1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
To “justify” means to “pronounce guiltless”. A person is justified when he is accepted by God as free from the guilt of sin and its deserved punishment, having been imputed with the righteousness of Christ. So, justification consists of remission of sins and imputation of Christ’s righteousness.
But how are we justified? By faith! We are justified by faith in Jesus Christ who died and resurrected to deliver us from our sin and judgment. The apostle Paul has explained earlier in Romans 3:22, “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference.” Paul also said in Romans 4:24-25 of justification that it is “for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.” Justification of a sinner is grounded in Christ’s death and resurrection. Romans 3:24 declares, “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus”.
Hence, faith in Christ is said to justify a sinner, because it is the instrument by which we receive Christ’s righteousness and redemption. By faith, His righteousness is conveyed to us. We are not justified by our own works, but by faith in Christ. In Romans 3:28, we read, “Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.” In Galatians 2:16, it is said, “Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.”
The justification that we receive by faith causes us to be at peace with God. If we remain in our sin and condemnation, we shall be separated from God. Thus, justification is indispensable to being at peace with God. Justification brings about a changed relationship with God. Being justified by faith, we can have the assurance that God shall never cast us away. He will no more lay on our hearts the intolerable sense of infinite disapproval and displeasure. Every “justified” sinner can say, “Nothing shall now separate me from God; and I will walk with God in peace.”