Dr. Clark's 7 point summary of Republication

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AndyS

Puritan Board Freshman
If it was a republication of the Covenant of Works no one would have survived the first offense. Even Adam ceased to exist in his first natural state as soon as he violated the Covenant. The Law was republished as is noted by Dr. Strimple. http://tinyurl.com/kw8l7b7 The Covenant of Works was not reinstituted in any shape or form.
Thanks for the link. Strimple is always helpful. (He was my systematic theology prof at WSCA.)
 

AndyS

Puritan Board Freshman
, 4B, that does not appear to be necessary and reflects their version of Two Kingdoms. The two issues are logically separable but practically joined at the hip in this American context.
I agree they *should* be logically separable, but I've long said that the Klinean repub view of the Mosaic covenant is the root from which R2k weed grows. They must defend the root to keep the whole plant alive.
That seems to be Dr. Frame's view - that there is a causal connection between the two.

Curious to know if those who hold to 2K would agree with that notion (even if disagreeing with his negative evaluation of 2K, of course).
 

AndyS

Puritan Board Freshman
Mark, I suspect as much that the Klinen viewpoint is the root of R2K. I am not sure exactly how. That is why asked if 4.B had to be part of republication.
Quick boil down (which of course does not adequately flesh it out): Klinean repubs insists on a very negative view of Mosaic law as always condemning as a COW, tied to theocracy --e.g., see T. David Gordon's borderline blasphemous essay trashing the Mosaic economy in TLINF. Since the Old Covenant has passed and theocracy is gone, in the New Covenant, we are under now under the "law of Christ" and appeals to the Mosaic law are portrayed as attempts to re-establish theocracy, eg. Lee Irons, Matt Tuininga, David Van Drunen. This drives the first table, second table division, where acknowledgment or involvement with first table duties in the common realm puts us back under that old, temporary, typological, theocratic, theonomic Covenant of Works. R2k depends on this negative portrayal in order to create the dichotomous "redemptive realm=grace realm" and "common realm=law realm".
Apparently I am going to have to read The Law Is Not of Faith.
 

Peairtach

Puritan Board Doctor
The Law Is Not of Faith.
It's not an easy read. Somewhat indigestible In my humble opinion. To have a thesis "Republication of the CoW in some sense" is just not good enough, and doesn't make for an easy or enjoyable read.
 

Semper Fidelis

2 Timothy 2:24-25
Staff member
This all leads me back to my previous comments: there are some unspoken assumptions in both discussions (republication and R2K); that they both assume each other. But this should be made explicit and defended accordingly (maybe the second series of essays in Confessional Presbyterian does that? Rich? Anyone?). Otherwise, summaries like the one discussed here just become an exercise in begging the question, or rather, unwittingly inserting hidden premises.
I'm going to cautiously add my thoughts on this. I think there are some connections here that haven't quite been fully worked out. How, precisely, does the view of the Covenants as being understood along the lines of the ANE treaty documents affect other aspects of theology? My own sense is that it was pretty much accepted that the Covenants needed to be re-understood as either Royal Grants or Suzerein treaties and, once one agrees that Hittite treaties formed the "architecture" for Covenants then all of the Biblical covenants had to be understood as one or the other.

Yet, once the Covenants are recast there are systematic "ripples" that work their way through the Confessions themselves. I think the project started as an area of Biblical theology. Where BT was grounded by Vos in Reformed Systematic theology, it seems that many Biblical Theologians were not as grounded in letting Reformed dogmatics control their conclusions. There has been a project, from what I can see, to update systematic theology according to the new Covenantal schema but it doesn't always seem like the differences between the new system and the system of the Confession are being properly underlined. To his credit (even though I thoroughly disagree with his approach), Irons was willing to come out and completely reject whole swaths of the WCF. What seems more common to me as one who examines men and listens to debates is that many men do not always think through the implications of the entire system and many Churchmen are not thoroughly investigating the consequences of some re-definitions.

For example, in the paedocommunion case, I heard men at GA say: "Well, as long as he doesn't practice it, I don't see what the issue is." I know they are two separate issues but it is not terribly difficult to see how paedocommunion ripples through the system of doctine in several areas throughout the Westminster standards. In one case, a Presbytery refused to include the list of exceptions where the term "worthy recipient" was used (since that excluded young children). They were only interested in the exceptions that the candidate for ministry stated for himself and were not interested in the exceptions that actually existed if one probed more deeply.

