Our Best Advocate Ever

At some point in our lives, most of us will have needed someone to speak on our behalf. Be it as a defenceless child, an unwell adult, an accident victim, or being accused of something, we need an advocate. In those times of vulnerability, being unable to say or do what’s needed to assist or release ourselves, an advocate who intercedes on our behalf becomes our saviour.

Advocates can be drawn from family, friends, work colleagues, or legal representatives. Regardless of who it is, there is one thing they all have in common; they speak and act in our defense. They set about achieving a beneficial result we cannot accomplish for ourselves. Consequently, they often become our heroes.

We read in 1 Samuel 14, of the time when Jonathan unwittingly violated his father’s vow not to eat food until the enemy was conquered. Consequently, King Saul, being full of self-righteous indignation, was determined to kill his son Jonathan to satisfy his vow. But Saul was confronted by an unexpected advocate in defense of Jonathan, when the people of Israel interceded for Jonathan’s life (1 Samuel 14:43-45). The people proved to be more honourable than the king by saying, there shall not one hair of his head fall to the ground, for he has worked with God this day. So the people ransomed Jonathan, so that he did not die (1Sa 14:45).

But the greatest advocate by far, is the Lord Jesus Christ. He stood in our place at the cross, paying the full penalty demanded by God for the guilt of our sin. Then, throughout the believer’s life, Jesus continues to advocate with the Father on our behalf. And even when a believer stumbles in sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous (1 John 2:1).

However, Jesus is no ordinary advocate, as the authority He intercedes with, is based on His satisfaction of God’s justice. He is the propitiation for our sins… (1 John 2:2). As the Lamb of God (John 1:29), Jesus is the only sinless sacrifice for sin ever made, who was provided by God, and has successfully and permanently appeased the wrath of God. Jesus alone has atoned for our sin, transitioning God’s wrath against our sin to a state of calm and peace. Now, with His unique credentials, Jesus continues to speak in heaven on our behalf, maintaining our justification (our declared innocence) and security of salvation.

In Romans 3:25, Paul emphasises that it was Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. Again, it is God’s intention for people to believe these truths, to attach their faith to Jesus who accomplished God’s appeasement on their behalf on the cross. It is personal faith in Jesus substitutional death and resurrection which activates the benefits of Jesus’ advocacy within the individual before God. This begins with the heavenly declaration that there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).

As believers, we will experience condemnation from others in this world, and from our arch enemy Satan, but NEVER from God! While worldly condemnation comes packaged with rejection, our heavenly advocate secures our acceptance with God. This is the very heart of the gospel, and Paul gives us real-world gospel application in Romans 15:7; Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory. Our heavenly advocate works for us, and within us, enabling His loving grace to defend us, to protect us, to secure us, and to flow through us to others. As always, this is for God’s glory and believer’s blessing. May this be true in our lives today.

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