How do I defend purgatory when Romans 8:1 is mentioned?
Romans 8:1 states: “The reason, therefore, why those who are in Christ Jesus are not condemned is that the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death."
Let’s say I was driving recklessly, struck another car, and demolished one of its fenders. Let’s further say that the driver of the other car turned out to be my brother and that there were several witnesses to my irresponsible behavior.
My brother forgives me and refuses to press charges. So I am forgiven and not condemned. The question remains, however: who is going to pay for the repair of the fender? The paying for the repair is what we call the temporal punishment due to sin. I am still responsible for the mess I made, even though I am forgiven by the one I offended.
That is why the Catechism says:
All who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven” (1030).