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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

Nitsavim 51-4

You are standing

Deuteronomy 30:1-6

Now it shall come to pass, when all these things come upon you, the blessing and the curse which I have set before you, and you call them to mind among all the nations where the LORD your God drives you, and you return to the LORD your God and obey His voice, according to all that I command you today, you and your children, with all your heart and with all your soul, that the LORD your God will bring you back from captivity, and have compassion on you, and gather you again from all the nations where the LORD your God has scattered you.

Deut. 30:1-3 NKJV

What is the purpose of curse?

Curse comes upon the sinner for various purposes. The first one is that this is the way of the Eternal to show His justice, by condemning a sinful behaviour. If He didn’t punish the sinner, He wouldn’t be just and would show that He tolerates sin, which in turn is against Himself.

Another reason for which the Eternal allows a curse to befall on the sinner is that He has to fulfill his word. Since He promised punishment to the man that disobeys, He must be faithful to His promises. If He didn’t punish men for his sin, He wouldn’t be faithful to His word and that is also against Himself.

We also see in this text a very beautiful purpose of curses; to create repentance in the sinner. This passage teaches us that a curse may produce one of the most pleasant things for the Eternal; i.e. a deep desire from man to have an intimate relationship with his Heavenly Father. When he departs from Him, all kinds of curses come upon him and thus men realize that there is no life outside of the Eternal and therefore it’s better to turn back to Him and live loving Him and keeping His commandments.

The Hebrew word for repentance is teshuvah תשובה whose root means to come back. But it also means to do something again. Turning back to the Eternal in repentance means, therefore that one also comes back to something he had before.

Then, if one who is born into a pagan culture far from the Eternal and later in life repents of his sin and returns to the Eternal, will he be finding the Eternal for the first time? Or, is it that he has already been in contact with Him in the past?

The meaning of the word teshuvah teaches us that every child formed in their mother’s womb has experienced an intimate relationship with the Creator, in spite of their parents being terrible sinners and enemies of the Eternal. At the moment of conception the Eternal blows from His Spirit and creates a new life that is in spiritual contact with Him. When that child grows up and sins for the first time, he loses that spiritual contact with his heavenly Father and will have to be born again to be able to have that spiritual intimacy with Him again. He will have to make teshuvah – return to his beloved heavenly Father, who is waiting for him all the time.

So there is no bad thing that cannot be used to create good.

Blessed be the Eternal who created curses to make sinners come back to life!


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