By: Carole L. Haines
There’s one thing Jesus won’t ever say to us about sin, “Been there, done that!” But what can be said about Jesus regarding sin is this:
“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore, let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews4:14-16)
Jesus can understand every temptation we ever face, it says so right here. He has been tempted in “ALL THINGS as we are,” yet without sin. Now that statement is just brimming with truth and encouragement for us. Let’s look at each part of verse 15 more closely.
For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.
- Jesus CAN and DOES sympathize with our weaknesses. This means that Jesus can and is affected with the same feeling as another. He can feel for and have compassion on us, because He knows what it is to be tempted as we are in our weaknesses.
The word for weaknesses is defined here as:
- BODY: want of strength, weakness, infirmity of the body
its native weakness and frailty
feebleness of health or sickness
- SOUL: want of strength and capacity requisite
to understand a thing, to do things great and glorious
to restrain corrupt desires, to bear trials and trouble.
That all sounds so detailed, but I love it. Can’t you relate to the feelings of illness and frailty of body? I can really relate to having an inability to understand some things, of feeling too small to do anything great. I totally get the difficulties in restraining corrupt desires and almost buckling under the weight of bearing trials and troubles.
- Jesus can sympathize with us about this. According to this verse, He was tempted with the same things; yet He never sinned in them.
- Jesus knows what temptation feels like, looks like and the courses it can take in our lives. He knows the subtle forms of its enticements and its insidious nature. Temptation here is defined as: to try or test one’s faith, virtue, character, by enticement to sin. God’s Word tells us that Jesus knows what it is to suffer under temptation and because he can and does come to the aid of those who are tempted.
For since He Himself was tempted in that which He has suffered, He is able to come to the aid of those who are tempted.
- The same word used for temptation in these verses is also used in the description of our temptations described in James 1:14-15.
“But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.”
- Jesus can aid us in escaping temptation, enticement and sin
Jesus suffered temptations, but He was never carried away and enticed by them. He always chose righteously and therefore He can show us how to choose righteously as well. Jesus provides that way of escape spoken of in 1 Corinthians 10:13:
No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.
So run to Jesus, Dear Believer, in any and every temptation. Run to Him and never from Him, for He knows, He understands and He is able to come to your aid and show you the way to escape so that you will be victorious over the temptation and sin that so often plagues us. Run to Him, cry out to Him, trust Him to lead you in the way that you should go. He loves you and that love will never fail. Jesus will never say, “Been there, done that.” But He will say, “Been there, and I can show you how NOT to do that.”
*(I had a friend ask me how I get the Greek Definitions of the New Testament words I use. I use the Strong’s Concordance, and I usually look them up at Blue Letter Bible. Here is an example of what that looks like.
*For we do not have G2192 a high G749 priest G749 who G5101 cannot G1410 G3361 sympathize G4834 with our weaknesses, G769 but One who G5101 has been tempted G3985 in all G3956 things G3956 as we are, yet without G5565 sin. G266
Each key word has a corresponding number that reveals the definition at the site. Just a little info, for anyone else who was wondering how and where I get my information:)