I’ve been a Christian for a loooong time, and to be quite honest I’ve had trouble grasping exactly what justification means. Can I get an amen from the chior? Clueless, up until reading this book The Fitting Room: Putting On the Character of Christ by Kelly Minter.
Anytime I read a book and my mind is blown away, the first thing I want to do is blog it all out. Thus, the reason for the rest of this post. Whether or not you buy the book, the simple discussion about justification deserves a few paragraphs. The author, Kelly Minter takes one verse from the Bible, Colossians 3:12 and dissects it. It’s awesome.
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Colossians 3:12
Chapter 3: Pointy Sticks and Behavior Management is the justification chapter. In chapters 1 & 2 she gently points out to the dear readers that we will have a hard time putting on the virtues of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience if we do not understand the foundations of being chosen by God, made holy and loved without condition.
This is the way the gospel should be presented every time to a newbie.
It’s not a clean yourself up by putting on the virtues and God will choose you, make you holy and love you. No, no, no, it’s the exact opposite. Because we’ve been made holy, (justified) we stand a chance at actually being patient with our spouse’s dirty socks. Because we’ve been chosen, we are able to be kind to the people who have hurt us so badly. Because God loves us, we are able to show compassion.
Simply put, justification is to be made Holy in God’s sight. He “thinks of our sins as forgiven and Christ’s righteousness as belonging to us.” It’s instantaneous meaning we don’t work our way into purity. It’s a legal act that will remain in authority forever. At the judgement seat of Christ at the end of the age, we will be marked holy. Justified, sins forgiven all because of Jesus and completely undeserved by me.
May we allow the truth of justification to sink into our bones, to penetrate to the marrow, so that we know beyond a shadow of a doubt that we are chosen, holy and dearly loved.