Galatians 3:10-13 (JDV)
Galatians 3:10 You see – all who insist on the achievements of the law are under a curse, because it is written, Everyone who does not do everything written in the book of the law is cursed.
Galatians 3:11 Now it is clear that no one is justified in God’s presence by the law, because the righteous will live by faith.
Galatians 3:12 But the law is not about faith; instead, the one who does these things will live by doing them.
Galatians 3:13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse in behalf of us, since it is written, Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.
half the law
The commandment aspect of the law was designed to be a standard no one could reach. It was intended from the very beginning to focus believers on the law principle of substitutionary sacrifice (the other half of the law). That is why so much of the Mosaic law contained details of the sacrificial system. Our universal failure to live up to the moral and ceremonial standards of the law was a given. It is in that sense that we can speak of God’s righteous law as a curse. If an adherent sought only the commandment aspect of the law, she would fail.
But if an adherent put her faith in the righteous commandment and the coming compassionate atoning sacrifice, she would be found faithful. All of the sacrificial principles of the law were prophetic, and pointed to the finished work of Christ. He was the only human being who ever obeyed the law to the fullest – including fulfilling its prophetic aspects of substitutionary atonement.
Lord, thank you that the gospel shows us how to respond to the whole law.