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Redeemed From the Curse of the Law By Paris Reidhead* My first introduction to the important subject of the Lord for the body or Christ our healer came when I was a student here in Minneapolis at Northwestern School. I was sick. I had been sick for some time. I couldn’t get my strength back, so I went in to see my good pastor and president of the school, Dr. Riley1. I told him what I was. I asked him if he thought if I should quit school or what. He looked at me and smiled. I had known him. He said, “Well, the first thing you’re going to do next Sunday afternoon go down to Jackson Hall to Charlie Ingersoll’s meeting. And you are going to go in and ask Charlie Ingersoll to pray for you. And you tell him I sent you.” Well, I inquired a little bit about Charlie Ingersoll in the book by T.J. McCrossan entitled Christ Paralyzed Church X-Rayed. You find reference made to Charlie Ingersoll. Mr. Ingersoll was an elder in the Oliver Presbyterian Church when Dr. McCrossan was pastor there. And Dr. McCrossan had...he had been examiner in Greek and Hebrew for the Manitoba Presbytery and for the Minnesota Presbytery. And God had, through the marvelous workings of His grace, brought Dr. McCrossan to the conviction that the Lord Jesus is both able and willing and desirous of healing. And so this had become part of his ministry and one of his elders, Charlie Ingersoll, had been greatly blessed of God and had obviously been given this ministry of encouraging people to lay hold of the Lord. Well, I do not know just what happened, but it so fell out that when the Dr. McCrossan left apparently there was a change in emphasis at Oliver Presbyterian Church and Dr. Riley had been greatly influenced by A.B. Simpson2 back years before at old Orchard, Maine. And apparently he had gotten vision and burden that made him a friend of what McCrossan stood for and of Mr. Ingersoll. And so he had opened Jackson Hall, one of the rooms there in the...in the Sunday school building to Mr. Ingersoll. And I went down and Mr. Ingersoll gave a lovely exhortation and prayed for me. And the Lord touched me and helped me. But I left it there and soon was out in the pastorate. The next encounter I had with the subject of healing was when I was pastor in Little Falls, Minnesota at the First Baptist Church. Someone was ill and I went to the hospital and the doctor met me in the hall and he said, “Brother, if you...mister or reverend or whatever it was, if you know anybody that knows how to pray, you’d better call on them because unless something is done that I can’t do, this poor party is going to die.” Well, I had already talked with him about the subject. Some where he had gotten interested in it and I gave him my unbelief I told him I did not believe that healing was for today or part of our heritage in Christ. And so in this particular situation remembering our conversation he said, “If you know somebody that knows how to pray you better get them,” and it was something of a rebuff to me. One of the deacons of that church came to me and said, “Mrs. so and so wants us to come and anoint her and pray for her.” And so in characteristic temerity and effrontery, in a sense, I said, “Oh, I am awfully sorry. I can’t do that.” “Well, why not? She asked for it.” “Oh,” I said, “You know very well that James was written to the Jews in dispersion. Now if you can prove she is a dispersed Jew, I’ll be willing to come, but otherwise...” And then 45 minutes explaining to him why I wasn’t going to go. And he said, “You don’t believe that.” “Oh, yes,” I said. “I believe it. But it is not for us.” 1 Rev. Dr. William Bell Riley (1861-1947) Pastor of the First Baptist Church, Minneapolis, MN. and educator. 2 Albert Benjamin Simpson (1843-1919) founder of The Christian and Missionary Alliance And so he said, “Well, I better see if there isn’t some preacher in town in lieu of because she wants someone to come and to anoint her.” And so it went on. Very little happened until I got to Africa and I used to get terribly angry with the Lord that He sent me to do Paul’s work and He didn’t give me Paul’s equipment. That seemed sort of small of Him if you asked me, because these people didn’t know whether Paul had lived 10 years ago or 2000 years ago. They had no concept of time. And I had been...when I went to Africa my Bible was really...oh, it was mine. It is about the size of a Sunday school quarterly in a 12 Sunday month period, you know. It wasn’t very big. I had chopped it up. This is to the Jews. This is to the tribulation and I ended up with a cover and a little bit in between. But I had distributed most of it. And the consequence of that was I used to feel it wasn’t quite fair of the Lord to send me out to do what Paul was supposed to do, but not allow me to have Paul’s equipment and provision. And I remember coming back from Kospi on a steamer where I was a guest of a Sudanese official, a Muslim and we were talking. And I finally came around to the point where I witnessed to him of Christ. And this Muslim who had told me that he was...didn’t believe in the religion of Islam, but he was socially and politically and economically a Muslim because it was his culture, but not religiously. And so I told him of Christ and he sat there and just wept. And then just about the time I thought surely he was going to open his heart to our wonderful Lord he left. And I didn’t see him to the next day. When I came to talk with him he was quit aloof and indifferent and I was disturbed. Well, we got to talking and I pressed the claims of Christ upon him and asked him to receive our Lord. And I’ll never forget his looking at me and