A Long Look At Jesus

Bible Book: 1 John  2 : 1-29
Subject: Jesus

Just after the close of the Civil War in the U.S.A. (1861-65), John Wilkes Booth killed President Abraham Lincoln. As his body "lay in state" long lines of people came by to see the dead President. One Black lady had her six year old son with her. She picked him up and said, "Now son, take a long look at that man. He gave his life for you."

We need to take "a long look" at Jesus for He gave His life for every person. In the second chapter of the First letter of John, that apostle helps us have a good look at Jesus. John knew Jesus as few other people did. He lived in the company of Jesus for three years. For sixty years that Apostle had thought about the Savior time and time again. Out of a life time of meditation and reflection John, a man about ninety years of age, wrote this letter. In the text we have a good view of Jesus. We see Jesus in five areas that are important for us today. We see Him as our Helper, as the One Who removes sin, as our perfect example, as the Spiritual Anointer, and as the Coming King. All of these great truths of Jesus are seen in this chapter. Now notice what the text says about Jesus.

I. We See Jesus as Our Helper

Verse one of this chapter says that if any sin, we have an advocate with the Father. That word "advocate" means helper. The word is "Paraclete." This means "para" such as in paragraph, or beside one. The "Clete" comes from Kaleo or call in Greek. Thus our Helper is the One who is called along beside us for the purpose of helping us.. Notice that John says we have this Advocate "with the Father." That word again "pros" means one with a face-to-face or equal relationship with God. God had that for He was God who came in human flesh. That advocate is Jesus. That's His earthly human name for Savior. The word "Christ" means the anointed one of God. Moreover, Jesus is             called "the righteous one." That is, He was and is holy, without fault or failure. What a Helper is He!

John saw a lot of believers or Christians have all kinds of problems. He watched as some fell into sin. He knew about the sins of his fellow disciples. Therefore, he wrote that if anyone - - that includes all of us, doesn't it? - - if anyone stumbles or falls into sin, we have the help that we need in Jesus Christ. God doesn't want us to sin, to stumble, or fall. But in reality everyone does commit sin. What do we do when we do that which is wrong and the devil accuses us before God? We look to Jesus to plead our case.

We may remember something of the story of the notable football player, O.J. Simpson. He faced the accusation of having killed his wife and another person. The football star had the help of Mr. Shapiro, a notable attorney. That court case lasted for more than one year. Mr. Shapiro received six hundred dollars an hour for his services. That equals about one hundred thousand dollars a month, or more than one million dollars a year. And when the jury made its decision, O.J. Simpson went free. They declared him innocent, even though most people (allegedly) still believe that O.J. Simpson had committed those murders.

When you and I fail, we have Jesus as our attorney, our Helper. The Savior doesn't ask us to pay anything for His services and He can exonerate every person. We don't even try to deny our sin today. We say that all are sinful. Solomon wrote, "There is not a just man upon the face of the earth who does good and sins not." Abraham sinned, saying that Sarah was his sister, not his wife. Noah sinned by becoming inebriated after the flood. David sinned. Simon Peter and Paul sinner. All of us sin. All of us need a Helper when we fail. Thus we see Jesus as the one who wants to help us when we fail.

II. We See Jesus as Our Sin Bearer

He is the One who removes our sin. John hardly closes one sentence about Jesus until he tells us something else about Jesus. Not only does He appear before God to help us in the time of condemnation, but He also has come to take our guilt, our sin away. He is the "propitiation/atonement" for our sins. Notice that the text states that Jesus not only is the hilasmos or propitiation for our sins, but also for the sins of the whole world. We need to emphasize the reach of the sacrifice of Jesus in that Calvary's blood, the death of the crucified Son of God, has a universal reach. That is, Jesus Christ is able to handle our entire sin problem. This fact places us on "shouting ground."

