Please help us share God's truths and hope in Christ.
If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.(Romans 10:9)

Salvation is the most important of Christian doctrines, and we must understand all three parts–justification (includes imputation), sanctification, and glorification. 

We could write thousands of words on this subject…and we have!  But perhaps a concise summary would be more helpful. (For deeper study, read: Justification & Imputation (Imputed Righteousness) and Sanctification & Glorification).

Let’s keep it simple!

It’s easy to remember these doctrines by understanding the progression of salvation, starting with justification (being born again), then sanctification (living for Christ and being conformed to His image), and then finally, glorification (being fully transformed in Heaven).

Justification, Sanctification, and Glorification

  • Justification saves us from the penalty of sin.
  • Sanctification separates us from the power of sin.
  • Glorification removes us from the presence of sin.

The Three Tenses of Salvation

  • Past Tense—Justification: we have been saved from the penalty of sin.
  • Present Tense—Sanctification: we are being saved from the power of sin.
  • Future Tense—Glorification: we will be saved from the presence of sin.

Past and Present Works of Salvation

Justification is what Christ did for us.
Sanctification is what the Spirit is doing in us.

Justification declares the sinner righteous.
Sanctification makes the sinner righteous.

Justification removes the guilt and penalty of sin.
Sanctification removes the growth and the power of sin.

Justification is of God and by God alone.
Sanctification is of God and by God, but we also participate.  

Participation in Sanctification

In justification, God has forgiven our sins, washed us clean, and regenerated our souls. It was His work alone.  However, in sanctification, we are called to renew our minds daily (Rom 12:1) and choose to follow His will and ways.

Rom 12:2  And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

In justification, God has given us His Holy Spirit. It was His work alone.  However, in sanctification, we are called to surrender to the Holy Spirit’s leading and walk in His light.

Gal 5:25  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

In justification, God has saved us for Himself. It was His work alone.  However, in sanctification, we are called to honor Him and share His love, our hope, and His saving grace with all people.

His Love:   [Jesus said] “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”  (John 13:34)
[Paul wrote]  Let all that you do be done with love. (1 Cor 16:14)

Our Hope:  [Peter wrote] Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man who asks you for a reason of the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear (1 Pet 3:15)

His Saving Grace:   [Jesus] said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15)

Walk in the Spirit

Live your life walking in the Spirit and bringing honor and glory to the One who lived, died, and rose for you.  And choose every day to let His Spirit direct your thoughts, influence your words, and guide your deeds.

Jude 1:24-25 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen.

Future Work of Salvation

So we understand Justification and Sanctification.  But what about Glorification? 

Glorification is future.  And it will be amazing. Glorification will happen in part when we leave our sinful flesh.  At death, our bodies go into the grave. Our souls and spirits go to be with the Lord in Heaven (2 Corinthians 5:8).  But a day will come when Jesus will return for His Bride, in what we call the Rapture of the Church (Read: What is the Rapture?).  And then our bodies will be resurrected to glory (Phil 3:21) and made new. What a glorious day that will be!

Titus 2:12-13  …we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,



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