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STUDY 6 The Propitiation for our sins (1 John 2 v2).
Bible passages to be read: Romans 3, Romans 5, Luke 18 v10-14, 1 John 1 v5 - 2 v2, 1 John 4 v9-19.
The word propitiation in the Greek of 1 John 2 v2, which only appears again in this exact form in 1 John 4 v10 is linked with the covering of the ark of the covenant - the mercy seat - kept in the Tabernacle set up by Moses in the wilderness (Exodus 25 v10-22); and subsequently in the Temple. This was to be the meeting-place between God and man. Our place of meeting with God is in the Lord Jesus Christ, who has Himself dealt with our sins. Read the story told by the Saviour in Luke 18 v10-14 and note how the Pharisee places his confidence in what he is in himself, and what he does, and is passed by. The Publican, however, uses a form of our Greek word, and prays in effect, ‘O God Meet me at The Mercy Seat’ - the appointed place of meeting, where the sacrifice has been offered. Knowing his own sinfulness, he rests wholly in God̓s mercy, and is accepted and forgiven.
Read Romans 3 carefully.
1. Is there any encouragement in this chapter for the thought that a man is able to approach God in the light of his own good works done in obedience to God̓s law? What do you gauge from this chapter to be man̓s natural condition apart from the grace of God?
2. Does this chapter teach how we may approach God? If so, prepare from it the advice you would give to anyone genuinely seeking for the forgiveness of their sins, and acceptance by God.
Turn now to Romans 5.
3. Verses 1 and 2 tell us of two things we definitely receive from God when we are accepted by Him. What are they?
4. Verses 3-5 speak of five more things, which are made part of our experience by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, who has been given in order that He may work into our lives the characteristics of the children of God. What are they? How do you harmonize these verses with 2 Peter 1 v3-11?
5. Verses 12-21 speak of four kings, two whose domain is outside the realm of the Mercy Seat, and two who operate through our new life in Christ. Give in your own words the argument of these verses.
1 John 1 v5 - 2 v2 describes the daily walk of the Christian. God meets with him at the Mercy Seat, and holds intercourse with him in a more wonderful way than He did with Adam in the Garden of Eden. The results of this fellowship are seen in verse 7.
6. Because a man is accepted by God does he become sinless? If not is there adequate provision for restoration for the man who falls? Give in your own words a summary of the teaching of the first two verses of Chapter 2.
7.Now read John 4 v9-19. Outline three things that emerge from this passage. (a) The way God has provided a propitiation for our sins, (b) The place the Holy Spirit has here, and (c) The way our love to God because of all He has done for us becomes manifest.