“THEREFORE, SINCE we are justified (acquitted, declared righteous, and given a right standing with God) through faith, let us [grasp the fact that we] have [the peace of reconciliation to hold and to enjoy] peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).” – Romans 5:1 (AMP)
Paul says in his letter to the Romans that we are justified – acquitted, declared righteous and given right standing – with God through faith. In other words, when we place our belief and trust in Jesus Christ to save us – spirit, body and soul – we will be made completely whole and worthy in the sight of God. How amazing is that? By simply trusting the Lord, we take on a different nature.
To be acquitted is to be cleared of a criminal charge as a result of being “not guilty.” This verse is saying that when we are “put on trial” for the deeds of our lifetime, our faith in Jesus will render us acquitted of any misdeeds. Faith in Jesus is what ultimately removes our guilt. Not even making reparations for the bad actions we’ve taken in the past can remove the guilt we feel. Only Jesus can remove guilt and restore a sense of innocence and justification to us.
I love that this scripture says our faith will declare us righteous. Think about it. When we’re accused of something, the last thing we want is to have our personal failures put on blast for the world to hear. But when we’ve accomplished something or become someone, we want all the world to hear about it. Our faith in Jesus causes God to declare us righteous. He’s sitting in heaven in all his glory declaring, “This kid right here is righteous! This child of mine is worthy to come before me and ask anything in Jesus’ name!”
Faith in Jesus Christ gives us peace with God. In the Old Testament days, the only way to achieve this peace with God was to bring a blood offering before him. Messy, time consuming and laborious, people spent a good deal of their “church time” making amends with a God they perceived to be angry most of the time. And this peace only lasted until the next sinful act was committed. Thank God (literally) that, through faith in Jesus, we can have peace with the God who created us.