Therefore, it was necessary for him to be made in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. Then He could offer a sacrifice (propitiation) that would take away the sins of the people. Since he himself has gone through suffering and temptation, he is able to help us when we are being tempted.
This letter was primarily written to a community of Hebrews who had converted from Judaism to Christianity. However, because of their faith in Jesus, they were now facing persecution from both the Gentile and Jewish communities. As a matter of fact the persecution was severe enough that some were considering returning back to Judaism in order to escape it. The author of this letter is stepping his audience through the foundations of the Jewish faith and showing them that not only is Jesus the long awaited Messiah; but Jesus, perfect in every way is the fulfillment of everything the scriptures and Judaism were pointing toward. Moreover, all Scripture from start to finish is about Jesus, because He alone is God’s plan of redemption for all mankind. In the verses above the author is explaining that Jesus had to be fully God and fully human and experience the same temptations we have in order to be a perfect sacrifice for us. In other words Jesus had to be like us in every way and He had to be sinless in order to take our place on the cross.
The word “propitiation” refers to the sacrifice Jesus made by taking on our sins and dying on the cross in our place. That sacrifice was sufficient to set us free and pay the price for our sins. Jesus perfectly fulfilled God’s righteous requirements for payment of our sins. Jesus through His death for us, saved us from death temporally, spiritually and eternally. Jesus, with His death paid the price once and for all times, past, present and future. He alone provides redemption for every person who places their faith in Him and accepts the sacrifice He made for us on the Cross at Calvary. His resurrection proved He was who He claimed to be, God in the flesh, because only Jesus had the power to lay down His life for us and pick it up again. And His resurrection gives us the guarantee that in Him we have eternal life. And like the High Priest, Jesus too has brought us before God, giving us access to God the Father. However, unlike the High Priest who had to make a sacrifice every year to remove his sin and the sins of the people. Jesus death and resurrection have given us access to God the Father for all eternity. There is nothing more we have to do to earn our way to heaven. Jesus has done that for us, once and for all time, so we may spend eternity in His presence and in His service.