1. "I wish you were dead! Go to hades! Get out of here and don’t ever let me see you again!" "You are no longer part of this family."
2. His father was angry. He cursed his son with more words than I can tell you here this evening. His father was angry at him and he let him know it. And not only did he wish his son would die, but he struck him hard and repeatedly.
3. The son had sinned against his father. He had brought shame to the family name. And now he was cast out of the family. Out of the presence of his father. He felt heavy with the wrong he had done. He felt shame and guilt. He felt alone and without hope.
4. He had received a curse from the one from whom he so much needed a blessing.
5. Has anyone ever cursed you? Wished you pain or misfortune? If so, you know how great and real the pain of a curse can be.
6. Whether you are aware of it or not, you either are or have been under a curse. And what makes this curse so devastating is that is came from the one who created you. One who always does what he says. When he curses you, it is not just a wish but a reality.
7. You see, when God chose his people, he told them they could either be blessed or cursed. Blessed if they would obey Him and remain faithful, but cursed if they disobeyed Him and rebelled against Him.
8. And those words are true for us today. If we have never sinned we will be blessed. But if we have done even the slightest wrong or thought the slightest bad thought, we too are cursed . . . unless.
9. The curse is death.
Deu 30:17-18 But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them, I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed.
The wages of sin is death.
10. And even worse than death, it means absence from God. Removal from His presence.
11. The curse of our sins is OUR curse. It means WE must die for our sins.
12. But someone has taken that curse upon Himself. Removed it and placed it on His own shoulders
Isa 53:4-5 Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
13. The LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
14. Paul says that Christ became a curse for us. He was dishonoured. He was treated with contempt. He was forsaken by His Father. He suffered the full wrath of God
15. And He was not just cursed but He became a curse. Calvin says that signifies that the curse of all was placed on Him. In Deuteronomy, God said "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." This did not refer to crucifixion, but to the custom that after a wrong-doer was executed, his body was nailed to a post or tree for public humiliation.
16. If, in the sight of God, the hanging of a dead body was a curse, how much more would not the slow, painful, death by crucifixion of a living person be a curse. And when God said this was a curse, He knew that one day His own son would be crucified, hung on a tree.
17. Christ became a curse for us. How could He? He was the son of God. The one whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. The one who is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.
18. Tonight we consider that Christ became our curse. That He was forsaken by His Father.
19. And yet His Father raised Him up from this death. And through Him, He will raise us up from death. That is the hope we share.
20. But this hope comes with a price. It means seeing the darkness of the curse which Christ became for us. It means seeing the suffering He went through. It means seeing the love which He has for us.
21. But it also means seeing the darkness of our own sin. It means that with David we say:
Psa 51:3-5 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are proved right when you speak and justified when you judge. Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.