Christ has compassion for our struggles with sin.

Christ has compassion for our struggles with sin.

Read Hebrews 4:11-16

“For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses.”

How can a holy God be sympathetic with sinful man? More than anything else, the one thing that separates us from God is his absolute purity and holiness. God is untainted by any sin, and all sin is an insult to who he is. Therefore, it would seem impossible for a holy God to be sympathetic with our struggle with sin. Angry and offended—yes, Understanding never! But this is where the writer of Hebrews takes us.

When Christ came to live among us, he did more than just come to confront us with our sin and point us to our need for salvation. When he came, he took upon himself our human nature so that he might fully identify with us. This is the wonder of the incarnation. We were created to reflect his image, but we rejected his image in the pursuit of our own. So God took on our image to renew his image in us. When Christ came, he was not merely God who appeared among men or appeared as a man. While maintaining his full deity, he also became fully human in every sense of the word. He suffered pain, discomfort, hunger, and fatigue. He experiences all the physical struggles we face within our mortal bodies. But he also experienced all the spiritual struggles as well. He faced all the temptations that we face. There was no struggle with sin that we face that Christ himself experienced. The difference was Christ faced the full weight of temptation without ever succumbing to temptation.

The reality of Christ’s humanity and confrontation with temptation leads to three essential truths. First, because he resisted all temptation and was free from sin, we have hope for our victory over temptation. In our union with Christ, we now have the strength, through the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, to now resist sin. Second, in his struggle with the temptation, he also became our sympathetic high priest. He understands and sympathizes with our weaknesses. He knows the struggles we face and is moved by them. Third, and this is where the writer of Hebrews now points us. Because Christ identifies with our struggle and yet was victorious over temptation, we have a place to turn to find help in our battle with sin. Christ is willing and able to give us both the strength to overcome temptation and the offer of mercy and grace when we fail. Remember Christ understands and desires to provide you the strength you need to overcome in your daily struggle with the temptations of life. All you have to do is ask!

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