The Christian’s Privilege of an Advocate Part 1

levi priest

1 John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

We are to consider the last conflict.

Revelation 12:17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

The remnant are the left overs, the sweepings of the earth, the last rain around the edges of the field which the gleaners have picked. They are the remnant those who live at the last time in earth’s history. When we consider earth’s history, has not the dragon made war with all time? The scripture is trying to bring to our minds, the increased intensity to the war. The dragon was always wrath with the woman.

When you are wrath with someone you indeed make war. Revelation 12:17 says the dragon is at war with the remnant and is making war with those people who keep the commandments of God and have the spirit of prophecy and the testimony of Jesus. The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy according to Revelation 19:10. Where is our faith? To what degree and strength is our faith for this last conflict? We shall be harassed by Satan. He desires to molest us along the way. He desires to sift us.

Luke 22:31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired [to have] you, that he may sift [you] as wheat: 32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

Jesus is intensely interested in regards to our faith and to the strength thereof. Jesus has prayed not for Peter only, but for them who hath believed on his word. If Satan desired to sift Peter for all those years, how much more does he want to sift the remnant? All the powers of darkness desire to strive, tempt, lure and goad us into sin; to prompt us into discouragement and despair and doubt of God’s mercy. This was the work of Satan upon Jacob as he wrestled. As Esau was to pursue him, Satan pressed the guilt upon him. In the case of Joshua the high priest, Satan is standing there. Zechariah was the high priest, Joshua was clothed with filthy rags and the accuser was reminding and bringing to attention, all those things which once marred the life.

This is the purpose of Satan to strive against us and to cause us to weaken our faith and make us stumble and to continue to fall. Will our faith pierce the darkness of such warfare? The warfare is not just in open anger, but in flattery and comforts as we find the Laodicean church has fallen into the snare and we being the remnant at such a time. Is it going to lighten or grow deeper in conflict? Where is our faith? These questions are answerable to God. As our soul stands before God, where is our faith? Our study today has an objective, a purpose. That is to strengthen our faith. The objective is to strengthen our faith that in such a time as this, that we may obtain the most advantageous strides towards the eternal victory. Our faith is to be strong. This is the purpose of this study. To strengthen our faith so we can make advantageous strides towards this victory.

Matthew 9:29 Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you.

Faith is the capacity to obtain the gifts from God. We talk about the arm of faith, we walk by faith, we see Jesus by faith and the eye of faith. All this is what faith is about. It is liken to the paths of the body that can make advantage for the soul for which soul will make an advantage to reach for the bread to eat. If the hand didn’t reach, we would consume away and die. To strengthen our faith is to make the muscles within the arm effective. If you have little faith, you have little strength. Faith is the thing that grasps of God.

If God is bestowing His gift which is next to us in the pit with us, our faith must grasp it in order to be benefited by it. Christ has given the gift of faith also. He has given it in what measure? What measure has Christ given faith? Is it not a seed? Has not Christ placed into us the gift of faith as a seed? So in deed Christ had to pray for Simon that his faith would not fail and grow into a great mustard tree. Like a talent, God has given everyone a portion of faith. We must exercise it for it to grow. If we do not exercise it, that which we don’t use, we lose. We can consider Jesus coming to the palsied man, did he have muscles? They were there but they didn’t work. They were wasted away. Any of us who has been given the seed of faith and who doesn’t use it in the most advantageous way will become palsied. Have you ever seen a person who has muscles very weak in their legs? Have you seen someone’s eyes that are weak? One eye may look to the left and one may look to the right. This is given to the Christian of faith where we can see a blur. It is appropriate that we spend time to strengthen our faith.

If we have an arm and a leg and a form and no muscle and being religious come here but seek not to strengthen our faith, just a form with no power, then this is what we are

2 Timothy 3:5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

Not from such a people turn away, but such a condition. Does God tell us to turn away those who are only in Christian by form? The scripture says to go and restore them. But it says to turn away from such a condition. That you would have an eye and not be able to see the glories of God, all this indeed is a form of Godliness when we desire the power of faith when we are given a seed. The mustard tree with its roots can go through the toughest rocks and search out the waters in the ground. Its branches are strong and so glorious and the fruit thereof all from faith, that is works. Like a muscle, a strong arm we are to plead for our brethren. Here comes the direction of God;

Isaiah 35:3 Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm the feeble knees.

