Jesus Is Better #7 -- Hebrews 5 -- Jesus Is A Better Friend


  • Friend: a person you know well and regard with affection and trust.
    • But I mean for the word to cover more than that today, and so does the author to the Hebrews.
      • Israel's priests served as guides, aides, therapists, counselors, worship leaders, financial planners, and even physicians in their ancient role.
        • They helped people:
          • Deal with sin, shame, and uncleanness.
          • By listening to people's deepest dreams, confessions, and desires.
          • Through various life stages like birth, sickness, marriage, and death.
          • Learn about human sexuality and how it works best.
          • Give, save, and spend wisely.
          • Work and play at healthy times and in healthy ways.
          • Celebrate, rest in, and serve God.
          • Connect with God and others.
        • When in full operation, they were true friends to God's people.
          • Note: You've likely had friends who have helped you with one or two of these categories!
    • But Jesus can befriend us and help us in each area better than the priesthood.
      • So let's talk about a true and dynamic friendship with Christ.
      • In the passage, Jesus is compared with the priests, so we will inspect each comparison.

1 -- He's The Best One For The Job, So Trust Him (1, 4-6)

1 For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins.

4 And no one takes this honor for himself, but only when called by God, just as Aaron was.

  • 1 Chosen / Appointed / Called / Aaron: In Aaron's priesthood they priests did not choose the job.

5 So also Christ did not exalt himself to be made a high priest, but was appointed by him who said to him [Psalm 2], “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”; 6 as he says also in another place [Psalm 110], “You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek.”

  • 4-6 Appointed by him: The high priest was born into his calling by being the oldest son of Aaron, but Jesus, God's Son, was appointed by God as priest forever.
  • The high priest had to be a man -- chosen from among men (1) -- but Jesus chose to become a man.
    • Jesus is the best one for the job because he's like you, but knows glory unlike anyone else who is like you. In other words, others might be able to relate to who you are, but Jesus can also relate to who you could be!
  • The high priest was called by God by being born of Aaron (4), but Jesus was appointed because he was God's Son (5).
    • This means he was the member of the Triune Godhead who chose to go! No descendant of Aaron chose his family line (but was born into it).
    • Jesus is the best on for the job because he chose to serve you, unlike others who fell circumstantially into your life. Think of the relationships you've had in life. Did any one of them sovereignly decide they would put themselves in your path? Didn't circumstances beyond their control (or yours) put them with you?
  • The high priest did not last forever, for Aaron and his offspring would die (4), but Jesus is our priest forever (6).
    • Note: We will talk about Melchizedek in future sermons, but suffice it to say today his was a priesthood without end, rooted in eternity.
    • Jesus is the best one for the job because he will be there for you forever, longer than anyone else.
      • 1 Peter 1:24–25 (ESV) — 24 for “All flesh is like grass and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls, 25 but the word of the Lord remains forever.”
      • Ecclesiastes 3:1 (ESV) — 1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
        • And Jesus will be there for you during all of it!
        • He's the best one for the job. Trust him!

2 -- He's The Best At Sympathizing With Your Weaknesses, So Go To Him (2, 7-8)

2 He can deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is beset with weakness.

  • 2 Beset with weakness: The high priest.

7 In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. 8 Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered.

  • 8 He learned obedience:
    • The high priest was born with and beset with weakness, but Jesus chose a life of dependence upon his Father.
    • The high priest could deal gently with the ignorant and wayward because he was the same, but Jesus learned obedience through what he suffered.
      • He offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death.
        • Garden of Gethsemane:
          • Matthew 26:39 (ESV) — 39 “...My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”
          • Matthew 26:42 (ESV) — 42 “...My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.”
      • He was heard because of his reverence.
        • His prayer was not to escape or change the Father's will, but to accept it, and for that reason he was heard.
    • All that to say, he is our God, yet he learned obedience in the face of difficulty.
  • He's the best at sympathizing with your weaknesses, so go to him.
    • So go to him!
      • Know that he had to go through major trials and difficulties too.
      • Envision him learning obedience through his sufferings.
      • Let feelings of ignorance or waywardness be signposts directing you to him.

3 -- He Introduces The Best Identity, So Embrace Him (3, 9-10)

3 Because of this he is obligated to offer sacrifice for his own sins just as he does for those of the people.

9 And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, 10 being designated by God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek.

  • 10 Melchizedek: Again, we will get to him in chapter 7.
  • 9 Made perfect: as the source of eternal salvation (not "made perfect morally," for he has only and always been morally perfect).
  • Jesus:
    • 1 The perfect sacrifice -- The high priest had to offer a perfect sacrifice for his own sins and those of the people (9), but Jesus was made perfect as the sacrifice for others' sins.
    • 2 The source of salvation/life -- The high priest's sacrifices took life from the bull and goat, but Jesus' sacrifice made him the source of eternal life (salvation).
    • 3 The winner of eternal salvation -- The high priest's sacrifices were ongoing, but Jesus' offering gives eternal salvation to all who obey him in faith.
  • He introduces the best identity, so embrace him.
    • Perfect / Saved / Eternally approved by God
    • Know who you are in Christ.
    • Remember how solid your relationship with God is.
    • Recall the sufficiency of his sacrifice for you.
      • John 19:30 (ESV) — 30 When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished..."

4 -- But Dullness Of Hearing Keeps Us From Enjoying Him, So Put Him To Use! (11-14)

11 About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. 12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, 13 for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. 14 But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.

  • 11, 14 You have become dull of hearing / mature / those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice: He had much to say about Jesus' high priestly role in their lives, but
  • Over time, these hearers had become dull of hearing (11), so our author felt he couldn't really get into Jesus' priesthood like he wanted to.
    • It wasn't that the message was dull, for the message of Jesus' RIGHT NOW ministry is exciting and awesome.
    • It was that his hearers has become dull (of) hearing, which kept them on the basic principles of God's word, the milk, and like children.
    • The noise of Jesus gets dulled to you.
  • 13 Since he is a child: Their dull hearing led them to spiritual childishness (not childlike dependency).

    • Unstable people
    • Upset easily
    • Immature in thinking
  • 14 Let your powers of discernment be trained by the constant practice of your relationship with Jesus.

    • Lean on him / Go to him / Embrace him.
    • Get in constant practice in your walk with Christ.


  • Sometimes you need to trade our a friend, counselor, doctor, therapist, financial planner, or pastor. But you'll never need to trade out Jesus!