Sabbath School Lesson for January 15-21, 2022

Overview of Lesson 4

Here are some of the ways Jesus is our Brother:

  • Like a close relative who was able to redeem, or buy back, someone from slavery, Jesus is our Redeemer from sin. (Sunday)
  • Like Moses, who chose to suffer affliction with God’s people, Jesus chose to take on our human nature in order to lead us out of sin. (Monday)
  • Only by being our sinless Brother was Jesus able to be our Savior. (Tuesday)
  • It was the suffering of Christ that enabled Him to experience what sin feels like and be able to comfort us when we have trials. (Wednesday)
  • Jesus, being without sin, made Him our model for living without sin. (Thursday)

Hebrews, chapter 1, concentrated mostly on Jesus as the Son of God and His superiority over the angels. In chapter 2, we find that Jesus made Himself lower than the angels by taking human form, in order to be the Son of Man.

He became the second Adam, someone who like Adam before the Fall, had no sinful tendencies. It was through His suffering and death that He became our Brother and Friend. He belonged to God as His Son, but also to fallen humanity as the Son of Man.

Memory Text: “Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is the devil.” Hebrews 2:14 NKJV

Jesus fulfilled His role as our faithful Brother by being our Protector, Teacher, and best Friend. He alone could conquer the power of the devil, which included the attraction of sin and the fear of death. He taught us how to live a sinless life and showed us friendship by sharing the pain and suffering that humans all too often endure.

Sunday: The Brother as a Redeemer

Leviticus 25 gives guidance on how slavery was to be dealt with in that ancient culture. Like divorce, which was never God’s ideal plan for marriage, He nevertheless made provision for slavery, the practice of hiring oneself to someone, in order to pay back debts or get out of poverty. Besides the Jubilee every fifty years, which allowed for all slaves to be free from their debts and servitude, it was possible for a relative to buy back an enslaved relative at any time.

Hebrews 2:14-16 describes the Messiah as such a relative, who is able to release us from the servitude of Satan. He gives aid to the seed of Abraham. In other words, His relatives. God’s people are His people–making Him, not only our Redeemer, but our Brother.

Bible Verses to Explore:

Hebrews 2:14-16 and Romans 6:23

  • What debt do we owe, and why?
  • How does Jesus release us from that debt, and why?

Monday: Not Ashamed to Call Them Brothers

The readers of the book of Hebrews had experienced public shaming for their faith in Jesus (Hebrews 10:33). They were made to feel ashamed for believing that Jesus was the Messiah. By contrast, Jesus was not ashamed of them.

This might best be explained by recalling the life of Moses, a figure of Christ. As the adopted son of Pharaoh’s daughter, Moses was in the line of succession for the throne of Egypt, one of the greatest countries in the world. His training as a youth in Pharaoh’s palace equipped him for leadership (Acts 7:22).

Moses had no doubt begun to make a name for himself as Pharaoh’s adopted grandson and leader of the army, when his decision to side with the enslaved Hebrew people made it impossible to remain in Pharaoh’s court. Hebrews 11:24-26 explains the reason for his abrupt dismissal and need to flee to the wilderness and spend the next forty years of his life as a shepherd. He chose to suffer affliction and hardship with God’s people rather than inherit all the earthly riches Egypt had to offer.

We see a similar situation with the Son of God. Jesus left all the treasures of heaven to come to earth as a man and suffer a violent, shameful death for His people. As God’s people, we need never feel ashamed of such a faithful Brother as our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Bible Verses to Explore:

Hebrews 10:33

  • When have you ever been made to feel ashamed for your Christian beliefs?

Matthew 10:32, 33 and 2 Timothy 1:8, 12

  • Why is it important not to feel ashamed of Christ?

Hebrews 13:12-15

  • What did Paul recommend as our reaction to public shaming?

