Thursday, February 19, 2009

Lent and Justification by Faith or, better, Justification by Faith and Lent

Justification by faith alone by God’s grace is clearly taught in detail by the apostle Paul in The Letters to Galatia and Rome, and it appears also in other Letters, as well as in embryo in the Book of Genesis and in the Psalter.

In substance this doctrine advances the view that a sinner is placed in a right relation with God, his Judge, through the merits of Jesus Christ, when he repents of sin and believes and trusts in the same Jesus as his Lord and Savior. The perfect righteousness that belongs to the exalted Christ Jesus is reckoned or accounted to the believing sinner so that the latter is declared righteous by the Father, through and in Christ the Righteous One.

The doctrine that it is primarily intended to exclude is the doctrine of justification or salvation by works, that is the notion that the good person can by doing good works gain entry into eternal life on the basis of merit from those works.