For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted. — Hebrews 2:18
“Been there, done that” has become an often-quoted phrase in recent years. Sometimes we hear it casually tossed about in reference to an activity. At other times, we may say it to acquaintances when they have a car wreck on the way to work, endure resistance from a rebellious teenager, spend sleepless nights with a colicky newborn, endure a difficult employment situation, or negotiate with a “terrible twos” toddler.
When we have been through a specific situation ourselves, it is much easier to empathize with others. Have you ever tried to comfort someone who faces a difficulty that you have never faced? Very likely you feel inadequate. Or perhaps someone who has never experienced a situation like yours has tried to console you. Although that person may have thought he understood, you knew full well that he did not.
If we understand better by experience, consider what our focus verse is saying. Jesus, who is God Himself and one with God the Father, became a human being like us. He experienced life on earth in all its dimensions. Why? So we would know that He understands what we go through.
He not only went through what we do, He went through more than any of us will ever face. Which of us has been without food for forty days while we were tempted of the devil? Have we been betrayed, spat upon, despised, or beaten? If we are reading this, we have not been killed for who we are or what we stand for. Jesus experienced the extremes!
Are you facing something difficult today? Perhaps emotional pain is tearing at your heart, or you confront a situation that looks like a mountain that can never be overcome. Take courage! Jesus understands — He really does — and He cares. He is looking at you with love in His eyes, and He wants to help you. Reach out to Him in prayer at this moment, and expect Him to answer with grace and strength for your time of need.
In verses 5-8, the writer quotes Psalm 8. God intended man to have dominion over the earth, but due to sin, man lost the ability to have that control. Jesus, because He lived without sin, had that dominion.
Jesus was made “a little lower than the angels” when, in His humility, He came down to this world. He suffered humiliation so that it could be followed by His exaltation. Humiliation and then exaltation is the order the Lord took, and His disciples will follow the same pattern.
The Lord’s substitutionary offering is clearly set forth in this passage. He tasted death for every man; He suffered for others. One purpose for Christ’s coming is mentioned here: that He might be like His “brethren.” In verse 10, the word captain means, “file leader.” It is a military picture of one who takes the lead, and his followers are behind him. Jesus suffered for the supreme purpose of “bringing many sons unto glory.” In this verse, the word perfect does not mean without sin or fault, because Jesus was sinless. It means “complete.”
Sanctification is what accomplishes the oneness referred to in verse 11. It makes us like Jesus Christ. Jesus prayed that His disciples might be one, even as He and His Father are one.
Verses 11-13 reference the bond that God expects us to have with Jesus Christ. When we think of the extent to which God went to meet the needs of sinful humanity, we can begin to glimpse the importance of this great salvation of which we are made partakers.
Satan’s power (verses 14 and 15) is through sin. He presides over the realm of death because of sin. There was no death in the world until sin entered. The sting of death is sin, so when sin is taken away, the sting is taken away also, and the fear of death is dispelled for the Christian.
We see the great purpose that Jesus had in forsaking all. He suffered for several reasons. First, His suffering was necessary so that He could identify with humanity. Next, He suffered death to redeem humanity and to make the power and fear of death ineffective by His resurrection. Finally, His sufferings qualified Him to be our High Priest before God the Father.
(Hannah’s Bible Outlines - Used by permission per WORDsearch)
II. The argument: the preeminence of Christ in His person and work
A. The superiority of Christ to the angels
2. Christ was made lower (2:5-18)
a. The fact (2:5-9)
(1) The destiny of man (2:5-8)
(2) The purpose of Christ (2:9)
b. The reason (2:10-18)
(1) To become man’s Savior (2:10)
(2) To be identified with men (2:11-13)
(3) To deliver men from death and the devil (2:14-16)
(4) To become a merciful and faithful high priest (2:17-18)
Jesus Christ does understand every situation. He is more than able to help with any challenge you face today, if you will ask Him.