Meditation number 89

Forgiveness, justification and sanctification

Most Christians believe that their sins are forgiven. Many however ignore that they are perfectly justifies before a righteous God et many more have never heard of their perfect sanctification by that same work that took care of their sins. (for practical sanctification -see 1 Th. 5:23). Yet these truths are clearly presented in the Word of God. This ignorance would not be very serious if these three words meant all the same thing. But these three things are quite distinct in themselves and their results quite different. Consider the following example: a man owes a large sum of money; if this debt is forgiven him, he is free from all punishment or lawsuit; however if someone pays his debt completely, He is not only free from all reproach concerning this debt but he is completely justified from it; but all this would not make him any more apt to enter into his creditor's home on a familiar basis. But the work of Christ has done these three thing; by it we are forgiven and thus saved from the punishment of hell; by it we are justified and can stand peacefully in the presence of a righteous God as if we had never sinned; and by it we are sanctified and thus made fit to enter into the presence of a holy God (He. 10:19). Justification is presented in Romans, sanctification in Hebrews. In we are before the throne of a righteous God, in Hebrews, we come into the sanctuary of a holy God. In Romans we have the guilt of the sinner that would deserve him punishment while in Hebrews it is a question of his defilement (his uncleanness) being the cause of his exclusion from the presence of God. In regard to the sacrifice of Christ, Romans presents its perfection in connection with the claims of the righteousness of God while in Hebrews, it is more the eternal character of the offering made once for all. Our peace rests on this double foundation. The work of Christ must be perfect to assure of a place before a righteous God and it must also be efficacious forever in order for that position never to be lost or altered. Justification, as well as sanctification, rests on a triple foundation, the one established by God the Father, by the Son and by the Holy Spirit. In Romans we are justified by the grace of God, by the blood of Christ and by the operation of the Spirit producing faith (see Ro. 3:24, 5:1-9). In Hebrews we are sanctified by the will of God, by the work and blood of Christ, things to which the Spirit of grace renders a rich and abundant testimony (He. 10).
(adapted from the English)

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