Summary: God loved us so much that he became like us so that he could save us.
God Has A Face
Text: Heb. 2:14-18
1. “We make such a fuss! Bring the baby into a room, and everything changes. Grandma reaches up. Grandpa wakes up. Conversation shifts from politics and presidents to Pampers and pacifiers. This time of year babies take center stage. And well they should. Is not Christmas the story of a baby?
2. Heaven’s seed enwombed in Mary.
Minuscule, yet mighty.
A fetus, yet a force.
God descends a birth canal.
Creator cradled in a Bethlehem barn.
Infant, yet infinite.
Asleep, yet a King.
God gurgles in Mama’s arms.
3. This is the Christmas moment that shaped all the others to follow. On a starlit night in the company of sheep, cattle, and a bewildered Joseph, Mary’s eyes fell upon the face of her just-born son. She was bone weary, surely. In pain, likely. Ready to place her head on the straw and sleep the rest of the night away, probably. But first Mary had to see this face. His face. To wipe the moisture from his mouth and feel the shape of his chin. To be the first to whisper, “So this is what God looks like.” (Excerpt From: Max Lucado. “Because of Bethlehem (with Bonus Content).” iBooks. https://itun.es/us/546E_.l).
4. We hear all of the time about the Christmas miracle. But that Christmas miracle is not that baby Jesus was born, but that God became like one of us. However, the question we need to answer is why?
5. God became like one of us...
A. To Set Us Free
B. To Relate To Our Struggle
6. Let's stand together as we read Heb. 2:14-18.
Proposition: God loved us so much that he became like us so that he could save us.
Transition: The first reason he became like one of us is...
I. He Became Like One Of Us To Set Us Free (14-15).
A. The Son Became Flesh And Blood
1. Why in the world would the Son of God become like one of us?
A. Why would he put up with teething?
B. Why would he put up with puberty?
C. Why would he subject himself to sickness, disease and pain?
D. Why would he go through Freshman English? Okay maybe not.
2. The writer of Hebrews gives us the reasons why. First he says, "Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death."
A. Death is the common fear and final experience of all people, and only as a human being, made of flesh and blood, could Christ die because only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.
B. His death and his return to life showed that death had been defeated.
C. Romans 6:9-11 (NLT)
We are sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. 10 When he died, he died once to break the power of sin. But now that he lives, he lives for the glory of God. 11 So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus.
D. Sin and death are interconnected: Sin results in death. Only by first breaking the power of sin could Christ then break the power of death. He accomplished both through his death and resurrection.
E. In those acts, Christ dealt the final blow to both Satan and death. Although Satan still holds great power over this world, he is mortally wounded. God allows Satan to work, but limits him.
F. Just as salvation is partly realized now and will be fully realized later, in God’s Kingdom, so Satan is still at work but will one day be destroyed (Barton, Life Application New Testament Commentary, 1016).
3. The Biblical writer goes on to say, "Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying."
A. The author does not explain how Christ's death does this but contents himself with the fact that it does. In doing so he stresses the note of victory that we find throughout the NT.
B. The defeat of the devil means the setting free of those he had held sway over, those who had been gripped by fear of death.
C. Fear is an inhibiting and enslaving thing; and when people are gripped by the ultimate fear—the fear of death—they are in cruel bondage.
D. In the first century this was very real. The philosophers urged people to be calm in the face of death, and some of them managed to do so. But to most people this brought no relief.