There’s a song by Ingrid Michaelson that includes these lines:
“Have you ever thought about what protects our hearts?
Just a cage of rib bones and other various parts…
And we are so fragile,
And our cracking bones make noise,
And we are just
Breakable, breakable, breakable girls and boys.”
I have three younger brothers, so when we were growing up accidents were a common occurrence in our house. I’ve had stitches twice under my chin, and I’m incredibly clumsy so I often have bruises, scrapes, and burns. My oldest brother has had stitches twice over his left eye. My middle brother has been more accident prone than the rest of us–he’s had stitches in his head after running into a doorknob (he was three, so doorknob-height) and his nose was broken by a baseball. And he was once swinging a baseball bat around in the backyard and our youngest brother “wouldn’t get out of the way.” My youngest brother had to keep his arm in a sling for a while after that incident.
We are fragile, and breakable.
I was reminded of this again recently when a friend of mine had to have brain surgery. He’s a bear of a man–about 6′ 5″ and probably close to 300 pounds, not the kind of person you think of as being fragile or breakable. And yet, he had a brain tumor.
We are fragile, and breakable, and mortal.
Over the next few weeks we’ll be working through a series of devotions here on thESource that look at prophecies concerning Jesus and their fulfillment. Our first prophecy is found at Genesis 3:15: “I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel” (ESV). This is the first promise of a Savior mentioned in the Bible, and while there are several pieces of this prophecy, the one I want to concentrate on is that Jesus would be the offspring of a woman. And, He was born of woman, as the Gospels show and as Galatians 4:4 and 5 say: “But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under he law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”
What does it mean that Jesus was born of a woman? Why is this important?
It’s important because we, too, are born of women. Jesus became flesh, just like us. He became fragile and breakable, and had a mortal body. He was fully man, and so He was broken, and He died, just as we will one day die. But because He was also fully God, He was able to defeat death. Take a look at Hebrews 2:11, 14-18:
“For he who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one origin. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brothers. Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. For surely it is not angels that he helps, but he helps the offspring of Abraham. Therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.”
Because Jesus was born of woman just as we are, that makes us brothers and sisters with Him.
Because Jesus was fully human, completely flesh and blood, He died. But because He was also fully God, He defeated the devil and death and delivered us from the slavery of sin and death.
Because Jesus was human, He helps us. He knows the things that we experience, and so He knows how to help us. He knows that the most important thing we need is forgiveness of our sins, and because He is God, He gives us that to us and reconciles us–brings us back to–our Father.
Because Jesus was born of woman, He suffered when He was tempted, and so He is able to help us when we suffer and are tempted.
Prayer: Father, you are a great and loving God who knows exactly what we need. Thank you for sending Jesus to be flesh and blood like we are so that through Him we can be your children. Thank you for knowing us and for having a relationship with us. Thank you for forgiving us of our sins and for reconciling us to you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.