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justification, sanctification, theological big words, mysteries of GOD

Q19 What is justification ?

The aim of spiritual springs is to keep theological things simple, but not simpler, to make salvation easy to understand. It really peeves me when theologians use big scholarly meanings to show off their pride.

Salvation is supposed to be child like and simple, we live by faith, not knowledge.

Some theologians say "justification" means Jesus takes away your sins and makes you stand before GOD as if you have never sinned. Wow ! What a concept of humility...but it can also become an attitude of pride. Where does it say this in Scripture ? It doesn't.

The Hebrew word "tsadaq" (6663) means according to Jeff Benner "straight".

The pictograph reads "travelling through the door (of our soul) over the horizon".

Words travel through the door of our soul, but not over the horizons of time. So perhaps this concept is to do with us being allowed to travel throughout time for eternity?

When you try to translate this Hebrew word consistently, the problem really begins...and the author hasn't tried...the translations and the contexts are really difficult.

Ps 19:9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether

Here is a good example: Let's try to make this fuzzy translation better:-

Ps 19:9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are truth and straight "as a single line".

The Hebrew word "yachad" at the end of "tsadaq" means "numerically one", so this concept of God's truth is straight and has a single meaning.

Now look at a huge passage about sinners, sinning and how GOD deals with such confessions:

Psalm 51 (To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet came unto him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba.)

  • 1 Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions.
  • 2 Wash me throughly from mine iniquity "guilt", and cleanse me from my sin "sin-offering".
  • 3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin "sin-offering" is ever before me.
  • 4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.
  • 5 Behold, I was shapen "called forth" in iniquity "guilt"; and in sin did my mother conceive me.
  • 6 Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.
  • 7 ∂ Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
  • 8 Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.
  • 9 Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities "guilt".
  • 10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
  • 11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.
  • 12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation "YASHA"( reference to Jesus); and uphold me with thy free spirit.
  • 13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.
  • 14 ∂ Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation "reference to our Saviour Jesus): and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.
  • 15 O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise.
  • 16 For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.
  • 17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

    Is "justification" here an event or a process?

    Justification is a process of how GOD looks at you...it's a mystery..so let's ke ep it that way...

    Does David seek to become straight again by doing works of confession, such as praying more, or sacrificing more ? No...such things do not make us straighter... Only a broken and humble heart does...read the passage carefully... This passage also contains the second birth experience too...and that is a mystery work of the Holy Spirit... So please do not pretend we know what "justification" means...its a mystery...

    Notice the image here, and let's pretend the person's travelling here is shown by the straw... When we look at the person's travelling it looks bent, dysfunctional or crooked...but we "know" from science this straw was "straight" before it was placed in the water...but now it looks crooked...

    But when a crooked person made crooked by his sinnings confesses that to GOD (the red line), notice the changes wrought by looking through the medium... The person's travellings appears straight again. (Contrast that with a straight person all along, the blue line)

    Amazing ? If you desire to know more about such mysteries see the functions of the Holy Spirit.

    Thus He placed us on vantage ground, where we could live pure, sinless lives. Repentant sinners stand before God justified and accepted, because the Innocent One has borne their guilt. {ST, June 17, 1903 par. 10}

    Notice SOP agrees that in the Psalm, David is made straight again when the guilt of his sinning is blotted out...

    9 Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities "guilt".

    Many commit the error of trying to define minutely the fine points of distinction between justification and sanctification. Into the definitions of these two terms they often bring their own ideas and speculations. Why try to be more minute than is Inspiration on the vital question of righteousness by faith? Why try to work out every minute point, as if the salvation of the soul depended upon all having exactly your understanding of this matter? All cannot see in the same line of vision. You are in danger of making a world of an atom, and an atom of a world. {CTr 150.2}

    Why do our theologians make such things complex and difficult with Scripture?

    When God pardons the sinner, remits the punishment he deserves, and treats him as though he had not sinned, He receives him into divine favor, and justifies him through the merits of Christ's righteousness. The sinner can be justified only through faith in the atonement made through God's dear Son, who became a sacrifice for the sins of the guilty world. {NL 20.1}

    There are statements like this that suggest "justification" along certain themes...but are these themes clearly written in Scripture?

