Being cursed was one of the most severe punishments that could happen to an Israelite. Deuteronomy 27 outlines a series of sins which would result in a person being cursed. Most notable is verse 26, ‘Cursed is he who does not confirm the words of this law by doing them’ which indicates that this will apply to everyone. To be cursed is the opposite of being blessed (see chapters 27-29 of Deuteronomy). So to be cursed by God means that you have lost His blessings. To be cursed by God means that you no longer have the status of being part of the people of God. You no longer have an inheritance. You no longer belong. You are cut off from God.
The Old Testament allowed various methods of capital punishment for serious crimes. These methods included ‘being hanged on a tree’ or crucifixion. This was one of the most excruciatingly painful ways to die. It is important to note that a person who is crucified is cursed by God (21:23). So severe and extreme is this method of death that it indicates in and of itself the judgement of God because the person is cursed and cut off from Him. Crucifixion is not simply a physical punishment; it is a spiritual one as well. It indicates that the crimes you have committed make you worthy of physical death and spiritual separation from God.
When we read of crucifixion we cannot help but think of Jesus who was killed in this way. Given Deuteronomy 27, it is clear that we are all cursed by the law as all of us have committed sins which mean we are cursed and therefore due for punishment.
Incredibly, Christ in being crucified Himself became a curse for us and thus redeemed us from the curse of the law. He could not be cursed by breaking the law because in His sinless perfection He kept the law in its entirety. And so, because ‘Cursed is anyone who hangs on a tree’ (Galatians 3:13), Jesus endured the horrors of crucifixion for us so that He could become a curse for us.
And now we are redeemed from the curse we should have been under!
Further reading: Galatians 3:10-14
To think about:
God promises us that he will never leave us or forsake us so when we feel alone and without God, who has moved?
If we are no longer under a curse we must be under God’s blessing. What are some of the elements of His blessing in your life?
|Journal page by Bernice|
Please remember to go back to previous blog posts to see the creative responses that have been added. Click on the thumbnail pictures to view them.
Please share your creative response using the linky below. To use the linky click on 'Click here to enter'. You will need the URL from your own blog or from a photosharing website like Flickr. Alternatively share your response in the Facebook group.