Raised for our Justification
In Romans 4 Paul says that Christ was crucified for our offenses and was raised for our justification. This is perhaps one of the most important statements about justification in all of Scripture. It establishes two very significant truths about this doctrine. First, that justification is a judicial act of God that so completely acquits of sin and every offense that we are not longer even under the power of death. Second, justification is something that took place in history, almost two thousand years ago. While we truly speak of our justification as the reality of God applying Christ’s resurrection to us in a personal way, we must never forget that our justification is in fact Christ’s justification. Christ was the innocent one, the just one, the righteous one, and therefore the grave could not hold him. Therefore, having faith in Christ means believing that his justification is our justification now, and that we will ultimately be raised from the dead like him. But this meal is a resurrection meal: it not only points back to crucifixion, it also points forward to marriage supper of the lamb, the great banquet following our resurrection. But we’re eating it now! This means that this meal also signifies our justification. If we are eating the resurrection meal, then we have been raised up together with Him already and have been seated in heavenly places with Christ Jesus. Therefore rejoice: Christ was crucified for our offences and He was raised for our justification.