Verse: Hebrews 2:14-18
14 Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— 15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. 16 For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants. 17 For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. 18 Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.
There is a lot packed into this verse, but let's just pick out on amazing truth. Jesus suffered the difficulties and pain of temptation, so that he could help us when we are tempted. That is incredible, and so comforting.
So that's the main thought for today. Are you wrestling with temptation in your life? Are you battling an ongoing sin area that you can't seem to kick? Are you living with shame and guilt from your past decisions, or even from stuff you are still doing? Do you feel powerless to overcome sin in your life?
Jesus understands. Now, he never actually gave in to temptation and crossed the line into sin, but he did face all kinds of temptation. The author of Hebrews in a couple chapters reiterates this point: "For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.(4:15). Imagine that. He has been tempted over and over again. He has suffered the attack of the enemy. He has battled thoughts that threatened to lead him down paths of sin. And in all that, he stood strong. But as a result "he is able to help" us.
Not only does he help us, but he also always provides a way out:
No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. (1 Corinthians 10:13)
Today, let this be an encouragement to you. The battle against sin is so hard. It can be so frustrating. And we will fall. We will fall. But God will be with you. He will stand with you when you are strong AND when you are weak. He knows your weakness and he will be strength in the midst of your weakness. He will comfort you when you fail. And he will even give you perseverance to stand in temptation and resist.
Don't give up. God is with you. He loves you, and you are not alone.
I pray that you would walk with me today in all my struggles and weaknesses. Give me strength to say no to the temptation as it comes my way, and when I fall, to receive your forgiveness and not dwell in shame.