Three Characteristics of the Covenant of Grace by Herman BavinckCovenant Theology - God's Master Plan to Give His Son Jesus Christ a Bride
Today, many Christians are turning back to the puritans to, “walk in the old paths,” of God’s word, and to continue to proclaim old truth that glorifies Jesus Christ. There is no new theology. In our electronic age, more and more people are looking to add electronic books (ePubs, mobi and PDF formats) to their library – books from the Reformers and Puritans – in order to become a “digital puritan” themselves. Take a moment to visit Puritan Publications (click the banner below) to find the biggest selection of rare puritan works updated in modern English in both print form and in multiple electronic forms. There are new books published every month. All proceeds go to support A Puritan’s Mind.
Check out these books on Covenant Theology.
When dealing with Covenant Theology “simple” is a good thing. After the Bible, this work is the FIRST that you should read, or one that you should introduce to a friend if they are struggling with covenant concepts.
There is no better succinct, concise, precise and exegetically irrefutable work on infant baptism than Harrison’s work. It is not just about baptism – it’s about infant inclusion in the covenant of grace. It’s about church membership.
“In the first place, the covenant of grace is everywhere and at all times one in essence, but always manifests itself in new forms and goes through differing dispensations. Essentially and materially it remains one, whether before, or under, or after the law. It is always a covenant of grace. It is called this because it issues from the grace of God, has grace as its content, and has its final purpose in the glorification of God’s grace. We have to note particularly therefore that this promise (I will be your God and the God of your people) is not conditional, but is as positive and certain as anything can be. God does not say he ‘will’ be our God ‘if’ we do this or that. He says rather that he will put enmity, that he will be our God, that in Christ he will grant us all things. The covenant of grace can throughout the centuries remain the same because it depends entirely upon God and because God is the immutable One and the faithful One.”
“The second remarkable characteristic of the covenant of grace is that in all of its dispensations it has an organic character. In history the covenant is never concluded with one discrete individual, but always with a man and his family or generation, with Adam, Noah, Abraham, Israel, and with the church and its seed. The promise never comes to a single believer alone, but in him his house or family also. God does not actualize his covenant of grace by picking a few people out of humanity at random, and by gathering these together into some sort of assemblage alongside the world. Rather he bears his covenant into mankind, makes it part and parcel of the world, and sees to it that in the world it is preserved from evil. Grace is not a legacy which is transferred by natural birth, but it does flow on in the river-bed which has been dug out in the natural relationships of the human race. The covenant of grace does not ramble about at random, but perpetuates itself, historically and organically, in families, generations, nations.”
A third and final characteristic of the covenant of grace which goes along with the second point above, is that it realizes itself in a way which fully honors man’s rational and moral nature. It is based on the counsel of God, yes, and nothing may be subtracted from that fact. Behind the covenant of grace lies the sovereign and omnipotent will of God. But God’s will is the will of the Creator of heaven and earth, who cannot repudiate his own work in creation or providence, and who cannot treat the human being he has created as though it were a stock or stone. It is the will of a merciful and kind Father, who never forces things with brute violence, but successfully counters all our resistance by the spiritual might of love. The will of God realizes itself in no other way than through our reason and our will. That is why it is rightly said that a person, by the grace he receives, himself believes and himself terms from sin to God.”
From pages 274-278 of Our Reasonable Faith (Grand Rapids, Baker, 1956).
The Puritans made many posters, even in their day, to aid church members in understanding Scriptural truth. I created this new poster to cover the Covenant of Redemption, Covenant of Works and Covenant of Grace.
Check Out these Books on Covenant Theology
Presumptive Regeneration, or, the Baptismal Regeneration of Elect Infants by Cornelius Burges (1589-1665)
A Discourse on Covenant Theology and Infant Baptism by Cuthbert Sydenham (1622-1654)
Infant Baptism of Christ’s Appointment by Samuel Petto (1624-1711)
Covenant Holiness and Infant Baptism by Thomas Blake (1597-1657)
The Manifold Wisdom of God Seen in Covenant Theology by George Walker (1581-1651)
The Covenant of God by Thomas Blake (1597-1657)
A Chain of Theological Principles by John Arrowsmith (1602-1659)
The Covenant of Life Opened by Samuel Rutherford (1600-1661)
The Covenant of Grace Opened by Thomas Hooker (1586-1647)
The Covenant of Redemption by Samuel Willard (1640-1707)
The Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace by Edmund Calamy (1600-1666)
The Doctrine and Practice of Infant Baptism by John Brinsley (1600-1665)
God’s Covenant and Our Duty By Samuel Willard (1640-1707)
God’s Glory in Man’s Happiness by Francis Taylor (1589-1656)
Infant Baptism God’s Ordinance by Michael Harrison (1640-1729)
Jesus Christ God’s Shepherd by William Strong (d. 1654)