August 21, 2023
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)
It is our great problem and the reason for all that is evil in this world. Man chose to sin from the beginning—to run independently from the God who made him. And the results have been catastrophic. No one could deliver us from the foundational problem that separates us from God … except One.
We have One who is our Lawyer before God. He is perfectly righteous in every way. The only One who can rightfully sit at the right hand of our Father and Judge. He is “daily interceding for us” and He has never lost a case. We are guilty before a holy God, but Jesus intercedes and intervenes on our behalf so that justice can be satisfied and we can be brought back into a right relationship with God.
But what is His argument? What is there to say about the unending rebellion of men before a righteous, holy God? Here is Christ’s simple but utterly sufficient plea:
“Father, I am the propitiation for their sins.”
Propitiation means “the satisfaction, the atoning sacrifice, the means of appeasing.” Christ has done what was necessary through His life, death, and resurrection for our sins to be forgiven and our guilt to be removed. When we come by grace through faith into a relationship with Christ, His life and death are the means of satisfaction before God. The penalty has been paid before the Judge.
“He Himself is the satisfaction for our sins.” Notice that the beloved Apostle John who leaned upon Christ’s breast, does not focus on an act or a step. His explanation is a Person. What has appeased God, rendering us completely righteous? Jesus. What has given our Advocate the means of winning the argument on our behalf? “He Himself.” Who should receive all the praise for this work? Jesus.
This is why we come with nothing in our hands—no good works, no vain arguments of innocence—but simply come in Christ. He is enough for our sins and the “sins of the whole world.” He Himself.
February 16, 2024
February 15, 2024
February 14, 2024