Summary: The coming of Jesus brings justification by faith (salvation) to all who believe.
“WHEN JESUS COMES: JUSTIFICATION”
(Advent 2010, Week #3)
Sermon Objective: The coming of Jesus brings justification by faith to all who believe.
Rev 11:18The nations were angry; and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead, and for rewarding your servants the prophets and your saints and those who reverence your name, both small and great—and for destroying those who destroy the earth."
Rev. 11:19Then God's temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a great hailstorm.
There are certain and specific matters that always accompany an appearance of Jesus. It does not matter whether it refers to his first Advent (The manger through the resurrection), His intermediary Advent (Pentecost and the filling of His people), or the final consummation (His Second Coming).
Some of these accompaniments are illustrated in Revelation 11 and 12.
Two weeks ago (the first week of Advent) we discovered that anywhere and anytime Jesus comes – JUSTICE follows. Justice means God sets things right. It is not as much about some people getting what they deserve as it is everybody getting what they need.
• When Jesus was with people they were simply better off.
• When Jesus’ Spirit-filled followers are with people, their “right-ness”, “right conduct”, (righteousness) will touch people
• And when Jesus returns all things will be set right.
Last week we discovered that a visitation of Jesus brings JUDGMENT. Sin must be addressed.
This week we will explore this a little more with “WHEN JESUS COMES: JUSTIFICATION.”
Justification is the act of pronouncing a person or thing acquitted (discharged of a debt) of guilt. The root word for justification is the exact same word used for “justice” and “righteousness.” It, as you can see, falls in line with our thought for Advent. If justice gives us what we need, and judgment takes care of the barrier of sin, then justification naturally follows; it means that through Jesus, God declares us righteous and releases us from debt.
THAT is Good News!
Justification has a unique and powerful place within Christian Theology. It comes at no small cost. Being released from sin’s debt and declared righteous required the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. And as you know … that is the reason we celebrate Christmas. The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 5:21 “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
Isaiah 53:6 says, “We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”
Righteousness, or its act of declaration (justification), come from the same DNA. Remember what I told you about justice? “Justice and righteousness are a lot like a tree. It does not matter whether I am looking at a leaf, the bark, or the trunk it all has the EXACT same DNA. It’s the same stuff just different expressions of the same DNA.”
The coming of the coming of Jesus was essential for the debt to be paid. It was necessary for justification to be declared. The time has come … for rewarding your servants the prophets and your saints and those who reverence your name, both small and great.
1. IS BASED SOLELY UPON THE CHARACTER OF CHRIST.
It is his “right conduct” (which is the definition of righteousness) not yours.
Titus 3:4-8a says: 4 But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, 5 he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. 8 This is a trustworthy saying.
1. Is based solely upon the character of Christ.
2. HAS PRACTICAL IMPLICATION WITHIN YOU – “RIGHT-NESS” EMERGES!
Unger’s Bible Dictionary says, “A justified believer emerges from God’s great court room with a consciousness that Another, his Substitute, has borne his guilt and he stands without accusation before the bar of God.”
Romans 8:33-34 says “33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.”