Thursday, May 22, 2014

May 22: A life without curses

Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us (because it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”) in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham would come to the Gentiles, so that we could receive the promise of the Spirit by faith.  (Galatians 3:13-14  NET)

When people think of the cross of Jesus, they think of his dying for our sins, and unfortunately think of that as a very abstract philosophical idea.  This promise here, brings it home so much more. Jesus actually became a curse.  Imagine the most evil, twisted and depraved curse that a Satanist could muster against an enemy.  Jesus was the embodiment of that, and a million times more, as he hung on that cross for us and all humanity, past present and future.  

The curse that began from the time of Adam and Eve’s sin was to be separated from their loving, protective bond with God.  They chose to obey Satan, so by default, they chose to exile themselves from God’s presence and become open targets for the attacks of Satan.  Adam and Eve’s descendants, you and I, have suffered more and more as generations have passed, and Satan has devised newer and more effective ways to torture souls and drag them into hell.  But Jesus’ death and resurrection has broken that curse.  We never have to live under that oppression again!

So why is this world still so evil and the devil still so ruthless?  The answer comes at the end of the passage.  The curse is broken for those who “receive the promise of the Spirit by faith.”  Agreeing to the idea that Jesus broke the curse is not enough – only an active faith that lives out what it believes can do that.  That’s what the Spirit of faith is.  We need to confront the evil that attacks us by claiming this promise – Christ already became a curse for us, so Satan has no right to lay a hand on us.  Jesus made the sacrifice, but the fight and stubborn faith is up to us.  

This promise goes on to say that with that faith, we then become eligible to receive all the blessings of Abraham.  We are the spiritual Israel when our deep faith in the cross destroys our curses.  The Israel of the Old Testament defeated every enemy as long as they were faithful to God.  They prospered, grew, and were a shining example of God’s love and power to the world.  

That is what a life without curses is supposed to look like for us.  That’s what true faith in the cross creates, and this is exactly what we need to fight for and live like if we are truly His.    

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