“And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.”
and not for ours only
Jesus did not only die for believers, but He died for unbelievers as well.
The word “ours” is a strong term placing emphasis on this word. This “ours” includes John; he was not sinlessly perfect though an apostle.
Christians are uniquely responsible for their sin.
God does not argue with the non-Christian about their sins, but he does with the Christian. Christians are more responsible for their sins than the non-Christian.
It is easy to fall into despair over our sins as Christians. The reason for this is that we think the resolution lies within ourselves. This is especially true when we look at the God of light – absolute in His righteousness. That is why we cannot plead our righteousness else; there would be no hope. Our only plea is Jesus Christ’s righteousness and sacrifice for our sins.
Jesus does not plead for our innocence, but He pleads for our guilt. He knows our guilt but pleads His blood as proper appeasement for sin. The basis of Jesus’ appeal is not His plea. The Father would not respond to a simple plea for forgiveness; He needs a basis for forgiveness. He does not respond to simple manipulation of words; He requires something consistent with His nature – justification for forgiveness.
Therefore, God is propitious. God always deals with believers based on the blood of Christ. Christ has an absolute right plea for us because He suffered all that needs to be suffered as far as the Father is concerned. Jesus transferred the perfection of His righteousness to our account.
2 Co 5:21, “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”