This is our duty to our brethren that we would strengthen that which is weak and direct the eye in the right direction. This is part of the objective for us in this last conflict to have strong faith.

Hebrews 12:12 Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees;

How shall we strengthen our faith, give muscle and exercise the weak muscles?

Job 4:3 Behold, thou hast instructed many, and thou hast strengthened the weak hands. 4 Thy words have upholden him that was falling, and thou hast strengthened the feeble knees.

What is it that has strengthened your faith – the word of God? It gives exercise to spiritual muscle. Many of us read the scripture and get tired. This tiredness testifies to the fact that its exercise. Which of you exercise and not feel weary? Here the word of God is an upholding element. It is the power that strengthens the muscles and sinews in the body. For us to get weary of study is a testimony that our faith has been strengthened. Which of you after exercising stop? We know that is it is producing muscle so we continue.

The duration of tiredness is brought out to endurance. For us to study our Bible, if we get tired in ten minutes, we can know how big our faith is. If you tire from studying the word of God, do not cease. Cease for a while and come back. But everyday continue a diligent exercise and you shall grow and be strong. None of us can strengthen each other in a daily routine. All we can do is show the invites of God’s word and then the spirit is to bring that home. We are to give ourselves to prayer for strength. Romans 10 clears up how we shall strengthen our faith;

Romans 10:6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down [from above]:)

Here we have the righteousness of faith. What is it saying to us? Don’t start to doubt that Christ is not near. Experimental faith is speaking to us on this wise. Do not think that Christ is at a far distance. This is the first key for us to maintain reading the scriptures. For if we read and not know that Christ is near us, but if we feel after Him, we shall find a stimulus in the word that invites us the next day to come study again. Don’t say that who shall bring Christ from above and so on.

Romans 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, [even] in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

Even this message is nigh unto you.

Romans 10:17 So then faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

For your faith to be strengthened, I must not share anything but Gods word. I can’t strengthen anything, I can’t even strengthen myself. The two heads of our objective in our study is to strengthen our faith by the word of God and to make advantage strides. If you have the ability to run and danger is far behind, would you not run? Running is more efficient as when you run, it’s faster. If you hobble, every step has to create its own energy. Running is advantageous. For us to be the remnant, the last, we have so far to go in such little time.

Said the angel, “Deny self; ye must step fast.” Some of us have had time to get the truth and to advance step by step, and every step we have taken has given us strength to take the next. But now time is almost finished, and what we have been years learning, they will have to learn in a few months. They will also have much to unlearn and much to learn again. Those who would not receive the mark of the beast and his image when the decree goes forth, must have decision now to say, Nay, we will not regard the institution of the beast. {EW 67.2}

We have much to gain for we are the people at the end. We are the weakest and we have to fight the biggest conflict.

Matthew 8:5 And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him, 6 And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. 7 And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him. 8 The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. 9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this [man], Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth [it]. 10 When Jesus heard [it], he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. 11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. 12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 13 And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, [so] be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.

Here the centurion made an advantageous stride. Jesus said I will go with you to your home. The centurion coming who was grieved, beseeching Jesus, does not want to delay too long. He said, you speak the word and he shall be healed. That servant was sick of palsy and he was tormented and if he had less faith, he would have said to Jesus come.

The time of travelling would have been a continual suffering for that man at home suffering.  Consider your suffering, how much less suffering would you have if you had stronger faith? If you exercised your faith in the word of God, how much more mourning would have been prevented if we believe in the word of Jesus? The centurion didn’t just believe in Jesus action of healing, he said, speak the word. In that self-same hour, the servant was healed. I feel deeply in regards to what we have to meet in the future. We have much to encounter. We are not striding as we should. We are not in a motion where one step creates the motion of the next as in a running man. One step gives strength for the next.

  If we overcome our trials and get victory over the temptations of Satan, then we endure the trial of our faith, which is more precious than gold, and are stronger and better prepared to meet the next. {EW 46.2}

Our faith is to be strong so that we can run. We would see Jesus, our weak faith to strengthen. Why; for the last conflict. The latter rain is an advantageous effect to the grain. It is given so that the barns may be made full.

Deuteronomy 11:14 That I will give [you] the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil. 

