Writer: Pastor R.S. "Bud" Miller | bibleresources.org/curses
Today, we think of "cursing" as someone using foul language, profanity, or perhaps, even blasphemous words against God. Our definition usually is synonymous with "swearing." This is a form of cursing, but it is only a small portion of what curses mean in the Bible.
Cursing in the Bible is not only speaking evil of someone, but evil coming upon someone. If a person is under a curse, according to the Bible, evil has come upon them in some way. Sickness, tragedy, or bad circumstances are occurring in their lives.
[Please Note: This does not mean that every difficult circumstance that we go through is a curse. Sometimes God leads us through circumstances to stretch our faith. This is for our own good, as it is helping us to grow stronger and identify ourselves with Him. However, He is not bringing anything upon us, but rather leading us through a circumstance so that we might experience His overcoming power. For the duration of this article we are referring to an evil curse that comes not from the hand of God, but from the enemy.]
Even today, in many cultures, witch doctors or shamans put curses on people through demonic powers. In some cultures, for example, "voodoo" is practiced.
This includes such practices as sticking pins in a doll made in the image of a person, usually with some of that person's hair, fingernail clippings, and so forth incorporated into the doll. Hateful words are projected as the doll is stabbed over and over.
There also are more gruesome practices used. However, with all evil witchcraft rituals, it is the hatred and evil projected from these people that is aimed at the targeted person that causes the harm. The curses spoken over that doll do not come to pass because of the doll or the pins. There is no power in those inanimate objects. They come to pass because of the demonic power operating through the person speaking forth the curses.
In many cultures, other than Western Societies, people have no problem understanding these curses and blessings, because the presence of demonic beings is very real to them. In fact, in many places, they leave offerings to appease evil spirits, for the purpose of warding them off so they will leave them alone.
Curses can work against Christians if they are in rebellion, out of the will of God, or not walking in faith and love. However, if we are walking where God wants us to walk, a hundred curses against us would just bounce off and would do us no harm.
The story of Balaam and Israel gives us a good example of this principle
(Numbers 22). Although Balaam was not an Israelite, he was a prophet of God. The kings of Moab and Midian wanted him to curse the Israelites during the journey from Egypt to Canaan. Elders of those nations offered him what apparently was a lot of money, and he tried to do what their king wanted -- but he could not. He tried three times but was unable to do anything, but bless Israel.
Jesus took the Curse for Us
Before we are born again, we walk under the law of sin and death; but, after we are regenerated, we are under the law of life in Christ Jesus, who became a curse for us.
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: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. Galatians 3:13-14
How wonderful is our inheritance as Christians! We do not get the evil that should be ours. We all deserve hell, but when we come to Jesus, we get Heaven. We are not under the curse of sickness and death any longer. We now have power over sin through Jesus. Sin can no longer pull us around like bulls with rings in our noses. You know, leading an animal by that ring must hurt his nose sometimes. Many of us have been led around hurting with rings in our noses!
However, we have to want to overcome the habit of sinning. God will not violate our wills. If we want to keep on sinning after we are saved from the law of sin and death, He will allow us to do so. We need to clearly understand that when we sin, it produces the death principle in our lives.