Seven Grand Results of Justification

7LW-013

This morning, we continue to direct your attention to the 7 Last Words, Segment Number 13.

Worldly Priorities

One boy is not going to be able to attend summer camp after registering because his mother has discovered that he has to play in a recital, piano I presume. I am astounded that a parent would say such a thing with a straight face. A brief piano recital night instead of a week resulting in eternal spiritual impact in summer camp, I think, is not a good exchange.

Piano recitals, in case you are not acquainted with them, are kids playing at various level of proficiency to an indifferent audience who, after waiting for one's own child to perform, are ready to go home. It is basically, I have found through years of experience, an uninspiring occasion with some painful performances by struggling Van Cliburn's in the views of their mothers. A student's performance at a recital doesn't last but a few minutes. Then it's gone; it's gone forever.

In the Middle Ages, a man named Dante wrote a literary work called "The Inferno" in which he imagined how people would be punished in Hell. I've always felt that a good type of eternal punishment for the unsaved would be perpetual attendance at piano recitals, just on and on and on for all eternity for these kids, for their piano recitals, forever and ever.

Because of the eternal importance of spiritual development in the Berean Youth Club Summer Camp program, it would seem that the wise choice of these parents is and should be very clear to tell the teacher that their child would not be able to participate in the recital. After all, they will not be put in prison if they don't. They will not be able to attend the recital because of a higher commitment. Besides, wise teachers and sensitive teachers to family needs would not schedule piano recitals during the summer months when families have opportunity to do things together, when school is out and other things that they would want to schedule.

Now, this decision, however, does reveal a general attitude in American society, and that is: that the Bible, as the mind of God, is not of supreme importance in life, it is not the thing that should be the priority in your life, the Bible is just a nice book. What happens now when some great tragedy occurs in society? Not too many long years ago, they used to say the ministers would come in locally to see if they could help anybody in need of any help. They don't call in the ministers at all anymore. They call in the therapists now. The psychologists, the counselors come in and they're as dumb as the kids. So how can they be of any help without spiritual orientation? But that is the nature of American society today. You can live without a week of summer camp. You can live without a week of the influence of the Berean Youth Club Summer Camp. But you will be all the weaker in facing Satan, the Sin Nature, and the world structure of our society. That is the problem. You stay home for a piano recital instead of a week at summer camp? You stay home as one little girl last year. You signed up. Take my name off because my team is going to be playing in some championship softball games. When I said to the father this is probably not a good choice for a ballgame over something that will have major spiritual impact on her. He says, "Oh boy, every time she hits a good ball, I take care of her spirit." So I knew I was talking to a fool. The Bible says, do not throw your pearls before swine, do not answer a fool according to his folly. But that was absolutely unbelievable.

But it happens all the time because this is where people have come in our society, because they've lost their way relative to the Word of God. How can this happen? What brought about such total ignorance of the magnificent work of God, for example, and removing that terrible wall that separated God from man and made it possible for a person to cross over and go from a destiny in the Lake of Fire to an eternity in Heaven? Who's responsible for that?

Society Has Lost Its Way

One good writer that I like to read, William Murchison, in one of the publications I received, wrote an article recently that I would like to read to you. "Spongianity and Cultural Decline" is the name, Spongianity May 19.

Quote: "Well, first, that's all that sin talk we got to get rid of. Plus, who believes in all those miracles the New Testament mentions; the cross as enduring sacrifice for sin, a barbarian idea. Nor was Jesus raised physically. Morality isn't external or objective. And don't ask some theistic deity to act in human history in a particular way. Who says, some atheist professor of biology? Says rather, the Episcopal Bishop of Newark, New Jersey, John Shelby Spong, a wolf in shepherd's clothing.

