Learning Obedience through Suffering
Have you ever wondered why Jesus had to suffer so much when He came to earth as a man? One might expect that the Son of the living God would live a comfortable life and die a peaceful death. After all, wouldn't His blood have paid for our sins whether it was shed painlessly or torturously?
But Jesus took on human flesh and came to earth not just to die for our transgressions but also—with the exception of sin—to identify with us in every area of our lives. And that includes suffering (Heb. 2:17-18). How would a Savior who had no experience with pain help us when we hurt? Also, when it's difficult for us to obey the Lord, we need the help of One who learned obedience from the things He suffered.
Unlike us, Jesus didn't move from being rebellious to becoming obedient. Rather, He learned by personal experience the pathway we have to walk when God calls us to do something difficult or painful.
In His humanity, Christ struggled with the assignment that lay before Him: death on the cross. Even though the Father heard His cries, the plan was not changed, and Jesus walked through all of it in complete submission, just as He had done with every divine "assignment" throughout His earthly life.
The only reason you and I have salvation is because Jesus always did what pleased His Father—had He rebelled in that one area, all hope for lost humanity would be cancelled. If His obedience in suffering resulted in such a great benefit, just imagine what is in store for us when we do what God wants.
For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.