saying, “Mr. Reidhead, you want me to receive Christ. Do you know what that is going to cost me? That is going to mean I’ll lose my job, for if I witness to him I’ll certainly lose that. It is going to mean I will lose my house because the mortgage is held by my father-in-law who is a fanatical Muslim. It means my wife will be taken away from me. My children will be taken away from me. And, furthermore, it means that my mother is going to take a vow down at the mosque that she will not rest until she’s killed me, because this is one of the five pillars of our faith, to kill the infidel. And she is going to swear, curse on anybody’s head that kills me, because she is going to say it is her responsibility to do it. She bore me and she should kill me.” Now he said, “You are asking me to do that on the basis of what you’ve presented.” I said, “Yes, I am. I know that.” He said, “Well, let me ask you something. You say that Jesus Christ is alive. And I say that Mohammed is dead. We know he is buried in the Kaaba in Mecca. We go there to go around the tomb of Mohammed. Now, I want to ask you one question. What can your living Jesus do that our dead Mohammed can’t?” And I said, “Now he’s opened the door.” I said, “He can take you to heaven.” He said, “I understand that is what your faith believes, but let me ask you one thing. Has anyone ever come back having gone your way and said he made it? Our people believe that Mohammed will take them to heaven. What proof do you have that your way takes people to heaven? Don’t they all die? What happens to them afterwards? How do you know, other than what the Bible says?” “Well,” I said, “We...we don’t and we just know that is what happens.” He said, “Good. But that’s what our people believe. What else can Jesus do?” “Well,” I said, “He can make people holy. “Oh,” he said, “like those people that go to the cathedral on Sunday but they have been drunk at the club on Saturday night. Holy like that you mean?” “Well, I mean, no. You have got to distinguish between Christians and Christians, you understand.” “Oh, like the missionaries that come and stand up in front of my counter and hammer on the desk when they don’t get service fast enough. Is that what you...?” “Well,” I said, “I am sure there are some of those.” “No,” he said. “I know there is a difference between them, but I am just not satisfied. We have some people that live very esteemed lives also. So I am not satisfied with that. What else can He do?” “Well,” I said, “After all He is the one that...that sent teachers to carry education and medical help to lands like the Sudan.” “Oh, yes, I know,” he said. “Also slavery and the atom bomb came from your country. What else do you have?” By this time I didn’t have much to say. He said, “I would like to know what your Jesus can do for our people that are in need.” And I hadn’t been taught very much about that. So I left Africa and I...we talked more. And I left Africa ringing in my ears: “What can your living Jesus do that our dead Mohammed can’t?” You see, nine people are being won to Mohammedanism for every one being won to Christianity. And missions in North Africa have been there for 150 years and we have recorded so far 300 converts. That is, we have record of two converts a year for 150 years from Islam. And nine people are being won to Islam for one being won to Christianity. This is the greatest challenge to the church that she’s ever faced. And the answer came back to this: What can your living Jesus do that our dead Mohammed can’t? Now, this drove me to the Word. I returned from Africa, was made a deputational secretary for a mission. I worked myself to the place out of sheer frustration and I sometimes think out of a death wish just to try and escape from myself and the world. I worked myself down, so that in three years of deputational work I had acute sinusitis, which the doctor said there was no cure; early arteriosclerosis, a vascular collapse so that most of the time my hands were numb to my elbows; I had had hemorrhoid conditions, so that I had had to have an operation which was only a temporary relief; and the doctor told me that the total condition was such that unless there was immediate relief I probably could expect death within months. And I was just about 30 at the time, maybe a little older. And I was desperate because I knew of nothing else than just the pressure of human enterprise and human activity. One day, down in a little hotel in Georgia, I had been praying for a long list of needs totaling a quarter of a million dollars and crying out to God for the supply of these needs. And all of the sudden it dawned on me that God had sent in about half of that amount and it was the same sum last year and it seemed like we were running up hill. We weren’t getting anywhere. A quarter of a million dollars last year, God sent in $125,000 and we were up to a quarter million again. How would you ever finish? And all of a sudden the futility dawned on me and I slipped off the edge of the bed where I was kneeling and fell straight out on the floor and sobbed like a baby. And I can remember saying this. “Lord, I am through. I am finished. It is absolutely wrong for you ever to have called human beings with nothing but nerves and blood and tissue to serve you. You ought to have made some robots that had copper nerves and aluminum tubes for veins that wouldn’t break down. A human being can’t stand this. It is too much.” And I told the Lord what I thought of Him and I thought of His work and that I was utterly finished and absolutely through and I wouldn’t go any further. And as soon as the merry go round stopped I was going to get off. And when I had finished and I was