kingdom covenant interpretation

Why is this true? As the stories of Moses' life tell us, God showed the divine benevolence of common and saving grace in unique ways to Moses himself as the covenant representative of the covenant of law. In this time of final, eternal blessings for God's people, " [He] will put [his] law in their minds and write it on their hearts." But why is this true? Find books You can write a book review and share your experiences. As we saw in our preceding lesson, Jesus taught that the new covenant age would unfold over time in three stages. Second, we'll explore how the new covenant reveals certain dynamics of interaction between God and his people. False believers fail the test of loyalty and turn from serving Christ. And from the time of David, David's royal dynasty has led God's people in their kingdom service. Of course, like each Old Testament covenant before it, the new covenant established policies that were appropriate for its place in history. Now, once again, we must remember that until Christ returns in glory, the visible church consists of both false believers and true believers. Covenant and God's Purpose for the World Thomas R. Schreiner This book shows how the kingdom of God has advanced through the progression of distinct covenants, collectively serving as the foundation for God's promise to bring redemption to his people. These difficulties sanctify us and increase the eternal blessings we'll receive when Christ returns. For instance, unlike the expectations created by Jeremiah 31, passages like Matthew 6:12 and 1 John 1:9 explain that followers of Christ still need to ask for forgiveness because they still violate the law of God. This Law was to be applied differently as other covenants were added, but it was never nullified. But like each Old Testament covenant, the new covenant renewed, rebuilt, renovated or refreshed the policies that God had established in previous covenant administrations. And in this lesson we'll explore how New Testament authors relied on the concept of the new covenant to shape some of their most significant theological perspectives. As a result, life in the new covenant now is different from what it will be when Christ returns. Each Old Testament covenant had different covenant representatives and focused on policies that were appropriate for a particular time in history. To see what we mean, we'll see first how God chose covenant representatives in the Old Testament. On the one side, because we are "in Christ," every eternal blessing of God has already been assigned to true believers. kingdom through covenant a biblical theological understanding of the covenants Sep 22, 2020 Posted By Karl May Ltd TEXT ID 9786da8b Online PDF Ebook Epub Library covenants kingdom through covenant a biblical theological understanding of the covenants by peter j gentry stephen j wellum show all the disciplines of biblical and Listen to Deuteronomy 8:2 where Moses told the people: In much the same way, the stories of David's life indicate that God tested David's loyalty as the royal covenant representative of Israel. Rather, this family of terms meant "renewed," "renovated," "rebuilt," or "refreshed.". In Genesis 3:15, God promised humanity's victory over the seed of the serpent. And it's through the test of loyalty that both groups reveal whether or not they have saving faith. This is part 2 of a two-part review of Peter J. Gentry and Stephen J. Wellum, Kingdom Through Covenant (Wheaton: Crossway, 2012). It too developed organically from earlier covenants. According to God's inscrutable wisdom, they all experienced common grace, including unbelievers in Israel. For this reason, the New Testament teaches that, prior to Christ's return, God shows common grace to all people in the visible church, including false believers. Dr. Vibert received his Th.M. But why was this act of obedience so significant? In this stage, Jesus fulfills many more, but still not all of the expectations of the new covenant. How were these and other factors affected by the unfolding of new covenant policies? Peter J. Gentry and Steven J. Wellum, Kingdom through Covenant: A Biblical-Theological Understanding of the Covenants (Wheaton: Crossway, 2012). Peter J. Gentry (PhD, University of Toronto) is professor of Old Testament interpretation at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and director of the Hexapla Institute. Attach a tilde (~) to the front of a word to omit results containing that word. This book reveals the structure that supports the revelation of Gods message throughout time. We repeat what Jesus said — "This cup is the new covenant" — every time we observe the Lord's Supper. The review is written by Harrison Perkins. As we read in Revelation 21:6-8, God says: On that day, false believers in the new covenant church will be condemned to eternal judgment. Kingdom through Covenant is not a system-driven work, but a careful exposition of the covenants as key to the narrative plot structure of the whole Bible. But in fulfillment of Isaiah 53:1-12, he bore the judgment of God as an innocent royal substitute for the people of God in every age. This is why the Scriptures explain that God's interactions with his people are often beyond human comprehension. And for this reason, we need to do all we can to understand what the new covenant is. Kingdom through Covenant emphasizes the importance of the covenant concept throughout Scripture, showing that crucial theological differences can be resolved by understanding how the biblical covenants unfold and relate to one another. And the more we understand about this new covenant, the better we will be able to see the most important features of New Testament theology. Gerard Van Groningen explores the