20 For no [a]person will be justified [freed of guilt and declared righteous] in His sight by [trying to do] the works of the Law. For through the Law we become conscious of sin [and the recognition of sin directs us toward repentance, but provides no remedy for sin].
16 yet we know that a man is not [a]justified [and placed in right standing with God] by works of the Law, but [only] through faith in [God’s beloved Son,] Christ Jesus. And even we [as Jews] have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the Law. By observing the Law no one will ever be justified [declared free of the guilt of sin and its penalty].
Galatians 2:16Being justified is a legal or judicial declaration of righteousness. Justification has two parts: (1) Being declared free of blame, acquitted of sin—not guilty. Believers are justified because Jesus Christ personally assumed the guilt for our sin on the cross; (2) God declares the person righteous, that is, placed in a position of right-standing with Him. A person may not be made righteous by his personal behavior, no matter how good, or by the declaration of any other human being.
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