Another Covenant? - Burroughs

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Grant

Puritan Board Senior
Good Day,

What are your thoughts on Burroughs quote below from The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment?

We read, 'There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall nay plague come nigh thy dwelling'; then there is a promise for the pestilence in the 5th and 6th verses, this is a Scripture to those who are in danger of it. You will say that this is a promise that the plague shall not come nigh them; but mark that these two are joined: there shall no evil befall thee, neither shall the plague come nigh thee, the evil of it shall not come nigh thee.

Objection: You will say, but it does come to many godly men, and how can they make use of this Scripture? It is rather a Scripture that may trouble them, because here is a promise that it shall not come nigh them, and yet it does come nigh them as well as others.

Answer: 1 . The promises of outward deliverance that were made to the people of God in the time of the law, were to be understood then a great deal more literally, and fulfilled more literally, than in the times of the gospel when God makes it up otherwise with as much mercy. Though God made a Covenant of grace and eternal life in Christ with them, yet I think there was another covenant too, which God speaks of as a distinct covenant for outward things, to deal with his people according to their ways, either in outward prosperity, or in outward afflictions, more so than now, in a more punctual, set way, than in the times of the gospel. Therefore when the children of Israel sinned against God, they were sure to have public judgments come upon them, and if they did well, always public mercies; the general, constant way of God was to deal with the people of the Jews according as they did well or ill, with outward judgments and outward mercies. But it is not so now in the times of the gospel; we cannot bring such a certain conclusion, that if God did deal so severely with men by such and such afflictions, he will deal so with them now, or that they shall have outward prosperity as they had then. Therefore, that is the first thing, for understanding this and all other texts of the kind.

For those further read in Burroughs, was he a proponent of Republication? The mentioning of "Another Covenant" just raises some questions for me as our Confessions speak of 2 covenants in time (CoW & CoG).
 

Reformed Covenanter

Cancelled Commissioner
For those further read in Burroughs, was he a proponent of Republication? The mentioning of "Another Covenant" just raises some questions for me as our Confessions speak of 2 covenants in time (CoW & CoG).

From what I have read of him, I suspect that Jeremiah Burroughs, along with the majority of Reformed theologians at that time, was a proponent of some form of republication (though I need to verify that point). In fact, I believe that the WCF favours pedagogical republication and accommodates the view of John Cameron, Samuel Bolton, and John Owen that the Mosaic covenant was a mixed covenant (just like it accommodates those who believe in the CoR as a separate covenant, but does not require one to hold that view). I am not sure that the above quotation is enough to prove the case concerning republication. He could just have been arguing that there was a national covenant of duty between God and the Israelites.
 

Reformed Covenanter

Cancelled Commissioner
@Reformed Covenanter

But was this National Covenant a CoW or a COG?

There is a third option: it was a covenant of duty like the marriage covenant or the covenant that a king takes on assuming office, which is not a strict covenant of works. I am not 100% sure, however, which view Jeremiah Burroughs held; he may have held that the national covenant was a covenant of works, but I find the quotes that you and I have posted on the subject to be less than entirely clear on the subject. Perhaps he says more elsewhere in his writings?
 

Shanny01

Puritan Board Freshman
Like Daniel said, he was probably following the Independent propensity to adopt a Cameronian approach to the Mosaic Covenant as a subservient national covenant. Though his language of two covenants seems similar to Ursinus or Olevianus (can't remember who at the moment) in speaking of there being both a legal and an evangelical covenant in the Mosaic Covenant. Burroughs and Goodwin could use similar treatments of their covenant theology like has been done with Owen.
 
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