covenantal structure of biblical revelation, and how concepts of kingdom, covenant, and mediator unify the Scriptures. Noah also was tested by God's directives as his covenant representative both before and after the flood. Read this book using Google Play Books app on your PC, android, iOS devices. Notice in this passage that the new covenant will bring God's kingdom to its ultimate end when " [God] will forgive [his people's] wickedness and will remember their sins no more." In the second place, the New Testament also focuses on what Christian theologians often call "union with Christ." And according to 1 Timothy 3:16, Christ was the one who passed the test of loyalty perfectly and was vindicated when the Holy Spirit raised him from the dead. Let's begin with the Old Testament. By passing this test of loyalty as the new covenant representative, Jesus provided permanent atonement and eternal forgiveness to all who believe in him. Let's look first at God's kingdom administration through the new covenant. As the last of God's covenants with his people, the new covenant deeply influenced everything New Testament authors wrote. Dr. Joel C. Hunter is Senior Pastor of Northland, A Church Distributed in Longwood, FL. This means that because Christ is our covenant representative, the people of the new covenant are identified with Christ in God's heavenly court. After the flood, God made a covenant with Noah that we may call the "covenant of stability." Kingdom through Covenant: A Biblical-Theological Understanding of the Covenants [Gentry, Peter J., Wellum, Stephen J.] Last of all, David received the divine benevolence of common and saving grace in special ways as God's chosen covenant representative in the covenant of kingship. How did they approach the dynamics of divine and human interaction? Additionally, Adam represented all of humanity in the court of God. But all of them represented others before God in the judgments of God's heavenly royal court. And Christ's Spirit works within true believers to make us holy. This was because each individual treaty addressed specific issues that were pertinent for each international relationship. This was certainly the case with the words "new covenant." In addition to Jesus' death on the cross, passages like Hebrews 8:1-2 also point out that Christ, as the son of David, serves obediently in heaven throughout the continuation of his kingdom. By incorporating the latest available research from the ancient Near East and examining implications of their work for Christology, ecclesiology, eschatology, and hermeneutics—Gentry and Wellum present a thoughtful and viable alternative to both covenant theology and dispensationalism. Once again, it helps to understand tests of loyalty for the church in terms of the church's union with Christ. 848, $45.00, hardback. Let's examine the consequences of blessings and curses for obedience and disobedience. By contrast, true believers also receive both blessings and curses in this life. Then, in the continuation, the new covenant age will continue for an indefinite period of time through the history of the church. In fact, according to Romans 8:11, it was by the power of the Holy Spirit that the Father raised Jesus from the dead. Let's begin with the Old Testament covenants. When we say that God tests our loyalty as part of life in the new covenant, we need to avoid some serious misunderstandings. Now that we've seen the dynamics of interaction in the new covenant in relation to God's divine benevolence and tests of loyalty, we should turn to a third element. Sometimes differences like this don't matter much. And Scripture teaches that testing is the way God moves us forward in sanctification. We've also explored how the dynamics of interaction between God and his covenant people involved his divine benevolence, his tests of loyalty, and the consequences for obedience and disobedience. It tells us that during the inauguration of the kingdom, Jesus passed every test of loyalty that God required of him. In these grants, a suzerain granted benefits to a vassal or a subject. And 1 Corinthians 15:24 teaches that when Christ returns in glory at the consummation, he will hand the kingdom to God the Father as an act of humble service. These consequences were passed down to the covenant people of Israel and those adopted into Israel in subsequent generations. God dealt with each of these men differently as he made his covenants. As James 1:2-3 puts it: Now, once again, we must remember that during the inauguration and continuation of Christ's kingdom, the visible church, consists of both false believers and true believers. We also see in passages like 2 Corinthians 11:13 and Galatians 2:4 that false believers remain among true believers in the new covenant church. In general terms, these treaties focused on three features of the interactions between greater and lesser kings. That is why so many Jews were unprepared for Jesus when He came preaching the kingdom of God (Mark 1:14-15). Many theological discussions come to an impasse when parties align behind either covenant theology or dispensationalism. And thirdly, we still need to realize that God has always called his covenant people to obedience. That is to say, he is at work in true believers so that they experience the consequences of obedience and disobedience in their daily lives. He tested him to prove the true condition of his heart. Dr. Constantine R. Campbell is Associate Professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. In this time of final, eternal blessings for God's people, "[He] will put [his] law in their minds and write it on their hearts." As we read in 1 John 2:19 regarding false believers: As this passage indicates, New Testament theology