Joy of Justification (Romans 3:24)
Romans 3:24, Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
Two brothers were spending their Saturday doing their chores, when the younger brother accidently knocked over a can of paint saturating most of the garage floor. When the older brother witnessed it, he told the younger brother, he would not tell their father if the younger brother mowed the lawn from now on. The younger brother was at first reluctant, but agreed. After a week the younger brother told his older brother that he would no longer mow the lawn. The older brother was quick to remind his younger brother of the agreement and that he would go to their father immediately. The younger brother said with joy, “Fine! I have already told dad, and he forgave me.”
Justification is the redemptive act of Jesus Christ at Calvary, whereby He declares the repentant and believing sinner free of all guilt and entitled to all the blessings and responsibilities of the kingdom. Justification is that spiritual blessing whereby God removes the filthy garments of our own "good" works, pays the debt of our sins, and argues our case as defense attorney, with the resulting verdict—not guilty, entirely by the grace of Jesus Christ. If the judge acquits me, who can condemn me? If the highest court in the universe has pronounced me just, who shall lay anything to my charge? God has already announced the verdict; the person who has faith in Jesus stands acquitted. Now, we are declared righteous by the One to whom there is no further appeal (Romans 5).
There are several reasons being justified brings a believer joy. Here are three.
2. Justification cancels out our enormous debt that we would never be able to pay. Again, imputation means a debt is owed; one is unable to pay, but the debt is satisfied when another steps in and pays the account on behalf of the debtor. If you will go to the LORD and take Christ’s righteousness (which is perfect) He will accredit it to your account. So, when you stand before God, you will stand before God as though you have never sinned. Not because your sinless, but because of your account.
3. Justification clothes us with robes of righteousness (I Peter 2:22; II Corinthians 5:21). Jesus Christ does not only deliver us from the pollution of sin by cleansing us; but God placed your sin upon Christ on the cross. Jesus placed your sins on His account and clothed you with His righteousness. So that when you stand before the Father, He will see you as justified.
The Canadian Ironman competition involves a 3.8 km swim, followed by an 180 km cycle, and ending with the traditional 42 km marathon run. The Ironman competition however, is not just a physical fitness competition, but a battle of the mind. In the race, all of a racer's self-doubts and inner demons rise to the surface, especially if a competitor doesn't know his or her own strengths and weaknesses. Among the mental tricks that helps competitors when the "babble" comes up is known as "treeing." If a negative thought comes up it is often hard to switch it to a positive. The competitors run up to trees, touch it and thus, give the negative emotions to the tree. The "babble" settles down and they are able to continue on. When we become a Christian, we "tree" our sin. We touch the cross and the Saviour that hung there; giving Him our sin and guilt, and taking from him His righteousness.
God is a holy God. He hates sin with infinite hatred. He will not look upon the smallest sin with the least bit of allowance, but God is also a God of pardoning love. He stands ready to pardon the vilest sinner. He is always calling to men and women who have sinned: ‘Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.’ (Isaiah 55:7). There are those that think they have sinned too deeply to ever find pardon, but it is not so. There is no depth of sin to which a person can go, to where God in His loving mercy won’t abundantly pardon that person, if they’ll acknowledge their guilt of sin and turn to the Lord by faith for forgiveness.
Prayer: LORD, thank You for being the God that justifies. Thank You for Your gift of forgiveness of all my sins. Help me to live like someone who is truly clean and forgiven! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.