When we read about the standard of sinless perfection and the numerous ways in which we have failed to take the ways of escape God has provided us, it can leave us discouraged and fearful. Thankfully, John does not leave us there. He introduces us to our advocate…the pleader.
We read on in verse 1b-2, “And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; 2 and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.”
What is an advocate? An advocate is one who pleads the cause of another in a court of civil law…a pleader. This is what Jesus does for us!
John assumes that we are in earnest; that sin is to us exceeding sinful, and holiness above all things desirable. We have really purposed in good faith that we will not sin again! If this describes us, we have an advocate! Our advocate is with us, encouraging us, and assuring us of complete victory! He is beside us, to help us if we do stumble—to lift us if we should fall. If any of us sin, we have an advocate with the Father. Robert Candlish wrote, “We need not therefore be afraid to walk with the Father in the light. We may walk, too often un-steadfastly….we may give new offense…we may incur new blame. But see! There is the intercessor ever pleading for us.”
Revelation 5 show us the wonder and glory of our advocate paying for our sin. He is the only one worthy to approach the glorious throne of Revelation 4! He is worthy of the praise of all of heaven and all of earth for his sacrifice on our behalf. Thank God for our Advocate and our propitiation!! We will see more next week as we finish looking at this text together. Until then, mediate on Revelation 5.
5:1 I saw in the right hand of Him who sat on the throne a book written inside and on the back, sealed up with seven seals. 2 And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the book and to break its seals?” 3 And no one in heaven or on the earth or under the earth was able to open the book or to look into it. 4 Then I began to weep greatly because no one was found worthy to open the book or to look into it; 5 and one of the elders said to me, “Stop weeping; behold, the Lion that is from the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has overcome so as to open the book and its seven seals.” 6 And I saw between the throne (with the four living creatures) and the elders a Lamb standing, as if slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God, sent out into all the earth. 7 And He came and took the book out of the right hand of Him who sat on the throne. 8 When He had taken the book, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each one holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. 9 And they sang a new song, saying, “Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation. 10 “You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.” 11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.” 13 And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, “To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.” 14 And the four living creatures kept saying, “Amen.” And the elders fell down and worshiped.
1. As you consider our advocate (pleader) how do you feel? How do you feel about your sin?
2. What stands out to you the most about our advocate when you read Revelation 5?
3. Take time to list out the different types of beings that praise Him in Revelation 5. Why, specifically, are they praising Him?
4. How should you respond to this text? In response to what I have read today, I will ______________.