“1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (NKJV)
There are two important doctrines that jump out at me in this verse. (Yes there are several.)
The first one is “having been justified.” This is a verb. It is an aorist passive participle which means it was completed in the past and we were the objects of the action. Passive tense in writing circles is something to be avoided. But when you are the object of the action it can’t be avoided and in fact, is a moment of God’s grace. We were justified—it is not of our works. We just receive by faith. We are justified by grace. We receive it and make it active by faith—by being fully persuaded of the finished work of Jesus on the cross. All this is through Jesus our Lord.
The Greek noun for this word is “righteous.” Therefore it means we were made righteous. This was completed by Jesus on the cross and confirmed by His resurrection. “24 But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; 25 Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification” (Romans 4:24-25).
We also now have peace with God. It’s almost like there was a war between us and God signed a peace treaty in the blood of Jesus. We have peace. It’s something we have now. It’s not for heaven; it’s for the now. Peace means that God’s is never angry or mad at you. He will never condemn you. He will never bring guilt and shame on you. He will never punish you or display any wrath toward you. Jesus took it all on the cross for us. Everything we deserved, Jesus took upon Himself on the cross that we might receive everything we didn’t deserve. We have peace that passes understanding. That means God is good—all the time. He never tests us with tricks and trials. He isn’t trying to make us better by bringing hardship on us. He is good and working good for us all the time.