Monday, July 21, 2008

Justification - Monday's word of the week.

Justification. As a former police officer and someone that has spent some time in the courtroom I have a pretty good understanding of this word. Most People that commit crimes try to "Justify" their behavior. Spousal abuse is "Justified" because she wouldn't listen to me. She was out with another man, and she deserved it. Theft is "Justified" because I was in financial need, or I can't feed myself. Murder is "Justified" because I was in danger of losing my own life. Etc..

My greatest reward as a police officer occurred when people would just say they screwed up and they didn't try to justify their behavior. They would let the chips land where they landed and took their medicine. However, when dealing with eternity we will have to Justify our behavior. We will have to explain to the Holy One why we lived our life's like we have. Like my last posting on relationships we all are in a relationship with Christ, will it be one of Wrath or one of covered sins one where we will be "Justified" to our father.

The Dictionary explains justification this way.
1. a reason, fact, circumstance, or explanation that justifies or defends: His insulting you was ample justification for you to leave the party.
2. an act of justifying: The painter's justification of his failure to finish on time didn't impress me.
3. the state of being justified.
4. Also called justification by faith. Theology. the act of God whereby humankind is made or accounted just, or free from guilt or penalty of sin.

It is a reason for doing something. Why did we react this way. Why did I leave my wife. Why did I quit my job. We are explaining why we did this or did that. As you can see in item 4 above, it also pertains to theology. You see we have to have our Sin accounted for. This is why we will have one of two relationships with God. Which one will it be. Will we be free from guilt, or burdened by guilt.

Another item I want to look at is how does Blue Letter Bible explain Justification. The Greek word for Justification is Dikaiosis and it means "the act of declaring men free from all guilt and acceptable to Him", and it means "abjuring to the righteous, justification". Abjur means to renounce, repudiate, or retract. So if we are abjured by someone, that person will renounce, repudiate, or retract our errors.

So if we are determined to be justified for killing someone, say in self-defense; then at the end of a trial in court the Judge or Jury will renounce, or retract the killing from our record. We thus will be justified in the eyes of the court. Now lets take this on a spiritual path.

In Romans 4:23-24 Paul writes " Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him, but also for us. It shall be imputed to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our lord from the dead, who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification." The first question that should be asked is: What are we being imputed with? Righteousness of course. Just follow the scripture back up to verse 22, "and therefore it was accounted to him for righteousness." This is what we are imputed with to make us "justified" in the eyes of the lord. Jesus is taking the Lord's wrath on the cross, instead of the Lord giving it to us when we die. Now of course we must be believers in Him (see my last post on relationships), to receive this Justification.

Another good example of Justification is is in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11. "Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. 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 and by the Spirit of our God." What elegant words. Paul tells us what we were. Each one of us could probably pick one, two, or more from above to describe our old self. Maybe we are one of the above still today. But Paul tells us we were washed, sanctified, and Justified by the Lord. We are exonerated, found not guilty by Jesus. He takes the wrath for believers leaving us spotless in front of God on judgment day. We confront God as if we never, no never, not once sinned. Remember, one sin and we deserve death. But not now, we are renounced in front of God. Made not guilty by the highest Judge of all. Oh, how refreshing and marvelous for us.

In Matthew 5:48 Jesus tells us "Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your father in heaven is perfect." You see with his personal work on the cross for us, we will be perfect in front of God. I, like Christ encourage you to live your life perfect, without spot or Blemish, forsaking the old self and turning toward the Lord for all things, to include but not limited to your JUSTIFICATION.

From this word we have many more to look at such as Sanctification, Imputation, Righteousness. Look for these words in the next few weeks.

1 comment:

Allen said...

Also look at Romans 3:24: "justified freely" "dikaioo" - "declared righteous." The Greek also means "without cause in you, and without cost to you." Let him who thirsts take of the water of life freely. Revelation 22:17.