The last word of the Old Testament is, “curse”. One of the last words of the New Testament is, “grace”. Many people sum up the two testaments like that. Old Testament depicted the curse of sin and God’s wrath and the New Testament shows God’s grace towards us.
I agree with that to an extent. Some people like to take it to a new level by saying the OT depicts God as an evil God, whereas the NT shows Him as a merciful God. God is consistent, He does not change. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow!
Anyway, I wanted to bring to your attention a curse found in the, you guessed it, New Testament! This curse was from God but Paul thought it so important that, in his letters to the Corinthians, he took the pen from his scribe and wrote the following with his own handwriting:
1 Corinthians 16:21-22:
The salutation of me Paul with mine own hand.
If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha.
To those familiar with the saying, “Maranatha”, they will know it is no curse, it is an admonition. It means, “come Lord Jesus” and was often said back then. It was the “Anathema” part that was the curse; the Maranatha part was just the expiration date of the curse.
Anathema, for whatever reason it was left un-translated, means “accursed” or “excommunication”. It meant rejection. So, the phrase Anathema Maranatha literally means, “let him be accursed until our Lord Jesus Christ comes.” This was a solemn curse.
So, if we were to apply this verse today, how many professed Christians do you think would be accursed? Would you be one of them?