Easton's Bible Dictionary
It proceeds on the imputing or crediting to the believer by God himself of the perfect righteousness, active and passive, of his Representative and Surety, Jesus Christ (Romans 10:3-9 ). Justification is not the forgiveness of a man without righteousness, but a declaration that he possesses a righteousness which perfectly and for ever satisfies the law, namely, Christ's righteousness (2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 4:6-8 ).
The sole condition on which this righteousness is imputed or credited to the believer is faith in or on the Lord Jesus Christ. Faith is called a "condition," not because it possesses any merit, but only because it is the instrument, the only instrument by which the soul appropriates or apprehends Christ and his righteousness (Romans 1:17; 3:25,26; 4:20,22; Philippians 3:8-11; Galatians 2:16 ).
The act of faith which thus secures our justification secures also at the same time our sanctification (q.v.); and thus the doctrine of justification by faith does not lead to licentiousness (Romans 6:2-7 ). Good works, while not the ground, are the certain consequence of justification (6:14; 7:6). (See GALATIANS, EPISTLE TO .)
These dictionary topics are from M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition, published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain.
Easton, Matthew George. Entry for 'Justification'. Easton's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/ebd/j/justification.html. 1897.