Joel 2:23 Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first [month].

God desires to give us the latter rain to help the fruit fill out. The latter rain is for the remnant or else it wouldn’t be the latter. The latter is obtained only by faith.

By faith look upon the crowns laid up for those who shall overcome; listen to the exultant song of the redeemed, Worthy, worthy is the Lamb that was slain and hast redeemed us to God! Endeavor to regard these scenes as real. {SL 91.1}

If you behold something and your vision is clear, how easy is it to regard that thing as real? It’s easy. But say your eyes have weak muscles and one looks to the left and the other to the right and you behold one object but can’t see it clear and you ask someone, what is that/; and they say, it’s a vase of flowers; I must regard that as real. Satan has a foothold to make you doubt, he will say it’s something else. You look and you listen to the voice of the enemy and therefore are deceived. We are to endeavour to regard the scenes of heaven as real. To make an advantageous view, we need eyesight.

Correct eyesight will lessen the ability of the dragon to speak doubts to your soul so that when the enemy comes and says that is not a vase, you can say yes it is. You then have a cause to resist the devil. When you resist the devil, he will flee. Can you see the importance of faith in the last days? That we can cut in half the allurements if we can see properly. Not that we can just see, but we can run and if we fall, we have the arms to pull ourselves up. We are to make advantageous strides with working faith.

If man had all the faculties of the body in a strong degree but sat in bed all day, what would happen? So it is if we have the faith but do not use it, we become weak, idle and lazy and the devils tool. By faith look, if you can’t see, study and your eyes will be strengthened. The veil that covers our faith so many times in trial so that we can’t see what God is doing. Study to strengthen the muscles of your eyes so you may see God in his mercy. When you see God in his mercy, it will be a great thing for the evil one to discourage. It is very hard for it is said of Jesus he was not easily discouraged.

 If we would permit our minds to dwell more upon Christ and the heavenly world, we should find a powerful stimulus and support in fighting the battles of the Lord. {SL 91.2}

What will stimulate us? Often when there is lack of blood flow in a leg with weakness, it is good to stimulate it with massage, hot and cold compress or a natural remedy.  That will stimulate the blood to that area to strengthen and to heal. If we permit our minds to dwell more upon Christ and the heavenly world, we shall find strength for the battles of the Lord. This is my purpose in this study to find Jesus as an advocate. As we consider we shall be stimulated and supported by the word of God.

These privileges that come through Jesus Christ, how shall he not freely give us all things? Jesus gave gifts unto men that we can grow up into Him the head. That we not be children tossed to and fro about with every wind of doctrine. God has given us gifts for the battle. We must secure them by faith. Which person gained the gift and buried it? Wasn’t it the foolish man who had the talent? He had damnation because of it. He did not use the gift, he buried it. When we have faith, use the gifts of God for his cause. He gave gifts unto men. He made captivity captive that we come behind in no gift, waiting for the coming of the Lord.

1 Corinthians 1:6 Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: 7 So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ:

God has given us the Spirit of Prophecy and the testimony of Jesus so we don’t come lagging behind in a wheel chair but that we would make long strides.

Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God; {RH, September 3, 1903 par. 10}

  In this scripture are portrayed Christian privileges that are comprehended by but comparatively few. Every one should become familiar with the blessings that God has offered us in his Word. He has given us many assurances as to what he will do for us. And all that he has promised is made possible by Christ’s sacrifice in our behalf. {RH, September 3, 1903 par. 2}

There are things in the scriptures that God has promised to do for us. If we do not know what He has promised, how shall we ask for such a thing? If we know that He will do, then we shall ask. If it is what He will do for us, then we can ask, knowing we will receive and strengthen our faith again.

If we viewed the Christian privilege in the right light, we should consider it the highest exaltation to be accounted a child of God, an heir of Heaven; and we should rejoice that we can walk with Jesus in his humiliation. But our Saviour assures us that there are some who would like to climb up some other way than the toilsome, self-denying way of the cross. They would avoid reproach and shun sacrifices. Christ calls such thieves and robbers. If we are not willing to breast the storm of opposition, if we choose to float with the current, we shall lose eternal life. {ST, July 31, 1884 par. 16}

If we aren’t decidedly going to follow Jesus and to walk after His footsteps but to let the world, feelings, flesh and disappointments in life drag us down, we shall not avail. These are the objectives for our study, the two heads; one to strengthen our faith for the battle and secondly with strong faith to make advantageous strides towards the kingdom.

