Bible Reading: 1 John 2.1-2
My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world. 1 John 2:1-2
The first purpose for John writings this was found in 1 John 1:4 – “These things we write, so that our joy may be made complete.” Now we get a second purpose “I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin.” Complete joy is one result of choosing not to sin. Here John bridges the verses from yesterday’s devotion (we are sinners and need to confess our sin) with the verses we will study tomorrow (loving God means refraining from sin and obeying His commandments).
While John’s desire is that we not sin, he knows there is a probability that we will. He boldly declares that if we sin we have an Advocate – Jesus Christ Himself. Now an advocate is a person who stands up for you before a judge. The reason Jesus can be our Advocate is because He is the Righteous One. He is also the propitiation or atonement for our sin (“propitiation” is a religious word which means that Jesus covers our sin and takes it away).
I like what John Piper says: “Christ is our attorney and His portfolio is His atonement. He stands before his Father in heaven and every time we sin He doesn’t make a new atonement. He doesn’t die again and again. Instead Jesus opens His portfolio and lays the exhibits of Good Friday on the bench before the Judge. Photographs of the crown of thorns, the lashing, the mocking soldiers, the agonies of the cross, and the final cry of victory: It is finished.”
As a result, we can find a fresh grace, fresh mercy, fresh forgiveness, and a fresh beginning. So, based on Jesus being our Advocate and Atoner, John does not want us to sin. And, we owe it to Jesus to live by His commands.
Weekly Memory Verse: If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; 1 John 1.6