The word "propitiation" or in Greek, "hilismas" is not an ordinary word for us. The expression refers to the covering on the "Ark of the Covenant" which was in the tabernacle of the Hebrews and later in their temple. That "ark" was about the size of a "communion table," or about three feet tall and four feet long and about two feet wide. That "ark" was the home or place where the Ten Commandments were kept as well as the "manna" which reminded the Hebrews that God had sustained them with bread during their forty years in the desert. Aaron's rod or staff which "budded" was also in that "ark" to remind the people that they had an ongoing priesthood. The covering or lid on that box or ark was called the "mercy seat" or "propitiation." Once a year the Great High Priest entered the Holy of Holies and sprinkled blood upon the top of that "Ark of the Covenant" to remind the people that the sins of the past year had been "covered" by the grace and goodness of God. That blood of animals symbolically covered or "atoned for" the sins of the people.

When Jesus came as God's final sacrifice for sin, the journey into the Holy of Holies by an earthly priest came to a close. Jesus is God's eternal High Priest after the order of Melchizedek as the book of Hebrews reminds us. We do not need another priest to stand between us and God. We do not need another sacrifice. Jesus has shed His blood "once for all." Our redemption is complete.

Romans 3:24-25 states that through faith in the blood of Christ which has been shed for us that we now have atonement or forgiveness. This great truth has been noticed in 1 John 1:7 that "the blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanses us from all sin."

In 1 John 2:12 the statement is written that "Your sins are forgiven for His name's sake." The "are forgiven" words are in the perfect tense. That is, the sins are forgiven with a continuing effect. God remembers them no more. The sins are blotted out. They are forgiven. God grants us abundant pardon through the death of Jesus on the cross.

A pastor in Scotland had an elderly member of his Church who was quite poor. That poor man called for a lawyer one day to help him draw up his will. That man told his attorney that he wanted to leave so many pounds or about one thousand dollars for each of his cousins. He wanted to leave five thousand dollars for each of his grandchildren and ten thousand dollars for each of his children.

The lawyer said to the gracious old man, "Now, sir, you and I know that you don't have this amount of money to leave to your family members when you die."

The fellow said, "You are right. I don't really have anything. But when they read my will, I want them to know that I have had a good attitude toward each one of them."

God has a "good attitude" toward each of us with plenty of "spiritual coins" for all who trust Him. He grants us "abundant pardon, unlimited mercies." He offers forgiveness "for all our sins." These are not meaningless, hollow words. Jesus is the great Sin Remover, the One who takes all our sins away. Take a good long look at Jesus and you'll see that He is our Helper and our Sin Remover.

III. We See Jesus as Our Perfect Example

We read in I John 2:6, "The one who says he abides (menein: to remain, dwell, make home with Him) ought himself also to walk, We can look to Jesus and know that we follow the One who is the right example, the even as Jesus walked." Jesus is our "role model." He never fails us. He's our hero.  He's the perfect one and we all need to follow Jesus. The Savior met all of God's standards. God said about Jesus, "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased" (Matt. 3:17). We, too, are   well pleased as we follow Him.

Jesus related Himself to God's commandments in the right kind of way. The word for commandment in the test is not "nomos" or the law of Moses. That word is "entoln" which speaks of the precepts and the spiritual desires of God for His people. Jesus kept both, of course. We are to follow Him and do God's will.

Jesus spoke of a new commandment of love. John wrote about that new order to love as we read in 1 John 2:7-11. We follow Jesus and we are in the "light" as we love one another.

Jesus related Himself in the right way with the world. In His High Priestly prayer in John 17, Jesus said, "I do not pray that you take my followers out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil that is in the world" (John 17:15).

In the First John text we find the way to relate to the world. Verses 15-17 states that we are not to love the world or the evil influences in the created order such as the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life which are "trademarks" of worldly-minded folks. We are to be interested in the life in the Spirit of God. Jesus is our "role model" as we well know.

Jesus is the role model for the young and for the old. John identifies some of the believers as "little children" and some as "fathers" and some as "young men." It doesn't matter what age of maturity or what physical age we may be, Jesus is our example. Let's follow Him!