"On the Internet and also in his new book, Spong advertises his conviction that it's time to throw out the whole Christian faith and start over. Why? Well, you don't keep month old bread around, do you? This stuff's stale, out with it. The bishop gets worse and worse. But so [and here's the point.] does most of the Western intellectual apparatus. In our time, the keepers of the tradition, far from keeping it, preserving it, and building on it, have turned against it. Western intellectuals hate the West. Those who don't hate it ought to outright treat it at best with amused contempt, an artifact of a world ruled by strutting racist women oppressing males. Oh thank God, if there is a God, such a world is gone. Today's intellectuals know so much more than anyone before them ever did.

"Self-styled Christian teachers, whose theoretical duty is to defend the faith once delivered to the Saints, are among the worst of the breed. Not all, of course, but many of them, such as Spong, such as the members of the Jesus Seminar, happily engage in de-supernaturalizing the gospels, such as the great host of clerics and seminary professors resident in every denomination who regard the church's task as justifying itself to the world rather than preaching justification by faith.

"There is a rich irony here. Let me remark it. The irony is that today the main exemplars of the tradition Spong abhors and hopes overthrown are Asians and Africans. As the great white bishop prepares to jettison yesterday's theological baggage, black and brown hands reach out to restrain him. A pivotal moment in modern Christianity's history could be coming in England this summer at a worldwide gathering of Anglican bishops, where at Spong proposes to talk up gay rights, the joy of unmarried sex, and the need to dress Christianity in modern glad rags. Our brother John and other left wing Western bishops, disconnected from traditional Christianity, will be up against it, forced to answer to the Asians and Africans, their forbearers converted.

"The converts have grown stronger in the faith than the converters. Strongest of all of them is the Archbishop of Singapore, Moses Tay, the leading force behind an affirmation of Christian moral standards called the Kuala Lumpur Resolution. How strange indeed Western civilization and its central beliefs in the care and keeping of non-westerners. What of it, so long as those beliefs, the Judeo-Christian tradition, liberty under law, responsibility as the correlative rights, get cared for and kept. The left's war on western civilization started by Marx and Freud is basically about right and wrong. The left doesn't believe in such categories, to the left, everything goes except cigarette smoking. That is why the left so forcefully repudiates religious authority; admit some deity made the world, and we might have to do things that deity's way. That would undermine sexual expression. It might mean no gay marriage, no abortion, no serial marriage. It could mean formal respect for formal codes, self-esteem replaced by repentance, the higher equality based on allegiance to God rather than the lower based on law and regulations. See what Bishop Spong is up to? Reconstruct Christianity his way and the danger passes.

"Under Spongianity, as I suppose we could call it, anything goes except saying some things don't go. Asia and Africa have their work cut out for them. Saving the West is too big a job, obviously, for all those westerner's trying to kick it aside like last winter's petunias." Unquote

Now, Bishop Spong is not as much an oddity as you might think. Pulpits are filled with his ilk and his type. This is, if not so blatantly, openly declared, exactly what people get in churches Sunday after Sunday. If expository preaching is not taking place in a church, you will be corrupted. People who swing off from the Berean ministry where they're used to having the Bible explained to them so that they know what they want to believe or throw out according to what the Scriptures teach, people who veer off from us, eventually get into the non-expository preaching church marked by the fact that the preacher jumps around the Bible preaching this text, that text, and never goes through in detail explanation, those people are always corrupted. Even good, solid Bereans are always corrupted. Eventually it takes effect.

I guarantee you, as I've reminded you many times, all issues of differences will be resolved at the Judgment Seat of Christ. We will stand on the decks of the Missouri up there in Heaven, and the tears are going to pour down the faces of these people who turn their backs upon the Word of God when they turn their backs upon expository preaching ministries. It's just that simple. One does not have to look very far at the lives of people who sat under expository preaching and were negative to it to see what happens to their lives, let alone those who departed from it. It is because people want to be: 1. where most everyone else is, they like to be with a gang, where the things of the glamor and of the sophistication are found in people; or 2. they want to find themselves a church that will be compatible with their lifestyle.

