Reports on what God is doing through Bible believing evangelical Christians in Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru, India and Ecuador. Jesus said, "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you" (John 15:7).
SELAH! Pause - reflect- just think of that!
“Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1).
Justification is the opposite of condemnation.
God declares the believing sinner to have a right relationship with Him, but that does not make him righteous. A sinner does not have any righteousness of his own, and therefore cannot be innocent. However, God declares believers in Christ righteous on the grounds of Christ’s atonement.
The believing sinner is declared by God to be just by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.
Grace of God is the cause of our justification.
Romans 3:24 reads, “being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus.”
No individual can make himself right with God no matter how hard he tries because he is a sinner. The Bible declares, “There is no one righteous, not even one” (3:10). The reason is because “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (v. 23).
Since we are condemned sinners worthy of death as a punishment for our sins, someone else must do the work of righteousness for us (6:23). We do not deserve or merit God’s love. The source of our right relationship with God is His own free grace.
The foundation of our justification is the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross.
It was Christ “whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed” (3:25).
God can now freely justify us because of the finished work of Jesus Christ. Christ paid our sin debt in full when He died for us (5:6, 8). We are “justified by His blood.”
Justification is an act of justice because when God justifies sinners, He is not declaring bad people to be good, or saying that they are not sinners. He is agreeing with the fact that all human beings are sinners. In justification He is pronouncing them legally righteous, free from any liability to the law they have broken.
The ground for our justification is the death of Christ.
The means of our justification is faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
Jesus “whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus” (3:25-26).
Faith is the channel by which justification becomes ours personally. Our faith in Christ is not the ground of justification, but the means by which God’s justification operates (5:1; Gal. 2:16).
Faith is essential for our justification, and it is God’s gift to us (Eph. 2:8-10). It is not works so no one but God can get the credit for our salvation. God does it, and we receive it freely by faith alone.
Even after a lifetime of Christian living and sacrificial service, the believer has no works on which to rely. He has no merits before a holy God. Justification is always by grace through faith, now, and in heaven before God’s judgment throne (Rom. 3:30; 5:1).
Justification of the sinner takes place objectively in Christ, and is appropriated subjectively as sinners place their faith in Him.
The apostle Paul never speaks of justification apart from faith.
The result of our justification is a vital union with Christ.
The ground of all that God does for and in us is this vital union with Christ (Rom. 5:1-11). We are now “in Christ Jesus.”
Our victory in the Christian life is accomplished in our daily life by being “in Christ.” We enjoy a personal, vital, living relationship with Christ.
“There is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ.” God freely and fully declares us just. This “faith-righteousness” is the end of “law-righteousness” which was never a “real righteousness” that satisfies God’s “perfect righteousness.”
Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006
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Unless otherwise noted "Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.""Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE" © Copyright 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission." (www.Lockman.org)
Scripture quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NET) are from the NET Bible copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://www.bible.org/. All rights reserved.
Wil is a graduate of William Carey University, B. A.; New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, Th. M.; and Azusa Pacific University, M. A. He has pastored in Panama, Ecuador and the U. S, and served for over 20 years as missionary in Ecuador and Honduras. He had a daily expository Bible teaching ministry head in over 100 countries from 1972-2005. He continues to seek opportunities to be personally involved in world missions. Wil and his wife Ann have three grown daughters. He currently serves as a Baptist pastor and teaches seminary extension courses in Ecuador.
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