To understand what the Bible teaches on the subject of JUSTIFICATION, it is helpful to picture in our minds a courtroom scene with GOD Himself as the "J _____________ of all the E______________" (Genesis 18:25). With this in mind, we shall now consider the five great facts which help us to understand the true meaning of JUSTIFICATION:
Consider carefully Romans 3:9-19 where we see ourselves just as God sees us (the God who is perfectly holy and absolutely righteous). According to verse 10, are you RIGHTEOUS or UNRIGHTEOUS? ____________________________ (Note: When you think of the word "justification" or "justify" you should think of the word "RIGHTEOUS." In the Bible, the word "just" means "righteous" and thus we could think of the word "justification" as meaning "rightification," to coin our own word. The word "justify" means "to declare or consider righteous." How can an unrighteous man become a righteous man? This is the key question because God will accept nothing less than absolute and perfect righteousness!)
Read Romans 3:19. As we stand before God the Righteous Judge, is the verdict "GUILTY" or "NOT GUILTY"? _________________ How many men and women share this same verdict (Romans 3:23)? _________
Not only are we guilty, but there is a penalty involved. In Romans 1:29-31 we find a terrible list of sins. As you honestly consider this list, have you done any of these things? We learn in Romans 1:32 that those who commit such things (the things mentioned in verses 29-31) are worthy of _________________! In Ezekiel 18:4 we read that the person who sins shall _________. Therefore, because of our sin we deserve (circle one): a. a $600 fine b. 5 weeks in prison c. 10 years in prison d. the death penalty. Because of my sin I deserve the ________________ penalty. In Genesis 2:17 we find that the penalty for Adams sin was also the ___________ penalty. What are the wages of sin (Romans 6:23)? _______________ If you were paid $8.00 per hour and you worked a 40 hour week, then how much money do you deserve to be paid that week? ________________ If your boss were fair and honest, then your wages for that week would be _______________. God the righteous Judge knows exactly what we have earned for ourselves as we live in sin each day and Gods Word tells us that the wages of _________ is ___________ (Rom. 6:23).
What is this death penalty? We must remember that this death (Romans 6:23) is more than just physical death. This "so great death" involves SPIRITUAL DEATH and SPIRITUAL DEATH consists mainly of two things: 1) SEPARATION FROM GOD; 2) PUNISHMENT BY GOD. The following verses speak of spiritual death (hell, which is also called "the second death"). For each verse write down the part of the verse that indicates separation from God and also the part that indicates that punishment is involved:
God the righteous Judge cannot say, "You deserve the death penalty, but because Im a merciful God Ill forget about that and Ill let you live!" If God were to do that, its true He would be merciful, but He would no longer be Just, He would no longer be holy and He would no longer be righteous! Can God stop being what HE IS? _______ (see Malachi 3:6)
Imagine a human judge saying to a criminal, "I know you robbed that bank and shot the teller at the window but because Im so merciful Ill forget it ever happened and Ill let you go free!" Would such a judge be exercising justice? ________ Do criminals deserve to be punished? ____________
Consider Deuteronomy 25:1-2. If a person is righteous (innocent) then the judge should justify him (declare him to be innocent). If the person is innocent then the judge should say, "Youre NOT guilty!" If the person is guilty, then he should be condemned. In Old Testament times, if the guilty man deserves to be beaten, should the judge let him go unpunished (Deuteronomy 25:2)? _______
Many non-Christians say, "How can a loving God send a person to hell?" But they forget that God is the Judge of the Universe and He must exercise justice! It would be silly for someone to say, "How can a loving judge send a criminal to jail?" A human judge may be very loving and kind, but he is still responsible and obligated to carry out justice and guilty ones deserve to be punished! Thats THE LAW!
We deserve the D______________ penalty and this penalty must be paid. We are all condemned sinners deserving an eternal death in the LAKE OF FIRE which is called the _________________________ (see Revelation 20:14 and 21:8). BUT, God sent His beloved Son into the world, not to ___________________ the world, but that the world through Him might be ______________ (John 3:17).
When the Lord Jesus died on the cross, did He experience SEPARATION FROM GOD (Matthew 27:46 and Psalm 22:1-3)? ______ Did He experience PUNISHMENT BY GOD (Isaiah 53)? ______ He suffered the very thing which we deserved to suffer! He paid the penalty that we should have paid.
Consider these verses: 1 Corinthians 15:3; Romans 5:6,8 and 1 Peter 3:18. Who
paid the penalty for our sins? __________________ Who deserved to pay this
penalty and who should have paid this penalty?
When a person really believes the first FOUR FACTS, God does a wonderful thing. We read in Romans 4:3: "Abraham ________________God, and it was ____________________ unto him for __________________." What does the word "it" refer to in verse 3 (see verse 5)? ____________________
Although we are not righteous in ourselves, when a person believes on the Lord Jesus Christ, God sees him as righteous IN CHRIST. We are righteous because we are IN Gods righteous Son! "But of Him are ye ____ Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and __________________" (1 Cor. 1:30). Because God sees us in his Son we are righteous: "For He (God the Father) hath made Him (Jesus) to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the ______________________ of God IN HIM" (2 Cor. 5:21). We are no longer guilty, condemned sinners because we are now IN CHRIST:
Because God in His grace has justified me (declared me to be righteous in His righteous Son--"just as if I had never sinned"), what kind of life should I now live? Read Titus 2:11-14 and circle the correct answer:
|1.||______||This is what the natural man would say (compare 1 Cor. 2:14).||A.||"I'll never forget what Christ has done for me on the cross and I want to live a righteous life day by day so that I might please the God who saved me."|
|2.||______||This is what the saved man would say.||B.||" It really does not matter how a person (believer) lives ot acts because God has forgiven all his sins and has declared Him to be righteous in Christ."|
DO YOU WANT TO PLEASE THE ONE WHO TOOK YOUR DEATH PENALTY AND SET YOU FREE FROM ALL CONDEMNATION?
IF HE WAS WILLING TO DIE FOR YOU, ARE YOU NOT WILLING TO LIVE FOR HIM? See Romans 6:13-18 and notice the word "righteousness"!
|_________||All men are guilty before God, but because God is loving and merciful there is no penalty for our guilt.|
|_________||The wages of sin is a free trip to heaven.|
|_________||The death penalty means only that we must die physically.|
|_________||A Holy God must judge and punish sin.|
|_________||All men will spend eternity in the lake of fire.|
|_________||No one will spend eternity in the lake of fire.|
|_________||The lake of fire is called the second death which involves separation from a Holy God and eternal punishment.|
|_________||A fair and righteous judge is one who does not punish the criminal.|
|_________||Jesus the Righteous One died for unrighteous me.|
|_________||God showed His great love towards us by forgetting about our sin.|
|_________||I believe with all my heart that the Lord Jesus Christ paid the death penalty for my sin and Ill always be thankful for what He did for me on the cross.|