“Therefore, he had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.” (Hebrews 2:17)
On a recent family road trip, I had the pleasure of listening to Focus on the Family’s radio theater version of The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom. The story is chock full of gospel, great teaching, and faith-building testimonies. I want to highlight just one part of the story related to the verses at the top of this letter.
Shortly after Corrie and her sister Betsy had been transferred to the Ravensbruck German death camp, Betsy challenged Corrie to give thanks for everything (1 Thessalonians 5:18) based on their Bible reading that morning. Corrie struggled with this, especially for the cramped, flea-ridden beds. Later they learned that they had more freedom in their barracks to share the gospel because the fleas kept the guards out. Another indignity that they had to suffer was a regular, mock medical examination while standing naked before the guard. At one of these, Corrie remarked that Jesus also hung naked on the cross, and they drew comfort from the fact that Jesus went before them even in this trial.
As the Psalmist states, “the darkness is as light” to our God. This is more than just a supernatural perspective that only God enjoys; we are reminded in Hebrews that our God entered His creation and took on flesh in every respect as His brothers. What Corrie and Betsy reveled in is true for us as well: their God, our Savior, has gone before us and now carries us through every moment of our distress. He is our perfect high priest, having cleansed us from every sin and removed every cause for fear.