Keep the Faith, Part 3, 1 John 2:1-6: John the Apostle makes crystal clear what only Jesus Christ can do for us in regards to our guilt because of our sin. John also provides for us characteristics of people who really know Christ.
Keep the Faith Part 3
Christ Our Advocate
Mosaic Rockford – Dave Spooner – Jan. 17th, 2016
- This is the third part in our series “Keep the Faith” from the book of 1st In previous episodes John establishes who Jesus is (fully God and fully man) and how we can relationship with him and fellowship with others. John also tells us the truth of the condition of people who say they know God but they don’t follow Him in their actions.
- Today’s message is very important in understanding what only Jesus Christ can do for us in regards to our guilt because of our sin and also for providing us with characteristics of people who really know Christ. So this is supper important information for us to know and live out. It has application for our lives now and eternal implications for the life to come.
- So today we will see Christ as our counsel, Christ as our covering, and Christ as our commander and then we will end out time today with communion.
Christ is our counsel
1 John 2:1 ESV
My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.
- “My little children” – is a term of endearment – saying they are not a project that He has to finish or people that he has to correct. But “my” meaning connectivity and relationship, responsibility and love – “little children” those who are precious new converts who are just starting out in the faith.
- He is writing so they would not sin – because in sinning we break fellowship with God and break fellowship the children of God which leads to isolation, misery, bondage, pain and destruction.
- However, if anyone does sin, we have an advocate, counsel, someone who will speak on our behalf with the Father. This person is Jesus Christ the righteous.
- Think of this as a court scene.
- Christ our advocate, our counsel, Satan is the accuser (Rev 12:10 for the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them day and night before our God.) and God the Father is the Judge.
- When we sin, we are guilty and Satan argues that point before God the Judge. Those without a defense will be condemned (no matter how many “good works” they have).
- Jesus is our advocate, our defense, our counsel, our attorney who is arguing our case – so to speak.
- And he is the only one who can do so, because he is the only one who is righteous – the only one without sin (the righteous). (because all others would be declared guilty and would be unqualified)
- There is no other advocate except Christ – no pope, no saint, not Mary the mother of Jesus, no pastor, no prophet (false or not), no other religious figure, not your parents, children or your spouse, Christ is the only one without sin the only one who is righteous on His own merit, and the only one who can advocate for us. This is why it is so important to know Him . . .
- But not only is Christ our counsel He is our covering
Christ is our covering
1 John 2:2 ESV
He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
- Propitiation? – what is that? when is the last time you used that word, or have even heard this word?
- Propitiation means the turning away of wrath by another paying the penalty. For the Christian, the propitiation was the shed blood of Jesus on the cross. It turned away the wrath of God so that He could pass “over the sins previously committed,” (Rom. 3:25).
- The mercy seat was sprinkled with atoning blood on the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16:14), representing that the righteous sentence of the Law had been executed, changing the judgment seat into the mercy seat (Hebrews 9:11–15)
- Propitiation is that by which God is rendered propitious, i.e., by which it becomes consistent with his character and government to pardon and bless the sinner. The propitiation does not procure his love or make him loving; it only renders it consistent for him to exercise his love towards sinners. In Rom. 3:25 and Heb. 9:5 (A.V., “mercy-seat”) which means “covering,” and is used of the lid of the ark of the covenant (Ex. 25:21; 30:6). On the great day of atonement, the high priest carried the blood of the sacrifice he offered for all the people within the veil and sprinkled with it the “mercy-seat,” and so made propitiation. Christ is “the propitiation,” because by his becoming our substitute and assuming our obligations he expiated our guilt, covered it, by the vicarious punishment which he endured. (Easton’s 1897 Bible Dictionary)
- So Jesus is the covering / atonement / payment / propitiation of our sins – which is the personal application – but also for the sins of the whole world – which is the scope – which is enough to cover everyone. . . however this is not universalism where then everyone is automatically covered, because we must know him and be in him, but it is enough to cover everyone.
- So this begs the next question, how do we know that we know Him?
- So he is our counsel, our covering and he is our commander
Christ is our commander
1 John 2:3-6 ESV
And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. 4 Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, 5 but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may be sure that we are in him: 6 whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
- So we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. This is not merely believing in Jesus, or knowing about Jesus, this is what we practice in our lives. If we “keep his commandments”. And these are actions founded and motivated by Love – of God and Love of Neighbor . . . Love the lord your God . . . seen in . . . service (etc.)
- So if you say “I know him” but do not keep His commandments – you are a liar, and the truth is not in you and The Truth (Jesus) is not in you.
- Christ’s command is made complete when we obey it. Christ’s command is made perfect when we keep it. The love of God is made complete by us when we keep (practice) His word. And Christ’s command in formed in and motivated by love. . .
- This is how we can be sure that we are in him – that if we say we abide (vine and the branches John 15 . . . ) – then we ought to walk the same way that Jesus did.
- So we know that we know Christ if we keep his command and walk in the same way as Jesus.
- So our you keeping his Command? And are you walking like Jesus?
- In the next verses we are looking at next Sunday, John expands upon the new command of love and how it is applied to us in our various stages of our spiritual development.
- Confess and Repent of not keeping Christ’s commands and not walking like Jesus. (these things are sin).
- Stand in confidence and peace in knowing Jesus and that he is your counsel and your covering.
- Be thankful, give worship and honor and praise to Jesus the Son of God, the righteous one, the lamb who was slain before the foundation of the world.
- Explain why we do it
- Explain how we do it
- Tell them about the prayer people