What does justification by faith mean?

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Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 5:1)

In his book on Christian Living, Dr. Charles Stanley explains the meaning of justification, as used in Romans 5:1.  He explains, "The Greek verb tense used in this verse means a once-and for-all transaction.  We have been justified - that is, declared not guilty once and for all.  The word justify is not only a theological term, but it is a judicial or legal term as well.  As far back as the book of Genesis, the question was asked, "Shall not the Judge of the earth deal justly?" (Gen. 18:25 NASB).  If we accept the Lord Jesus Christ who died n our place, we are justified, at peace, spared from the penalty." (Charles Stanley's Handbook for Christian Living, p. 196. © 1996 by Charles Stanley)

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