Lent Devotions 2009: Tuesday 31st March

“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’ – ” Galatians 3:13

What is the curse of the Law? Does this mean that God’s Law is bad? Absolutely not! God’s Law is perfect, holy, and just. It instructs us on what God wants and how to please Him. The curse comes because, while it tells us what God wants, it does not give us the power to do it. We clearly know what we should, and should not, do, but we are absolutely unable to live according to it. And the penalty for breaking God’s Law is eternal death.

That’s where Jesus comes in. Being truly human, He had to live under the Law just like we do. However, Jesus never gave into temptation or broke God’s Law. He was spotless in observing God’s commandments. He had no penalty to pay. But then amazing grace kicks in. The only human who ever perfectly kept God’s precepts volunteered to take our curse, for breaking the Law, upon Himself. And being true God, He suffered the penalty (eternal damnation) in our place. Becoming accursed by hanging on the tree, Jesus became our substitute. He got our punishment, while we get His righteousness. God no longer sees us as cursed lawbreakers, but as His beloved children. We no longer have to keep God’s Law; Jesus did it for us. And it is precisely that fact which means that we want to keep His Law now. And that changes the curse into a blessing.

Gracious Lord Jesus, thank You for becoming a curse for me, so that You can now use me as a blessing to others. Amen.