It is quite interesting to compare Hebrews 2:14 with Hebrews 3:14, and to note why Christ was made partaker of flesh and blood. It required Christ’s death and resurrection to destroy Satan’s “death” power. In the next chapter we learn that believing sinners delivered by Christ are partakers of Christ.
“Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the Devil.” Hebrews 2:14.
“For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end.” Heb. 3:14.
The spiritual benefits that have come to believers have come because of the death and resurrection of the eternal, omnipotent and sinless Christ. It was on the cross of Calvary that Christ was made sin, and we, thereby, have been made the righteousness of God in Him. II Corinthians 5:21. He was made for a little while lower than the angels for the suffering of death. Hebrews 2:9. Christ suffered for sins once, the Just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God. I Peter 3: 18.
Because of the suffering, death and resurrection of the Son of God we have been made partakers of Christ. This Greek word “partakers” is “Metoches” meaning a “participant”, a “sharer” or a “partner”.
Perhaps we have tried to inventory all that we have in Christ, our possessions, our riches, our spiritual blessings; and we have scarcely dared to believe all that God’s Word tells us that we have, and all that we are, and all that we are yet to be in Christ. We are partakers of Christ. In Him “all things” and “all spiritual blessings” are ours.
Six or seven different Greek words are translated “partaker” in the Scriptures. These words are used by the Holy Spirit to tell us what it means to be a partaker of Christ. Believers are joint-heirs with Christ and are joined to Christ in an inseparable and eternal union; members of His Body, seated with Him and blessed in Him with all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies. So we join with Paul in “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light” Colossians 1:12. This Greek word “partaker”, is “meris”, meaning to “get as an allotment”, “to receive a portion”. What a portion! What an allotment! We receive it, by grace, through faith. God made us meet, or literally, “qualified” us. We are God’s workmanship. God did the work. He wrought the Divine transformation. He placed Christ where He is, far above in the heavenlies, and placed us in Christ. When we were dead He made us alive and raised us up. We are God’s workmanship. As partakers of Christ:
We are partakers of the Divine nature. II Peter 1:4
We are partakers of His holiness. Hebrews 12:10
We are partakers of the Holy Spirit. Hebrews 6:4
We are partakers of the heavenly calling. Hebrews 3:1
We are partakers of His sufferings. I Peter 4:13
We are partakers of God’s promise in Christ. Ephesians 3:6
We are partakers of grace. Philippians 1:7
We are partakers of fruit. II Timothy 2:6
We are partakers of the afflictions of the Gospel. II Timothy 1:8
We are partakers of Christ’s glory. I Peter 5: 1.
It is very interesting to trace the meanings of the different words translated “partaker” and learn of our intimate relationship, partnership and fellowship with Christ; “joint-heirs”, “sharers”, “partners”, “Co-partners”. “In Christ” and “Christ in us”. Christ partook of our nature that we might partake of His nature. We partake of His sufferings that we might partake of His glory. As the Captain of our salvation, He was made perfect through suffering.
We are partakers of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. By that grace He became poor that we, through His poverty, might become rich. The Gospel has made us rich. The Gospel has brought us peace. It is called the “gospel of peace”. Christ made peace by the blood of the cross. Christ is our peace.
Paul seems to have reached the highest expression of the Gospel of Christ when he wrote to Timothy concerning “the gospel of the glory of the Blessed God, committed to my trust.” I Timothy 1:11. Grace and glory are combined in that gospel, which offers grace and glory to every beneficiary, and declares “As He is, so are we in the world”. I John 4:17.
What a spiritual treat, what an abundant feast! Let us spiritually, seriously, prayerfully read that wonderful prayer of the Lord Jesus, John 17:9 to 26, and learn of our union, partnership, eternal glorious fellowship in the Son and in the Father. Then later on in the Book we learn that it has been the delight of the Holy Spirit to be the instrument with the Word of God to bring it about. II Thessalonians 2:13. It means much to be a partaker of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is in the believer. The believer is in the Spirit. The believer is to walk in the Spirit, to be filled with the Spirit, and to manifest the fruit of the Spirit, as he is led and instructed by the Holy Spirit.
The partaker of Christ is the partaker of the Divine nature, because God has created in that believer the new man in righteousness and true holiness, after God’s own image. Christ is the believer’s holiness. I Corinthians 1:30.
Everything that the believer needs to please God has been provided in Christ; even the grace, the boldness, the humility, the power to be a partaker of the afflictions of the Gospel. The true Grace preacher must suffer as an evil-doer to make Paul’s gospel known. “Be not ashamed,” are the words in this connection. II Timothy 1:5 to 12. It is an up-to-date admonition. Preachers and Christian workers of today are ashamed and afraid to be partakers of the affliction of that unmixed gospel. They join up with a semi-religious movement for protection, for security and for advantage. They limit the Holy Spirit, as they take off the keen edge of the affliction of Paul’s Gospel. But if we suffer with Christ and Paul, and follow Paul as he instructed us, we will be glorified and reign with Christ. This should encourage us to an uncompromising, unmixed testimony in this religious day of confusion, compromise and condemnation.
For we are partakers of Christ’s glory that shall be revealed. I Peter 5:1. Hear the prayer of Christ in John 17:22, 24 and I Peter 5:10 and 11.
“And the glory which Thou gavest Me, I have given them; that they may be one, even as We are one.”
“Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am; that they may behold My glory, which Thou hast given Me; for Thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.”
“But the God of all grace, Who hath called us unto His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. To Him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.”
For more articles by Pastor J. C. O'Hair, visit the J. C. O'Hair Online Library.