How & When do we get Freedom from the (1) Guilt of sin (2) Power of sin (3) Presence of sin?

Justification,sanctification,glorification from Gospel Coalition

Seminary Professor AUGUSTUS NICODEMUS GOMES LOPES explains:

  1. The first step, justification, is an act of God whereby he considers us righteous on the merits of his Son. It’s a legal declaration made once for all, and it is the basis for all that follows.
  2. The second step, sanctification, is our deliverance from sin’s power. This process begins after justification and continues our entire life. Sanctification does not entail complete eradication of our fallen nature, but it does help to subdue and slay it. This is the stage of salvation in which all Christians presently live. The Lord provides us means of grace like biblical meditation, prayer, and fellowship with other believers to harness the Spirit’s sanctifying power. It’s also vital to pray specifically for the spiritual fruit of self-control. This fight is a fierce and seemingly endless struggle, but the fight itself is not sin. Temptation only becomes sin when we yield to it. Victory, however, comes when we say „no,” hour after hour, by the Spirit’s power.
  3. The final step, glorification, is our ultimate freedom from sin’s indwelling presence. It will occur when we die or when our King returns. There will be a resurrection of the dead and a transformation of believers still alive. All God’s children will become like God’s Son in immaculate, immortal, imperishable, glorified bodies.

Source: The Gospel Coalition

Why is God just to punish Jesus for our sins John Piper

The following is an edited transcript of the audio.

Why is God just to punish Jesus for our sins when doing a similar thing would be so unjust for a human judge to do?

5PIPER12xx.jpgVery good question.

When Jesus died, he said, „Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son and glorify yourself.” And the Father came back and said, „I have glorified it [my name], and I will glorify it again.”

The way to understand Jesus’ substitutionary death under God’s wrath is that he is doing it in such a way as to glorify or magnify the infinite worth of the glory of God.

God’s glory has been trampled by people like us. Every time we prefer something to the glory of God, we demean the glory of God. And we do it every day.

Since his glory has been impugned and belittled, he has to exalt his glory by punishing sinners and saying, „My glory is infinitely valuable. If you trample my glory, you lose glory. And I restore my glory by your losing glory.”

Jesus enters in and he is able to do what no human could do. This is why there is a difference. No human ever could do this in a court of law. He is so perfect and he suffers so much, and his motives are so Godward, that when he dies on the cross, what is manifest is, „Look how valuable the glory of God is!”

If a mom stepped forward in a courtroom and said, „Let me take my son’s place. Let me take my son’s place, please.” We all know that would be unjust. She goes to the electric chair, and this son goes on to sin more.

The two differences are

  1. She’s not doing that to magnify the worth of the state—God. She’s doing it to magnify the worth of her son, and that’s not what’s happening at the cross.
  2. She’s freeing the son, untransformed, to go into the world and sin some more.

And those are the very two things that are different about the death of Jesus.

  1. Jesus dies not to magnify the sinner’s worth, but to magnify God’s worth.
  2. And he dies and changes those who escape from hell. He doesn’t just release more sin upon the world. He puts the Holy Spirit in our lives and begins to transform us into the image of Christ so that we bring more glory to the Father than if we had been left in our sin.

By John Piper. ©2013 Desiring God Foundation. Website: desiringGod.org

R C Sproul – The Doctrine of Justification (Sola fide)

Image of "Dawn: Luther at Erfurt" wh...

Paul discovering Justification by Faith-Image via Wikipedia

The Importance of Justification Sola fide (by faith alone) is important not merely because the church stands or falls on it. It is important because on it we stand or fall. The place where and the time when we will either stand or fall is at the judgment seat of God.

The doctrine of justification has to do with our status before the just judgment of God. That every person will ultimately be called into account before God is central to the teaching of Jesus. He warns that the secret things of our lives will be made manifest before the Father and that every idle word we have spoken will be brought into judgment. The whole world – every man, woman, and child – will come before the final divine tribunal. We will all come to that place, at that time, as either unjustified or justified sinners. Paul at Mars Hill warned: „Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men every where to repent, `because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained.'” (Acts 17:30-31 NKJV)

This judgment will be a righteous judgment by a righteous God. Those who will be judged are unrighteous people. The universality of sin is clearly affirmed by Paul:

„For we have previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all (italics mine) under sin. As it is written: „There is none righteous, no, not one….” Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.” (Romans 3:9-10, 19-20 NKJV)

Herein is our dilemma. There will be a judgment. It will be a righteous judgment. As fallen, we are not righteous.

The ominous warning of the apostle is that „no flesh will be justified in His sight.” Fortunately this is not the whole sentence. It is not an absolute denial of justification. If there will be no justification in his sight, then all disputes about the way of justification would be vain disputes, much ado about nothing. If there is no justification, then there is no gospel – no good news, only bad news.

But this is not the entire statement. Paul does not say there will be no justification. What he does say is that no flesh will be justified in God’s sight by the deeds of the law.

Paul does not exclude justification altogether. He does exclude it by virtue of our doing deeds of the law. Justification on the ground of our works is eliminated as an option. Christians were once debtors who could not pay their debts to God. The law of God requires perfection. It is a requirement sinners do not and cannot meet. Because of the universal reality of sin, Paul comes to his „therefore.” Our sin leads to the necessary inference contained in the conclusion that by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in God’s sight.

The verdict of the law on sinners was known in the Old Testament. Psalm 130 asks a question that is clearly rhetorical: „If You, Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand?” (130:3 NKJV)

The answer to the psalmist’s question is abundantly clear Who could stand? No one. Certainly not I. Certainly not you. If we are judged by the law in terms of our own righteousness, we will not stand; we are certainly fallen. If Luther rested on his own righteousness before the diet of heaven, he would have to declare: „Here I fall! I can do no other, God help me.”

Not only would Luther fall. The whole church – nay, the whole world – would fall.

Paul does not leave us falling without hope before the righteous law of God. He continues his teaching of the doctrine of justification with a single word that screams relief to guilty sinners: „But…” There is, to our everlasting benefit, a „however” to his declaration. This little however introduces a high and mighty exception to the dreadful conclusion that by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in God’s sight. Though justification is categorically denied by one means, it is now categorically affirmed by another means. That no flesh will be justified is not the final word. There is another word, which is the gospel itself:

„But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God which is through faith in Jesus Christ to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth to be a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.” (Romans 3:21-26 NKJV)

Here Paul declares a way of justification different from justification by deeds of the law. It is not a novelty, proclaimed for the first time in the New Testament. This way of justification is witnessed to by the Prophets and by the law itself. It is justification through faith in Jesus Christ. This justification is not given to everyone. It is provided to all and on all, who believe. It is based on the righteousness of God that is provided to and on the believer. It is given both freely and graciously by God through the redeeming work of Christ. This manner of justification demonstrates God himself to be both just and the justifier.

Again,the dilemma faced by the sinner summoned to the judgment seat of God is this: The sinner must appear before a divine Judge who is perfectly just. Yet the sinner is unjust. How can he possibly be unjust and justified? The answer to this question touches the eye of the Reformation tornado. For God to justify the impious (iustificatio impii) and himself remain just in the process, the sinner must somehow become actually just by a righteousness supplied him by another.

R.C. Sproul is now the distinguished visiting professor of systematic theology and apologetics at Knox Theological Seminary. R.C. Sproul is also chairman of the board at Ligonier Ministries.

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