God justifies those who take him at his word concerning what his son accomplished; something for nothing! Being declared righteous is God’s gift to the believing sinner and it has nothing whatsoever to do with the sinner himself doing anything to deserve or merit that righteous standing. The righteousness God credits to the account of the believer is a righteousness that comes without a cause in the one being declared so. We have to admit, that is difficult for men imbued with the pride of life to imagine. It is difficult to accept because it does not seem fair to the human mind, especially to the religiously minded. It does not seem quite right that God could consider someone righteous, especially if that person is not expending the same amount of effort or attention that they are to become righteous by way of his or her practice. One can see why some have called this justification of God; cheap justification, one can see where the pride of life comes up with that notion. If it is that easy, (is the idea) if you can obtain righteousness without doing something, or even trying to do something (or at the very least, promising to do something) in order to gain it-why, that would be too easy and that would make it cheap. It is absolutely free, but it was certainly not cheap, it came at tremendous cost.
What God was doing through his son; God knew about what he intended to do before the world was ever formed, yet, God had kept this secret from ages and generations until it was time for the ascended Jesus Christ to reveal it to the apostle Paul, so that Paul could reveal it to the world. Understanding this message is Satan’s major goal during this age of grace, Satan knows the force or the power that emotions play when these emotions become the cement that seals the door of the mind such that a mind remains closed and the door locked. It is not that people cannot see the truth, it is more the fact that they do not want to see the truth. To be open to that which moves a person from the mental comfort zone to which that person has become accustomed becomes not only an unsettling inconvenience, it becomes a mind-shaking threat to many people. It is easier for these people to remain firmly entrenched in a false system of belief than it is to expose the pride-nature to the possibility of having been wrong and especially for the possibility of having been wrong for many, many years. Human wisdom, human reasoning will go to great lengths to deny the truth of God, that God has already reconciled all man to himself through what his son accomplished where their sins are concerned. To think that God has reconciled all man to himself where their sins are concerned smacks man’s self-righteous pride-nature right in the face. If the reality of reconciliation must be believed in order for justification or righteousification to become a judicial reality in the mind of God for those who believe that good news message, then we can only expect that Satan’s operation in this age of grace will be to attack the reality of reconciliation with all the religious fervor those who adhere to Satan's false belief systems can muster.
There are those who mistakenly suppose that reconciliation is the same thing as righteousification. These people have jumped to the conclusion that Christ taking the sin issue off the table of God’s justice through his becoming sin for man is that which makes a man as righteous as God; they have mistaken reconciliation for justification. To have your sin slate judicially emptied because Christ died for those sins does not mean that you now possess the righteousness recorded on the slate of the one who died for those sins. How can you get God to reconcile you to himself where your sins are concerned? The fact is, you cannot. There is nothing you can do. You do not have to try to get him to do it, you do not have to promise him something in order for him to do it, and you do not even have to ask him to do it because he has already done it. The instant you take God at his word that his son resolved God’s justice where all your sins are concerned (past, present, and future), God’s power from on high or what is called holy spirit joins you to his son who died for your sins and thereby you become an instantaneous member of the household of God. Those who believe in a belief system known as Universal Reconciliation are not understanding the difference in reconciliation and justification. Belief is necessary for righteousification and that belief is how you are heaven-worthy.