Sometimes you have to risk your life to save a life. That’s exactly what some pilots did when two workers at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station became ill. The only way to ensure their recovery was through a daring rescue mission. A spokesman stated that it was “the darkest and coldest of all past missions to the South Pole for medical evacuation.” Due to the harsh conditions, planes don’t usually go to the outpost between the months of February and October. But the pilots were undaunted. “The courage of the pilots to make the flight in extremely harsh conditions is incredible and inspiring,” said a fellow station worker.

This is, indeed, an inspiring story, but not as stirring and powerful as a daring Savior willing to endure far harsher conditions to rescue us. “Christ . . . rescued us from the curse . . . [w]hen he was hung on the cross” (Galatians 3:13). All of humanity needed rescuing because we had broken God’s law—the consequence of which is being cursed (see Deuteronomy 27:26). The solution to being under the curse was not human effort through obeying the law (Galatians 3:11), but faith in what Jesus has done (Galatians 3:14).

What did Jesus do? He endured the harshest and darkest midwinter known to man—He took on humanity’s curse. When Jesus died on the cross, He paid the penalty for sin and took all the guilt of us lawbreakers on Himself (Deuteronomy 21:23). The curse of the law was transferred from guilty sinners to a sinless Savior. He “suffered . . . to bring [us] safely home to God” (1 Peter 3:18).

Yes, we were dead and trapped in the bondage of our sin (Galatians 3:10). But Jesus endured our curse so that we might live in true freedom by faith in Him (Galatians 3:9,14).

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: John 13:1-20