a reason, fact, circumstance, or explanation that justifies or defends: His insulting you was ample justification for you to leave the party.
an act of justifying: The painter's justification of his failure to finish on time didn't impress me.
the state of being justified.
Also called justification by faith. Theology. the act of God whereby humankind is made or accounted just, or free from guilt or penalty of sin.
Printing. the spacing of words and letters within a line of type so that all full lines in a column have even margins both on the left and on the right.

1350–1400; Middle English < Late Latin jūstificātiōn- (stem of jūstificātiō), equivalent to jūstificāt(us) past participle of jūstificāre to justify (see justificatory) + -iōn- -ion-

prejustification, noun
rejustification, noun
superjustification, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
justification (ˌdʒʌstɪfɪˈkeɪʃən)
1.  reasonable grounds for complaint, defence, etc
2.  the act of justifying; proof, vindication, or exculpation
3.  theol
 a.  the act of justifying
 b.  the process of being justified or the condition of having been justified
4.  Protestant theol Also called: justification by faith the doctrine that God vindicates only those who repent and believe in Jesus
5.  printing, computing the process of adjusting interword spacing in text or data so that both right and left margins are straight
6.  computing the process of moving data right or left so that the first or last character occurs in a predefined position

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Bible Dictionary

Justification definition

a forensic term, opposed to condemnation. As regards its nature, it is the judicial act of God, by which he pardons all the sins of those who believe in Christ, and accounts, accepts, and treats them as righteous in the eye of the law, i.e., as conformed to all its demands. In addition to the pardon (q.v.) of sin, justification declares that all the claims of the law are satisfied in respect of the justified. It is the act of a judge and not of a sovereign. The law is not relaxed or set aside, but is declared to be fulfilled in the strictest sense; and so the person justified is declared to be entitled to all the advantages and rewards arising from perfect obedience to the law (Rom. 5:1-10). 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 (Rom. 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 Cor. 5:21; Rom. 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 (Rom. 1:17; 3:25, 26; 4:20, 22; Phil. 3:8-11; Gal. 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 (Rom. 6:2-7). Good works, while not the ground, are the certain consequence of justification (6:14; 7:6). (See GALATIANS, EPISTLE TO.)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Example sentences
There is no moral justification for cutting estate taxes.
It undermines the whole justification for the high pay.
Yet doing something because it makes people feel good is not adequate
All our projects are absolutely irrational with no justification to exist.
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