The Help All Of Us Need
One of the great benefits man can have in Christ is simply HELP.That's right. "For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted," (Heb. 2:18). When I experience difficulty here on the earth (and this is a difficult place to live), I have a Savior who can help. He is not a remote onlooker. He has participated in human life on earth. He has been through the human experience. Now He is in heaven, at the right hand of God, and He is there to help ("aid") His people. How does He help us?
He helps us by delivering us from sin. He said one time that sin is a master that holds us in bondage (Jno. 8:34). Only Jesus can free us from that master, by cleansing us, giving us new direction and teaching us how to live without being ruled by sin. "In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace," (Eph. 1:7).
He helps us by His example. As we follow Him - as we think the way He thought, react as He reacted, and obey God as He did, we are helped in handling the sufferings and temptations we face. There is no better example. In fact, there is no perfect model of human behavior save Him who died for us after living completely without any sin! One way He comes to our aid is, through His perfect example.
He helps us by His teaching. Not only does He show us how to live, He tells us how to live. Through His teachings in the first four books of the New Testament, and the teaching communicated through His apostles in the rest of the New Testament, we have the instruction we need. He said this one time. "Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall." (Matt. 7:24-27). He doesn't promise to prevent all the storms in life. He says, if we will hear and do what He says, we will have the strength to endure those storms and survive (see also 2 Jno. 9). Jesus is the help we need - and He helps through both His example and His instruction in the New Testament.
He helps us through the promises of the gospel. In essence He has said: "regardless of what you may have to endure on earth, there will be a perfect existence for you when I come again. Just trust Me and obey!" So, when we are troubled or frustrated by the physical pain, the emotional stress, the persecution and injustice we experience and observe - we take our rest, our confidence and stand upon His promises. Those statements generate with us, hope, motivation and comfort. It helps to believe what He said: "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know." Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (Jno. 14:1-6).
He helps us through His attitude of care and mercy. If we believe in Him, we know He is a merciful and faithful High Priest (Heb. 2:17; 1 Pet. 5:6,7). Jesus is an authoritative Ruler and Commander, but not like a cold, human dictator who cares not for his men. So, we can follow His example, obey His instructions, reply upon His promises and be comforted by His attitude of love, care and mercy for us.
He helps us through His intercession on our behalf. We approach the Father in prayer through Jesus Christ, who is our Mediator, our Intercessor and Advocate with the Father. He ever lives to make intercession for us (Heb. 7:25). And "...if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous," (1 Jno. 2:1).
Now, what kind of a problem do you have. Just name the problem!
Do you suffer under the guilt of some transgression or a life of sin? Are you under the pressure of some specific temptation now? Have you been trying to serve God through the doctrines and commandments of men? Are you having trouble coping with the daily pressures of life - physical pain, emotional pain, a struggle in some relationship? You cannot name any problem that Jesus cannot help you handle! He can help. And that doesn't mean He will suddenly make all the trouble go away. Remember, there will be storms. But with Him at your side and you on His side - you will survive the storms. Come to Him in obedience and stay there! He will help.
By Warren E. Berkley
From Expository Files 5.10; October 1998