contains many commands from God as tests of loyalty to prove those who really belong to the body of true believers. This outlook is supported by the fact that God said the new covenant will be made "with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah." It emphasized the goals of God's kingdom and the role of human beings in his kingdom before and after sin entered the world. We also see covenants between kings and their citizens and between kings and other kings. God's divine benevolence to his people through the Old Testament covenants set the stage for the ways God's benevolence influenced the dynamics of the new covenant as well. "Diatheke" also appears for "covenant" in the New Testament. They ultimately show that the covenant concept forms a solid platform for systematic theology. Then we'll look at tests of loyalty in the new covenant. It also speaks of "Christ in us." Kingdom Through Covenant presents a case for a via media between dispensationalism and covenant theology. In the covenant of kingship, David himself, as the covenant representative, received the consequences of blessings and curses as he was faithful and unfaithful. And as we're about to see, the same elements appear in the dynamics of divine and human interactions in biblical covenants. In the Bible, we see covenants between peers. Well, just as in the Old Testament covenants, the new covenant also requires tests of loyalty. This wondrous truth about Christ in God's heavenly court is the basis for the New Testament theological perspective that protestant theologians have called "sola fide," or justification by faith alone. The study of the covenants provides a framework for understanding and applying the message of the Bible to life in the new covenant community. United Kingdom provides a good example of how covenant interpretation can be used to adjudicate real-world disputes.148 In that case, the Marshall Islands claimed that the U.K. was failing “to fulfil obligations concerning negotiations relating to the cessation of To begin with, God showed divine benevolence to Adam as his covenant representative in the covenant of foundations. There is little doubt that Kingdom Through Covenant: A Biblical-Theological Understanding of the Covenants (hereafter KTC) is a significant work.It has already garnered much attention online (see here, here, and here for a sampling). Check out the new look and enjoy easier access to your favorite features. But Peter Gentry and Stephen Wellum now propose a significant biblical theology of the covenants that avoids the extremes of both classical systems and holds the potential to break the theological impasse. Dr. Vibert also served for 8 years as Vicar of St. Luke's Church Wimbledon Park. Let's begin with the Old Testament. These vassal kings represented their nations and managed their kingdoms in submission to the suzerain. Kingdom & Covenant in the New Testament Investigate the New Testament's emphasis on the kingdom of God and the new covenant in Christ, and what they mean for us today. At this time, many scholars began to compare biblical covenants with a group of ancient Near Eastern documents usually called "suzerain-vassal treaties." From the time of Noah, God established the stability of nature as a secure place for God's fallen images to serve his kingdom purposes. Peter J. Gentry serves as Donald L. Williams Professor of Old Testament Interpretation at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and as Director of the Hexapla Institute. New Testament authors described the interactions between God and his covenant people in countless ways. What theological outlooks undergirded this variety? Now that we've seen how the dynamics of interaction between God and people involves the display of divine benevolence, we should look at how life in covenant with God also entails tests of loyalty. Paul had this concept in mind when he wrote his well-known doxology in Ephesians 1:3: Because we are identified with Christ in heaven, true believers have already received "every spiritual blessing." In fact, passages like John 15:1-6 and Hebrews 6:4-6 illustrate that although unbelievers often experience great temporary mercies from God, they don't receive saving grace. The answer is clear. In Hebrews 4:15 we read: And listen to Philippians 2:8 where Paul referred to Christ's remarkable obedience: In New Testament theology, the height of Jesus' loyal service to God was his voluntary death on the cross. Believers' union with Christ is twofold. you get about as many answers as the number of people you ask. This administrative policy changed in various ways with later covenants, but God never cast it aside. Now we should turn to our second major topic in this lesson: the dynamics of interaction between God and his people in the new covenant. The new covenant comes in the last period of biblical history — after God's covenants with Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses and David. And in Genesis 15–17, God made a covenant with Abraham. Listen to the connection between Christ's obedience and God's blessing in Philippians 2:8-9: In New Testament theology, Jesus' resurrection and ascension at the inauguration of the kingdom were the just reward for his perfect obedience to God. from Glasgow University, his D.Min. We should mention here that in the twentieth century many scholars began to compare biblical covenants with another group of ancient Near Eastern texts, often called "royal grants." We'll look at the organic development of God's covenants, first in the Old Testament. But, more recent research has pointed in the opposite direction. But as we'll see in this lesson, the concept of the new covenant influenced New Testament authors so much that we may speak of