Jesus For The Defense
JESUS FOR THE DEFENSE
1 John 2:1-2
About 2 weeks ago a friend called and asked if I knew a good lawyer. I did but there is a difference between a “good lawyer” and a “great” lawyer and here is the difference.
“Good lawyers know the law; great lawyers know the judge.”
- There are a lot of “good” lawyers but I am not sure that there are a lot of “great” lawyers.
But, now I want to change the sign to this: “Good lawyers know the law; great lawyers are related to the judge.” (That could be helpful!)
- But, how about this: Good lawyers know the law; great lawyers are the judge’s son!”
- Would you rather have a “good” lawyer or a “great” lawyer?
Did you know that is what you and I have? When it comes to spiritual matters…when it comes to eternal life or death our lawyer is the Judge’s Son, but there is something even more amazing than that about our lawyer, something that you will never see a lawyer do today.
Here in these first 2 verses of chapter 2 John takes us into the courtroom verbally…he uses courtroom language here and what he is going to do is he is going to deal with the legal nature of sin.
- Here is the situation: In Romans 6:23 the apostle Paul tells us that the “wages of sin is death.” (That is not talking about physical death. It is talking about spiritual death. You can sin and still be alive physically. So Paul is talking about spiritual death.)
So, when you sin, sin demands that it gets paid. You sin and you are to die spiritually… you are condemned to be lost eternally.
- So in the legal sense when you sin, sin immediately makes its case against you.
Now, John is going to deal with that.
John says, “My little children, I am writing these things to you that you may not sin.”
- In chapter 1, specifically in vs. 7 John wrote and told these Christians that even though they had sinned their fellowship with God was not broken due to the “blood of Christ” and the forgiveness of sin through Christ.
- But, John didn’t want these Christians to go to far with “the cleansing of the blood of Christ.”
- Some of them may have the same idea that the people in Romans 6:1 had…they may be thinking, “If the blood of Christ cleanses us of our sins…let’s just go ahead and sin even more!”
- And John is saying here, “The blood of Christ does cleanse you of your sins…and fellowship with God is not broken…but don’t you take advantage of it! Don’t abuse it!
- The blood of Christ cleanses us from all sin but that is not license to sin.”
- If you do that then you are no longer walking in the light…you are walking in darkness.
- So John writes here to keep them from purposely sinning.
Look at the next sentence.
- John tells them not to purposely sin…don’t intentionally sin…but then he says, “And if any one sins…”
- See the “if”…that is not an “if” of doubt…that is an “if” of “when.”
- John is saying, “Don’t intentionally sin…don’t purposely sin…you walk in the light…but “when” you do sin…and they will…
- Look what he says:
…we have an Advocate with the Father…
- Do you see the word “Advocate”?
- In the Greek that is the word “parakaleo”…we get our word “paraclete” from it.
- A “Paraclete” is an intercessor…one who intercedes for us…one you call to your side…one who “pleads your case.”
And notice it says that “we have an Advocate with the Father…”
- Our Advocate…our intercessor…the one we “call to our side to plead our case” is with the Father…
But, the Father…sends our Advocate to our side…”to plead our case to the Father.”
- And look at who our Advocate or Paraclete is: Jesus Christ the righteous;
Let me see if I can explain this to you in simpler terms.
- You as a Christian are not going to live a life of sin…you repented, you were baptized into Christ washing away your sins…you are walking in the light.
- But as carefully as you walk you will still sin…and when you do you are guilty…and remember, sin demands its wages!
So we make our plea to God for help, chapter 1:9: “Confess.” “God, I am a sinner…I am guilty…and I am doomed to die!”
- And God…who is the Father…or the Judge…He is inclined toward us because we have called for His help…and because He is inclined toward us He appoints our counsel or our advocate for us to help us.
- And to our advantage our Advocate or “lawyer” if you will, is His Son, the Son of the Judge.
But that is not all. Your Advocate or counselor is your brother. (Gal. 4:7)
And in chapter 1 and verse 9 because we did not deny that we are sinners, He, our Advocate, is “faithful and righteous” to defend us!
But there is more; look at verse 2. Listen, a lot of lawyers or Advocates will defend you…they will plead your case for you…but you will not find any who will do what our Advocate with the Father will do.
… And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins:
Do you know what this means? You won’t find any other Advocate, Paraclete, lawyer that will do this!
