Christ redeemed us from that self-defeating, cursed life by absorbing it completely into himself. Do you remember the Scripture that says, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”? That is what happened when Jesus was nailed to the cross: He became a curse, and at the same time dissolved the curse. And now, because of that, the air is cleared and we can see that Abraham’s blessing is present and available for non-Jews, too. We are all able to receive God’s life, his Spirit, in and with us by believing—just the way Abraham received it. (verses 13-14)
Read Galatians 3:1-14
In Leviticus 26 God tells Israel what will happen to them if they break his laws and go after other gods. One of the curses of the law was to be hung on a tree, also seen in Deuteronomy 21.
This is the curse that Paul has in mind in verse 13. All of us have fallen under this curse through our sin.
Paul is telling us that if we are seeking righteousness by keeping the law, we are already under the curses proclaimed in the law, for we have already broken the law. If we keep the whole law, but violate any one part of it, we are guilty of it all. We cannot just keep part of the law, the part that is pleasing to us. We must keep the whole law, as we are made guilty by breaking even one commandment.
However, Paul concludes that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God. The Bible tells us that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. There is not one who is righteous, and through the law no one becomes righteous. We are all guilty, but Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law by taking the curse upon himself. He came and took our guilt, and he hung on the tree for us. the crucifixion brought Him under the curse of the Law, and now we are redeemed. We can live righteously by faith, not by the law.
Eternal Father, please help me to come to you in faith, so that your blessings and promises may flow through me and those around me. Amen.
by Georgia Anderson (a student of Concordia College, Adelaide)