too tired to cry or to sob, deep down in my heart I thought I heard Him say something like this. “You mean you are really through? Well, that’s what I have been waiting for. You know, you have really run Me a chase. You mean you are not going to just rest a little and get up and tear off again? You are through? Well, that is the best news I have heard. I have got something far better for you than what you thought I had.” And it wasn’t long after that until I discovered the wonderful truth of our union with Christ, in our identification with Christ and victory through that identification. That when Jesus died we died. Oh, it was like spring time in midwinter. My heart leaped with delight and joy to think that there was victory over our personalities and deliverance from this slavery to our traits and nature. And then the next thing I’ve learned was down in Louisville, Kentucky. A dear woman in a little church there where my brother Wallace Kable was pastor. It was in a morning meeting and I had been expounding on identification with Christ and she came and stood there so sweet and smiling and said, “Oh, that was rich. That blessed my heart. But, you know, I do wish that you had knew the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the fullness of the Spirit.” Well, I went pouting off into a corner. And I knew one thing. I wasn’t going to get very near her after that. She just couldn’t appreciate the fine things of life. And that was the...and I wasn’t... But, you know, those words just stuck in my heart. And finally I began to see that God did have something more than just victory that the normal Christian life wasn’t our just trying to live for Him in our energy, even delivered from our traits and tendencies, but the normal Christian life was given to us in the words of Paul. “I am crucified with Christ.” (Gal. 2:20a) That’s identification. “Nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me.” (Gal. 2:20) And I had to realize that I knew very little of His indwelling life. So there came a time in February of 1953 when after months of searching the Word and meeting and seeking Him I actually knew for the first time the fullness of His presence and His covering, anointing presence. In that same time dear friends with whom I was praying said, “Let’s ask the Lord about your other needs.” He said, “You have very acute eye trouble.” And I did. And so he prayed for my eyes. And he said, “And your sinus is very bad. Let’s ask the Lord about that.” And he said, “And your circulation is very poor. Let’s ask the Lord about that.” And, you know, within just days my glasses didn’t fit. They weren’t quite right, but they were much better than they had been. And my sinus cleared up and my circulation was better. And it wasn’t long until I had just known the healing life and the restoring life of the Lord go through my body and I was rejuvenated and how I rejoiced. But there was one area that didn’t respond. I had been anointed. I had sought the Lord. He had done such wonderful things for me. I didn’t have any question as to what he could do. But why about this? Why not this? And gradually it began to dawn on me that there was something more the Lord wanted to teach me. And so I went into the Word, went to studying it and seeking it, continually asking God to show me what it was that He wanted to use. And I can’t tell you what train of suggestion or influence came, but all at once I began to be greatly concerned about the verse in front of us. “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law having been made a curse for us.” (Gal. 3:13) I went back to some notes I had made in school, went to some commentaries I had. And almost invariably they said, “The curse of the law is death.” The curse of the law is the same as the penalty of the law. And to be “redeemed from the curse of the law” is just the same as to be redeemed from the penalty of the law. Now the penalty of the law is clear. “The soul that sinneth, it shall die.” (Eze. 18:4, 20) And so I said now is the curse of the law synonymous with the penalty of the law? Whatever the curse of the law is I have got to find out because Christ was made a curse for us. Now we know that “there is no remission of sins, but by the shedding of blood.” (Heb. 9:22) But if all we get out of the death of Christ is the remission of sin, why did He have to go to the cross? Why the spear could have pierced His heart on the garden path and He could have died and shed His blood. And do you mean, then that all these hours of agony that He had on the cross had no other purpose than just the remission of sin? And so I remembered that back in school I had been taught a principle called the first mention principle. And you go to the Scripture to find out the first mention of a word and there you usually find how God uses that Word and how he wants you to understand it. So the word involved and at question was “curse.” Well, that meant I had to go back to Genesis the third chapter. And this was the first mention of the word “curse.” It was the time when Adam and Eve had sinned and God called the pair before Him and Satan as well. And we find it here in the 14th verse, God speaks first to the serpent and then elsewhere. And this is the first mention of this word “curse.” Now remember. Penalty is clear. “The soul that sinneth it shall die.” Die, death is the penalty. And the question to be established was: Is curse and penalty synonymous? So let’s look. “And the Lord God said unto the serpent, because thou hast done this, thou art cursed.” (Gen. 3:14) Does this mean he died? Or was it a change in his condition from pleasantness to unpleasantness? I think you will see that that