Topic 2: Justification and the work of Christ
By Carl Johnson
What is Justification? What does Paul say about Justification? The answer lies in the pages of a letter called Romans that forever changed the way people thought and lived for God forever even through great minds such as Luther and Wesley. The definition of Justification is God’s declaration that a believer is restored to a state of Righteousness in His sight on the basis of faith in Christ’s redemptive work and not one’s personal accomplishments. That is just one definition of Justification but let’s look at what Paul says “He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.” (Romans 4:25) In Romans by F.F. Bruce he says Christ died for our sins so we can be justified. In Romans Paul expounds even further on the stone of Justification the foundation of our salvation. “Consequently, just as the result of our trespasses was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men.”(Romans 5:18)The concept is that Jesus died for all of our trespass to justify us into a right standing with God the Father.
Now Jesus took this great trespass by one man’s disobedience, perdition and sin. Jesus Christ obedience brings us in life to justify us from death. In condemnation we are purposed to death but God removed this curse to restore us into life and righteousness. In Paul’s letter his doctrine is made of six crucial concepts which are election, propitiation, redemption, sanctification, glorification and justification. These aren’t in order but the basis is that it starts with Justification and ends with glorification. These terms are important to know so we can understand the totality of the Doctrine of salvation.
Doctrine in some definition is something received and that is instructed. The Greek defines the word Aletheuo to be true and to speak truth. The term election is explained in Paul’s letter “Yet, before the twins was born or had done anything good or bad—in order that God’s purpose in election might stand.” (Romans 9:11). In, meaning not because of works but because of call of God’s purpose for Isaac’s life. In the next term in Paul’s letter that makes the doctrine is propitiation which is just as foundational for salvation in concept is in the letter “God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished” (Romans 3:25).
The key in this scripture that describes propitiation is “sacrifice of atonement” which explains this term in salvation. In the concepts of salvation we are redeemed and by this the letters says “and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.” We cannot redeem ourselves only Christ can do that. In the process we are sanctified in concept is “through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.” We are sanctified by Christ and God in this is the Conclusion of the sound doctrine of salvation. In the letter Paul says “And those he predestined, he also called: those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. (Romans 8:30) Paul says that we are elected and justified then redeemed and sanctified and glorified. All this is done because of the righteous work of Jesus Christ.