Made like us in all things but sin, Jesus needs no one to tell him about the human heart, for he has taken our heart as his own heart. The Letter to the Hebrews says that Jesus was tempted in every way that we are but did not sin- in every way that we are. Imagine the breadth of that statement. Think of all you go through, all you feel, all the ways you are tempted; and imagine Jesus feeling it all with you. It never ceases to astonish.
The Letter to the Hebrews goes on: “We do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet apart from sin. Therefore let us draw near with boldness to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Jesus knows, Jesus understands. He shares our flesh and blood and knows well what yanks at our hearts because “he himself likewise shared the same things so that through death he might destroy” all that threatens to draw us away from God. Imagine then the sympathy of Jesus; literally, he feels as we do. He speaks to us not from above, but from deep within us.
Photograph by Charles O'Connor.