Right with God

Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of observing the law? No, but on that of faith. For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law. Rom 3:27 ,28
We…. know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified. Gal 2:16
Justification is a key doctrine for the Christian which is the outworking of the work of Christ on the Cross as it is received by us. Why have we left it this late? Because we’ve been focussing on the work of Christ on the Cross, and strictly speaking we were not justified by the Cross, we are justified by God after faith, on the basis of the Cross.
At various times in these meditations we have been seeking to show that what Christ achieved on the Cross was sufficient for the salvation of any and every person who would respond in repentance to him. There was nothing any one of us could have added to it. It was complete as an act by God to establish the basis for our salvation, but it was not our salvation. That only came when we responded in faith to this good news. Then and only were we ‘justified’.
So what is ‘justification’? It is the instantaneous legal act of God whereby He declares our sins forgiven and taken by Christ, and Christ’s righteousness declared as now belonging to us, so that we are now righteous in His sight. Why ‘instantaneous’? Because it happens the very moment when we believe and surrender to God, seeking His forgiveness and newness of life, i.e. at the moment when we exercise faith.  Hence faith is the key that brings the already complete work of Christ to bear on our lives.
There is no merit in our faith; we have not earned this justification, we have simply received it as an act of grace by God. When we believed what He has done and said, then by an act of grace on God’s part, He declared that that work of Christ on the Cross, that dealt with our sins, now applied to us and we were justified. In normal usage, a dictionary definition of ‘to justify’ means ‘to show the justice or rightness of a person or act’. Note the closeness of the words ‘justify’ and ‘justice’. Thus, to justify means that justice has been done, and we have been put right with the Law, and the basis of that is Christ’s work on the Cross.
Lord, thank you that you provided the completed work of Christ for me to believe in, and when I did you declared me free from my sin and guilt, and now righteous in your sight.