What's happening, then, is that the system of doctrine is not really being recast by the courts of the Church but in the writings of seminary professors. They're teaching certain views of the Covenant and, in some cases, new systems of doctrine for how the law then relates Covenantally to the Gospel, and these men are then going to Churches to be ordained. If the Church is willing to accept that the man has no exceptions then some of the ministers may actually be in conflict with the system of doctrine but the Church is not really ruling one way or another but letting ministers teach very different things within the same Church. Take the "controversies" over sanctification and one can see the divergence that results. I think many are content to permit certain things and probably even assume that the system of doctrine permits both views or (worse) some really do not care whether the system is fully coherent.

Now, if a Seminary actually came out and boldly underlined where all the Confessions need to change in order to comply with the new systematic understanding then I think there would be more problems. I hate to sound so negative but the current general ambivalence about systematic coherency within the Confessions makes it much easier to just allow all sorts of divergent issues and there is really very little "forcing function" that causes the full impact of certain views to be fully examined. My opinion here but I've had some conversations with some professors that lead me to believe that they think the Puritans were pretty much legalists and it's reflected in the Westminster standards but they'd never come out and say that because it would upset too many issues. There's nothing forcing the issue of anyone actually making those things come to light. Look at how long it took what Peter Enns was teaching to come to light and, when you read about it, you realize it wasn't just him but it was taught for at least two decades and some were wondering: "Why is everyone making such a big deal about this now?"

Circling back to what you were asking, I think the CPJ exchange was intended to try to help clarify if there is a connection between the things you are identifying as organically connected. Structurally, the Confessions move from Covenant to Christ as the mediator of the Covenant and then all the aspects of Christ as mediator are connected to justification, sanctification, etc. If one redefines what the shape of the Covenants are into Royal Grant or Suzerein treaties then it seems it cannot but have a ripple affect on how one views the Law as Christ mediates it or other theological headers.

:2cents: I guess after all that spilled out, it's probably not as cautious as some would prefer but I do wish the connections were more easily understood and because I think we often come into conflict on certain clauses within the Confessions and don't always trace them back to the root cause and ask how one change rippled all the way through a system to create dozens of differences.
 

R. Scott Clark

Puritan Board Senior
So, the assumption is that all the OT (or vast portions?) is typology and thus not useful beyond pointing to Christ? But this does not explain why attempts to use the Mosaic law are inherently wrong when Dr. Scott states that the typological overlays the moral:

"6. In the old covenant two things were happening simultaneously: a typological, pedagogical, formally legal (but not strictly legal) administration of the covenant of works (see #4 above) and an administration of the covenant of grace in which sinners were justified and saved by grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone."

"7. In the new covenant that law, in both tables, stripped of its Israelite, typological features (e.g., land tenure, saturday sabbath), remains as a perpetual, universal norm for all humans."

Thus, as for a skeletal outline to be sure, it is missing important elements that must link 4.B (denial of use of First Table for civil matters) with republication beyond using an ad hominem ("negative portrayal"). If one were to drop the word "republication" in the 7-point description then one can see the artificiality of 4.B (or, rather, arbitrariness).

But given points 6 & 7 the simple existence of typology does not negate the usefulness (application) of OT laws. If it is "simultaneously" then it overlays and does not tell us exactly what is only typological (and thus not applicable today [again, an assumption contrary to, say, Calvin who finds much moral non-Christological use out of ceremonial laws]).

There is a moral system driving the answer to the question of what is merely typological (land tenure, saturday sabbath, etc.) and that appear to be R2K. But if the Living in Two Kingdoms book is a summary of that moral system, it, too, is deficient, seemingly bringing in both the Klinean model (without explicitly stating as such) and, again, a moral assumption along the lines of NT-only ethics and/or libertarian-like culture and/or First Table is only binding in the church (pick-one) (which was not explicitly stated as such in the book).

This all leads me back to my previous comments: there are some unspoken assumptions in both discussions (republication and R2K); that they both assume each other. But this should be made explicit and defended accordingly (maybe the second series of essays in Confessional Presbyterian does that? Rich? Anyone?). Otherwise, summaries like the one discussed here just become an exercise in begging the question, or rather, unwittingly inserting hidden premises.

At least with Lee Irons all the theological cards were on the table. I read his defense before GA and it was crystal clear. [No, I am not accusing anyone of hiding things. There is just more clarity needed or, likely, I need to read even more than I have].

thanks, I'll have to review what I've read and listen to some Heidelcasts.
Shawn,

I would prefer to discuss this on the Heidelblog rather than here. I just can't keep up with both simultaneously.

