Justification by Faith
“Justification by Faith” – what does this really mean?
Lets start by looking at the relevant scripture in the King James:
[Rom 5:1-2 NKJV] 1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
2 through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
And compare it to the NLT – New Living Translation:
[Rom 5:1-2 NLT] 1 Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.
2 Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.
The term “justified” in the King James is here translated to “made right with”. So then justification, is the process of being made right with God, or to have peace with God. This means God is at peace with us – there can be no condemnation or wrath from God as we are made right with God.
[Rom 5:9 NLT] 9 And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation.
These verses also indicate that this is done BY FAITH. So it is our faith in His son Jesus Christ that makes us right (or gives us peace) with God.
[Rom 1:17 NLT] 17 This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”
This is an important distinction – this process happens by faith (so that none may boast) and not by the law or works. So apart from believing or having faith – there is nothing you can do in your own might through works or the keeping of the law, that will give you peace or right stranding or justification with God.
[Rom 3:28 NLT] 28 So we are made right with God through faith and not by obeying the law.
Verse 2 continues and says that is this faith in Jesus Christ, that brings us to a place of UNDESERVED PRIVILIGE or GRACE, where we can confidently and joyfully (hope) share in God’s glory. The glory referred to here, is a reference to the resurrection where we (and our bodies) will be glorified, and we will enter heaven and see Him for what He is.
[1Jo 3:2 NKJV] 2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.
We shall partake of His Glory!
[Col 3:4 NLT] 4 And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.
In short, the term “Justification” is therefore the process whereby people are made right with (made peace with the wrath of God for sin and disobedience), through faith in Jesus Christ, in order to partake in His glory (heaven).
So, do you have peace with God?