I was riding the bus to class one day, per usual, and was kind of whining to the Lord about the injustices I see every day, and the pain that people suffer in all forms day in and day out, and felt this verse so strongly in my heart:
“For we do not have a high priest [Jesus] who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are — yet was without sin.” Hebrews 4:15 [note added]
This verse is important for several reasons. First, Jesus is not unable to sympathize with us. He lived 33 years on this earth and faced many of the same trials we do. Sure, it was Israel, 30 AD..heck, men still wore dresses — I mean cloaks. But still, Jesus faced temptations of many kinds, he had to choose to do the right thing, he had to love in spite of how others treated him, he had to walk in grace when it would be easy to walk in anger, he had to make a name for himself, which was Son of God (NBD), and no one believed him. But why I felt the Lord brought this to me in this moment, was that he faced complete and utter injustice when he walked to that cross.
Jesus was SINLESS. I wasn’t even sinless in my first years of life, but HE WAS! For 33 years!! He lived 33 years without sin, and then faced the execution reserved for some of the worst criminals — people who had done wrong and made really bad choices and intentionally hurt others. Jesus died with them. He faced one of the greatest injustices when he faced death on a cross for OUR sins. He was literally innocent, and faced this death anyway. He was beaten, he was cursed, spit on, whipped, slandered, blasphemed, lied about, and the subject of many peoples’ hate — for nothing. He did nothing. He had the power to shut them all up in a second, but was subject to this pain. For you, for me.
This really matters to me. It means that Jesus understands what injustice feels like, and not just what it looks like. He understands because he experienced it. That brings me some peace to know that he knows what we experience on earth, and he has a way of righting the wrongs. His idea of justice may look widely different than mine, and his timing sure is different than mine, but he is trustworthy and will redeem what has been lost. This doesn’t solve the issue of injustice, but I feel that it makes it a little easier to swallow. He is not some old man sitting on a cloud, uninvolved in our lives. He is about justice (Isaiah 30:18), he carries healing in his wings (Malachi 4:2), and someday this will all make sense to us.