Let me say that your post seems to assume things I do not and you seem imputing to me views I've not assumed, held, or taught.

First, As a minister in the United Reformed Churches I subscribe, without exception and unequivocally, the Three Forms of Unity. As a seminary prof I subscribe ex animo the system of doctrine contained in the Westminster Standards but I believe that I hold them without exception.

Second, though I appreciated Meredith Kline my first loyalty is to God's Word. My second loyalty is to the Reformed confessions as the ecclesiastically sanctioned summary of the most important teaching in God's Word for Christian faith and life. Where Meredith's teaching contradicts the standards I reject it. E.g., in the current edition of Kingdom Prologue he denies that we baptize covenant children on the basis of the Abrahamic covenant. That's an error. We confess rightly that we baptize covenant children on the basis of the promise given to Abraham. I think I also disagree with the way Meredith, in his later years, sometimes spoke about the Decalogue. I was not entirely comfortable with his late essay on science. I've never read God, Heaven, etc. I read some of the material when it was first published but did not understand it. I still don't. I have doubt about the utility of speaking of Israel's "merit" relative to the land. I think Meredith's intent was to say that Israel was in the land by what the medieval's call "congruent merit" (as distinct from condign merit) so it may be defensible on that ground and it doesn't strike me as heretical. Nevertheless, inasmuch as many are no longer aware of the distinction between condign and congruent merit and may tend to be confused by the use of the word, it's probably better not to speak that way. Thus, I may not be quite the thoroughgoing "Klinean" you assume. From what I can tell, I am not regarded as a completely "orthodox" Klinean by some Klineans. I doubt that Meredith would think much of anyone calling himself a Klinean and I keep wondering why did folk (especially in the OPC) wait until after he was dead to raise these questions with this intensity? It's not like his views were a secret and yet he was never charged by any court in the OPC during more than 50 years. That seems like a reasonable period of time in which to charge a man and put his views to the ecclesiastical test.

Third, the major influences on my understanding of covenant theology and its history have been the primary sources from the periods of Reformed orthodoxy (c. 1565-1700).

Fourth, to reply to the concern regarding the phrase "in some sense." In the classical period there were multiple views on the ways in which the Decalogue (or the Mosaic law more broadly) was a "republication" of the covenant of works. This is why people use the expression "in some sense." The only alternative is to list the many different ways in which was held in the classical period.

Fifth, I have no idea what I have said that might give any reasonable reader the idea that the only function of the Mosaic law in the new covenant is to serve as a typology. I've written online and in print extensively about the abiding validity of the moral law of God in exhaustive detail. I affirm heartily the teaching of the standards on the moral law. I've defended the historic Reformed views of the 2nd and 4th commandments at length online and in print. I've taken more than a little flack for defending the historic Reformed practice of worship—including the singing of God's Word alone a cappella.

Sixth, it's true that I'm not a theonomist but neither was the Reformed tradition. After all the WCF 19 does say that the civil laws have "expired." Amen! The general equity continues to apply. Amen! I'm not a Constantinian. I'm an American. i think the 18th-century American revisions of the Standards were correct. I agree with Abraham Kuyper's argument for the revision of Belgic Confession art. 36. I see no warrant in God's Word, in the NT, for the magistrate punishing religious error. That's hardly a radical view.

Finally, I've argued on the HB for God's "twofold kingdom." That's Calvin's language and he wrote just a few years before Meredith. There's plenty of support in our tradition for making that distinction, including Abraham Kuyper. I'm trying to apply the distinction, as Kuyper was, in a post-Constantinian setting. That's hardly radical.
 

AndyS

Puritan Board Freshman
Thanks Scott.

Do you see a direct connection between Kline's view (or what seems to be WSCA's view in general if you prefer) of republication and the version of 2K taught there?

Your post above was helpful.

Thanks, Andy
 

Douglas P.

Puritan Board Freshman
, 4B, that does not appear to be necessary and reflects their version of Two Kingdoms. The two issues are logically separable but practically joined at the hip in this American context.
I agree they *should* be logically separable, but I've long said that the Klinean repub view of the Mosaic covenant is the root from which R2k weed grows. They must defend the root to keep the whole plant alive.
That seems to be Dr. Frame's view - that there is a causal connection between the two.

Curious to know if those who hold to 2K would agree with that notion (even if disagreeing with his negative evaluation of 2K, of course).
I would say the connection (between 2K and Klinean covenant theology) has less to do with republication per se, and more to do with the distinctive view of the biblical covenants.
 

