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The Triumph of His Cross
Heb. 2: 14-18


These last five verses further prove Christ superiority and the subjection to all things under Him. There were several human problems here. Problems we will never conquer or be victorious with. However, Christ’s death on the cross provided a way and the best solution to those problems.

I. Jesus’ death gave Him victory over the devil (Heb. 2: 14)

A.The word partakers come from “koinoneo” which means to share with others (objectively or  subjectively): communicate, distribute, be partaker or “to have something in common.” The text states that the children (the adopted sons of God) are partakers of flesh and blood. Christ have to become human (have flesh and blood) so that He can rescue us. By doing so, He was able to destroy the devil who has the power of death.

B.  that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; (Heb.  2:14) The word destroy comes from “katargeo” and means “to be entirely idle (useless), literally or figuratively: —abolish, cease. The word does not mean “annihilate,” for it is obvious that Satan is still alive and busy. The word means “render inoperative, make of none effect.” Satan is not destroyed, but it indicates the annulment of his power over those whom Christ had redeemed.

C. In what sense did Satan have the power of death? The final authority of death is in the hands of our God (Deut. 32:39; Matt. 10:28; Rev. 1:18). Satan can do only that which is permitted by God (Job 1:12; 2:6). But because Satan is the author of sin (Jn. 8:44), and sin brings death (Rom. 6:23), in this sense Satan exercises power in the realm of death. Jesus called him a murderer (Jn. 8:44).

Illustration 1/Application: Satan’s Power is Permitted
Lest we be “terrified by our adversaries,” it is well to remember that Satan’s power is not inherent but permitted (Rom. 13:1). It is not unlimited but controlled (Job 1:12; 2:6). It is not invincible but broken (Lk. 11:21-11). It is not assured of success, but is surely doomed (Rev. 20:2-3). Satan knows well that there is no ultimate victory for him. The pronounced sentence has only been postponed. But he works to hinder and postpone Christ’s final triumph. We can rejoice in the certainty of John’s assurance: “Greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world” (I Jn. 4:4).
J. Oswald Sanders, Cultivation of Christian Character, (Moody Press, Chicago; 1965), p. 86

II. Jesus’ Death gave us freedom from the power of death (Heb. 2: 15-16)

A. Satan uses the fear of death as a terrible weapon to gain control over the lives of people.

B. Jesus took the fear and dread out of death for those who are saved. No longer do we have to look at the grave fearing the judgment of God. Now we can we can look
death in the face and say, O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
(1 Cor. 15:55) Jesus dealt with death for us. David said, Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. (Ps. 23:4). David describes the believer’s experience of death as a shadow of death. We do not face death itself but simply the shadow. How different it was for Jesus—He faced death itself as He hung upon Calvary’s Cross with the world’s sin upon Him. He faced the sting of death for every man. Because He faced death victoriously, we only have to face the shadow. Shadows can’t hurt anyone. The shadow of a sword can’t kill you. The shadow of a snake can’t bite you. The shadow of a bee can’t sting you. The shadow of death can’t separate the Christian from life.

C. Jesus Christ did not take on Himself the nature of angels in order to save the fallen angels (2 Pet. 2:4; Rev. 12:7-9). Instead, He stooped lower than the angels to become Man! And not just “man” in general; but He became a Jew, a part of the “seed of Abraham” (Heb. 2:16). The Jews were a despised and hated race, and yet our Lord became a Jew. (The Bible Exposition Commentary).

D. Faithful Gentile Christians, can spiritually claim to be “seed of Abraham” (Gal. 3:29)
Illustration 2/Application: Sarah Winchester
Sarah Winchester’s husband had acquired a fortune by manufacturing and selling rifles. After he died of influenza in 1918, she moved to San Jose, California.
Because of her grief and her long-time interest in spiritism, Sarah sought out a medium to contact her dead husband. The medium told her, “As long as you keep building your home, you will never face death.”
Sarah believed the spiritist, so she bought an unfinished 17-room mansion and started to expand it. The project continued until she died at the age of 85. It cost 5 million dollars at a time when workmen earned 50 cents a day. The mansion had 150 rooms, 13 bathrooms, 2,000 doors, 47 fireplaces, and 10,000 windows. And Mrs. Winchester left enough materials so that they could have continued building for another 80 years.
Today that house stands as more than a tourist attraction. It is a silent witness to the dread of death that holds millions of people in bondage (Heb. 2:15).
Our Daily Bread, April 2, 1994

III. His humanity enabled Jesus to be a sympathetic High Priest (Heb. 2:17-18)

A. Jesus is a merciful and faithful High Priest

1. In becoming man and coming to the world, Jesus was made like unto his brethren. “In all things”: Jesus was “made like” us “in every respect” except yielding to sin (Heb. 4:15). He knew what it was to be a helpless baby, a growing child, a maturing adolescent. He knew the experiences of weariness, hunger, and thirst (Jn. 4:6-8). He knew what it was to be despised and rejected, and falsely accused. He experienced physical suffering and death.

2. He had to be merciful (Heb. 2:17) that is, compassionate. That he might know how to pity us in our infirmities and trials, by having a nature like our own. (Barnes)

3. Christ had to be faithful (Heb. 2:17) The life of Christ was marked by faithfulness. He is the only One who could ever say, I do always those things that
please the Father. (J n. 8:29) Again He said, I have kept My Father’s commandments. (Jn. 15:10) Jesus was faithful to satisfy the righteous requirements of God.

4. to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. (Heb. 2:17) Reconciliation is the act of bringing two or more opposing parties together. It comes from “hilaskomai” and also carries the idea of atonement or propitiation. This was all the work of the High Priest. For every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins: (Heb. 5:1)

5. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted. (Heb. 2:18) Jesus experienced the same everyday life that we do—only without sin. He was hungry, He was thirsty, He was tired and weary. He was lonely, He slept, He laughed, He wept, He was grieved, He was troubled. He faced the attacks of Satan; he was bombarded with man’s unbelief and opposition. He was despised and rejected. He knew what it was like to be hated and lied about.
6. Why would the Son of God subject Himself to such treatment? Jesus allowed Himself to be treated with contempt and cruelty so that He could be a merciful and faithful High Priest (Heb. 2:17) and… succour them that are tempted. (Heb. 2:18) Because Jesus has been where we are He can empathize with us. In His humanity our Lord has experienced the same infirmities and limitations as us.

7. The word succour comes from the compound Greek word “boetheo.” “Boe” means “to cry” and “theo” means “to run.” The idea is to run to the aid of a person who is crying out for help. That is exactly what our Lord did when came to save sinful humanity and that is what He does at the right hand of God today. When you go to God in prayer with all the hurt and heartache, you have a Representative at the right hand of God who knows exactly what you are feeling, and He is able to comfort you.

Illustration 3/Application: The Miracle of Reconciliation

One sign and wonder, biblically speaking, that alone can prove the power of the gospel is that of reconciliation… Hindus can produce as many miracles as any Christian miracle worker. Islamic saints in India can produce and duplicate every miracle that has been produced by Christians. But they cannot duplicate the miracle of black and white together, of racial injustice being swept away by the power of the gospel.
Today’s Best Illustrations – Volumes 1-4.

IV. Conclusion:
Jesus’ death gave Him victory over the devil. Satan is still alive but his power is now inoperative over those whom Christ has redeemed. His death also gave us freedom from the power of death in the sense that we no longer have to fear death. As our hight priest now in heaven, He can rightly represent us because he knows exactly how we are feeling specially during trying times. Come to Jesus now. Repent and receive Him as your personal Saviour.

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