- What this means is you, as a Christian, have sinned and you have pled guilty and your sin condemns you to die.
- But the Judge is inclined to you because you have acknowledged your sin and so He sends His own Son to plead your case for you.
- But not only is your Advocate the Son of the Judge, He is also your brother.
And now it is time for you to be sentenced for your sin and you are guilty as charged and deserving of what sin demands… but you won’t be punished, you won’t pay sins demands, and do you know why?
- Because your Advocate, your Paraclete, your Counsel has already paid the penalty. He has already paid the price!
Do you see the word “is”?
- When you, as a Christian, sinned Jesus doesn’t have to go and make propitiation for your sin.
- He “is” propitiation. He is standing propitiation. As soon as you sin the wages of that sin is already paid, the debt is forgiven.
- And the redeeming power of His blood will never play out.
We, as Christians, often pray to God and we say, “Father, forgive us our sins.”
- Do you know what would be more correct to say?
- “Thank you Father for forgiving us our sins, or for continuing to forgive us of our sins.”
If you are not a child of God, then yes, you need to have your sins forgiven.
- But if you are a child of God, if you have been baptized into Christ and you are walking in the light as He Himself is in the light, and you sin, and you will, that sin is already forgiven, propitiation has already been made, and you have not lost fellowship with God.
Many who have been baptized into Christ, and who are walking in the light, who sin think they are lost until they can run home and ask God to forgive them.
- And they are scared that if they die before they can ask for that forgiveness that they will be eternally lost.
- That thinking is not in agreement with what John says here in these verses.
Years ago I was asked to teach a class at the Baptist church in Monument, NM. It was a class where they were studying the different religious groups.
- And the primary question they asked was, “Do you have to be baptized every time you sin?”
- If the blood of Christ washes away your sin at baptism do you have to be baptized again every time you sin?
In Romans 6 the apostle Paul says that at baptism you “bury the old man of sin” and you are raised up to walk in “newness of life”, no longer “presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but presenting yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”
- If someone is dead how many times do you bury them? (One time).
- So, you are baptized, you bury the old man of sin and you are walking in “newness of life” and you sin? Do you have to “bury the old man of sin again?” Do you have to be baptized again? NO!
Jesus “is the propitiation for our sin”…He is standing propitiation…and as soon as you sin the wages of that sin has already been paid.
- And we simply need to resume our walk with Christ.
When Jesus gets us off even when we are guilty it is not a frustration of justice because He has paid the penalty.
- He defends the guilty and never loses.
Now, let’s go back to the context that John is dealing with.
- Remember that John is dealing with the Gnostics.
- And look back in chapter 1 verse 8 and verse 10.
- Some of these Gnostics were denying that they had sinned.
- If you deny that you are a sinner what do you make God?
Now if you call the judge a liar how inclined toward you do you think He is going to be?
- And if He is not inclined towards you is He going to send His advocate to help you?
No, besides as far as you are concerned, “You don’t need an advocate” because you don’t think you are guilty!
- So you are standing before the Judge and denying what He has said about you.
- When the verdict is handed down what do you think it will be?
- And who will pay the fine? Who will bear the punishment?
- You will because there’s no one to be a propitiation for your sin.
Brethren, this is what Christ has done for you.
- At the cross He interceded on your behalf and made propitiation for you.
- And as a Christian who is walking in the light, when you sin your fellowship is not broken because you acknowledge to God the same thing He says about you, “God, I am a sinner.”
- And with that plea He sends his Son and your brother to be your Advocate, to plead your case before the Judge who is your Father.
- And even though you are guilty you will not pay the price because your brother, your Advocate already has and He continues to do so.
Do we sin so that grace might abound? God forbid!
- But when we do sin our fellowship with God is not broken.
Most people do not feel favorably about lawyers. A man asked one time, “Do you know what is black and brown and looks good on a lawyer? A Doberman.
The majority of the members of congress are lawyers. And yet congress has a less than 10% approval rating with the American people.
Lawyers are expensive and many of them are ruthless. Consequently many people don’t have much good to say about lawyers.
But, when we understand what our lawyer or our Advocate has done for us, how He has pled our case for us before the Judge, and then suffered the penalty of our sin for us, how can we verbally, or by our actions do anything that could possibly speak poorly of Him?
He is worthy of all our praise and devotion. Let’s do that at this time.
© Sunset Ridge Church of Christ 2023