“Justification is the doctrine on which the church stands or falls.” – Herman Bavinck
For Christians the good news is that we are justified. We have been justified by grace alone, through faith in Christ only. This is the good news of Christianity. Whenever you want to try and understand the gospel deeper you need to go directly to the doctrine of justification. However, one of the most important things that we must realize is that at the center of our justification is our union with Christ. Because we have been unified with Christ, we now receive all of the benefits that come from being united with him! However, what are all of those benefits?
Too often, Christians think their justification attains them a place in heaven, and that is all that they have gained. But the glorious gospel of Jesus benefits us in unimaginable ways that many Christians fail to remember and live in daily. All believers need to be reminded of the assets that have been deposited in our account through the death and resurrection of Christ. It is easy to see why reconnecting with the benefits of justification is an absolute necessity for all Christians. Below are five benefits that the doctrine of justification in Christ declares.
A home security system makes a family feel better. It changes a lot when someone can go to sleep at night feeling safe and secure. This same security system is installed into each and every believer. However, believers rarely spend time lavishing in the fact that their Father in heaven will sustain them to the very end. The message found in John 6:37 says, “However, those the Father has given me will come to me, and I will never reject them.” That is not something that can be overlooked. There is beautiful freedom in the realization that, through faith in Jesus, we will never be cast out, though we might struggle and fall. Our security in Jesus stays with us always, even unto the end of the age.
When a woman looks into the mirror, does she see her imperfections and flaws or does she see a beautiful daughter of the King? Justification says that all who are in Christ Jesus are accepted fully. The way she looks or feels does not define her; her full acceptance before God is completely anchored in what Jesus has done, not on her beauty or performance. The mirror that once revealed all of her imperfections is replaced, and she is given a mirror that has the words, “With you I am well pleased.” Full acceptance is hers.
Evidence has been presented and a verdict has been reached. The judge is about to deliver the sentence, but a last witness is called. This witness walks to the stand and shocks everyone with what he says. The witness says, “I did it and I will take the punishment.” This is what Jesus Christ does for everyone who places their faith in him. The guilt and brokenness we deserve does not have to be experienced anymore. We are not guilty. We are free because the Savior of the world took on the guilt for his people.
Most of us understand that Jesus Christ paid the penalty for our transgressions. However, that is only half of the problem. Even after forgiveness happens, a stain remains that cannot be fully removed. In 2 Corinthians 5:21 it says, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” When a man places his faith in Christ, not only is the stain removed, but his clothes are exchanged for Christ’s perfect robes. This man is now viewed as wholly righteous before God.
The Bible tells us that we are all born into the world spiritually dead. Ephesians 2:1 says, “…and you were dead in your trespasses and sins.” A man is born and then wheeled off to the spiritual morgue. What we need is something that will make the dead come to life. Christ came to resurrect all who place their faith in him from the grave. Christians have been revived through Jesus. We are finally alive! Live in light of that truth.