Semper Fidelis

2 Timothy 2:24-25
Staff member
This all leads me back to my previous comments: there are some unspoken assumptions in both discussions (republication and R2K); that they both assume each other. But this should be made explicit and defended accordingly (maybe the second series of essays in Confessional Presbyterian does that? Rich? Anyone?). Otherwise, summaries like the one discussed here just become an exercise in begging the question, or rather, unwittingly inserting hidden premises.
I'm going to cautiously add my thoughts on this. I think there are some connections here that haven't quite been fully worked out. How, precisely, does the view of the Covenants as being understood along the lines of the ANE treaty documents affect other aspects of theology? My own sense is that it was pretty much accepted that the Covenants needed to be re-understood as either Royal Grants or Suzerein treaties and, once one agrees that Hittite treaties formed the "architecture" for Covenants then all of the Biblical covenants had to be understood as one or the other.

Yet, once the Covenants are recast there are systematic "ripples" that work their way through the Confessions themselves. I think the project started as an area of Biblical theology. Where BT was grounded by Vos in Reformed Systematic theology, it seems that many Biblical Theologians were not as grounded in letting Reformed dogmatics control their conclusions. There has been a project, from what I can see, to update systematic theology according to the new Covenantal schema but it doesn't always seem like the differences between the new system and the system of the Confession are being properly underlined. To his credit (even though I thoroughly disagree with his approach), Irons was willing to come out and completely reject whole swaths of the WCF. What seems more common to me as one who examines men and listens to debates is that many men do not always think through the implications of the entire system and many Churchmen are not thoroughly investigating the consequences of some re-definitions.

For example, in the paedocommunion case, I heard men at GA say: "Well, as long as he doesn't practice it, I don't see what the issue is." I know they are two separate issues but it is not terribly difficult to see how paedocommunion ripples through the system of doctine in several areas throughout the Westminster standards. In one case, a Presbytery refused to include the list of exceptions where the term "worthy recipient" was used (since that excluded young children). They were only interested in the exceptions that the candidate for ministry stated for himself and were not interested in the exceptions that actually existed if one probed more deeply.

What's happening, then, is that the system of doctrine is not really being recast by the courts of the Church but in the writings of seminary professors. They're teaching certain views of the Covenant and, in some cases, new systems of doctrine for how the law then relates Covenantally to the Gospel, and these men are then going to Churches to be ordained. If the Church is willing to accept that the man has no exceptions then some of the ministers may actually be in conflict with the system of doctrine but the Church is not really ruling one way or another but letting ministers teach very different things within the same Church. Take the "controversies" over sanctification and one can see the divergence that results. I think many are content to permit certain things and probably even assume that the system of doctrine permits both views or (worse) some really do not care whether the system is fully coherent.

Now, if a Seminary actually came out and boldly underlined where all the Confessions need to change in order to comply with the new systematic understanding then I think there would be more problems. I hate to sound so negative but the current general ambivalence about systematic coherency within the Confessions makes it much easier to just allow all sorts of divergent issues and there is really very little "forcing function" that causes the full impact of certain views to be fully examined. My opinion here but I've had some conversations with some professors that lead me to believe that they think the Puritans were pretty much legalists and it's reflected in the Westminster standards but they'd never come out and say that because it would upset too many issues. There's nothing forcing the issue of anyone actually making those things come to light. Look at how long it took what Peter Enns was teaching to come to light and, when you read about it, you realize it wasn't just him but it was taught for at least two decades and some were wondering: "Why is everyone making such a big deal about this now?"

Circling back to what you were asking, I think the CPJ exchange was intended to try to help clarify if there is a connection between the things you are identifying as organically connected. Structurally, the Confessions move from Covenant to Christ as the mediator of the Covenant and then all the aspects of Christ as mediator are connected to justification, sanctification, etc. If one redefines what the shape of the Covenants are into Royal Grant or Suzerein treaties then it seems it cannot but have a ripple affect on how one views the Law as Christ mediates it or other theological headers.

:2cents: I guess after all that spilled out, it's probably not as cautious as some would prefer but I do wish the connections were more easily understood and because I think we often come into conflict on certain clauses within the Confessions and don't always trace them back to the root cause and ask how one change rippled all the way through a system to create dozens of differences.
After I wrote this, I realized I had posted it in a thread that is attached to Scott Clark's name. Let me be clear that not everything I wrote could possibly be attributed to one man and that was not my intention to somehow make this all about him. My concern is a broader movement and I don't even think it can be laid at any one Seminary's feet. I actually think it is the respective Churches that are not really taking seriously their own Confessional standards. I could wish that Seminaries would toe the line but, even there, we don't merely restrict ordination to those who come from Reformed seminaries.

