In what way is Jesus our advocate?

The original Greek word for "advocate" is parakleton, which means, "helper, advisor, or counselor." When we put our trust in Jesus and are saved, He becomes our advocate. We also use advocate as another name for a lawyer. When we are in court, an advocate provides support and advice for us and pleads our case to the judge. Advocates know how to navigate complicated legal situations with tact and depth of knowledge.

The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from our sins and makes us righteous before God when we put our faith in Jesus. When we receive salvation, we are instructed to put our flesh to death and live by the Spirit (Romans 8:12–13; Galatians 2:20). This does not mean that we will not still struggle with our fleshly desires: we fall short of God's perfection by sinning (Romans 3:23). If we continue sinning, even after coming to Christ and living in the knowledge of Him, we are still guilty of breaching God's standards (Hebrews 10:26; Romans 1:21–23; 1 Timothy 2:4).

The good news is that Jesus is our advocate before God the Father. First John 2:1 says: "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." Jesus also calls the Holy Spirit our advocate in several verses (John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7).

Even when we are guilty of sinning, if we have surrendered to Jesus Christ and confessed Him as Lord of our lives, He is our advocate before the Father. His sacrifice for our sins was good once and for all: "For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God" (2 Corinthians 5:21; see also Romans 10:9–10). Thanks to Jesus, we can be declared "not guilty" before God the judge (Romans 8:1; Colossians 2:14).

This does not mean that once we have been saved, we have no responsibility for our own sins. We are required to confess our sins to the Lord. This shows that we have a humble and repentant heart—we do not take His sacrifice for granted: "a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise" (Psalm 51:17). We have this promise: "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).

Jesus is our perfect advocate, because He lived here on earth as a human man. He has compassion on our every struggle because He also experienced rejection, temptation, abuse, and unfair treatment. Jesus lived a perfect life on earth, which qualified Him to forever be our High Priest and advocate (Hebrews 4:15; 9:28). Unlike a human advocate who has knowledge based exclusively on external circumstances, we have a heavenly advocate who can also see the internal condition of our hearts (1 Samuel 16:7; Luke 5:22; Mark 2:8).

Jesus purchased us with His blood. He is our Lord, our Savior and our perfect advocate: "And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption" (1 Corinthians 1:30). This was the plan from before the beginning of the world, and Jesus will be our advocate until we are with Him in heaven (1 Peter 1:20–21; John 17:24).

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