Gal 3:10-14 “For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
Claiming our works as having anything to do with our justification is a curse. It is a curse because, if we claim justification by the law, then we must continue in all things which the law requires of us. We can never fail in any aspect of the law ever if we are relying on our works. Even then, we cannot be justified before God, because His holy word concludes that (without Christ) we are all under sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us (1Jn 1:8).
The just (righteous, holy – see Strong’s) shall live by faith. It is our faith in Jesus Christ that makes us lively in the kingdom of God. The only time our works are of true value is when they are motivated by our faith. When our works are motivated by a false hope that we can justify ourselves, then our labor is vain. Like grace, our faith is a gift from God (Eph 2:8). The work of faith, the labor of love, and the patience of hope (1Th 1:3) is honoring to God. It is the work of faith that men see and give God glory (Mat 5:16).
The law is not of faith. The law is a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ so we can understand that we are justified by faith. Until we see Christ as our all in all, we do not truly recognize our state of depravity (Gen 6:5). Since every imagination of our hearts (while in our carnal state) is only evil, it is ludicrous to suppose that we could keep the law, which is holy (Rom 7:12). It is impossible for us to live in the law because we cannot do the law continually in every aspect.
Our condition would be truly wretched were it not for the truth that Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law. It is only by faith given by God that we are able to lay hold on (believe) the revelation from the Spirit that Jesus has paid this price for us. Jesus has certainly ultimately saved us from our sins, but for those of us to whom He has given a measure of faith, He has also redeemed us from the vain labor of seeking our own righteousness through the law.
Christ redeemed us from the curse by becoming a curse for us. Please take a moment and let that sink in. He is so much more than our substitute. He became a curse for us; He became sin for us (2Co 5:21). Only by faith can we begin to grasp the enormity of what this means. He became a curse for us for a very specific reason.
Christ redeemed us from the curse, and was made a curse for us so that we might receive the blessing of Abraham. Because of the work of Christ we (whether believing Jew or Gentile) are among those nations that are blessed. Everyone that He lived and died for is blessed by His action. Those of us who are blessed to live by faith have that knowledge now, and we honor God in this kingdom of heaven that is ours here on the earth. It is through faith that we receive the promise (divine assurance – see Strong’s) of the Spirit.
May we take great comfort and encouragement from our faith that Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law!