As I was running today, it struck me that it was a Seminary and not a Presbytery that took action against Enns. Perhaps a Presbytery has taken action now but where was the oversight and accountability for all those years? One thing it points out is that saying that a man is a "minister in good standing" will ultimately mean nothing if Church government fails to maintain accountability.
 

R. Scott Clark

Puritan Board Senior
Hi Andy,

1. I don't speak for the seminary. The president and the board of trustees speak for the seminary. That said, I don't think the sem has a view covenant theology beyond what is confessed in the Westminster Standards and the Three Forms of Unity. There is no extra-confessional test of orthodoxy as far as I know.

2. No, I don't think there is a necessary connection between 2K (whatever that is; in my view it is a question and a way of analyzing Christ and culture more than a set of conclusions) and republication. Grounds: There were doctrines of republication taught during the period in which Reformed writers held Constantinian views and there have been those who distinguished between two kingdoms (or two spheres in the twofold kingdom, to combine Kuyper's language with Calvin's phrase) in the post-Constantinian period.

3. Here's a better way to lump and split. It is likely that one might group those who are clearer and consistent about the uniqueness of the Israelite theocracy and those who are less consistent. E.g., Beza was clear theologically that Israel was temporary and typological but in De iure magistratuum (On the Right of Magistrates) on the French Wars of Religion and the magistrate's role to promote true religion he also talked as if the French Monarch were a new king David and France a new Israel. That, in my view and in the view of all Americans who accept the 18th-century revisions of the Westminster Standards and the 20th-century revisions of Belgic 36, was an inconsistency. One cannot say that Israel was a once-for-all, temporary, typological arrangement (as we all confess) and a post-canonical magistrate is the equivalent of an Israelite King for the purpose of exterminating heresy and enforcing true religion. Among those who want to blur the line between the Israelite theocratic kings and post-canonical kings are modern-day theonomists (who want post-canonical magistrates to enforce the Mosaic civil laws "in exhaustive detail," who effectively deny WCF 19.4 when it says:

To them also, as a body politic, he gave sundry judicial laws, which expired together with the State of that people
and who re-interpret "general equity thereof" to mean "whatever a certain theonomist says it is" and more traditional Constantinians, who don't seek explicitly to enforce the civil laws per se or to reconstruct the Israelite system explicitly but who did (and seek to do) so implicitly with some recognition of the movement of redemptive history from old covenant to new. The late patristic church, the medieval church, the Reformation and post-Reformation church was Constantinian.

As I said. I can't keep up here and at the Heidelblog. You're welcome to discuss there. Thanks.
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
First, As a minister in the United Reformed Churches I subscribe, without exception and unequivocally, the Three Forms of Unity. As a seminary prof I subscribe ex animo the system of doctrine contained in the Westminster Standards but I believe that I hold them without exception.
On another point I also believe that Dr. Clark holds to a position concerning the Mosaic Covenant that is not in accordance with the WCF concerning the Mosaic Covenant. He seems to hold to a position that is at odds with the Mosaic Covenant being a full administration of the Covenant of Grace. It seems to be a modified approach that makes it both an administration of both the Covenant of Grace and a Covenant of Works (in a varied sense).

“That God might have arranged a temporary, national covenant with Israel such that she may be said to have “merited” temporal blessings in the land is a view that has been held in the history of Reformed theology. It is probably a minority view but it has been held.


I would not put it that way myself. As I’ve said many times, there’s too much evidence in the history of Israel for me to think that even the temporal blessings were merited. Nevertheless, it is also the case that Scripture does speak to Israel in legal terms and that, is, in my view, the material question in republication. I agree with the broad mainstream of classic Reformed writers in the 16th and 17th centuries and with the Marrow of Modern Divinity, that the old covenant (Moses-David-Prophets) was both an administration of the covenant of grace and an administration of the covenant of works.” R. Scott Clark
I do not believe this is the broad mainstream of the Westminster Divines. I am not so sure it is that of the Marrow Men either as I have noted here.

The Marrow of Modern Divinity and the Recent Republication Issue. | RPCNA Covenanter
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
And btw, the Establishmentarianism of the WCF is not Theonomy and is also opposed to Erastianism. I have seen many buck against Establismentariansism who claim to be Reformed.
 

