The Clarity of Chapter 7 and the Mosaic Administration

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Backwoods Presbyterian

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I think it can be shown without a shadow of a doubt that the Westminster Confession of Faith confesses that the Mosaic Administration is a part of the Covenant of Grace, not the Covenant of Works or a mix between the two.


CHAPTER VII
Of God's Covenant with Man.

I. The distance between God and the creature is so great, that although reasonable creatures do owe obedience unto him as their Creator, yet they could never have any fruition of him, as their blessedness and reward, but by some voluntary condescension on God's part, which he hath been pleased to express by way of covenant.

II. The first covenant made with man was a covenant of works, wherein life was promised to Adam, and in him to his posterity, upon condition of perfect and personal obedience.

III. Man by his fall having made himself incapable of life by that covenant, the Lord was pleased to make a second, commonly called the covenant of grace: wherein he freely offered unto sinners life and salvation by Jesus Christ, requiring of them faith in him, that they may be saved, and promising to give unto all those that are ordained unto life, his Holy Spirit, to make them willing and able to believe.

IV. This covenant of grace is frequently set forth in the Scripture by the name of a testament, in reference to the death of Jesus Christ, the testator, and to the everlasting inheritance, with all things belonging to it, therein bequeathed.

V. This covenant was differently administered in the time of the law, and in the time of the gospel: under the law it was administered by promises, prophecies, sacrifices, circumcision, the paschal lamb, and other types and ordinances delivered to the people of the Jews, all fore-signifying Christ to come, which were for that time sufficient and efficacious, through the operation of the Spirit, to instruct and build up the elect in faith in the promised Messiah, by whom they had full remission of sins, and eternal salvation, and is called the Old Testament.

VI. Under the gospel, when Christ the substance was exhibited, the ordinances in which this covenant is dispensed, are the preaching of the Word, and the administration of the sacraments of Baptism and the Lord's Supper; which, though fewer in number, and administered with more simplicity and less outward glory, yet in them it is held forth in more fullness, evidence, and spiritual efficacy, to all nations, both Jews and Gentiles; and is called the New Testament. There are not, therefore, two covenants of grace differing in substance, but one and the same under various dispensations.

What say you?
 

Casey

Puritan Board Junior
There are those who would say the Mosaic Covenant is (essentially) a republication of the covenant of works and that the covenant of grace in the form of the Abrahamic Covenant runs parallel to it. I personally see this as untenable because (1) that makes the Mosaic Covenant a works-principled hick-up in God's plan and (2) Scripture is rather clear that the Mosaic Covenant is a flowering/fulfillment/continuation of the Abrahamic Covenant. I also personally believe that the Standards positively teach that the Mosaic Covenant is an administration of the covenant of grace and it is rather telling that the Standards nowhere speak of any such republication of the covenant of works in regard to the Mosaic Covenant. :2cents:

I'll sit back and watch the fire-fight now! :lol:
 

Christusregnat

Puritan Board Professor
I think it can be shown without a shadow of a doubt that the Westminster Confession of Faith confesses that the Mosaic Administration is a part of the Covenant of Grace, not the Covenant of Works or a mix between the two.

I think the attempt to link the covenant of works with the Mosaic covenant is generally getting antinomianism in by the back door. Rather than frankly say, "Free from the Law, Oh happy condition!", this school of thought weakens for the force of the first use of the law by allotting the Mosaic covenant to "Israel-only" status. Then, the civil law is generally thought to be an interesting relic, and the curses and blessings of Deut 28 and Leviticus 26 are thought to be more personal than civil.

Anywho, that's what say I. Also, I should note that the link which I discussed above is not always created with epistemological self-consciousness; I'm more speaking of effect rather than intention.

Cheers,
 

Grymir

Puritan Board Graduate
I think the Mosaic Law as works fits into the worlds view of 'religion', ya know the do good and your closer to God thingy. And if you live basically a good life, God will accept you. Hence, most people think it is "works"

Now may I ask a question. (He says in a Columbo like manner, throwing down the gauntlet ;))





















Naw, nevermind. Learning is cool.
 

Rev. Todd Ruddell

Puritan Board Junior
The Larger Catechism leaves no doubt as to the Administration of the Covenant of Grace in the Old Testament. See question 34, where the answer declares that the Covenant of Grace was administered under the Old Testament by promises, prophecies, sacrifices, circumcision, the passover, and other types and ordinances which wdi all fore-signify Christ then to come, and were for that time suffucuent to build up the elect in faith in the promised messiah, by whom they then had full remission of sins, and eternal salvation. In this list of types and ordinances, the divines clearly clearly include the Mosaic administration in the Covenant of Grace.
 

Christusregnat

Puritan Board Professor
I think the Mosaic Law as works fits into the worlds view of 'religion', ya know the do good and your closer to God thingy. And if you live basically a good life, God will accept you. Hence, most people think it is "works"

Tim,

So, do you think that this is how people misconstrue the Mosaic covenant, or do you actually think this is a flaw within the covenant itself? I use the term "flaw", not in a contra-inerrancy sense.

Cheers,
 

Grymir

Puritan Board Graduate
I think the Mosaic Law as works fits into the worlds view of 'religion', ya know the do good and your closer to God thingy. And if you live basically a good life, God will accept you. Hence, most people think it is "works"

Tim,

So, do you think that this is how people misconstrue the Mosaic covenant, or do you actually think this is a flaw within the covenant itself? I use the term "flaw", not in a contra-inerrancy sense.

Cheers,

It's definitely how people misconstrue the Mosaic covenant.
 
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