What are Justification and Sanctification?

What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby Mary's Girl » Sat Mar 08, 2014 5:21 pm

Thanks, Ian,

It's way over my head, though. The subject of justification is like the subject of statistics--something only brainiacs get. First of all, what is justification (in simple terms!)? How is it different from sanctification? I'll start there.
Nina

“We have been called to heal wounds, to unite what has fallen apart, and to bring home those who have lost their way.” ~ St. Francis of Assisi

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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby ianJM » Sun Mar 09, 2014 1:02 am

Post originally from this thread: Good Catholic sites

Nina,

I've created a new thread for you because I think you ask a good question and it deserves more attention from our learned members.
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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby dean » Sun Mar 09, 2014 4:31 pm

Justification is getting into right relation with God. It happens at baptism. Through grace alone, our sins are forgiven; we become children of God, heirs of the kingdom. God dwells within us. It also happens when we confess our mortal sins and receive absolution.

When we are in right relationship with God, God dwells within us and gives us prompting and strength to carry out good works. Our cooperation with God's promptings in carrying out good works in charity has an effect on us. God in effect crowns His own works He has begun within us. These works purify us, make us holier, prepare us for life in the kingdom of heaven. This is sanctification, in a nutshell.

I have read Protestants who separate the 2 processes. Justification is a once for all occurrence, and then sanctification determines the level of reward you will receive in heaven. You can never lose justification once attained.

With Catholics, justification can happen again and again as we sin mortally and return through confession. And it is difficult to see how one could remain justified without working toward sanctification. Catholics closely link justification and sanctification, and they are both considered lifelong processes.

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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby dean » Sun Mar 09, 2014 4:49 pm

Think about a son who becomes addicted to drugs and leaves his parents' home. During his addiction, he is completely out of contact with his parents and he is unable to get any help from them, despite his parents wanting desperately to find the son and to care for him.

The son hits rock bottom and comes to some kind of realization that he needs to change. He makes contact with his parents, sincerely begging for help and intending to amend his ways, and his parents rush to his aid, not for anything the son has done for them, but for no other reason than that they love their son. Right relationship has been initiated. (justification)

Yet there is a lot of work that needs to be done. The addiction needs to be treated. Good habits need to be developed and kept. Amends need to be made. But with the help of the parents, because the son is in right relation with them again, the son is helped to purge the hold that drugs and other bad habits have on his life. (sanctification)

The above is imperfect, but it hopefully helps to see the difference between justification and sanctification, even as the 2 are intertwined processes. You can't have one without the other.

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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby seamas o dalaigh » Sun Mar 09, 2014 7:23 pm

Nina,

You might also find this interesting,

(Latin justificatio; Greek dikaiosis.)

A biblio-ecclesiastical term; which denotes the transforming of the sinner from the state of unrighteousness to the state of holiness and sonship of God. Considered as an act (actus justificationis), justification is the work of God alone, presupposing, however, on the part of the adult the process of justification and the cooperation of his free will with God's preventing and helping grace (gratia praeveniens et cooperans). Considered as a state or habit (habitus justificationis), it denotes the continued possession of a quality inherent in the soul, which theologians aptly term sanctifying grace. Since the sixteenth century great differences have existed between Protestants and Catholics regarding the true nature of justification. As the dogmatic side of the controversy has been fully explained in the article on GRACE, we shall here consider it more from an historical point of view.



http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08573a.htm

It goes on to give an overview of the Protestant position and then provides a detailed explanation of the Catholic view.


The following is also relevant:

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/06701a.htm
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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby Retsinab » Sun Mar 09, 2014 8:10 pm

dean wrote:I have read Protestants who separate the 2 processes. Justification is a once for all occurrence, and then sanctification determines the level of reward you will receive in heaven. You can never lose justification once attained.

With Catholics, justification can happen again and again as we sin mortally and return through confession. And it is difficult to see how one could remain justified without working toward sanctification. Catholics closely link justification and sanctification, and they are both considered lifelong processes.

Dean

One of the things that attracted me to Catholicism was puzzlement about the protestant idea of "Once saved, always saved."

The idea that "accepting Christ" (once saved, always saved) meant that no matter what happened from there on out, one is assured of attaining heaven was (and is) very difficult for me to accept.

But there are many protestants who will contend that is true.
And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’
The Gospel of Saint Matthew, 25:40 (NAB)

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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby Mary's Girl » Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:03 pm

Dean- I'm doing this by phone so please forgive me for being brief. What you say makes sense. Justification (being in right relationship with God) is the first step and happens through baptism and happens again through Confession. Sanctification is the ongoing restoration and purification of the soul, which can only happen through justification.

The article that James posted mentioned adulthood so I'm confused as we baptize our babies.
Nina

“We have been called to heal wounds, to unite what has fallen apart, and to bring home those who have lost their way.” ~ St. Francis of Assisi

Pax et bonum! :)
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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby seamas o dalaigh » Mon Mar 10, 2014 7:14 pm

Nina,

The article that James posted mentioned adulthood so I'm confused as we baptize our babies.


This bit?

Considered as an act (actus justificationis), justification is the work of God alone, presupposing, however, on the part of the adult the process of justification and the cooperation of his free will with God's preventing and helping grace (gratia praeveniens et cooperans).


Although it is God's act, it presupposes the cooperation of our free will (if we are adults, not if we are babies).
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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby Mary's Girl » Tue Mar 11, 2014 12:02 am

James,

Yes, the part you re-quoted is the part that confused me. Thank you for explaining that paragraph! :)
Nina

“We have been called to heal wounds, to unite what has fallen apart, and to bring home those who have lost their way.” ~ St. Francis of Assisi

Pax et bonum! :)
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Re: What are Justification and Sanctification?

Postby Allandnothing » Mon Jan 28, 2019 4:49 pm

I offer simple meanings for Justification / and Sanctification / and one more, Deification. I believe my offerings are clear and essentially complete. Justification= the change from being a mere human being, not a member of God's Personal Family, not a son or daughter of God, by God's gift of grace at Baptism to really being a son or daughter of God, a real member of God's Trinity Family. Sanctification= the life long process of growing, maturing, in the fullness of being a real and perfect son or daughter of God. Deification= the having become the perfect son or daughter we were created to be, and sharing fully in the Life of the Most Holy Trinity. WE are no longer on earth but are in Heaven. I correspond better on emal> Trinity5635@aol.com Here my name is Allandnothing. I Pray for you .. please Pray me. John
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