Lent Day 8: Kinship Enfleshed

The Word Made Flesh, God Poured Out by Mike Moyers

The Day’s Scripture

Hebrews 2:10-18 (CEB)

10 It was appropriate for God, for whom and through whom everything exists, to use experiences of suffering to make perfect the pioneer of salvation. This salvation belongs to many sons and daughters
whom he’s leading to glory. 11 This is because the one who makes people holy and the people who are being made holy all come from one source. That is why Jesus isn’t ashamed to call them brothers and sisters when he says,

12 I will publicly announce your name to my brothers and sisters.
        I will praise you in the middle of the assembly.
13 He also says,
       I will rely on him.
And also,
      Here I am with the children whom God has given to me. 
14 Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, he also shared the same things in the same way. He did this to destroy the one who holds the power over death—the devil—by dying. 15 He set free those who were held in slavery their entire lives by their fear of death. 16 Of course, he isn’t trying to help angels, but rather he’s helping Abraham’s descendants. 17 Therefore, he had to be made like his brothers and sisters in every way. This was so that he could become a merciful and faithful high priest in things relating to God, in order to wipe away the sins of the people. 18 He’s able to help those who are being tempted, since he himself experienced suffering when he was tempted.


A couple of things I know . . .

1) Experiencing and enduring suffering can lead people to grow in empathy, compassion, and mercy for their fellow humans.  2) We will look out for those we consider “family” more than any others.  We will defend our family, we will love our family, we will fight for our family, we will give to our family, we will suffer for our family, some of us may die for our family members.

Here’s why Jesus’ life on earth is a big deal: It means, we are Family to him.
The Incarnation of Jesus Christ is Good News because in his enfleshment Jesus moves to claim relationship/kinship with us; share flesh and blood with us; and share our sufferings with us. This means in Him we have one who has compassion and mercy for us; in Him we are inheritors for whom He will defend, love, fight for, give to, suffer on behalf of, and die for to save.

Jesus is the wounded healer.  Jesus is the go-between.  Jesus vouches for you.  Jesus is legit and has the ultimate street cred.  He’s been where you’ve been.  He understands what you are going through.  There is nothing you suffer, you wrestle with, you are tempted by that is too far gone or too estranged in a swamp-pit of hot-messiness for Jesus to handle, lift up, cover over, cleanse, or deliver you from.  This is why we can turn to him like little children and ask to be healed and be saved.  Jesus’ incarnation is Good News for all people because it means God has drawn near to us.  It means God is present and accessible and not aloof. He is compassionate and merciful. Emmanuel, God with us.

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