I JOHN 2:1-5

I. Introduction

A. In I John 1:8-9 the possibility of sin is fully admitted

1. In the second chapter we see the necessity of sin in a believers life~is challenged and denied

a. they are enjoined to sin not

b. the scriptures recognized a difference between occasional and habitual sin

c. at no time is sin ever to be justified or excused

2. While provision is made for it justification is not given to it

a. the Christian ideal is "to sin not"

B. A believers sin is a Family Matter

1. When a Christian sins it is not an offense against the Creator - it is against the Father

2. John does not say we have an advocate with God - but we have an advocate with the Father

a. when a Christian sins it is dealt with on the basis of God's Fatherhood and Christ's advocacy

b. when a child of God sins it does not destroy his relationship but it does disrupt his fellowship

c. he still has his union though he has lost his communion

3. While sin can affect one's state, it cannot affect his standing

a. our union With God is eternal while our communion with God is conditional

b. by virtue of the Cross, we are in God's family

c. by virtue of His work at the Throne, we are provided a remedy for violations in the family

II. The Unfinished Work of Christ

A. We must recognize both the finished and unfinished work of Christ

1. As the High Priest in sacrifice before God, the work is finished

2. As Advocate in sustaining us before the Father the work is unfinished

a. as Savior at the Cross, the work is finished

b. as Sustained at the Throne the work is unfinished

c. as Justifier His work is finished

d. as Sanctified His work is unfinished

B. These things point to an important truth in life

1. Our lives are both finished and unfinished

2. Our standing before God is finished while our state before the world is unfinished

3. God sees you perfect, but I certainly don't

III. The Forgiveness of Sin (2:2)

A. The function of an Advocate is rather easy to picture for we have all had the experience of a friend coming to aid and console

1. However, the idea of propitiation is very difficult to convey and is more natural to the Jewish mind than to ours

2. We have to go back to the Day of Atonement to discover it

B. The verb has three meanings:

1. When used with man as the subject it means to placate or pacify someone who has been offended

2. If the subject is God, the verb means to forgive

a. for then the meaning is that God himself provides the means whereby the lost relationship between God and man is restored

3. The third meaning is closely allied to the first

a. a person sins - at once he acquires the taint of sin

b. he needs something which will disinfect him from that taint and enable him once again to enter into fellowship with God

c. it is in that sense the word is used here

d. it could better be translated "expiate" this is how Strong's Concordance translates it

e. God does not need to be pacified but man does need to be disinfected (Cleansed 1:9) from the taint of sin and thereby fit again to enter into fellowship with God

C. When John speaks of Jesus being our propitiation he is bringing all of these senses into one

1. Jesus is the One through whom guilt from past sin and defilement from present sin are removed

2. It is through Christ that our fellowship with God has been restored and maintained

3. So through His propitiation we have forgiveness of sin.

IV. Forgiveness of Sin then is Conditional

A. Propitiation is based on our receiving Christ as our Savior - as our Expiator

1. Forgiveness - APHIEMI (to send forth)

a. it also means to remove, to erase, to put away

b. it has in it the idea of the separation of the sinner from his sin so that one is no longer identified with the other

2. The Ritual of the Day of The Atonement gives us insight into both propitiation and forgiveness

a. on that day the High Priest sacrificed two goats

b. the first goat was slain and then it's blood was sprinkled on the Mercy Seat in the Holy of Holies

c. the Mercy Seat covered the Ark which contained the broken law

d. the High Priest interposed blood between a holy God who must judge a sinful people and the law that condemned them

3. The High Priest then left the Holy of Holies and placed his hands on the second goat confessing the sins of the nation

a. the second goat was led away in the wilderness never to be seen again

b. as a person saw the priest placing his hands on that goat he could say, "My sins are transferred to a substitute.

c. "that goat is my sin bearer, he is bearing them away from me so that I no longer bear them."

d. as he watched the goat disappear - He could say, "My sins have been removed, my sins are gone."

B. That separation of sin from the sinner is a fundamental concept in the mind of the Apostle

1. That is why he can say, your sins are forgiven you for his names sake

2. Heb. 10:17, 18; Matt. 26: 27-28.