AndyS

Puritan Board Freshman
This all leads me back to my previous comments: there are some unspoken assumptions in both discussions (republication and R2K); that they both assume each other. But this should be made explicit and defended accordingly (maybe the second series of essays in Confessional Presbyterian does that? Rich? Anyone?). Otherwise, summaries like the one discussed here just become an exercise in begging the question, or rather, unwittingly inserting hidden premises.
I'm going to cautiously add my thoughts on this. I think there are some connections here that haven't quite been fully worked out. How, precisely, does the view of the Covenants as being understood along the lines of the ANE treaty documents affect other aspects of theology? My own sense is that it was pretty much accepted that the Covenants needed to be re-understood as either Royal Grants or Suzerein treaties and, once one agrees that Hittite treaties formed the "architecture" for Covenants then all of the Biblical covenants had to be understood as one or the other.

Yet, once the Covenants are recast there are systematic "ripples" that work their way through the Confessions themselves. I think the project started as an area of Biblical theology. Where BT was grounded by Vos in Reformed Systematic theology, it seems that many Biblical Theologians were not as grounded in letting Reformed dogmatics control their conclusions. There has been a project, from what I can see, to update systematic theology according to the new Covenantal schema but it doesn't always seem like the differences between the new system and the system of the Confession are being properly underlined. To his credit (even though I thoroughly disagree with his approach), Irons was willing to come out and completely reject whole swaths of the WCF. What seems more common to me as one who examines men and listens to debates is that many men do not always think through the implications of the entire system and many Churchmen are not thoroughly investigating the consequences of some re-definitions.

For example, in the paedocommunion case, I heard men at GA say: "Well, as long as he doesn't practice it, I don't see what the issue is." I know they are two separate issues but it is not terribly difficult to see how paedocommunion ripples through the system of doctine in several areas throughout the Westminster standards. In one case, a Presbytery refused to include the list of exceptions where the term "worthy recipient" was used (since that excluded young children). They were only interested in the exceptions that the candidate for ministry stated for himself and were not interested in the exceptions that actually existed if one probed more deeply.

What's happening, then, is that the system of doctrine is not really being recast by the courts of the Church but in the writings of seminary professors. They're teaching certain views of the Covenant and, in some cases, new systems of doctrine for how the law then relates Covenantally to the Gospel, and these men are then going to Churches to be ordained. If the Church is willing to accept that the man has no exceptions then some of the ministers may actually be in conflict with the system of doctrine but the Church is not really ruling one way or another but letting ministers teach very different things within the same Church. Take the "controversies" over sanctification and one can see the divergence that results. I think many are content to permit certain things and probably even assume that the system of doctrine permits both views or (worse) some really do not care whether the system is fully coherent.

Now, if a Seminary actually came out and boldly underlined where all the Confessions need to change in order to comply with the new systematic understanding then I think there would be more problems. I hate to sound so negative but the current general ambivalence about systematic coherency within the Confessions makes it much easier to just allow all sorts of divergent issues and there is really very little "forcing function" that causes the full impact of certain views to be fully examined. My opinion here but I've had some conversations with some professors that lead me to believe that they think the Puritans were pretty much legalists and it's reflected in the Westminster standards but they'd never come out and say that because it would upset too many issues. There's nothing forcing the issue of anyone actually making those things come to light. Look at how long it took what Peter Enns was teaching to come to light and, when you read about it, you realize it wasn't just him but it was taught for at least two decades and some were wondering: "Why is everyone making such a big deal about this now?"

Circling back to what you were asking, I think the CPJ exchange was intended to try to help clarify if there is a connection between the things you are identifying as organically connected. Structurally, the Confessions move from Covenant to Christ as the mediator of the Covenant and then all the aspects of Christ as mediator are connected to justification, sanctification, etc. If one redefines what the shape of the Covenants are into Royal Grant or Suzerein treaties then it seems it cannot but have a ripple affect on how one views the Law as Christ mediates it or other theological headers.

:2cents: I guess after all that spilled out, it's probably not as cautious as some would prefer but I do wish the connections were more easily understood and because I think we often come into conflict on certain clauses within the Confessions and don't always trace them back to the root cause and ask how one change rippled all the way through a system to create dozens of differences.
Thank you very much. I found that to be quite helpful.

Please (someone!) write a book (or at least a booklet) to flesh this out more thoroughly.
 

Douglas P.

