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Summary: For this reason he had to be made like his brothers 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.

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JESUS THE BETTER WAY: BETTER THAN OUR HUMAN POTENTIAL

HEBREWS 2:5-2:18

BIG IDEA: For this reason he had to be made like his brothers 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.

It is not to angels that he has subjected the world to come, about which we are speaking. But there is a place where someone has testified:

“What is man that you are mindful of him,

The son of man that you care for him?

You made him a little lower than the angels;

You crowned him with glory and honor

And put everything under his feet.”

In putting everything under him, God left nothing that is not subject to him. Yet at present we do not see everything subject to him. But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering. Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers.

He says,

“I will declare your name to my brothers;

In the presence of the congregation I will sing your praises.”

And again,

“I will put my trust in him.”

And again he says,

“Here am I, and the children God has given me.”

Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants. For this reason he had to be made like his brothers 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. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

INTRO

Have you ever paid attention to the warning labels you find on appliances and products you buy? I found a web site that has catalogued quite a few of them. I think you may find these “interesting:

• "Caution: The contents of this bottle should not be fed to fish." -- On a bottle of shampoo for dogs.

• "For external use only!" -- On a curling iron.

• "Warning: This product can burn eyes." -- On a curling iron.

• "Do not use in shower." -- On a hair dryer.

• "Do not use while sleeping." -- On a hair dryer.

• "Do not place this product into any electronic equipment." -- On the case of a chocolate CD in a gift basket.

• "Recycled flush water unsafe for drinking." -- On a toilet at a public sports facility in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

On a personal note, attached to the handle on the case of the projector I bought was a cotton thread with a note from the manufacturer on it. It read:

“Before you try it your way, read our instructions.”

It would have been a whole lot less frustrating (not to mention saved me some time and money) if I had just read that little tag and took its advice BEFORE trying it my way. But nooooooo! How hard could it be! I don’t need to read no stinkin’ manual!!!! The truth was, however, the manufacturer knew better how to operate it than I did and I should have heeded the warning and taken their advice.

(special thanks to Thomas Lea in “The Holman New Testament Commentary” for this adapted illustration).

That scenario has been reenacted time and again by people from every walk of life and in every age. They think they can tackle whatever is on the table at the moment in their own power and with their own skill set. It is so engrained in us that it easily morphed into a movement with an official name – “The Human Potential Movement” (HPM).

The Human Potential Movement arose out of the chaos of the 1960s and formed around the concept of capturing the potential that, according to its advocates, lies largely untapped in all people.

• The movement has its conceptual roots in existentialism and humanism.

• It believed that: encapsulated within human potential was the ability to solve any problem and lift the world out of its mess into a state of perfection.

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