One of the more popular TV genres that has been on the air, since literally TV started, has been law themed. Perhaps the quintessential show of this type was Perry Mason. He was always cool, always prepared, and always confident. Supposedly, he lost only one case during the run of the series. In the movies, arguably the most famous courtroom drama was Twelve Angry Men, which told the story of jurors struggling with the guilt or innocence of a defendant. Both still air occasionally on TV today.
The idea of an advocate, or the process through which the accused is represented in court, has always been intriguing and can make good entertainment. John is “writing these things” (1 John 2:1) so that we may not sin. Of course, we recognize in our fallen state we are already condemned and born into sin. Even those who have repented of their sin and acknowledge Christ as personal Lord and Savior, still sin. However, even in our sin, the Christian has an advocate. Christ alone is righteous, and Christ alone is able to advocate on our behalf before the Father. Christ is the propitiation for our sins, meaning, He is the appeasement for our sin before the Father.
John goes on to write that as followers of Christ, we are to keep His commandments. Although we are not saved thru works, part of our identification as Christians is how we lead our lives. Do our actions reflect Christ? John cautions about the hypocrisy of a person who claims to be Christian but lives his or her life otherwise. Our behavior becomes part of our testimony, good or bad.
When I was first saved, I had the simple illustration given to me about how God sees me after I am saved. God does not see me in my sin, but rather He sees His Son, Christ. Christ’s blood was the atonement for the world’s sin. An “oldie but a goodie” classic hymn goes:
Oh victory in Jesus, my Savior forever
He sought me, and He bought me with His redeeming blood
He loved me ‘ere I knew Him And all my love is due Him
He plunged me to victory beneath the cleansing flood
It is good and right to sing of the hope we have in Christ. Yet, just as importantly, we must sing of the blood of the Lamb, the sacrifice of Christ. A result of His bearing the weight of the sins of the world, and the penalty of that sin, His death, we have an advocate that has never lost a case, nor ever will.