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THE PURPOSES OF JESUS’ HUMANITY (3)

Hebrews 2:14b-18

Victor M. Eskew

 

INTRODUCTION

 

A.  The Bible plainly teaches that Jesus was made a little lower than the angels. 

 

B.   This, however, did not make Him to be less than the angels.

 

C.  His becoming a man served astonishing purposes.  The writer of Hebrews reveals the many purposes of Jesus humanity in this section of Hebrews. 

 

I.         REVIEW OF CLASS ACTIVITY

 

II.       PURPOSES OF JESUS’ HUMANITY (Heb. 2:9b-18)

 

A.  REQUIREMENT (Heb. 2:9a):  for the suffering of death

 

B.   REPLACEMENT (Heb. 2:9b):  should taste death for all men

 

C.  REWARD (Heb. 2:10):  in bringing many sons unto glory

 

D.  REALIZATION (Heb. 2:10):  to make captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings

 

E.   RELATIONSHIP (Heb. 2:11-13):  he is not ashamed to call them brethren

 

F.    RELATE (Heb. 2:14):  he also himself likewise took part of the same

 

G.  RETALIATION (Heb. 2:14):  he might destroy him that hath the power of death

 

…that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.

 

1.    Defintions:

a.    Destroy

1)     Strong (2673):  render entirely idle (useless)

2)    Thayer:

a)    To render idle, unemployed, inactive, in operative

b)    To cause a person or thing to have no further influence, to deprive of force, influence, or power

 

b.    Power

1)     Strong (2904):  vigor, also translated as dominion, might, power, strength

2)    Thayer:  force, strength, power, might, dominion

c.    Devil

1)     Strong:  diobulos – prone to slander, slanderous, accusing falsely

2)    Thayer:  a traducer, specifically Satan

2.    Observations:

a.    The power of life and death ultimately resides in God (Deut. 32:39; I Sam. 2:6; Ps. 68:20).

 

The Lord killeth, and maketh alive:  he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up.

 

b.    Satan’s power to bring death is through his ability to tempt men to sin.  The wages of sin is death (Ezek. 18:20; Rom. 5:12; I Cor. 16:55-56).

c.    Jesus’ death provided the sacrifice for sins.

1)     Man does not have to be held accountable for his sins.  He has forgiveness through Jesus’ blood (Matt. 26:28; Eph. 1:7; Rev. 1:5).

2)    Satan’s power over death has been taken away by the death of Christ.

 

H.  RESCUE (Heb. 2:15):  deliver them who…all their lifetime subject to bondage

 

And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

 

1.    Part of the “power” of death is its ability to inflict fear into the hearts of men.

a.    Fear:

1)     Strong (5401):  phobos – to be put in fear, alarm, or fright

2)    Thayer:  fear, dread, terror, that which strikes terror

b.    Why the fear?

1)     Because of the misery associated with it

2)    Because of the inevitable corruption of the body

3)     Because of the uncertainty of what lies beyond the grave

2.    Too, all men die (Heb. 9:27).  We are subject to the bondage of death.

a.    Definitions:

1)     Subject to:

a)    Strong (1777):  liable to (a condition, penalty, or impartation)

b)    Thayer: under obligation…in a forensic sense, denoting a connection of a person …with a crime.

2)    Bondage: 

a)    Strong (1397):  slavery

b)    Thayer:  slavery, bondage, the condition of a slave

3.    Jesus has delivered man from the fear of death.

a.    We will die, but not forever.

b.    We know we will be raised from the dead because of the death of Christ.

1)     It is true that His resurrection ensures our resurrection.

2)    But, to have Jesus resurrected, He first had to die.  The two are inseparably linked together.

c.    Bruce:  “If, then, death itself cannot separate the people of Christ from God’s love which has been revealed in Him, it can no longer be held over their heads by the devil or any other malign power as a means of intimidation” (51).

d.   See Isaiah 25:8

 

He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from all the earth:  for the Lord hath spoken it.

 

I.     RESPONSIBILITY (Heb. 2:16-17):  might be a merciful and faithful high priest

 

For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.  Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in all things pertaining to God…

 

1.    Jesus became a man so He could faithfully execute the office of high priest.

2.    To understand man’s side, deity had to become a man.  Thus, Jesus took “on him the seed of Abraham.”

3.    Several points that could be developed:

a.    The role:  high priest

b.    The responsibilities

1)     Merciful

a)    Strong (1658):  compassionate

b)    Thayer:  merciful

2)    Faithful:

a)    Strong:  (4103):  trustworthy

b)    Thayer:  worthy of trust, one who can be relied upon…faithful in the discharge of official duties

 

J.    RECONCILIATION (Heb. 2:17):  to make reconciliation for the sins of the people

 

…to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.

 

1.    The ASV says:  “…to make propitiation for the sins of the people.

2.    Definition of “reconciliation”

a.    Strong (2433):  to conciliate…to atone (for sins)

b.    Thayer:  to render to one’s self, to appease, conciliate to one’s self…to expiate (to atone for, make amends for, or reparation for)

3.    Jesus’ death atoned for our sins.  He rendered our sins to Himself (II Cor. 5:21).

 

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

 

K.   RELIEF (Heb. 2:18):  he is able to succor them that are tempted

 

For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succor them that are tempted.

 

1.    As a man, Jesus suffered in His temptations.

a.    Suffered:

1)     Strong (3958):  to experience a sensation or impression (usually painful)

2)    Thayer;  to be affected, to feel, to have a sensible experience…in a bad sense, to suffer sadly, be in bad plight

b.    Tempted:

1)     Strong (3985):  to test

2)    Thayer;  to try, make a trial of, test, for the purpose of ascertaining his quality, or what he thinks, or how he will behave

2.    The purpose of Jesus’ suffering was so that “he is able to succor them that are tempted.”

a.    Mankind is tempted every day.

b.    Because Jesus has experienced suffering, He can succor us.

c.    Succour:

1)     Strong (997):  to aid or relieve, also translated as help

2)    Thayer:  to help, succor, bring aid

3)     Because Jesus has suffered, He can bring the exact aid we need.

 

CONCLUSION

 

A.  Yes, Jesus became a man, but He was not just any man.

 

B.   After one sees why He became a man, He sees His superiority, even to the angels.