This is the problem we have in rearing our children. Parents are always rearing their children today to be compatible with what the child wants, with what his peers want for him. They set the standard. Parents are not rearing their children to be compatible with the standard of the Word of God and making it clear to the kid: you fail to live up to that standard and there are consequences and by Heaven you will pay those consequences.

The last thing we will ever give you is a speech. Misery we will give you, but a speech, we will not give you because you'll love the speeches and go do it again. Adults do the same thing. If the failure of the local church is there, it will fail the people in the pulpit. It is amazing that people cannot grasp that to understand what is being done to them, what they are being robbed of in terms of the Word of God. They go along like ninnies, some of them, of course, because they never knew any better. Is there any wonder that Jesus, with moist eyes looked out there and said, "My, my, the field is ripe to harvest?" Where are the shepherds? Where are the harvesters? Where are the people who bring it in? There are so few.

So Murchison is right on target, as he always is. He's an Episcopalian, so he speaks as an insider.

This attitude of contempt for knowing Bible doctrine, life, principles and adherence to them leads also to people universally and arrogantly creating their own way for getting into Heaven. People are doing that all the time. There's a man who's dying. He's into his own religious system. It was in his background. Now things are getting very, very bad for him. Mrs. Danish says you've got to go talk to him again. I don't know whether I want to talk to him again or not. I've sat across from him on more than one occasion. We've set out to dinner and I said, look, this is what you have been reared with and it's very wrong. What you are counting on is a dead savior and a dead religious system. If you do not change, that is where you'll end up. So we make one more effort to save him again, only to be looked at and say, no, this is my way, I'm going to do it my way, And he probably will go out into eternity and he will do it, indeed, his way-this attitude of contempt for knowing the Bible, to having somebody who can explain it to you-not the attitude of I know it myself.

The Bible Says the Man Should Be the Spiritual Leader

God help the woman who's married to some crackpot Yo-Yo, who does not know the Word of God so that he can be a spiritual leader. I have yet to try to find a woman in all my 4-decades-plus-experience who takes off on her own in spiritual things, who does not fulfill the picture in Scripture of the woman hiding the evil of leaven into the true doctrine. She will do it every time, not because of some intellectual shortcoming, some inferiority, but because it's not God's way.

It is the order of the Word of God, the Bible cannot be more explicit, to say that the human race is living in a living hell because the woman in the Garden of Eden decided that she could figure out things spiritually on her own. She could even be a preacher and teach her husband just as well as any male around. And Paul says. Therefore, the man must be the leader, and the woman must be responsible to follow his guidance. But he is responsible to see to it that he can give her guidance.

Pity these poor women who would be responsive, and they are left out there because they've got men who either think they know it or have never been taught the Word of God, or have been negative all their lives, or have gotten away from it so that they are just as much of a pagan as anybody else. This poor woman sitting at home, nobody guides her, nobody leads her. What is going to happen? She will go down. She will inevitably go down. She will lower herself to that man's level. This attitude of contempt for the Word of God never goes anyplace but bad.

Once one is taught about the problem that exists between God and man, you no longer try to come up with ways of solving it yourself. Once you are instructed from the Scriptures that which exists between a holy God and a sinful man, it becomes very clear that no one can make it into Heaven by his own efforts. The Bible makes it clear that it takes an act of God Himself to remove this terrible wall of separation between God and man, these blocks that have been the result of what Adam did in the Garden of Eden. Please notice that the Bible never says that in Eve, did we all sin? It never says by one woman's sin, death came into the human race. It was Adam's fault. He should have been on top of things. He should have been guiding. When he let things get out of hand, the results were his fault. Adam is held responsible.

Salvation Explained

So the Bible makes it clear that once man did this, there was no way that he himself could remove the separation. It takes an act of God to remove this wall. And He did this at a very big cost to Himself; taking the second person of the Trinity, removing Him from total deity, not diminishing the deity, but joining it to humanity, a perfect sinless humanity such as Adam was originally, so that now forever this person of the Trinity would be a God-man, and therefore He is able to die for the sins of the world to bring this wall crashing down. Now, this is the good news of the gospel, of the grace of God. Salvation is a free gift from God, by faith alone in Jesus Christ alone as one's personal savior.