Puritan Board Freshman
On another point I also believe that Dr. Clark holds to a position concerning the Mosaic Covenant that is not in accordance with the WCF concerning the Mosaic Covenant. He seems to hold to a position that is at odds with the Mosaic Covenant being a full administration of the Covenant of Grace. It seems to be a modified approach that makes it both an administration of both the Covenant of Grace and a Covenant of Works (in a varied sense).
Could you elaborate on what you mean by full administration? I searched through the Standards and couldn't find that exact language.

Also, are there comments on your blog? There are a few posts which I'd love to interact with you on but I can't seem to find a way to.
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
I mean the Mosaic Covenant is an administration of the Covenant of Grace alone. It is not an administration of both the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace. It is not a mixed Covenant. The substance of the Mosaic Covenant is that of the Covenant of Grace and not the Covenant of Works. That is the position of chapter 7 in the Westminster Confession of Faith.
 

Douglas P.

Puritan Board Freshman
I mean the Mosaic Covenant is an administration of the Covenant of Grace alone. It is not an administration of both the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace. It is not a mixed Covenant. The substance of the Mosaic Covenant is that of the Covenant of Grace and not the Covenant of Works. That is the position of chapter 7 in the Westminster Confession of Faith.
Maybe I'm wrong here or I have missed something (I've worked through a lot of Kline's material) but I was never under the impression that Kline was saying that the Mosaic Covenant was a mixed administration of the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace. The Mosaic Covenant was fully an administration of the Covenant of Grace, but the Mosaic covenant itself contained blessing and curses based on obedience, which made it typologicaly similar to the covenant made with Adam, but not the same in substance.
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
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There are conditions laid out in the New Covenant also. Obedience is very important or one might find himself delivered over to Satan also as the man in 1 Corinthians 5 or the Church that may have its candlestick removed as in Revelation 2. There are conditions in both the old and new.

Just to lead you back to where I started thinking about this and Kline's perspective I will refer you to one of the first posts I started to inquire about this stuff.

http://www.puritanboard.com/f30/kline-karlburg-not-confessional-concerning-mosaic-69258/

Here is a comment Reverend Winzer made concerning what I call the new paradigm (Modern Reformed Thought) and shift in theology.

http://www.puritanboard.com/f30/kline-karlburg-not-confessional-concerning-mosaic-69258/#post887863

The basic problem with the new scheme is the way it makes the covenant of works co-ordinate with the covenant of grace in the Mosaic economy. They refer to the Abrahamic promise and the so-called "works principle" of the Sinaitic covenant functioning side by side. The older divines would speak of the covenant of works as subordinate to the covenant of grace. It was serving in the way we see it in action in Romans 7, for example, bringing conviction of sin and driving the people to the promised Christ. (Incidentally, the same is true with respect to the law-gospel relationship now.) Besides this ordo salutis aspect, there was also the historia salutis aspect. The outward service of weak and beggarly elements bound the people to the faith of Christ until Christ came. This was a temporary "addition" which had respect to their minority as sons and had all the appearance of making Israel look like they were servants in bondage. This has been abrogated in Christ and the son has come to maturity in the Spirit. But as to the essential nature of the Sinaitic covenant, it was always looked upon as an administration of the covenant of grace. The catechetical teaching on the preface to the ten commandments drove this point home in an experiential way which could not be easily forsaken.


Further problems arise once this basic departure is discerned. One begins to see a metaphysical reworking of the categories of grace and justice in relation to the "covenant of nature." Instead of a providential dispensation (see Shorter Catechism question 12), the covenant of works is turned into a creational entity which characterises the natural relationship between God and man. Human morality is, in its very essence, made a covenant of works. Grace is only operative where sin abounds.


Other problems might be mentioned but I believe these suffice to alert us to the fact that this is a new scheme and that it introduces harmful deviations into the reformed system of theology.
Here is where Karlburg and Lee Irons are noted as understanding that the Kline of 'By Oath Consigned' is not the Kline of 'Kingdom Prologue'. He had a shift in his theology which led him away from his earlier stance.

http://www.puritanboard.com/f30/kline-karlburg-not-confessional-concerning-mosaic-69258/#post887978

Karlberg points to an important principle in reading Kline’s works: the later works correct and revise the earlier works. Kline’s student, Lee Irons, has also noted this important principle, arguing that Kline’s position on the relationship between the Mosaic Covenant and the new covenant in By Oath Consigned is revised in his later work, Kingdom Prologue. Irons argues:

In other words, in KP [Kingdom Prologue] he no longer defines the New Covenant as a renewal of the Old/Mosaic Covenant (i.e., as a law covenant) and instead stresses the contrast between the Old and the New Covenants. The Mosaic Covenant was a covenant of works and was breakable. The New Covenant is a covenant of grace and is fundamentally unbreakable (although the sense in which it is unbreakable must be carefully defined).24 In other words, in Kingdom Prologue, Kline revises the position he articulated in By Oath Consigned, by arguing that “The New Covenant is not a renewal of the Mosaic Covenant but the fulfillment of the Abrahamic Covenant.”25
 

PuritanCovenanter

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Douglas P.