Tuesday: Flesh and Blood Like Us

God becoming human, flesh and blood, was a vital part of the plan of salvation. Only by His sacrifice can we escape the penalty of death that sin brought to our planet. Several things are noted that were made possible by Him becoming human:

  1. Like Adam at his creation, Jesus had no sinful tendencies. He did experience fierce temptation from the devil himself, however, but remained without sin (Hebrews 4:15).
  2. In this sinless state, Jesus was able to be our Sacrifice. He was without blemish, as their animal sacrifices called for, and was willing to die the death we deserve (Hebrews 7:26, 27).
  3. Jesus made our forgiveness and reconciliation with God possible (Hebrews 2:14-17).
  4. He gave us the power to become righteous and have God’s law written in our hearts (Hebrews 8:7, 10).

Bible Verses to Explore:

Matthew 16:17 and Ephesians 6:12

  • Why do we need God in the flesh to understand the things of God?

Galatians 1:16 and 1 Corinthians 15:50

  • Why is it unproductive to rely on human beings alone for our salvation?

Wednesday: Perfected Through Sufferings

Why did our sinless Savior have to suffer such excruciating torment while on this earth? He did not deserve the treatment His adopted family gave Him, let alone the final execution they demanded He endure on the cross.

  • The sufferings of Christ can best be justified by seeing it as part of God’s plan to save us. In a legal sense, death, with all its painful torture and grief, was required to pay the penalty of sin.
  • Also, Christ’s graceful, humble way He endured His suffering gave us an example in how to persevere in our own trials and hardships.
  • And, finally, the suffering of Christ allowed Him to experience firsthand the effects of sin, without having sinned Himself, in order to mediate for us as our High Priest in heaven.

It’s easier for us to empathize with someone when we have gone through similar experiences. All that Jesus endured on earth certainly qualified Him to be the source of comfort and empathy we need, no matter what we have been called to suffer.

Just like our own trials often strengthen us and perfect our character, Jesus was perfected by all He endured. The Garden of Gethsemane showed us the struggle it was for Jesus, in His humanity, to accept His fate on the cross (Matthew 26:42). But His divine nature won out and He amazingly became the only Sacrifice we need to secure our salvation.

Bible Verses to Explore:

Hebrews 2:10, 17, 18 and 4:15

  • For what reasons did Jesus suffer?

Hebrews 5:8, 9 and Matthew 26:42

  • How did Jesus become obedient through suffering?
  • What part does submission play in our obedience?

Thursday: The Brother as a Model

As important as Jesus’ death was, His life was just as important. He showed us how to live the life of faith by doing so perfectly, leaving us with a role model that no one can duplicate throughout their lifetime. He did this simply by putting His trust in His heavenly Father.

Isaiah found this trust possible in the wake of a dreaded invasion of Israel, when the fearful hearts of the people “were moved as the trees of the woods are moved with the wind” (Isaiah 7:1, 2). He said in Isaiah 8:17, 18 that he would wait on the Lord and hope in Him. Precisely what Jesus continually did while on earth.

Hebrews 12:1-4 calls Jesus “the author and finisher of our faith”. He is the source and perfecter of our faith. It starts with Him and finishes with Him. He polishes our faith and makes us shine in His glory by considering His life and how He endured hostility from sinners.

There is no reason to become weary and discouraged when we remember what evil forces Jesus had to contend with. He was a Brother we can always look up to as a model for our lives.

Bible Verses to Explore:

Hebrews 12:1-4

  • Why is a life of faith called a race?
  • Who are we competing with in this race and who helps us become winners?
  • How does Jesus help us win the race of faith?

Friday: Conclusion

This quotation from The Desire of Ages, p. 649 shows us the most important lesson we have to learn from Jesus, our faithful Brother. He teaches us how to minister to others.

“In His life and lessons, Christ has given a perfect exemplification of the unselfish ministry which has its origin in God. God does not live for Himself. By creating the world, and by upholding all things, He is  constantly ministering for others. ‘He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.’ Matthew 5:45. This ideal of ministry God has committed to His Son. Jesus was given to stand at the head of humanity, that by His example He might teach what it means to minister.” ~Ellen G. White

For some ways we might be more faithful to each other and minister like Jesus, see

Next Week: Jesus, the Giver of Rest

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