Galatians 3:13. Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree” – 14 so that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith.
Have you ever been cursed? Not cursed at. Cursed. Like a hex is on you that is ruining your life.
You’re probably thinking that being cursed is not a real thing. It’s only something that happens in books and movies based on those books. And for the most part your right. But the Bible teaches that there is a real curse. There is a hex that’s ruining your life, and my life, and everyone’s life…if we let it.
The curse of the law.
The Bible says that if (or when – let’s be honest) we disobey God’s law we will be cursed (you can read long, horrifying, lists of these curses in Deuteronomy). Simply put, the curse of the law is death. Physical death. Relational death. Spiritual death. Death that comes from trying to live a life of self-justification and self-righteousness.
Galatians 3:10. all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.”
And, apart from union with Christ, there’s only one way to avoid the curse of the law. Obey. Plain and simple. Keep all of the law all of the time.
Galatians 3:12. “The one who does them shall live by them.”
Since such obedience is impossible, everyone, yes everyone, is under the curse of the law, because no one can fulfill the law’s demands. No one can obey all things written in the book of the law. Even if we reduce God’s law down to just the two broadest commands – love God and love neighbor – none of us have loved God with all our being. And none of us have loved our neighbor as ourselves. We have all failed. Therefore, we are all cursed.
But here’s the good news of Jesus – Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us.
Let’s allow the magnitude of this statement to sink in for a moment.
God cursed God.
This is the heart of Christianity, and the great paradox of the cross. On the cross, the Trinity was divided. The Father forsook the Son. And at the same time, the Trinity was fully united. United in their loving resolve to save you and me. United in redemption’s plan. The cross is not a monstrous Father punishing his Son involuntarily. Nor is it a Son reluctantly appeasing the wrath of his Father. The cross is a loving and just God doing the only thing he could to save us. God became his own curse. God became his own enemy. God crushed God so that God wouldn’t have to crush us.
What love. Love that would crush itself in our place.
What justice. Justice satisfied by that self-crushing love.
Galatians 3:8. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.”
Jesus became our curse so that we might become his blessing. The blessing of Abraham. The blessing justification. The blessing of being declared “not guilty.” The blessing of forgiveness. The blessing of imputed righteousness.
And the blessing of the promised Holy Spirit.
Not only have we been freed from the curse of the law and declared not guilty, as if that weren’t enough, we are have been eternally blessed with the indwelling life of Christ. The Spirit in our hearts. God our Friend now walking through life with us every step of the way. God our Comforter lavishly pouring his love into us. A Love so strong and so true that it can answer any question and solve any problem that may come our way.
“To live is Christ” means forever living free from the only curse that ever existed. The curse of the law. And, beyond this, it means living in the blessing of Christ’s own life. The life of curse crushing love and mercy that now lives in you.
Have you ever felt cursed? Why?
You in Christ
How can knowing that you are eternally blessed and never cursed in Christ change your perspective today?
Christ in you
How can you celebrate your freedom from the curse of the law today? May I suggest going big?
Playlist: Songs of the curse.