is what it was. “Thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. [Now] Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow [change condition] and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground.” (Gen. 3:14-17) Now, does this mean it died? Or did there come a change of condition. Well, obviously there came a change of condition. “Cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground” (Gen. 3:17-19) Now here is the first use of the word “curse,” a changed condition from pleasantness to unpleasantness. So obviously the first mention of the word “curse” indicates that it is something that results from sin, but seemingly is an intermediate experience between the time the penalty is pronounced until the penalty is carried out. Now, let’s see if that is sustained. If you will turn to Deuteronomy chapter 28 we will have an opportunity at great length here to check and see whether our definition of curse is correct. The first 14 verses of Deuteronomy 28 have to do with blessing which mean the improvement of conditions, pleasantness, satisfaction, supply, joy, and blessing. But beginning with verse 15 you have another thing introduced. And if this is the proper use for the word “curse” we ought to see it here. The curse, therefore, has reference to a condition imposed upon those that are under the penalty of the law previous to the exercising of that penalty for the purpose of persuading them to return in repentance so as to escape the penalty. Do you see? Now let’s see if this is sustained. “But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee: Cursed shalt thou be in the city, and cursed shalt thou be in the field. Cursed shall be thy basket and thy store. Cursed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy land, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Cursed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and cursed shalt thou be when thou goest out.” (Deu. 28:15-19) This doesn’t sound like death, does it? It sounds like a foretaste of it. It sounds like a condition that results from the penalty having been pronounced, but previous to the exercising of the penalty. Now notice what it says about the body. “The Lord,” in verse 21, “shall make the pestilence cleave unto thee, until he have consumed thee.” (Deu. 28:21) Verse 22, “The Lord shall smite thee with a consumption, and with a fever, and with an inflammation, and with an extreme burning.” (Deu. 28:22) Then we will go down to verse 27. “The Lord will smite thee with the botch of Egypt.” (Deu. 28:27) I don’t know when I got to Egypt I got sick after the three days. I kind of figured that was what it was. I don’t know. First I thought I would be sick. Then I was afraid I was sick. First I was afraid I would die and then I was afraid I wouldn’t die. And it is encouraging. When you come to the place that you are afraid you won’t die you are almost through with it and then you get better. But this must be the botch of Egypt. Whatever it was, it certainly changed my plans for me. “The Lord will smite thee with the botch of Egypt, and with the emerods.” In other words, from hemorrhoids. “...with the scab, and with the itch, whereof thou canst not be healed. The Lord shall smite thee with madness, and blindness, and astonishment of heart: And thou shalt grope at noonday, as the blind gropeth.” (Deu. 28:27-29) Verse 35. “The Lord shall smite thee in the knees, and in the legs, with a sore botch that cannot be healed, from the sole of thy foot unto the top of thy head.” (Deu. 28:35) Now do you understand? We could read further, but this is sufficient to enable us to understand that the curse was given by God after they had disobeyed and come under the penalty, so with that getting a good taste of the penalty they would change their mind about how smart it was to sin so that there would be reason within and without to drive them to God in confession and to know forgiveness and pardon. And so it was a foretaste of the penalty, but it wasn’t the penalty. The penalty was death always. But God in being gracious had a little time of probation when he would put on them a sample of the penalty. And this was to induce them to flee back to Him, to know forgiveness and pardon. Now this is the curse. That which came upon the earth, came upon man, came upon women, came upon Satan and then came upon his people because of sin. Now if you will stay with me, then, we will go a little further. God had as His great purpose to secure people for Himself. We are already in Deuteronomy 28. I’d like to have you go back to Exodus the 12 the chapter with me and see what happened. Now, you remember God wanted to have a nation. And He allowed this nation to go down into Egypt, 70 of Jacob’s family, and stay there 400 years and then Moses was called of Him to draw His people out of Egypt and unto Himself that He might have this testimony, that this nation that would know Him and understand Him and be His witness. Now they were slaves. They were forced to live on an absolutely inadequate diet. They were brutally treated. There was no unions to protect working conditions. And you can see them building the pyramids and other things, can’t you? And they rolling a big block up and somebody lets go of a rope and it runs back over a chap’s foot and he is kicked with the horses and he is hurt and he is bruised and he is crippled and he is suffering from all these diseases. I used to think that when Israel went out of Egypt they had 12 tribes and then the litter cases that they carried along with them. And so they had to take along. Oh, they weren’t going to leave the sick there. They weren’t going to leave all of these people in Egypt. They were all of Israel, all of the delivered line. And so we have to go back. Let’s find out what happened. We are back at Exodus 12 now and this will give us a little insight as to what God is doing in deliverance of His people. And these things are for our ensample. “Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house: And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb. Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.” (Exo. 12:3-6) And they shall take the lamb and nail it to the top of the door? Is that what it says? No. “They shall take of the blood and strike it on the upper two side posts and on the upper door posts of the houses” and “then when the angel of the Lord goes through at night he will see the blood and will pass over you.” (Exo. 12:7, 13) It is blood that makes atonement for sin. And it was the blood that the angel looked for. And so the lamb would be slain, the blood caught in the basin and the bunch of hyssop broken off the wall and made into a little brush, dipped into the basin and sprinkled plainly on the upper posts and the side posts, speaking to us, incidentally, of a cross. For if you move those two posts together and put the one, the lintel down a little further you have a cross. And it was the blood of His cross where He died and shed His...poured out His life that He might redeem us. “And without [the] shedding of blood there is no remission of sins.” So it is “the blood that makes atonement for the soul.” (Lev. 17:11) But what about the body of the lamb? Did they just say, “Well, it is not important, let the dogs eat it”? What did they do with the body? Well, the first thing they did was to make a cross. For they were going to have to roast it over the fire. And I have been enough out in the East, the Near East to know how they do that. They take a long stick, often a green sapling. It won’t burn. And they will put it through the lamb in such a way that it will turn more or less smoothly on the crotch sticks that they stick in the ground on each side of the fire. Then, in order that the fire can penetrate they will often cut the breast and put another stick cross wise so as to open the body of the lamb up that all might have the same penetration of heat and all might be done and ready to eat at the same time and some wouldn’t be burned. So can you see this lamb now put on a long stick with a cross stick opening up the breast so that the fire could get in? And there it is over on a cross over the fire. And notice we begin with the eighth verse. “And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it. Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof. And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire. And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the Lord’s passover. For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the Lord. And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.” (Exo. 12:8-13) Now see, then, what is happening. It says, “And you shall all eat it with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet and your staff in your hand.” I want to take you into a home in Egypt, just one of the slave homes. There is a young man in that home about 22 or 23. He was working when he was a lad at 14 on one of Pharaoh’s projects there near Luxor. He was trying to build one of those big buildings. And they were moving some blocks up on rollers and the block slipped, the chuck block slipped and the block rolled back and hit him in the thigh. And it crushed him and it crushed his leg and crushed his hip socket. And his left...or his right thigh and leg had withered. He couldn’t walk. And because of sickness and disease resulting from it and proper care, he was unable to walk at all. And so here he was with one side of him crushed, his leg crushed and hopelessly deformed. And the other through malnutrition and disease, so that he couldn’t move. And he is in this house. They have been caring for him and he has no allotment of food from Pharaoh’s store because he can’t work. According to the utilitarian idea they should have let him die. But instead of that the families watched after him. And now he has been hearing that Moses is going to lead the people out to worship. And deep down in his heart he wants his people to go because he wants them free from slavery, but there is a deep fear because it has been now some 10 years since he has walked and he knows that his family couldn’t carry him. He is too old. He is too heavy and they are too old. And he knows that his neighbors will have more than they can carry. And so in his mind he is resigned to the fact that he has got to stay there. He has just got to stay there in his...in Egypt and be hated and be the point of all the anger of the Egyptians after Israel is gone. And his isn’t a very happy lot. And deep in his heart he hopes to die. But the afternoon comes and he is beginning to think about it and he says, “Mother, does Father have the lamb?” And she says, “Yes, son. He is out there. You can hear it bleeding.” And it gets toward evening and he says, “Mother, has Father killed the lamb yet?” “Why are you so concerned?” “Well, mother being as crippled as I am I know that tonight the angel of the Lord is coming through. And I am the first born in this home and if the blood isn’t there I will be destroyed with the Egyptians.” And she says, “Well, son, father has just taken the lamb out now and he has killed it.” “Well, what is he doing with it? What’s he doing?” “Well, he caught the blood in the basin.” “What else is he doing, mother?” “Well, he has gone over and he has taken some hyssop off the wall and he is making a little brush out of it.” “Well, mother, what else?” “And he