1 John 2:1-2 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
The Apostle John is about 80 years old when he writes as a father to his children. John knows the greatest danger that Christians face is sin and that Jesus is the One Who can save them from sin. Believers have the power not to sin (2 Peter 1:3-4), but John knows that every believer does sin by disobeying the Lord’s commands. Sin brings destruction, death and judgment by mankind’s loving and just Creator God. Sin destroys fellowship (mutually sharing relationships) with God and people. Jesus came to save us from sin by dying on the cross to pay the penalty for sin (Romans 5:10), to free us from slavery to sin (Romans 6:6-7) and to one day free us from the presence of sin (Revelation 21:1-4).
When we sin as believers we cut-off our fellowship with the Lord and those around us. We need an Advocate with the Father to avoid the death of sin and to gain restored fellowship with God and man. An Advocate is one who supports us. Jesus is our Advocate. He keeps us from judgment by interceding for us with the Judge and gaining us pardon from our sin and restoration to fellowship with God. When we confess our sins, He forgives us of our sin and cleanses us from all unrighteousness by telling the Father that He has already paid the penalty for that sin by His death on the cross. Hebrews 7:25 tells us He ever lives to make such intercession for us.
Jesus is the propitiation for not only our sin, but the sins of the whole world. Propitiation means Jesus paid the penalty for our sin and satisfied the justice of God. We receive the benefits of Jesus’s payment for our sin when we repent of our sin and believe the gospel. When we sin and confess it to God, we are forgiven and cleansed because Jesus’s blood shed on the cross washes away the just penalty our sin deserves. Nothing is better than to be forgiven and cleansed from all unrighteousness. We sin daily and need cleansing daily. What starts to happen if we don’t wash up and shower on a regular basis? We begin to stink! People don’t appreciate it if we stink around them. When we fail to deal daily with our sin our lives begin to stink and ruin fellowship with God and people. Jesus has provided the way for us to be cleansed from the stink of sin and enjoy right relations with God and man. We are to go to Jesus as soon as we repent of our sin and confess it to Him. He immediately forgives us and cleanses us from our sin.