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Archive for the ‘Biblical Interpretation’ Category

Here is something I designed for our catechism class to help young and old track with the main contours of Covenant Theology and its bearing on redemptive history. Comments below.

S Cat 020 The Covenants [CCat]

Much of this is self-explanatory for those with a working knowledge of Reformed doctrine. But a bit of clarification on my design. I added a dashed, horizontal line & arrow from Covenant of Works moving through the OT and NT dispensations to help reduce the impression that it is somehow a cipher after the Fall. I also configured the OT period to begin at Sinai (as technically it does), though canonically it usually embraces everything from Genesis to Malachi. Third, the dashed, vertical line above Sinai intersecting the horizontal lines of the Moral and Ceremonial law is intended to reflect the development and institutionalization of the latter and the explicit publication of the former. Last, the dashed and hard vertical lines at the cross represent the distinction between the definitive abolition of these laws at 33(-ish) A.D. and their actual, outward end with the destruction of the Temple and Jerusalem in 70 A.D.

I omitted the ‘biblical’ covenants (Noahic, Abrahamic, Davidic), leaving that for another day and another diagram.

And now you’ll need a chart to understand all that! Seriously, though, if you can help me perfect this further, I’m open. Just as long as you’re no Dispy, Hyper-Preterist, or any of the countless bunny trails from good old 1646 Federalism.

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“We would appeal, in this connection – progressiveness – specially to the practical and practicable character of Old-Testament legislation. And thus we are led to assert that those very passages concerning polygamy and kindred themes (which have been made an occasion of gibe against the Scriptures) are themselves a most cogent argument for their divine origin. We Americans ought to know by this time that the best way to secure polygamy unharmed and enshrine it unconquerably under the protection of a nation is to write on the statute-books inoperative laws against it. The Bible was framed by too wise a statesman to fall into that error, and we who enjoy Christian homes to-day have to thank God for it. The unspeakable wisdom of dealing at that age, and under those circumstances, with polygamy, divorce, slavery by regulative laws, which in regulating discouraged, and in discouraging destroyed them, makes strongly for a superhuman origin of the legislation.”

– B. B. Warfield

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St.-Jerome-In-His-StudyIn preparing for a message on the Parable of the Sower, I’ve looked at Jerome (ca. 347 – 420) among others.  Many of his comments are extremely helpful.  But as with all commentators, there is some chaff mixed in with the wheat.  When writing about the three levels of fruit among those who receive the seed in good soil, he declares, “The hundred-fold fruit is to be ascribed to virgins, the sixty-fold to widows and continent persons, the thirty-fold to chaste wedlock.”  Wrong on two counts – bad interpretation and bad theology.

 

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