Thursday, March 9, 2006

A Covenant Without Curse

But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises. (Hebrews 8:6)
The old covenant God made with Israel was a marvelous covenant with many wonderful provisions and blessings for all who kept it (see Deuteronomy 28:1-14 for a good summary of these benefits). Alas, Israel was unable to keep the Law of Moses, so all that was left was the curse (see Deuteronomy 28:15-68). For God said,
I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and our descendants may live. (Deuteronomy 30:19)
The covenant that was meant for life and blessing became a covenant of cursing and death. However, Israel was not without hope. For the Mosaic Law made provision for sacrifices which would cover willful sin and inherent iniquity. These sacrifices were types which pointed toward a greater fulfillment that would one day come in the person and work of the Messiah (see Isaiah 53, where the prophet describes this work).

In his letter to the church at Galatia, Paul speaks directly to the issue of the blessing and the curse, and what Messiah (Christ) has done about them:
Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”), that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. (Galatians 3:13-14)
Where there is curse, there is no blessing, but where there is blessing, there is no curse. Jesus has freed us from the curse of the law and brought us into the blessing of Abraham (which predates the law by 400 years). Therefore, the curse has no right to be on those whom God has blessed.

Once we were under the curse, dead in trespasses and sins. But now we have a new and better covenant with God, mediated to us by the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. This covenant does not come up short in any way. It does not lack any of the benefits of the Old Covenant, but adds to them. In the New Covenant, there is no curse, for Jesus has completely taken all of the curses and nailed them to the Cross. In effect, He has cursed the curse, for the Bible says, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree.”

The curse no longer applies to those who have become the children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. The devil may try to tell you that you are still cursed, but you can be free from his deceit by reminding him that Jesus the Messiah has redeemed us from the curse. You may still find the effects of the curse still operating in your live (see Deuteronomy 28:15-68 for a thorough listing of these effects), but you now have the right to bring them under submission to the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ. The power of the curse has been broken, and its right to be on you has been revoked.

Dear Lord Jesus,
I thank You that You have redeemed me from every curse, so that the wonderful blessing of Abraham can come upon me. Thank you for the Holy Spirit, who comes to empower and teach me how to walk in the life of blessing You have provided for me. Thank You for the new and better covenant You have established by Your blood on my behalf. I trust Your provision, and I receive this New Covenant and all its blessings. And now, in the authority of Jesus’ name, I tell the devil, the curse and all its effects to take a hike — they no longer have any right to be in my life. Thank You, Lord. Amen.

To go along with this article, listen to Choosing Life, a free MP3 download from our CD, Healing Scriptures and Prayers Vol. 2: New Testament Scriptures (Actually, it is based on an Old Testament passage, but it is a bonus track on CD 2).