is putting it up on the wall.” “Is it plain mother? Can you see it or is just a little?” “Oh, no, son, it’s plain. It’s quite large on both side posts and over the top.” “You’re sure it’s plain enough so the angel of the Lord can see it.” “Oh, yes, son.” “I’d like to see it. But I don’t want you to...I don’t want you to have to have to take me out. Are you sure it’s there? You’re satisfied, mother.” “Oh, yes, son. It’s...it’s there. There’s no question. I can see it.” And so he waits. Father comes in and he says, “Son, can you smell the lamb roasting in the yard?” “Yes, see I can smell it, but I’m not hungry. I am sorry. I...I...I don’t think I have any appetite, father. I am not going to eat tonight.” “Well, we’ll see about that, boy.” And a little while later his father comes in and says, “You know, I got this out of the case, yes.” “Say, that’s my old cloak, isn’t it? That’s the one I wore the week before I was hurt. I haven’t seen it for a long time. I didn’t even know you kept it.” “Oh, yes, we kept it. And here, put it on.” “Oh, no, father. I’m not going out. It will be warm in here. I won’t have any chill, you see.” “Put it on, son.” “Well, why should I put it on?” “Because Moses said we were to eat with our coats on.” “Oh, but I told you I wasn’t going to eat.” “Will you just do what Moses said? Will you, son? Put your arm out. Now...now put your other arm out. All right. Tie it around you. That’s fine.” “Say, dad, what...what are those?” “Why, those are you sandals.” “Oh, you kept those, too?” “Yes. I kept them.” “What are you going to do with them?” “I am going to put them on your feet.” “Father, I haven’t have had a sandal on my feet for 10 years. No use putting it on. I’m not going to walk anywhere.” “Son, I’m going to put it on your left foot. That’s the better one. And it’s tied. Now the right, say, that’s been badly twisted, hasn’t it? Oh, I had forgotten that was hurt. But we’ll tie it on anyway.” “But I don’t know why you’re doing this. Father, what’s that? That’s my staff over there. I didn’t know you had kept these things.” “Well, we have been going to throw them away many times or give them away, but we just kept them and I guess it’s good because Moses said you are to eat with your coat on and your shoes on and your staff in your hand.” “But I’m not really hungry, Father.” “Well, we’ll see.” And a little while later they come in. They pick up his bed and they carry it out just posts, four posts and some side posts and a rope across it. “Where are you going?” “You’re coming out and eat.” “Oh, I...I...I...I haven’t any hunger at all.” “Well, all... you all come out and watch the rest of us eat, then. You are coming out. Moses said we are to eat of it.” And so they set him out in the courtyard by the fire and his father goes over to the lamb when they are starting to eat and he takes a little piece of it and puts it on a leaf and a little clay dish and he brings it over with some unleavened bread and he said, “Here, son.” “Oh, I don’t think I want any, father.” “Well, son, I am going to ask you to eat it for my sake whether you want it or not. You see, Moses still said that all of Israel was to eat of this lamb. And if you don’t mind I am going to ask you to do it for me if not for you.” “Well, all right, father. I’ll take one bite if you insist.” And his father says, “Here. This is a nice piece.” “Say, father, that does taste good. I didn’t realize I was hungry. I’ll have another piece, please, if you don’t mind. Mmm... That’s the best I’ve eaten. Father, look! See what happened. I wiggled my left toe. I haven’t wiggled it in such a long time. That meat is so good. I’ll have some more, please. Look at that, father, there is my right foot and it is moving. And, father, if you don’t mind I’d like to sit...sit up. Haven’t sit up for 10 years. Sit me up, father, and I’ll have some more of that lamb, please. That’s good. Say, something has happened to me, father. I just feel that this life...Father, I know this sounds foolish, but I think if you and mother would get one on each side of me I could stand up. Do see what has happened to my foot? Do you remember how twisted it was? It straightened out while I have been eating. Let’s see if I can’t stand up. Look, father. I’m standing. I wonder if I couldn’t just lean on my staff and have some more of that meat. That’s the best I’ve ever eaten, I tell you. And look at what it has done. Father, get over here with my staff here I think I could take a step. Look! I can! Two steps! Father, I can walk!” Then tears gush up. “Father, I won’t have to be left behind now, will I? I can go with you out of Egypt. You see, I have been so afraid that when you went you couldn’t take me and you would have to leave me and all the sick people. But since I have eaten that lamb, I’m not sick anymore.” And somebody is looking at me and saying, “You’re making that up.” Well, I wouldn’t have the effrontery to make it up. You turn to Psalm 105 verse 37. See if I made it up. Now I want you, everybody, to read it with me. You’re going to read it out loud, because I don’t want to be the only one to say that I didn’t make it up. Let’s just...everybody, now, together. The first word and the whole verse, Psalm 105 and 37, everyone now in unison: “He brought them forth also with silver and gold: and there was not one feeble person among their tribes.” Two and a half million people and not a sick one among them. Why? The blood makes atonement for us all. And when I see the blood I will pass over you. But he said, “Eat the lamb.” And the lamb was over the fire and the lamb was on a cross and every time you come to the communion table you say, “This is his blood shed for the remission