The Cross of Jesus Christ is a Symbol of Justification
Key Scriptures: Romans 5:1-4
A). The Meaning of Justification
1. Justification is the bestowal of the status of acceptance on the believer in Christ.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11
Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
In the Greek, the word justified means to be declared righteous, free and just.
In the GNT it renders thus;
“In the past, some of you were like that, but you were washed clean. You were made holy, and you were made right with God in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.”
1 Corinthians 6:11 NCV
2. Justification is higher than forgiveness. The forgiveness of sins itself is a wonderful blessing of our redemption. Colossians 1:14. If all we ever receive from the Cross was forgiveness of sins, that in itself is a goldmine. It’s blessedness is unspeakable. However God goes a step further to justify us. He made us right with himself. He declared us Righteous.
3. Justification is that grace by which God sees us through the glasses of divine perfection and sinlessness. He sees us, not as hopeless sinners saved by Grace but as sinless, perfect saints.
4. Justification puts the believer in a different light all together and changes his status.
5. His Righteous estate means that he has no traceable past of sin. The new creation in Christ is no longer in Adam. He can’t be found in or traced to Adam. 2 Cor.5:17. He is now in Christ. His past, present and future can only be found in Christ.
B) The How of Justification
1. The Cross of Jesus Christ made justification possible.
2. How can God declare sinful man guiltless? The answer is found in another mystery of Redemption known as Substitution.
3. Substitution means that Christ took our place so that we might take his place.
4. Our justification is based on the righteousness of Christ being reckoned to our account. 2Cor.5:21. The meritorious ground for our justification is entirely in Christ. As we give ourselves completely to Christ, he gives us his righteousness.
5. Romans 5:18-19 sums it all up;
Therefore as by the offence of one [judgment came] upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one [the free gift came] upon all men unto justification of life.
For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
C) The Benefits of Justification
1. The consciousness of justification by faith brings peace. Rom.5:1
2. Empowers your prayer life. Heb.4:16. How can you come boldly before the throne of Grace? It’s on the basis of justification and righteousness. You come to the palace of prayer knowing fully well there’s nothing between you and the father. It means God declares you guiltless.
3. The gift of righteousness causes us to reign in life. Romans 5:17. This means that we become masters of situations, walking in absolute dominion.
God did more than wash us and sanctify us. He also justified us. This means that he made us right with him and declared us guiltless. Tap into this blessing today by freely accepting through faith.