Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. For surely it is not angels that he helps, but he helps the offspring of Abraham. Therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. Hebrews 2:14-18, ESV.
When we go through hard times, we want sympathy. We want someone who will come alongside us and share our struggle. Sometimes, maybe most of the time, we want this more than we want an expert scientific description of our condition or practical advice on how to improve our lot. We want someone like us, who loves us, to be with us.
Hebrews 2:14-18 tells us that God the Son, the second person of the Trinity who had enjoyed perfect fellowship in the Godhead from before time began, took on flesh as a man to become our perfect sympathetic friend. Jesus, the eternal Son of God shared our flesh and blood condition to come alongside us and show that He cares for us in a way unlike any other.
Jesus shared our flesh and blood condition to defeat our death-wielding enemy, the devil. The devil is the accuser. As such, he employs a mighty weapon against us. Because the wages of sin is death, he can point to our sin and demand that a just God take our lives and condemn us to the eternal second death. Jesus came alongside us as one of us to defeat this evil accuser.
Jesus shared our flesh and blood condition to deliver us from a lifelong fear of death. As if eternal death were not bad enough, there is a present-day shadow cast over us by the prospect of it. We are enslaved by the fear of death all of our days. During an epidemic with stay-at-home orders, this becomes abundantly clear. Jesus came alongside us as one of us to remove that fear.
Jesus shared our flesh and blood condition to be our High Priest and make the sacrifice that brings us forgiveness. Only a man could stand as a substitutionary sacrifice for sinful men. Only a man could serve as the priest who offers that sacrifice. So we might be forgiven of our sin and freed from death and fear, Jesus came alongside us as one of us.
Jesus shared our human condition to help us in our temptation as one who knows what temptation is like. To the glorious gift of freedom from death and fear through the forgiveness of sin, Jesus adds this: a constant companion in the fight to not sin. He does not just show up, deal with eternity, and leave us to fight against temptation alone. He stays with us as one who knows what real temptation feels like and He helps us fight the pull toward sin. Jesus stays alongside us in our fight against sin.
God the Son came as one of us to rescue us from our death problem and its close partner, our fear problem, by sacrificing Himself to forgive our sins. But He is not a hit-and-run Savior. He is with us always, even to the end of the age, as we continue to live in a world of temptation.
My prayer for you today is that you will know the whole of the Jesus experience—the devil-defeating, fear-removing, sin-forgiving, temptation-overcoming experience of walking with Jesus. May you enjoy Him today!