The Blocks Thus Far

We have been looking at the blocks which have made up this wall and have been demolished on the cross. First block down here is a block which we referred to as the sin market. This is the block we're representing everybody's enslavement to Satan in his sin market corral. This was removed by the redemption price, which was the death of Christ on the cross.

The second we have is the moral guilt. The Bible says all have sinned, come short of the glory of God. The block of moral guilt for one's personal evil, that guilt has been expiated by Jesus Christ on the cross so that your record is clear.

The third was a block that had to do with the fact that we are all spiritually dead because we have the Sin Nature. This has been removed by an act of regeneration by the part of the Holy Spirit at the point of faith in Christ as savior so that the spiritually dead, become spiritually alive. This is the result of what Christ did on the cross. He died spiritually in our place.

Then there is the block of the holiness of God, and that block expresses on the one hand the perfect justice of God, which means that all sin is dealt with to its fullest extent. Secondly, it has to deal with the righteousness of God, which is absolute perfect righteousness. God's justice was satisfied by the death again of Jesus Christ on the cross, in place of all mankind. God's absolute righteousness was met by Jesus Christ, imputing his righteousness to the believer, while taking on the believer's sin on Calvary as His own guilt. The imputation to the believer's credit of the absolute righteousness of God is entirely secured by an act of faith in Jesus Christ as savior.

So where do all these religions go? They go nowhere. Every one of these religions of the world do not understand that this is the barrier. They understand that that barrier is there, but they don't understand that they cannot change that. Only God can remove the barrier. That's exactly what He's done.

Now, we pointed out that Abram, Abraham as his name came to be called, is the classic example of a lost sinner made good enough to go to Heaven because of his faith and God's promise to save him someday through a coming savior. God always saves the lost sinner on the basis of faith, faith in Jesus Christ alone. In the Old Testament that was looking forward to that savior and in the New Testament, we look back to that savior who has come.

Faith, please remember, is not a human good work. It is not an act of merit on the part of the believing sinner. That's why we say faith is non-meritorious. It is no credit to you whatsoever to say that God is not a liar. You're admitting a fact and therefore you have done nothing to make God true. You're simply looking and saying He tells the truth. The Bible is the truth. It is no credit to you. Therefore, it's a non-meritorious act recognizing the truth of God's promise to save through Jesus Christ as a gift. The lost sinner doesn't contribute anything to make himself saveable. That's all the work of God alone.

So salvation, because it is the work of God alone, cannot be contaminated by man. That's why a man cannot do something to put this wall back up. It is Christ who removed it. You can't put it back up. There's no way that man can put this wall back up. Every time somebody says, well, you can be saved, but if you don't behave yourself, you put the wall back up and you're out again. No, you cannot reverse salvation. The Lord Jesus Christ has made men saveable. That's what this wall being brought down has done. It has made us saveable by removing the wall of separation. All human plans for qualifying for salvation are a bust.

Imputing absolute righteousness to the believing sinner is to declare him justified by the holy God who acts as the judge of all the universe. Justification means you have perfect, absolute righteousness. Please turn to Romans 4, this great passage once more on securing justification. Romans 4:23, the Imputation of Absolute Righteousness. After telling about how Abraham was saved by his confidence and faith in God, Romans 4:23 says "Now not for his sake only was it written, that it was reckoned to him." This biblical record we have of this man who is called out of Ur of the Chaldees to come to a new land after he believed God and was saved. He didn't get that promise to come to a new land, the Abrahamic covenant, until he had believed God and was saved. Once he was saved, God says, now I've got something more for you. But once this man, as a pagan, a rich pagan, believed God, this was recorded for us, that we would always know how he was saved. He was saved by faith in God and the coming savior. It tells us, Paul says, that this wasn't recorded just so we would know about Abraham. But it had an eternal, divine purpose that this man was saved simply by an act of divine grace. God reckoned it, imputed, salvation to him in the form of absolute righteousness. There was a purpose that God had in this for us.

