I wonder, have you understood this most important biblical term? Now, in the time we live in, we would use this word in this context: “Can you justify your actions?” By this we would mean, “Can you come up with a reasonable explanation to support the actions you took?” Either that, or, “Can you prove why it was a right course of action that you took?” However, when we move into the biblical realm, we have a different definition. It means to declare one righteous or innocent. Kenneth S. Wuest writes, “Justification in the Bible sense therefore is the act of God removing from the believing sinner, his guilt and the penalty incurred by that guilt, and bestowing a positive righteousness, Christ Jesus Himself in whom the believer stands, not only innocent and uncondemned, but actually righteous in point of law for time and for eternity.” (1)
Say, for example, a person is caught stealing. This person is then brought before the judges of the land and sentenced to 5 years in prison. Once this person has served their 5 year sentence, one would say that the person is justified. They have paid the penalty for their crime and can no longer be tried and sentenced for it.