28
Jan
12

Standing and State

I want you to remember the two following terms:  Standing and State

Standing concerns our justification before God.  State concerns our sanctification in the world.  Our standing before God is based solely  on the righteousness of Christ and cannot be augmented. Though the believer’s standing and state are completely different, they are connected in that they both result from his union with Christ. Additionally, his standing in justification serves as motivation for worship and obedience to God.  He can now approach God’s holy throne with confidence that his worship and obedience will be accepted since his conscience has been cleansed by Christ’s once for all sacrifice for sin.

The believer’s state is altogether different.  He will never be perfected in sanctification as long as he lives. He must move from one stage of sanctification to another, but whatever may occur in the process of sanctification, his standing will never be altered. He will never be more or less righteous in God’s sight than he was the moment he first believed.

Sanctification is necessary for salvation, but not for justification.  Remember, justification does not equal salvation. It is an essential aspect of salvation, but salvation is far broader.  Why is sanctification necessary for salvation?  Because God has purposed to conform all his chosen people to Christ’s image  (Romans 8:29) and make us holy and blameless (Eph. 1:4).  That purpose must and will be realized in the lives of all God’s people.

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