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JS116

Puritan Board Freshman
While listening and reading different resources I've heard of this new teaching of the law called Theonomy.I've been hearing different views on the subject and no straight answers.

So I want to ask you guy's what exactly is Theonomy?

How is it the same or differ from the historic teachings of the reformed faith?

Does the Westminster Confession or any other reformed confession agree with it or is it imposed?

I'm asking these because this one important thing to understand because I am close to subscribing to a reformed confessions and if I want to subscribe or teach something,it would only be right if I properly understood how it was historically taught when the confession(specifically the WCF) was created.
 

Backwoods Presbyterian

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Best intro article on what Theonomy is can be found here:

What Is "Theonomy"?
By Dr. Greg Bahnsen

Here is an excerpt that spells it out fairly clearly:

Although Israel as a political body has expired -- and along with it its judicial law as a constitution -- the general equity of those judicial laws is still required (Westminster Confession XIX.4). Similarly, when a public library goes out of business (and your library card thus expires), the truth of what was written in its books is not abolished or changed. Political codes today ought to incorporate the moral requirements which were culturally illustrated in the God-given, judicial laws of Old Testament Israel. George Gillespie, widely regarded as the most authoritative theologian at the Westminster Assembly, wrote: "the will of God concerning civil justice and punishments is no where so fully and clearly revealed as in the judicial law of Moses.... He who was punishable by death under the judicial law is punishable by death still" ("Wholesome Severity Reconciled...," 1645).
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
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George Gillespie, widely regarded as the most authoritative theologian at the Westminster Assembly, wrote: "the will of God concerning civil justice and punishments is no where so fully and clearly revealed as in the judicial law of Moses.... He who was punishable by death under the judicial law is punishable by death still" ("Wholesome Severity Reconciled...," 1645).
He was a prominent member, and hard to imagine what the Assembly would have been like without him as a member, but this kind of statement strikes me as overstating his "authority". in my opinion, Anthony Burgess should be considered the key writer who may have influenced the Assembly (as long as we are supposing).


You know there is a sub-forum in the theology section for most if not all discussions on theonomy.
Spending time on some of the more recent threads and longer ones may be the best use of time on the subject.
Theonomy forum

Theonomy is not the position of the Westminster Standards. Whether it is contrary to them depends on what flavor of theonomy (e.g. rejection of the tri-fold division of the law). If the sub forum doesn't help, I would get a hold of Matthew Winzer's Part Two of the below, which is commentary on sources, which appeared in The Confessional Presbyterian journal volume 5 (2009).
Chris Coldwell and Matthew Winzer, "The Westminster Assembly & the Judicial Law: A Chronological Compilation and Analysis." Part One: Chronology. Part Two: Analysis
 
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