of sins and this is his body which was given for us, for us.” Now, I want you to go back to my text in Galatians chapter three, “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law.” And that is not the penalty. That is that which the penalty deserved and the penalty earned and goes under the penalty received, but for the purpose of inducing them to repent. It is not the penalty. And Christ has redeemed us and bought us out from under the curse that was pronounced upon those that broke the law. For, “cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree.” Now if this is true, then we have got to find somewhere that our Lord Jesus not only was crucified, but while He was being crucified the curse of the law came upon Him. And He endured in His body that which we have found or something of that which we have found associated with the curse of the law. And so I am asking you to turn now to Psalm 22. In verse five he says, verse six: “I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people. All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, He trusted on the Lord that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.” (Psa. 22:6-8) Then in verse 12: “Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round. They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion. I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax.” (Psa. 22:12-14) And I asked the doctor once, “What happens with heart disease?” He said, “Well, it is as though your heart became like wax. It just sort of gives up.” And our Lord Jesus said, “I had what you had.” “My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws...For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet. I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me.” (Psa. 22:15-17) Save me from the power of the dogs. “Save me from the lion’s mouth.” (Psa. 22:21) Our Lord, in those hours of agony—and this is the Psalm of the cross—endured the curse of the law. He was despised, abhorred and He was attacked by Satan. His bones were out of joint. His heart melted within Him. And then if you will turn to Psalm 38 where He has another messianic Psalm and we know it is a messianic Psalm because He said in verse 11, “My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore; and my kinsmen stand afar off.” There is the messianic key. And here our Lord Jesus has identified Himself with me and because I am under both the penalty of the law (death) and the curse of the law, the only way He can redeem me from the penalty of the law is to die. And the only way He can redeem me from the curse of the law is to be made a curse for me, take the curse. And so here He identifies Himself with me and He so claimed me and brought me to Himself that He makes my sin His and yours His. “There is no soundness in my flesh because of thine anger; neither is there any rest in my bones because of my sin.” (Psa. 38:3) It was not His, but it was mine that He made His. And since He identified Himself with me in Gethsemane when He kneeled over the stone from the moment that He arose from that stone He was under the sentence of death. And, thus, from three in the morning—or, if you please, six in the morning— He was taken into the presence of the Caiaphas and the high priest and then to Pilate. He was there scourged, buffeted, beat, the crown of thorns pressed on His head and His hands nailed to the cross. Hear me, my dear, that blood which was shed by the cat-o-nine tails that tore His flesh from His back was not the blood that makes atonement for the soul. The blood that one day ran down from the spear points of the crown of thorns was not that blood with which His life was poured out. That was just the agony that came as He endured the curse of the law. So from six in the morning at the latest until three in the afternoon our Lord Jesus was undergoing this which came upon men because they were under the penalty until they paid the penalty. So we find it here in this...this 38th Psalm. “My wounds stink and are corrupt because of my foolishness. I am troubled; I am bowed down greatly; I go mourning all the day long. For my loins are filled with a loathsome disease: and there is no soundness in my flesh. I am feeble and sore broken...” (Psa. 38:5-8) My heart panteth, my strength faileth me: as for the light of mine eyes, it also is gone from me.” (Psa. 38:10) In verse 13, “But I, as a deaf man, heard not; and I was as a dumb man that openeth not his mouth.” (Psa. 38:13) In verse 17, “For I am ready to halt, and my sorrow is continually before me.” (Psa. 38:17) And our Lord has in this 38th Psalm so identified Himself with us, that He has told us that in those hours of agony on the cross He was enduring the curse of the law. And so if you understand, then, what we have been setting forth it is this: that the penalty of sin is death. The only way He could redeem us was to die, to have His life gush forth. And He poured out His soul unto death that the penalty of our sins might be remitted. But His purpose was not only to save us from the penalty of what we have done, but to save us from the curse of the law as well. And so He was made a curse for us and this is symbolized by His...by the words, “hanging on a tree.” And then we find the statement made in Isaiah 53—if you care to turn to it—“by his stripes we are healed.” (Isa. 53:5) Why? Because the stripes were the cat-o-nine tails the executioner used upon the back of our Lord, a leather thong tied around his wrist, pulled down to his ring in the stone in the courtyard and with his back arched, then the cat-o-nine tails would come and tear the flesh from the back from the body of our Lord. And this was not for the