P. S. Wilmot
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Is it possible for a Christian to live under a curse or be liable to a curse?
As a Child of God, a curse cannot be placed on the believer by the world. This is evident in the record of Balak and Balaam. He (Balaam) was empowered by Balak, a heathen king, a type of the world, to place a curse on Israel (a type of the believer) In the words of Balaam, How shall I curse, whom God hath not cursed? or how shall I defy, whom the LORD hath not defied? (Numbers 23:8) In other words, what God has blessed, no one can curse. If you are a believing Christian, you are blessed by God, and no one or thing can curse you.
Then there are those who teach, The Family Curse. That is to say, there are certain individuals today who are under a curse, due to what may have transpired in the past history of their family. Those ill things had placed a curse on the family line. So, they teach unless, the curse is broken by a preacher or a person with expertise in such matter, the curse remains.
However, unless this is carefully explained, the teaching of The Family Curse is inaccurate. The Scripture clearly states in the book of Romans 8:1 that there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, which means, to live in union with Christ Jesus. However, there is a condition to this. If the individual is in union with Christ Jesus, he or she should no longer do things according to the lust of the flesh, or make decisions based on our flawed human nature. Rather, through the learning process of trusting in the Lord. Through this, those who believe are free from their penalties of the past life, including their family history, or so-called family curse.
Therefore, if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Now, if a person is not in Christ, or not in union with Christ. They aren’t a new creature, or creation. Consequently, they are still under the penalties of that life. If there is a family curse, it could still affect them, but remember, when you are in Christ, you are a new creation, and old things are passed away and all things are now new.
Here is another clause, and it is very important. Even though a person is a new creation, but the individual still has a free will. Yes, the “Plan” of Salvation is unconditional, meaning if you stay in the will of God, He will keep you, but if the individual chooses to walk away, though the burning flame of the desire to be with the Lord is difficult to extinguish, but that flame can cease, not by the curse of others, but by the individual own doing. This is referred to as the Fallen Away of The Faith, and it is found in the book of Hebrews 6:4-6 . . . they abandoned their faith! It is impossible to bring them back to repent again. As the result, the individual has removed themselves from God’s protection, therefore, they are exposed.
Now, for the deeper understanding to the word “curse,” it is important to look closely at the definitions.
In the Hebrew language, it bears three meanings.
Alah serves as a warning, equivalent to the modern English word and phrase, to swear, a solemn oath. It is used as a promise and a testimony, but with a far greater indication as a covenant between God and His people. Deuteronomy 29:12. This promise could mean a penalty if broken
Arar on the other hand serves as a binding act, it also serves as the opposite of blessing, its consequences are imbedded in the framework of God’s law. Certain laws come with the promise of blessings, the breaking thereof will usher in the curse, arar. This word also has the indication of binding or limiting. Or to reduce the ability of a person or thing. For an example, the curse of the earth due to sin in the Book of Genesis, has limited the earth in yielding forth fruits, plant life, vegetation and the likes. What we see in the earth today, it is not how it was meant to be, or how it was at creation. Consequently, a limited earth, will in some ways limit the people as well, by not fully enjoying what the land originally was meant to offer.
Qalal, similar to arar, indicates blessings withdrawn. As Richards explains, the one cursed, experiences reduced circumstance. Often this curse of reduced position, power, wealth, or honor is occasioned by the breaking of God’s covenant.
This isn’t the will of God; He desires to see His people bless and bless more abundantly. John 10:10
The overall idea of “curse” for the heathen world, a curse implies some magical spell cast on a person to gain power over the person, to control or destroy. However, in the Scriptures for the most part, a curse is the result of the violation of the individual relationship with God. So, a curse is moral, rather than something enchanted or magical. Therefore, do the right thing in the presence of the Lord, by faith and no curse shall befall you, present, past or the future.
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.