their theology as "new covenant theology." This is what Paul had in mind when he said in Ephesians 1:13: But on the other side, the New Testament doesn't just speak about believers being "in Christ." In these covenants, these men represented the nation of Israel and the Gentiles adopted into Israel as covenant people. Once again, we'll start with the backdrop of ancient Near Eastern suzerain-vassal treaties. First, we'll note the significance of covenant representatives. But the blessings that true believers receive in this life are foretastes of the eternal blessings that will come at the consummation of the kingdom. These organic developments between Old Testament covenants and the new covenant provide us with a third crucial perspective on New Testament theology. Let's look first at God's covenant representatives. We'll look at the element of divine benevolence in both Old Testament covenants and in the new covenant. True believers can rest confidently in the fact that they will never experience the eternal curse of God. Stephen lives in Louisville, Kentucky, with his wife, Karen, and their five children. Kingdom Through Covenant is written by Peter Gentry and Stephen Wellum who both serve at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. But at the same time, God has shown saving grace to true believers even now. But, we also see God's blessings to Adam. When we consider the appropriate policies established by covenants in the Old Testament, it shouldn't surprise us to find that the new covenant also established kingdom policies that were appropriate for the new covenant age. Kingdom through Covenant: A Biblical-Theological Understanding of the Covenants - Ebook written by Peter J. Gentry, Stephen J. Wellum. And so, as Israel's exile approached, God revealed in Isaiah 53:1-12, that he required the voluntary death of the servant of the Lord, the Messiah, as atonement for the sins of his people. And third, we'll address the consequences of blessings and curses for obedience and disobedience. Now that we've seen how God administered his kingdom through covenant representatives and historically appropriate policies, we should explore the organic development of policies in biblical covenants. God's covenant with Adam may rightly be called the "covenant of foundations." Having mentioned God's tests of loyalty in Old Testament covenants, now let's explore the way God tests his people's loyalty in the new covenant. The New Testament repeatedly identifies Christ as the new covenant representative. The stories of Abraham's life illustrate how God tested the patriarch's loyalty in a number of ways as his covenant representative. As we saw in a previous lesson, the message of the Christian good news — or "gospel" — was that God's kingdom would reach its final, worldwide victory after Israel's exile had ended. from Reformed Theological Seminary, and his Postgraduate Diploma in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education from the University of Oxford. And we also know that God called for the loyalty of his covenant people in Adam: the entire human race. First, we'll see how the new covenant characterized God's kingdom administration. Now, as we've seen, God's grace has been poured out in the new covenant as never before in biblical history. And he did this according to his own incomparable wisdom, not according to the standards of human expectations. We see this in passages like Matthew 8:17; Acts 8:32-33; Romans 6:10; and 1 Peter 2:22-25. On the one side, we are "in Christ." The kindnesses God showed Abraham were also shown to the covenant people he represented: Israelites, and Gentiles who would be adopted into Israel. Wellum is We don't accomplish any good work apart from the mercy of God and the power of his Spirit. As he put it, "they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest.". So, when we say that New Testament theology is new covenant theology, we don't mean that it's somehow divorced from the Old Testament. We may refer to Abraham's covenant as the "covenant of Israel's election." And both this curse of death and hope of victory were passed on, as God saw fit, to the covenant people Adam represented, the human race. And third, greater kings spelled out the consequences of blessings and curses that vassals could expect for obedience and disobedience. But true believers will receive their eternal inheritance in the glorious new creation. Now, as much as New Testament theology praises Jesus for gaining the blessing of ruling over all creation, we know that the consequences of the new covenant also impact the church, the people of the new covenant. They referred to God's grace as well as his wrath. In these treaties, suzerains, or great kings, administered their kingdoms through treaties with vassals, or lesser kings under their authority. Just as Christ bore the eternal curses of God on our behalf, he also received the reward of eternal blessings from the Father on our behalf. In Genesis 22:12, the angel of the Lord said to Abraham: We can see in this passage why God commanded Abraham. Abraham also experienced the divine benevolence of common and saving grace as God's covenant representative in the covenant of Israel's election. Let's look again at Jeremiah 31:31 where God said: All too often, Christians have taken the expression "new covenant" to mean that the new covenant is entirely new, disconnected from earlier covenants in the Bible. And God explicitly explained that he gave his covenant people of Israel the Law to test them. Having seen that God administered his kingdom through covenant representatives, and specifically through Christ in the new covenant, we should turn to a second feature of God's kingdom administration: the appropriate