Romans 4:24 says, "but for our sake also, [This was recorded.] to whom it will be reckoned, as those who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead." The record of Abraham's salvation is for our guidance today, as well as to how God saves by the work of a free grace salvation. Believing in God the Father who raised Jesus Christ from the dead is to believe the Father's message about Jesus Christ. That's why it says but for our sakes, this was written so that we would know what we should do. This God who reckoned salvation righteousness to Abraham, we all should know that as those now who would have that same salvation, we must believe in Him, God the Father, who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. Christ was raised to prove that salvation, the holiness of God, had been met. And therefore, Acts 16:31, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved. The result is that, God the Father will credit the absolute righteousness of Jesus Christ of the believer's credit today just as He did to Abraham.

This divine imputation of absolute righteousness declares that the believer now is justified before a holy God, which means he is qualified for Heaven. That means he can go to this place of total holiness. God in the Bible carefully and repeatedly warns mankind not to try to do what only God can do to secure absolute righteousness for the lost person.

See, this salvation by an act of God is no big secret. The problem is that people do not look to the Bible to find the answers. They have some other authority. The Bible repeatedly says, as it does for example in Titus 3:5-7, don't try to do this yourself. Titus 3:5-7, "He [God] saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, [not our human good works,] but according to His mercy, [just the kindness of God to select us to salvation] by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, [sins washed away by an act of God,] "whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior." The Spirit of God to the Church Age believer becomes a permanent in-dweller in that believer. Verse 7, "that being justified by His grace [not by our efforts] we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life." All that is ours in Heaven is because God has given it to us. God stipulates only one condition for justification, believe in His Son, and thus to receive Him and His work for your sins. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved. Romans 4:24, "but for our sake also, to whom it will be reckoned, as those who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead." So what God does is the amazing thing of exchange our moral guilt for the sinlessness of Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:21, "He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him."

Now, what's wrong with this whole biblical concept? Why is it that people resist? I'm sure that sooner or later, especially with some of your relatives, you've had the expression, something to dislike in this way, something to this point, "Well, that's just too easy. That's just too easy." The Mormons have a phrase, people like to get saved free, but everything costs something. I was standing someplace reading this little Mormon card of explanation, "Everything costs something. Nothing is free." They didn't mean that Jesus Christ paid for it. That would be what you would think when you read it, yes, it isn't free. It costs God a great deal, cost Christ a great deal. That isn't what they're saying, what they're saying is that you have a price to pay and so they use the term prove yourself worthy.

The Mormons and the Bible cannot both be right. They're contradictory. One is right, one is wrong. Everybody must decide God made it possible for sinners to be justified just on the basis of what He alone has done for us. So Romans 4:25, "He who was delivered up [Christ] because of our transgressions, [That's why he was put on the cross, burying our sin and guilt.] and was raised because of our justification [because God could declare us absolutely righteous]." Christ was raised back from the dead. The point of the Scripture is abandon your human relative righteousness; it's all a useless thing. Philippians 3:9, "and may be found in Him not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, [by keeping rules,] but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith." Is it no wonder that Martin Luther was thrilled when he read passages like this: a righteousness which comes from God on the basis entirely of faith in Christ? I will not be found in Him, and thus qualify for Heaven with a righteousness of my own that I created by doing good works. But I do get a righteousness if I trust in Christ to pay the price for me. That's righteousness, that absolute righteousness which comes from God, just on the basis of faith.

This is a problem that we have with all of us and with people, when we deal with children in one way or another at Berean Church: we have a terrible problem with parents, they don't have faith. They don't have faith in the Word of God. They don't have faith in Scripture. They don't have faith in doctrinal principles. Therefore, because their faith is in society, their faith is what other people think. Their faith is in everything else under the sun. They constantly make the wrong mistakes, the wrong decisions, and their children suffer accordingly. Abraham should always be connected with the concept of faith. What you believe is what you do. It's just that simple. What you believe determines what you will do.

