I knew as a boy growing up that Jesus died for my sins. I could see him hanging on the cross at the front of the church every Sunday morning. And while I would acknowledge once a year that he was raised from the dead, I had no revelation that my sins were forgiven once and for all time. I did not know that when Jesus entered into heaven with his blood as an offering for my sin, I was justified as though I had never sinned. To be justified is to be pronounced or proclaimed to be free from guilt or blame. Our sins were forgiven and forgotten by God.

Were ARE NOT justified by the law.
We cannot earn justification or be good enough to obtain it. We cannot even keep all of the commandments of God and be justified. It comes only through believing on the name of Jesus. Paul speaking in Acts 13:38-39 stated,

"Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses."

The prophet Habakkuk in speaking about God, stated in chapter 1 verse 13,

"Thou are of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity..."

God cannot look upon our sins and the law does not deal with our sins. In fact, Paul, in Romans 3:20 states,

"Therefore by the deeds of the law shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin."

If we put ourselves under the law, our sins are not forgiven because we have removed the grace of God from our lives. Read Galatians 5:4,

"Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace."

And in Romans 3:28,

"Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law."

We ARE justified by faith.

It should now be evident that we are not justified by the law. That is what Paul stated in Galatians 3:11,

"But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, the just shall live by faith."

Paul expounds even more in chapter 2 verse 16 on who or what we are to have faith in,

"Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified."

Paul taught this in his various epistles because it is the very foundation upon which Christianity is based. He knew he was dealing with hard hearts (ours included) and had to keep instructing us that we were to believe in Jesus, not Moses. God gave the Jews the law, but he set it aside when he sent Jesus.

"Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster" (Galatians 3:24-25).

All we have to do is believe it. It is a free gift from God.

"Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:" (Romans 3:24).

How do we get the grace of God to manifest in our lives? You guessed it. Faith in the resurrected Jesus.

Romans 5:1-2 says,

"Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God."

Paul even makes it clearer in verse 9,

"Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him."

And in Titus 3:7 he states,

"That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life."

It doesn't get any better than this. When we believe what God did for us when he sent Jesus to the cross and then raised him from the dead, we access the grace of God in our lives for the forgiveness of our sins; we have peace with God; we are saved from wrath; and we have hope of eternal life.

Isaiah 53
Isaiah chapter 53 (actually, starting at 52:13) is a prophecy of Jesus spoken about 750 years before he was born. Let's read verses 4, 5 and 11.

"Surely he hath born our griefs and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted (v4).

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: and the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed (v5).

He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities" (v11).

When we know Jesus and believe in his death, burial and resurrection, we are justified because he bore our iniquities. He paid the penalty for our sins so we wouldn't have to. Praise God! Amen.


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