You Already Have An “A”

“At every college and university, students study hard to get an “A” at the end of the course. When I was a student, I did the same thing. But I had one class that was different. It was a senior level course taken only by physics and chemistry majors, and there were only four or five students in the class. The first day of lectures, our teacher surprised us with the following announcement: “You don’t have to worry about your grade in this course—you all have an ‘A.’ Now we can just settle down and enjoy the material.”

Now, this is exactly what God does in justification. God gives us an “A” at the beginning of the Christian life! We do not labor to merit eternal life at the end of our course; we have eternal life.”

–Charles Leiter, Justification and Regeneration

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come…For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.  (2 Corinthians 5:17, 21)

Isn’t it a great feeling to know that Christ took our old report card and God credited us with Christ’s perfect card of straight-A righteousness?  Now we can get to work for God BECAUSE he has justified us not in order to be justified.  We aren’t saved by good works, but salvation RESULTS in good works, which God created beforehand for us to walk in.

  • photini

    Well, but having an A doesn't mean you graduate and get a diploma. You have to put on the cap and gown and walk to get the diploma. (Or put on the new man/wedding garment and walk with the Lord). Or are you saying that everyone goes to heaven because everyone gets an A?
    It is true that I can do nothing to GAIN my salvation, but there is a synergy involved and there are things that I must do to be saved. I must repent. As much as God loves me, He can't repent FOR me. I must choose to walk in the light. Jesus died for me, but He can't walk for me – through me, but not FOR me. If I don't make those choices, I can have lots and lots of A's and still not graduate to eternal life with God.

    • Mark Altrogge

      You're right – having an A doesn't mean we don't do anything after that. Justification comes in the beginning of our Christian walk then we participate with the Holy Spirit in our sanctification, which involves us obeying God's word by his power. Thanks for adding your comments!

  • http://Www.worshipfulreader.blogspot.com Ron Reffett

    Amen! I am so incredibly thankful for the perfect righteousness that I have in Christ! When we get so down on ourselves and wallow in our sinfulness, we experience identity amnesia. We forget that our identity is not in what we do or fail to do, but it lies solely in Christ and His perfect righteousness that we as believers receive by his staggering grace! All of my sin for His righteousness and right standing before God the Father, what amazing love!
    Thanks Mark, for yet another encouraging boost in my day!
    Blessings
    Ron

    • Mark Altrogge

      Hey Ron,

      Great way to put it – identity amnesia. Brilliant! And I love the phrase "staggering grace." Thanks for your encouraging comments Ron!

  • http://www.scholion.net/ james

    Great my favorite post of yours of all time.

    • Mark Altrogge

      Wow, thank you James.

  • http://www.recoveringwomanhood.weebly.com Hope Henchey

    Wow this is is excellent! Romans 8 all the way! Christ is interceding for us! As long as He has an A we do too!