Faith must grasp the strength through the word of God to obtain the gifts and privileges God designs us to have and thus to achieve the eternal victory. Thus the scriptures say this is the victory that overcomes the world even our faith. The method of our objectives to strengthen our faith is to see what sayeth the scriptures. To make the advantageous stride, is to believe and obey what sayeth the scriptures.

1 John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

We shall consider this text over a number of studies. There is much to be gained to know that we have an advocate. What an advocate does and how to use the advocate. This is a privilege of the Christian. This is the title of the sermon, the Christians privilege of the advocate. When John is writing this, we look in John 1:1. The apostle John is writing from a deep experience from what he has seen, touched and handled.

1 John 1:4 And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

The apostle John is writing to us that our joy can be full. The privilege of joy can be obtained.

1 John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

Our study is called the ‘Christians Privilege of an Advocate.’ Someone may ask the question, isn’t it not everyone’s privilege to have an advocate with the Father? Is it not just the Christians privilege? What if you are not a Christian, do you still get to have an advocate with the Father? You will see that it is Christian’s privilege to have an advocate with the father because in verse 2 we see a statement that says:

1 John 2:2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for [the sins of] the whole world.

Everyone Has Access to the Cross of Jesus

The propitiation is an atoning victim that atones. The sacrifice is not just accessible to Christians but to everyone. He is the propitiation for our sins, not us only but for the whole world. Is there a difference between an advocate and a sacrifice? Everybody however great the sin, everybody has access to the cross of Jesus. None are excluded.

1 John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

Who is this addressed to? The little children. This word “and if any man”, is addressing that he is writing to the little children that have an advocate. We see who John is writing to here;

1 John 2:12 I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name’s sake. 13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him [that is] from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.  

Who is he writing to? The children of God. He said if any man, young or old has an advocate with the Father, it is a privilege of a Christian.

John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, [even] to them that believe on his name:

When we receive Jesus, we then have the power to become the sons of God and then a son with the children of God.

Romans 8:32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?

Jesus was delivered for the sins of the whole world. He is the propitiation and for those that receive sacrifice, and obtain gifts and privileges because they then are the sons of God. To accept Jesus Christ means we have help in our conflict. We have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. For those that do not receive Jesus, who say I don’t want that propitiation, I don’t want that sacrifice, He cannot advocate for those people.

Romans 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together.

We have a privilege. We have a heritage. We have an inheritance to the throne of heaven. That which is in heavens riches is accessible to us. You shall have access to all the riches of heaven if we will suffer with Him. That in itself is a privilege. Heaven has all sorts of gifts. If you went to a shop not knowing it was a shop, how will you know what to buy until you went in and saw and searched the goodness of such a shop? The kingdom of heaven is such a store house. Many gifts one being an advocate of the Father. In this trial we are to enter, we need that.  You will need someone to plead your cause through the law. Not the old law, the new law. My entreaty as we close this portion of consideration is that you will accept Jesus. Accept him in his sufferings.  As you accept him in his sufferings, you shall be glorified with him. You shall have access to the fullness of heaven. You shall have access to the protection of the heavenly angels. You will have child guidance help, the spirit of grace, all the riches of Gods glory if you will accept him.

Turn not away like Israel of old. They didn’t accept Him. Like the centurion of great faith, they will come from the east and west and will sit down with Isaac and Abraham. The others will be thrown in outer darkness. Will you accept Jesus in His humiliation and not miss out on all the privileges? You will need an advocate. You must have an advocate. If any man sin, we have an advocate. May God help us to choose Jesus, to shun the flesh, to exercise ourselves in the world of God so that our faith can see the advocate and that we would get oil for our vessels and not our lamps only. Consider your faith before God. Consider the method of your walking. Consider the muscles in your eyes. Consider how easily you get thrown into doubt and confusion. Pray that God will give you the water to grow. Every person has a talent, don’t bury it, and exercise it. Continue to go through the pain of studying. Endure it. He that endures to the end the same shall be saved.

Amen.

Posted on February 6, 2010, in Divine Service Sermons, Sermons For Sabbath, The Christians Privilege of an Advocate and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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