Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Hebrews 5 & 6

In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, being designated by God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek. Hebrews 5:7-10

The author of Hebrews wants his audience to grasp the humanity of Christ. For someone unsure of this, the passage can be very uncomfortable. The following words convey humanity: "loud cries and tears", "learned obedience through what he suffered." Jesus cried out to God to be saved. We see this in the Garden of Gethsemane. He knew that God could save him, which is what he wanted. But more than that, he wanted to obey his father, even if it meant humiliation, separation from his Father, and a painful death.

What does it mean when the author says that Jesus "learned obedience through what he suffered?" Every high priest had to understand what the people were going through before he could be any help to them. Jesus was the ultimate high priest, but that would not have been the case if he had not truly understood us, and the only way that he could truly understand us was to experience suffering. And experience suffering he did.

In the creation, the Lord made man like himself; but in the redemption he made himself like man. John Brys

As the Son of God, and as the only one who never did anything wrong, you were the one person who did not deserve to suffer. I thank you for choosing to lay down your life for me, a pitiful sinner. I am truly thankful that you know me, understand me, and despite all that is in me, you love me.

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