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The One We Can Count On – 1 John 1 & 2 // by Charity Kerr

“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. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.” 1 John 2:1-2

At the end of my freshman year of Bible college, I got pulled over for speeding. My friend and I were headed to a graduation party, sharing our future plans with one another. We were so caught up in the excitement of everything, I honestly had no idea how fast I was going. The police officer got out of his car, came up to my window, and asked the usual questions. I explained, through a shaky voice, that I was genuinely not aware that I was speeding and we were going to celebrate the end of the school year. 

As I was finishing up my explanation, the police officer walked around to my friend’s side of the car. He asked her, “Do you think I should give her a ticket?” My friend, taking full advantage of the situation presented to her, calmly replied, “No sir, I don’t. I think you should just let her go.” The police officer handed her my driver’s license and sent me on my way without a ticket. As I’m sure you can imagine, my friend and I had a little praise party in my car that night. 

We all want someone we can count on.

In a tough situation, I know that I have a support system of people who will have my back and look out for my best interest. I was glad my friend interceded on my behalf to the police officer in that weird and hilarious situation. Yet, what happens when our mistakes are bigger than going above a speed limit? Who can we turn to when we are in over our heads?

Although I love my friends, family, and my husband, there is no comparison to the intercession that Jesus does on our behalf when we mess up. It reminds me of Romans 8:34, which says,

“Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.”

In 1 John 2:2, it describes Jesus as the propitiation for our sins. Propitiate means to gain or regain the favor or goodwill of. Not only are our sins forgiven, but we also receive favor because of Jesus. If you are anything like me, it can be hard to wrap your head around undeserved favor.

It’s important to know when you have done something wrong, but I know many of us battle holding onto shame even after we have asked God for forgiveness.

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

I ask God for forgiveness and He forgives. I know that verse by heart. However, even though I KNOW IT BY HEART, I don’t always TAKE IT TO HEART.

Do you ever do that too? When we sin, we forget that we are still loved because we do not feel worthy of love. We often think that we should have known better and get swept up in shame that we were never supposed to carry. 

Your sins are not too much for Him.

If you feel alone or ashamed today, please rest in knowing that Jesus is your best friend. 1 John 2:2 mentions that not only can He be the propitiation for our sins, but for the sins of the whole world.

Your sins are not too much for Him to handle. He isn’t afraid of your weaknesses, failures, or shortcomings. He loves you at your best and won’t stop loving you at your worst. He’s the One you can count on to be there for you no matter the situation. 

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