    An infinite price has been paid for our redemption, and ought we not to bestir ourselves to search the chart and prove to our souls that we are in the highway cast up for the righteous, and walking in the path of humble obedience? We are warned to " make straight paths for our feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way." We are examples to others, and if we pursue a wrong course, and lead others away from the path of right, we shall be held accountable. {BEcho, June 11, 1894 par. 4}

    A reader studying SOP will discover there are many references to "strait" "highways" "walking the path" and "straight truth"...all suggesting correctly that "justify" means to be "straight" but O how often SOP has to deal with fuzzy translations, SOP to leave the theme alone...do not make atoms out of it...

    The aut hor agrees, the fuzzy translations are so common for this word in Scripture, that one really should leave some "word meanings" alone.

    No where in Scripture does salvation discuss the theme of "justification" for man...it is simply something GOD does, not something man does, or needs to know.. That is why is it not found in SOP "steps to Christ" nor found in Scripture "salvation steps of Jesus".

    So how does the Author deal with these two concepts using child like faith?

    When a sinner "takes the seed power of Christ" it germinates and begins a work in your life. This is called justification or germination, the beginning of Jesus in your life.

    The germination of the seed represents the beginning of spiritual life, and the development of the plant is a figure of the development of character. . . {AH 145.4}

    When the sinner continues in Jesus daily, Jesus grows daily in your life, and the believer by faith uses the power of Jesus daily in his life. This is called the sanctification or photosynthesis, the growing of Jesus in your life. Jesus changes you to become like Him.

    So with child like faith,

    "justification" means

  • "when Christ germinates in you"

    and "sanctification" means

  • "when Christ grows in you".

    Simple hey? Yes...a profound mystery...let's keep things easy to understand...if you want to grapple with mysteries that is OK too, but do not grow in pride, if we assume to know anything about GOD. Shalom

    Justification is the opposite of condemnation. Godís boundless mercy is exercised toward those who are wholly undeserving. He forgives transgressions and sins for the sake of Jesus, who has become the propitiation for our sins. Through faith in Christ the guilty transgressor is brought into favor with God and into the strong hope of life eternal. . . . {CTr 150.4}

    This is a profound statement.

    Ro 5:16 And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.

    How amazing every time you read the "Holy Spirit SOP", you find the same meanings in Scripture, but you have to be prayerfully looking carefully with meekness. When Adam sinned there came a judgement of condemnation, our whole world became "crooked" or "decaying" , from that very day, things began "dying to die" as Scripture says. Justification is the restoration of mankind to that before the fall. First there is an immediate change of rulership over our lives, King Jesus takes charge, then more slowly daily, is the process of the second birth, first the babe, then the person grows up to be like Jesus, with the same nature Adam had before the fall.

    Ro 5:19 For as by one man's disobedience many were "ruled" sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be "ruled" righteous "straight".

    What is amazing is "straightness of living" continues guarenteed for eternity as long a King Jesus continues ruling over you.

    12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation "YASHA"( reference to Jesus); and uphold me with thy free spirit.

    That is also mentioned in the famous Psalm about being made straight. Indeed the crooked ways of humans can be made straight.

    Isa 40:4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain:

    Notice again the Hebrew meaning of "tsadaq" means to be "straight" or "Straightened by GOD". It is a mystery working o f GOD.

    The Hebrew word straight here has the pictrograph "the active hands pressing the head", and Jeff Benner pictures this as a slack tent cord, pulled and tightened to become straight again.Sometimes our cords of faith become slack and also need pulling so our cords of faith become straight again for Jesus. Amazing !

    There are science experiments that help us understand "refraction" and the "straightening process of crookedness" inside a "medium" using a glass slab,but for the majority of us, it is really a mystery of GOD working within is...better to be in a relationship with Jesus, than to grapple with the knowledge of how it all works..Shalom

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