Seven Grand Results of Justification

So this is a wonderful thing, justification by faith, the rallying cry of the Reformation. Seven grand things about justification ties it all together. This is the holiness of God giving us absolute righteousness. That was required, done, you qualify on that basis so that the holiness of God will never keep you out of Heaven for a moment.

Justified By God/The Christian Chain Reaction

First of all, we are justified by God. Romans 8:30 points out, "and whom He predestined, those He also called; and whom He called, those He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified." Who is that? He it is God the Father. Those whom He pre-destined: you, you, you are the mass of humanity. I am now predestinating you to come into My family. The rest have no right. The mass of lost humanity has no claim upon God. You are all sinners. You are all morally guilty. You are all deserving of the Lake of Fire, and God doesn't have to do anything. And when He has done it, it has been out of His mercy. He does not have to bring anybody in except by His good purpose and His goodwill. Whatever moves Him, that's what decides who goes and who doesn't.

But please notice the chain reaction from that. Once He predestines you, He sees to it that you are also called. You get the gospel, you get the call. Theologians call it an efficacious call. You can't say no. God, the Spirit finally hits you, brings conviction, opens your eyes. You say, yes, I believed. Until that happens, you won't say yes. So if you're predestined, the next link is going to happen. You'll be called. Then the next link will happen. If you're called, you'll be justified. You're going to get absolute righteousness. Then the next link will be if you've got absolute righteousness and you're justified, you're going to be glorified in Heaven. You're going to have the glory of God upon you. Now, that sounds to me like a pretty good deal. It's a sure winner. And who's done it? God, one into the other.

And Romans 8:33 says, "Who will bring a charge against God's elect? God is the one who justifies." OK. Stand up my stupid relatives, and tell me: that all of you who do not trust in Christ, that your belief that all the non-Christian groups who reject Jesus Christ are going to get to Heaven, that your Roman Catholic relatives who depend upon their own works to get justified, they're going to make it into Heaven. Who is going to bring a charge against God's elect who claim that they're going to Heaven for sure on the basis of a work of God? God is the one who decides. God is the one who justifies. He knows whom He's justified and He knows who he hasn't. The people He justifies are those who have trusted in Christ.

Please notice that all sin is basically against God. Breaking any one of the moral codes does hurt people. It is injurious to people and you have to deal with that on the basis of individuals when you have violated the moral code of God, but all sin is against God. Please do not forget that the overt sin is but the expression of what already took place in your mind. That's why we say mental attitude sins are the grossest. Those will lead you away from the Word of God faster than anything under the sun. But all sin is against God. So He's the one that you have to deal with. That's why 1 John 1:9 in confession as a Christian deals with going to God. You can pay a debt to society for something of which you are guilty, but you can never pay your debt to God for your moral guilt for sin.

Justification Is By Blood

Secondly, justification is by blood. Romans 3:24-26 "being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; "whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation [satisfaction] 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, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus [Christ]. God has to be just. How can God maintain His justice? He had been telling Adam, you'll go to Heaven. He's told Eve you're going to Heaven. He told Abraham you're going to go to Heaven. He told David you're going to go to Heaven. He told all those believers through the centuries of the Old Testament, you are all going to Heaven because you have faith in the coming savior. But God had no basis to qualify them for Heaven. He couldn't give them absolute righteousness. Why? Because the price of blood, the spiritual and the physical death of Christ, the Lamb of God, had not been shed to provide the penalty so that God could be just while He was a justifier of the guilty. See, this is why we say that God was giving a promise that He was going to keep, but it was all on credit until Christ finally paid the price on the cross. Then all those IOUs were paid and these people then receive their full justification. So without the shedding of blood, there is no basis for justification. So all these religious systems that are going to do it on their works are never going to get justified. This is the ground of justification, all through the death of Christ. The death of Jesus Christ was in our place. He was our substitute.

