‘Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us. For it is written: “Cursed is everyone that hangs on a tree!” — so that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ!’ Galatians 3:13-14.
Calvin comments: “Christ…had made all who are under the law (after sinning), subject to the curse. Hence the great difficulty that the Jews could not free themselves from the curse of the law.
“He (Paul) solves the difficulty, by putting forward the remedy…. This further confirms his purpose. For if we are saved because we have been freed from the curse of the law, then righteousness is not by the law! He next adds the way in which we are made free….
“‘Cursed is everyone that hangs on a tree!’ Christ was hanged. Therefore, He came under the curse. But it is certain that He did not suffer that punishment on His own account. It follows therefore either that He was crucified in vain — or that our curse was laid upon Him, so that we might be delivered from it.
“Now, he (Paul) does not say that Christ was cursed — but something more! That He was a curse — signifying that the curse of all was placed on Him….
“But how does it happen…that a beloved Son is cursed by His Father?… There are two things to be considered…. The one, is that He was the unspotted Lamb of God — full of blessing and grace! The other is, that He took our place — and thus became a ‘sinner’ and subject to the curse — not in Himself indeed, but in us. Yet in such a way, that it was necessary for Him to act in our name.
“He could not be outside God’s grace, and yet He endured His wrath! For how could He (the Father) reconcile Him to us, if He (the Son) regarded the Father as an enemy and was hated by Him?… Again, how could He (the Son) have freed us from the wrath of God — if He had not transferred it from us to Himself? Therefore, He was smitten for our sins!….
“‘(So that the blessing of Abraham might come) upon the Gentiles!’… We are delivered from the curse of (trangessing) the law, by Christ…. The blessing promised to Abraham is founded on this, and proceeds from it to the Gentiles…. What is to hinder the Gentiles from obtaining the…benefit?… It is faith in Christ which makes us partakers of it!”
Calvin also says in his Institutes II:7:15 & 16:6 & 17:4 & III:4:27: “To redeem us from this curse, Christ was made a curse for us. Cursed is everyone that hangs on a tree!…
“It is especially necessary to attend to the analogy which is drawn by Paul, as to His having been made a curse for us (Galatians 3:13)…. The power and curse of sin was destroyed in His flesh, when He was offered as a sacrifice on Whom the whole weight of our sins was laid with their curse…and condemnation to death!” Thus Christ redeemed us, by being made a curse for us!