( [email protected] ) Oct 17, 2008 05:01 AM EDT

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 3:25-26

"Justification" is an often-used word in the Christian vocabulary that carries great meaning. It is a word that declares the rightness of something—not symbolically or potentially, but actually.

The Bible says that when I come to Christ and ask Him to forgive my sin, recognizing that He died in my place and took the penalty that I should have taken, then I have been justified.

One way to think of the word, "justification," is "just as if it never happened." When I come to Christ and ask His forgiveness, He says, "You are justified." That is, "just as if it never had happened." It is incredible to think about.

Sometimes guilt from the past can plague you. The devil may whisper, "Do you remember what you did? Do you remember that sin you committed 23 years ago?"

But you can say, "I am justified—just as if it never happened." Only God makes that possible. As Psalm 103 says, "He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us (verses 10–12). That's a long way!

Corrie ten Boom used to say. "God has taken our sin and thrown it into the sea of forgetfulness and posted a sign that says, 'No fishing allowed.' " You are justified. Just as if it never had happened.

Copyright © 2008 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.

Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000

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