JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH
The subject of “Justification by Faith” is an argument, proposed by the Apostle Paul in Romans 1:17 where he starts by introducing God’s revelation to humankind concerning unrighteousness: That this was a God-given revelation in the beginning and throughout man’s history (faith to faith) within the “Gentile’s law of nature and the Jews law of Moses. However, Paul further exclaims, “that neither of them could be justified by their obedience to the respective laws under which they were, but that they both stood in need of the righteousness of God.”  As Paul is strictly a preacher of the Gospel of salvation through Christ Jesus, there is no doubt he had to find another style of presenting the Good News to factions in opposition to one another. His method of preaching in Romans catches the undivided attention of both the Jew and the Gentile Christian. Justification in the sight of God comes by faith in Christ Jesus alone, by which we can also avoid the wrath of God that is consequential to the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. Certain cults, like the Jehovah’s Witnesses seek gratification by including their works to implement salvation and only adhere to particular scripture verses to defend their position. They twist the interpretation of James 2:18, 20, and 26 by ignoring Ephesians 2:8-9, which is contrary to the analogy of faith and does not agree with the biblical map. Works are only what we offer out of thanks for the sacrifice Christ made for us but they search for every excuse and alternative possible and refuse abandon their false doctrine, which is a matter of their own “free choice”. In actuality, there is no “free choice” because not accepting Christ Jesus as our personal savior accounts as a sin, in the eyes of God. (John 5:26-29)
“Justification” and “Faith” Defined
Since we are speaking of “Justification by Faith”, this is where it is appropriate to throw in the explanation of the two words, “justification” and “faith”.
Let Us Define “Justification”
According to Verlyn D. Verbrugge’s New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology”, the Greek word “justification” (dikaiōsis), defines a vindication or an acquittal (p. 147), a dismissal of criminal charges. We can best explain “justification” by encountering someone having a traffic citation for speeding and that either he gets the infraction dismissed or he pays the fine. The driver may appear in court to dispute the citation but if found guilty the punishment for these charges remain impending. He is no longer guilty if the charges are dropped and they will be forgotten. If the fine remains and is not paid, penalty charges will be added and compounded until the driver pays the full amount incurred, is arrested, or is jailed and serves time as payment; or serves time and still pays for the infraction. At this point, his license to drive can be suspended or revoked. The driver is no longer considered criminal once the fine is paid but this is where sin and the traffic citation divide. We cannot pay for our sin, our infractions against heaven. Our depravity is a spiritual matter that cannot be handled by physical means. Only a divine spiritual source can take care of both our spiritual, physical needs simultaneously, and that comes through blood sacrifice only. Christ Jesus, “ In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;” (Eph. 1:7)
Definition of “Faith”
Now “faith” (πίσtις), as defined by Verbrugge, offers another method of having that traffic ticket expunged. It “denotes the trust that someone may place in other people or in the gods, credibility, and credit in business, guarantees, or something entrusted” (p. 462). Again, in this case it is Christ Jesus, because he paid every debt of man’s criminal activity. So here, we put our trust (“faith”) in Jesus to pay the penalty for our crime much like a father...
Bibliography: Gill, John. “John Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible.” Paris, AR: The Baptist Standard Bearer, ISBN 1579780105 Online. E-Sword® Bible Study Software, Ed. Rick Meyers, Equipping Ministries Foundation. Sept 30, 2007.
Verbrugge, Verlyn D. “New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology.” Zondervan, Grand Rapids, MI. 2000. ISBN-13: 978-0-310-25620-5
Scofield, C. I. “The Scofield Study Bible”, Authorized King James Version.” Oxford University Press. New York. 1909, 1917; copyrights renewed 1937, 1945.
“Holy Bible”. New International Version, NIV. Biblica, Inc. Colorado Springs, CO. 2011. www.Biblica.com
“Baker Reference Library: Evangelical Dictionary of Theology.” Second Ed
Towns, Elmer. “Core Christianity: What Christianity is All About”. AMG Publishers, Chattanooga, TN. 2007.
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