Sympathy

July 21, 2004
by John Stuart

Hebrews 4:15 – For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are — yet was without sin. (NIV)

I remember being in a teaching hospital where an eminent Jewish psychologist was interviewing a young girl. She was deeply troubled by the unholy thoughts that kept penetrating her peace of mind. She was restless and agitated, wounded and suffering. The psychologist started to talk to her about her faith, and even though he was Jewish, he talked to her about Jesus.

A breakthrough occurred when the doctor said to his young patient, "Don't you think that when Jesus was a teenager, he experienced similar temptations?" The young girl's face seemed to brighten as she realized this for the very first time in her life. Instead of being condemned by God, she at last understood how compassionate He was. Jesus had walked that path too. Jesus could sympathize with her weaknesses.

Sometimes we forget that Jesus was fully human, because we concentrate too much on His divine side. It's comforting to know that Jesus was tested again and again, so that He can empathize with the struggles we face every day against temptation and sin.

And isn't it wonderful to have a Saviour who knows us completely, and yet He is still willing to show us mercy and grace?

Prayer: Lord Jesus, we owe You everything. You forgive us of all our faults. You grant us grace. You show us mercy. You understand the struggles that we encounter each day and sympathize with our weaknesses. Thank You for being our strength, our song, our salvation. In Your holy name we pray. Amen.

About the author:

John Stuart <traqair@aol.com>
Knoxville, Tennessee, USA

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