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|VII. Pardon. A pardon in the Old Testament sense of the word (the English word does not appear in the New Testament) is more than the release granted to Barabbas when Christ died in his place and stead (Matthew 27:15f) - although that also is a glorious picture of what Christ has done for His elect. Rather, the Hebrew word means "to be delighted with". Barabbas received a pardon from the penalty of his offense, but we are not told that anyone afterward found delight with him. But those whom Christ pardons through the shedding of His blood are not only released from the penalty of their offense, but also are made God's delight. -- Isaiah 40:1f: "'Comfort, yes, comfort My people!' says your God. 'Speak comfort to Jerusalem, and cry out to her, that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned; for she has received from the LORD's hand double for all her sins.'" -- The meaning of "she has received from the LORD's hand double for all her sins" is not that the punishment meted out was more than was deserved - for that would be unjust. Rather, it means that the atonement Christ made for sin was of such infinite value that it not only compensated for the evil done, but also was super-abounding. "But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more, so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 5:20f). God's people have gained far more in Christ than they lost in Adam! VIII. Justification: the act of pronouncing one to be righteous. -- Isaiah 53:11: Jehovah prophesied, "By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, for He shall bear their iniquities." -- Romans 3:24: God's elect are described as having been "justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." -- Romans 5:9: "Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him." 1. All who were "justified by His blood" at Calvary will in their conversion be "justified by faith" in Him (Romans 5:1). -- To be "justified by faith" means to be "justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law" (3:28), and as opposed to being "justified by works" (4:2). The meaning is not that faith justifies, for sinners are "justified freely by [God's] grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus" (3:24). Rather, faith in Christ is our access into the justifying grace of God through Christ, and the acknowledgment of the fact that we are now at peace with Him who was at peace with us in the death of Christ, and the reason for our rejoicing reason (5:2): "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God." 2. All who were "justified by His blood" at Calvary and "justified by faith apart from works" in their conversion will subsequently throughout their lives be "justified by works, and not by faith only" (James 2:24, as illustrated in the context). IX. Sanctification: the act of making one holy. -- Hebrews 10:10, 14: "we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. ... For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified." -- Acts 26:18: Christ says all whom He sanctified in His death will in their own experience be "sanctified by faith that is in Me." X. Washing: to cleanse from the defilement of sin as in bathing. This is in fulfillment of the Messianic prophecy that "In that day a fountain shall be opened for the house of David and for the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for uncleanness" (Zechariah 13:1; cp. John 19:34). -- Revelation 1:5: Jesus Christ is "Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood." -- Hebrews 1:3: "when He had by Himself purged our sins, [He] sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high." 1. All whose sins were washed away by the blood of Christ in His death will experience this blessing in their regeneration by the Holy Spirit. -- Titus 3:5f: "according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior." -- Ezekiel 16:9: "Then I washed you in water; yes, I thoroughly washed off your blood, and I anointed you with oil." -- 1 Corinthians 6:11: "you were washed, ... you were sanctified, ... you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God." 2. All whose sins were washed away by the blood of Christ in His death will appropriate this blessing to themselves through their faith in Him, by which they have "washed their garments and made them white in the blood of the lamb" (Revelation 7:14). 3. All whose sins were actually washed away by the blood of Christ in His death are to symbolically wash away their sins in the ordinance of Christian baptism, in obedience to the command to "Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord" (Acts 22:16). 4. All whose sins were washed away by the blood of Christ in His death will find that His blood will forever keep them clean (Ephesians 5:25-27): "Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word [i.e., the fountain of water opened (Zechariah 13:1) in Christ the Word (John 1:1)], that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish." 5. May we ever be obedient to the command to "Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil, learn to do good" (Isaiah 1:16f). 6. May we ever, despite all our efforts to wash ourselves, acknowledge the need to pray "Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. ... wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow" (Psalm 51:2, 7). -- 1 John 1:7, 9: "But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. ... If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." XI. Healing from all spiritual infirmity. -- Isaiah 53:5 / 1 Peter 2:24: "by His stripes we are healed" (cp. Malachi 4:2). -- This healing from infirmity is received through faith in Christ (Mark 5:34 / Matthew 9:22 / Luke 8:48): "your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction" (cp. Mark 10:52 / Luke 18:42; Luke 17:19; also Acts 14:8f). (To be continued)|