Justification Is By Faith

Number 3, justification is by faith. Romans 3:28 says, "For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law." You don't get justified by something good that you do. Romans 4:5, "But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is reckoned as righteousness." Believing in Christ is the way you are justified. It comes by faith, believing. Romans 5:1, "Therefore having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Human good works gain nothing with God. All of your human good works come from the Old Sin Nature. The Old Sin Nature produces two terrible evils: sins and human good. And God considers both of them vile. Thus there is no way to pay God the debt of your moral guilt for your sin. All we do is rejected by Him.

Justification Is by Grace

No.4 Justification is by grace. Romans 3:24, "being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus." So you see how sloppy people are with the Scriptures? That is so clear. The words are so precise. They'll say, yeah, well, it's that, but you still have to do your own thing. "Being justified as a gift," if it's a gift, that's what Romans has made clear, it can't be something you paid for or earned. "Justified as a gift by His grace," just because of God's kindness. But it's through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus. That code word for removing the whole wall, freely, means without a cause. Without a cause in us is justified as a gift. "By His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus," God does it purely as an expression of His love. We don't deserve the justification. There is no goodness or attractiveness in us.

Justified by the Spirit

Point No. 5. We are justified by the Spirit. This is in 1 Corinthians 6:11, "And such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God." And God the Holy Spirit is the agent of regeneration. He is the one who brings us to life spiritually. It is the Holy Spirit who places us into Jesus Christ. Thus we have imputed to us the absolute righteousness of Christ. So we are declared justified. That is a work of God the Holy Spirit. Yes. We were all dogs. We were all moral dogs at one time. Paul says. But He has washed us from that point.

Justified By Our Works

No.6 were justified by our works. James 2:21, justification illustrated, demonstrated, from a different angle, James 2:21, "Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar? Of course he was! He demonstrated by being willing to sacrifice that boy in faith to the Word of God. He was demonstrating that he had faith in God, and therefore his justification that he had was revealed outwardly by this act. James 2:24-25 says, "You see that a man is justified by works, and not by faith alone. And in the same way was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works, when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way?" Was Rahab saved? Yes, Rahab was saved. How do we know that Rahab was saved with the terrible background that she had? Because she stood by the Word of God that told her to protect these men, and she did. So this is justification demonstrated in the lifestyle.

And here's where we break down so sadly. Some Christians are lousy demonstrators of justification. Yes, they're justified, they're saved, they have absolute righteousness positionally. But the way they live, like alley dogs smelling each other, what kind of a lifestyle is this? Their moral code is made up, making up their own rules and thinking that life now is good when all of it is not freedom, but greater enslavement. God's real acquittal is evidenced outwardly by our lives that follow. We're not justified before God by our lifestyle, but we sure are before men and a Christian should reflect what he is.

Justification is Only in Christ

Finally, No.7. Justification is in Christ, no place else. 2 Corinthians 5:21, "He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness [the absolute righteousness] of God in Him." This is the reason that justification is possible. Christ took our sin. He gave us His moral purity and we have been made therefore, a new creation. So we are said to be accepted in the beloved. 2 Corinthians 5:17, "Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come." And these new things are not a nice lifestyle. This has nothing to do with how you live. These new things which have come is the fact that you're now in the position of absolute righteousness. You are in a position of justification. That makes you a new species of human being.

Ephesians 1:6 says, "To the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved." Since we are in the Beloved, we share His justification. The Beloved is Christ. Since Christ cannot be brought to judgment for sin again, as He was on the cross, neither can we. See, He not only paid for your past sins, but everything in the future.

We close this morning reading Romans 5:1-10. Receive the Savior and the grand results of justification. Romans 5:1-10, "Therefore having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him, For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life."

You talk about a great future. That is the greatest.

Dear God, our Father, we thank You for this time together, in the Word. We thank Thee that the holiness of God has been completely satisfied in our behalf. We are good enough in our Savior to go to Heaven, and we thank Thee for that. In Christ's name. Amen.

Dr. John E. Danish, 1999

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