Friday, December 11, 2009
JUSTIFICATION IN THE MIND AND PURPOSE OF GOD
For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
Here we see the matter of justification as is it viewed in God's eternal mind and purpose. God in eternity past sovereignly chose a people in Christ and determined to justify them based on the righteousness of Christ. His purpose was and is to glorify Himself in the salvation of sinners based on the righteousness of Christ. In Romans 8:30 it says that all whom God foreordained and predestinated to be conformed to Christ, He also called, justified, and glorified. All of these blessings which are earned by Christ for His people are spoken of in past tense, as if they had already occurred. Yet, many of God's elect had not even been born at this time.
How, then, could it be said that they are already called, justified, and glorified?
We must make a distinction between God's eternal purpose before time and what God accomplishes in His elect in time. It is true that in the mind and purpose of God, His elect have always been saved, called, justified, and glorified, not in their own persons but in the mind and purpose of God. It has always been so sure and certain that they would be saved, called, justified, and eternally glorified, that it is sometimes spoken of in past tense as if it had already taken place. It has always been so sure and certain because it was never conditioned on them. It was always conditioned on the sovereign grace and power of God who cannot fail and on the Person and work of Christ who is faithful to His Father.
By Bill Parker