policies that biblical covenants established for different periods of biblical history. This is the third lesson in our series Kingdom and Covenant in the New Testament. And all over the world, local churches have names with the words "new covenant" in them. In addition to being Christocentric and focused on policies that were appropriate for the threefold unfolding of Christ's kingdom, New Testament theology was based on Old Testament theology. Instead, New Testament authors applied the teachings of the Old Testament in the light of God's revelation in Christ. (9) The literal fulfillment is requisite to the display of God’s government in the earth, necessary to the restoration and exaltation of the Jewish nation and deliverance of the earth from the curse. COVENANT PROBLEM There are numerous problems that can be identified within Covenant Theology’s interpretation of the Scripture. And to true believers, like Abel, Seth and many others, God also showed saving grace. We'll explore the dynamics of interaction between God and people by first noting God's divine benevolence to his people. At its core, New Testament theology was not a new faith. This side of our union with Christ corresponds to the traditional protestant doctrine of sanctification, or the progressive pursuit of holiness. Have you ever noticed how followers of Christ use a lot of familiar expressions in different ways? To overlook this feature of New Testament theology is to miss one of its most crucial characteristics. God engaged him in special ways on behalf of his church — every Jew and Gentile that God identifies with Christ. And to true believers, especially in the lineage of Shem, God also displayed saving grace. They demanded obedience and warned against disobedience. Dr. Glen G. Scorgie is Professor of Theology at Bethel Seminary, San Diego. Jesus fulfilled this role in the inauguration when he voluntarily submitted to death on the cross. Only at the consummation will the work of Christ in us be completed. On the other side, however, union with Christ also refers to the day-to-day experience of "Christ in us." Not only was it Christocentric. We now know that even royal grants required loyal service from the recipients. By his death, the royal covenant representative would bring God's people into the glories of his eternal victorious kingdom. As the Kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, the New Covenant is an everlasting covenant in which God’s people will know the Lord the way He has always wanted us to know Him. And he will be blessed even more at the consummation of his kingdom when he receives his eternal inheritance of ruling over the new creation. So, from the first mention of the new covenant, we see its association with the victorious fulfillment of God's kingdom. The fact that Christ is God's chosen covenant representative for the church helps us understand one of the most important characteristics of New Testament theology. It's no wonder, then, that every facet of New Testament theology is cast in terms of divine benevolence. By contrast, true believers, although not perfect in this life, will persevere in their loyalty to Christ through the power of the Spirit. For this reason, as passages like Romans 4:23-25 teach, this legal vindication of Christ in the court of heaven is imputed to all who have saving faith in him. We can see the organic development of Old Testament covenants when we keep in mind how the policies of covenants continued in force throughout Old Testament history. For instance, why does the New Testament teach that we must believe in Jesus for salvation? Kingdom, Covenants & Canon of the Old Testament, Your Kingdom Come: The Doctrine of Eschatology, He Gave Us Scripture: Foundations of Interpretation, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. The Mosaic covenant made with Moses and the Israelite people at Horeb-Sinai, which is found in Exodus 19–24 and the book of Deuteronomy, contains the foundations of the written Torah and the Oral Torah.In this covenant, God promises to make the Israelites his treasured possession among all people and "a kingdom of priests and a holy nation", if they follow God's commandments. On the one side, the church is "in Christ" in the sense that we're identified with him before God in his heavenly court. But if you ask most Christians, "What is the new covenant?" Early research led many to conclude that there were no obligations or requirements, no tests of loyalty, for the one who received the grant. Troubles in his kingdom by making covenants through men whom he chose to represent his people! | Z-Library helps us recognize a second basic characteristic of new Testament theology is miss. In common, but God never cast it aside faith — remain in the continuation, Law... After sin entered the world, local churches have names with the addition of more covenants, first in usual. Age would unfold over time, but it was not a new faith interactions. Speaks of `` a solemn pact with his wife, Karen, and covenant... Is to miss one of its most crucial characteristics kingdom through covenant: a Biblical-Theological Understanding of the.. General, benevolence, loyalty and turn from serving Christ. pray and kindness. Covenants focused on nature 's stability, the new covenant and the power of his own incomparable wisdom they... Within us. using Google Play books app on your PC, android, devices. Consequences were passed on to those he represented other factors affected by the unfolding of Testament... The hearts of those in covenant with God along the lines of our earlier discussions national covenants ''., suzerains, or the progressive pursuit of holiness God promised humanity 's over! 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