purpose of releasing His life. This was that which was put upon those that were as condemned as a foretaste of the penalty in order that they might be induced to repent and to confess that it might save the court the trouble of having to have a trial. It was the curse of the law. And our Lord Jesus, therefore, has declared, “by his stripes we are healed.” His blood was shed for the remission of our sins, but He gave Himself up to the agony of the cross in order that He might deliver us from the curse of the law by being made a curse for us. Now come with me, then, to our text again in Galatians the third chapter. What are the implications of it? I think this will help you to see it. Here is the man who has had a mortgage placed upon him and the strange terms of this mortgage are as follows. As long...until the mortgage is paid, every Monday morning, absolutely every Monday morning a railway express delivery man is going to come to his door with a box. This is a box of snakes. There are vipers and cobras and puff adders. There is just coral...there is coral snakes and water moccasins and rattlers, just different snakes. But every Monday morning a box full of snakes are brought to his front door. And the man says, “Here is your snakes. Sign for them.” And because he knows his mortgage is on him and he knows the terms of the mortgage are such, he signs and takes it. And the door opens and the man opens the door and slams it shut and so all week long the fellow has to fight snakes. Well, then somebody hears about this and decides that he ought to do something. So he goes and says, “What is the mortgage?” Well, you see, I have a debt. And the only...until I pay that debt, as long as I am under that debt this...the terms are that I...I knew about it. I knew what it was. The terms are that I have to take these snakes. “Well, I am going to do something about that.” So he comes back a little later and he says, “Here. I have paid your penalty. I have paid your mortgage and here is the absolution. You are free.” “Oh, that’s wonderful. The debt is paid. Isn’t that wonderful? The debt has been paid.” But the next Monday morning the bell rings and he goes to the door and there is the railway express man. “What are you doing here? My debt is paid.” “I don’t know anything about your debt being paid. I just know that in everybody in this block gets a box of snakes on Monday morning and you are in this block and here is your snakes. As long as you live in this block you are going to take snakes.” “Oh, my debt is paid. I don’t have to.” “I don’t know anything about that. I just know you live on this block. You get snakes. Move if you don’t want snakes. But if you live here you get them.” “You mean I got to take them?” “You got to take them. That’s my orders. Leave them here.” “You mean I got to sign for them?” “You got to sign.” “I thought when I had the debt paid that these snakes wouldn’t come anymore.” “Well, here, sign.” “I don’t know what use it is to have the debt paid. Still fighting snakes.” So the door opens and the box is emptied and he turns it and all week he fights snakes. And so week after week the express man comes with the snakes. And finally the man who paid the mortgage comes around and says, “Wait a minute. What are you doing?” “Well, I’m just fighting snakes. Get out of the way. There’s one over there.” “What do you mean? Don’t you know that I not only delivered you from the penalty of this mortgage, but I delivered you from the interest? You don’t have to keep paying the interest on it.” “Well, why?” “You see, the only way I could possibly deliver you was to let everyone of those snakes bite me. And I have been bitten by every snake that they had ever put in. And because I not only paid the penalty, but I also took the bite of the snakes and I did it for you, you don’t have to take it anymore.” “You mean that?” “Yes I mean it.” And the next Sunday morning, the next Monday morning the bell rings and he goes...he doesn’t open the door. This time he shouts through the keyhole. He says, “Take your snakes away. The Man who paid the penalty has told me that He has removed the obligation for the interest and I don’t have to take them any longer. Take them away.” Say, is that what it means? Well, that’s what it means to me. And when I saw that truth I said, “Thank you, Lord, for letting this thing that you didn’t remove stay long enough to show me this truth.” And God began to gently and graciously lead me into the place where I saw that, “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, having been made a curse for us.” And it opened up biblical grounds for believing the Lord for the body. It opened up a theological ground. It opened up a scriptural ground. It put a foundation under it and it has meant the life and joy and peace and blessing and a measure of health I have never known before. And not only to me, but to others. And today, this Sunday afternoon, I would like to have you take this verse, ponder it and meditate upon it until the truth of it grips your heart and I trust it appears to you the same way as it does to me, that Christ gave his blood for the remission of our sins and he gave his body for us, for us. And, you know, could it be that this is what the Scripture means when it says, “Many are sick and some sleep not discerning the Lord’s body?” (I Cor. 11:29-30) Not realizing its importance and its place and its meaning and its significance? You think so? Let us take the text, shall we? “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.” (Gal. 3:13) * Reference such as: Sunday Afternoon, by Paris W. Reidhead, Pastor. ©PRBTMI 1955-1965

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