Puritan Board Freshman
There are conditions laid out in the New Covenant also. Obedience is very important or one might find himself delivered over to Satan also as the man in 1 Corinthians 5 or the Church that may have its candlestick removed as in Revelation 2. There are conditions in both the old and new.
So are you seeing the stipulations, with their blessings and curses, under the Old Covenant to be the same as the conditions of the New Testament?
 

mvdm

Puritan Board Junior
Douglas, consider:

"..the demand of obedience in the Mosaic covenant is principally identical with the same demand in the new covenant of the gospel economy." John Murray, "Principles of Conduct", p.199.
 

Peairtach

Puritan Board Doctor
The demand for obedience under the OT presumes grace and faith, because it is impossible to truly observe the law without grace and faith, as the Israelites who resorted to idolatry found out, and as the Second Temple works righteousness legalists found out.
 

Douglas P.

Puritan Board Freshman
Douglas, consider:

"..the demand of obedience in the Mosaic covenant is principally identical with the same demand in the new covenant of the gospel economy." John Murray, "Principles of Conduct", p.199.
I guess I'm not exactly following, maybe I'd have to see the whole quote in its context. When Prof. Murray says the "demand of obedience" does he just mean that God demands obedience in both Covenants, or is he saying the covenant stipulations, with their blessings and curses, are the same in the Old as they are in the New. In other words, Israel lost God's blessing in the land on the basis of their disobedience to Torah, so Christians under the New covenant can lose their blessing based on their disobedience? I can't imagine he means the latter.
 

mvdm

Puritan Board Junior
According to Deut. 28 Israel would received the blessings of the land through obedience to the stipulations of the covenant.
So you seriously believe Israel achieved the obedience stipulations of the covenant during their retention of the land?
 

Peairtach

Puritan Board Doctor
Israel lost God's blessing in the land on the basis of their disobedience to Torah,
How did Israel last more than 2 minutes in the land then?
According to Deut. 28 Israel would received the blessings of the land through obedience to the stipulations of the covenant.
Since the CoW was broken in Adam those in Adam can experience the Curse both in this life and the next. Those in Christ experience the troubles of this life as chastisements. Both of these groups were under the OT administration of the CoG and so were liable to temporary troubles that taught them about the Curse of the already broken CoW.

The Curse was taught to the Israelites as part of the Covenant of Grace in a peculiar manner because they were the "Church under age".

Since the CoW was broken in Adam it is impossible for sinners to attain to the sanction of reward without grace. The way for the Israelites to enjoy long and happy tenure in the Land was to avail themselves of the grace proferred them in the OT administration of the CoG.

This corresponds to the situation under the NT administration, without the temporal tutelary aids that the OT Church had.

Those under the NT administration that don't produce the fruits of faith are still under the Curse and can go straight to Hell from being under that administration but not in the life of it. God's true people are subject to the various troubles of this life which are the result of the Curse, but they are made chastisement and blessing to them in Christ.

In order to obtain the Heavenly reward which the Land was a type of, those under the NT administration of the CoG must avail themselves of the proferred grace by faith in Christ and produce the fruits of obedience that evidence it.

It cannot be attained by sinful or self-righteous works. The Israelites discovered this to their cost.

Sent from my HTC Wildfire using Tapatalk 2
 

Douglas P.

Puritan Board Freshman
According to Deut. 28 Israel would received the blessings of the land through obedience to the stipulations of the covenant.
So you seriously believe Israel achieved the obedience stipulations of the covenant during their retention of the land?
Personally? I've yet to take a stand. I'm still young, still learning, still looking to be taught and discipled. However, I do think the Klinean side of the argument seems more logical and complete, so I do lean that way. But I'm open to being persuaded.

However, to try and get at your specific question, a verse like 2 Kings 10:30 seems to imply that God's blessing came upon Jehu on the basis of his obedience.
 

AndyS

Puritan Board Freshman
Douglas, consider:

"..the demand of obedience in the Mosaic covenant is principally identical with the same demand in the new covenant of the gospel economy." John Murray, "Principles of Conduct", p.199.
^^^ This!
 
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