The Lexham Bible Dictionary
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Justification by Faith Alone

The phrase “justification by faith,” which figures prominently in Romans and Galatians, is particularly distinctive of Protestant Christianity (e.g., Rom 3:26, 28; 4:5; 5:1; Gal 2:16; 3:11, 24). In popular understanding, this phrase has been understood to mean salvation by acceptance of Jesus’ self-sacrifice for human sin, without personal merit. While there are a few places where Paul makes clear that God’s gifts of grace and salvation are freely given (Rom 4:4–5; Eph 2:8–9), it is necessary to understand the meaning of justification by faith in the first-century Jewish context of Paul’s ministry.


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