IV. We See Jesus as the One Who Anoints Us Spiritually

Verse 20, 27 states that Jesus anoints us with the Holy Spirit. We have the "unction" from Him. The "Christ" who is the "anointed one" now "christens" or anoints us with the Holy Spirit. All Christians need to be aware that the Holy Spirit lives within us and we do have this anointing.

Spiritual anointing gives us instruction. John wrote that you now "know all things" and you do not need for anyone to teach you (v. 20, 27). Let's "unscramble" those statements. John faced a lot of "gnostic philosophers" of his day. Those Gnostics or teachers of "vain philosophies" denied the humanity of Jesus. Cerinthus said that the "divinity" came upon Jesus at His baptism and left Him before the cross. He and other Gnostics denied the divinity-humanity of Jesus. John said that Jesus is the "Christ" from beginning to end. We don't need false teachers to mislead us about who Christ really was. Thus, the Christians didn't need "that kind" of teacher. We do need teachers in Sunday School and spiritual leaders all around us. John himself assumed that role and others did also. But the "anointing" that Jesus gives helps us know the truth that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

My Mom never attended High School. But for years that farmer's wife read the Bible through year after year. During the last 20 years of her life she read the Bible through three or four times a year. She knew the Scriptures and she had the "anointing." That's the instruction that John refers to in the text. We have the spiritual help and insight from the Holy Spirit to know the truth of Christ.

The anointing that Jesus gives lets us have an abundance of inspiration. We go "from strength to strength." That's the meaning of Isaiah 40 in the last few verses that state that we "can mount up with the wings of eagles and run and not be weary, walk and not faint." We have inspiration to keep going because of the anointing from Jesus. Perhaps this idea may be seen in psalms 92:10 where David wrote that he wanted to be "anointed with fresh oil." A lot of us can make that same confession.

Jesus wants us to be filled with the Spirit of God and be "clothed" with His Spirit." Let's see Jesus as the spiritual anointer and then we'll have a new day in life.

V. We See Jesus as Coming King

Verse 28 states, "Little Children, abide in Him" - - stay in fellowship with Jesus - "that, when He shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before Him at His coming." We don't want to be ashamed and embarrassed when Jesus comes again. We want to have boldness to "go out to meet Him."

We do believe that Jesus is coming again, don't we? That truth is given over and over again in the Scripture. We cry out for His Second Coming just as the Hebrew world waited for His first coming. He came the first time in humility, but he is coming again in honor. He came the first time in poverty, but He's coming the second time with plenty. He came the first time to be rejected, but He's coming again to be received. He came the first time to wear a crown of thorns, but Jesus is coming again to wear a crown of triumph. He came the first time to die and be placed in a grave, later to come out of the tomb. Jesus is coming the second time to open up the graves and call forth the bodies of all those who believe in Him. He is coming again. Philip Bliss wrote the hymn "Man of Sorrows." The final verse of the song reads, "When He comes our glorious King, All His ransomed home to bring, Then anew this song we'll sing, Hallelujah, what a Savior."


The name of Marie Joseph Lafayette is revered in American history. In 1777 Lafayette came to America from France and gave big financial and moral support to the Colonies in their struggle for freedom again Britain. Congress conferred upon that young Frenchman the rank of "Major General" as he joined Washington. He was wounded at Brandywine and stayed with Washington at Valley Forge. When the Revolutionary War ended, Lafayette returned to France.

In 1824 Lafayette returned to America for a visit. The old, gray-headed soldier wept over the graves of soldiers who had died during the Civil War. Crowds of people followed Lafayette through cities, cemeteries, and throughout the country. Never before in American history had a man received such as welcome as did that man from France.

Jesus has come to the earth. He has won the battle for our eternal freedom. He has gone back to heaven. But He is coming back again one day. We will see Him and we want to give Him a big reception and welcome as He comes again. Let's take a good, long look at Jesus. He's our Helper, Sin Remover, Perfect Example, Anointer, and the Coming King of glory. Will we follow Him? (www.PrestonTaylorBooks.net)