Of Godís Covenant with Man.
I. The distance between God and
the creature is so great, that although reasonable creatures do owe obedience
unto him as their Creator, yet they could never have any fruition of him
as their blessedness and reward, but by some voluntary
condescension on Godís part, which he hath been pleased to express by way of
a Isa. 40:13-17;
Job. 9:32,33; 1 Sam. 2:25; Ps. 113:5,6; Ps. 100:2,3; Job. 22:2,3; Job 35:7,8;
Luke 17:10; Acts 17:24,25.
II. The first covenant made
with man was a covenant of works,b
wherein life was promised to Adam, and in him to his posterity,c
upon condition of perfect and personal obedience.d
b Gal. 3:12.
c Rom. 10:5, Rom.
d Gen. 2:17; Gal.
III. Man by his fall having
made himself incapable of life by that covenant, the Lord was pleased to make
a second,e commonly
called the Covenant of Grace: whereby he freely offereth unto sinners life
and salvation by Jesus Christ, requiring of them faith in him, that they may
be saved;f and
promising to give unto all those that are ordained unto life his
Holy Spirit, to make them willing and able to believe.g
e Gal. 3:21; Rom.
8:3; Rom. 3:20,21; Gen. 3:15; Isa. 42:6.
f Mark 16:15,16;
John 3:16; Rom. 10:6,9; Gal. 3:11.
g Ezek. 36:26,27;
IV. This covenant of grace is
frequently set forth in the scripture by the name of a Testament, in reference
to the death of Jesus Christ the testator, and to the everlasting
inheritance, with all things belonging to it, therein bequeathed.h
h Heb. 9:15-17; Heb.
7:22; Luke 22:20; 1 Cor. 11:25.
V. This covenant was
differently administered in the time of the law, and in the time of the
gospel;i under the
law it was administered by promises, prophecies, sacrifices,
circumcision, the paschal lamb, and other types and ordinances
delivered to the people of the Jews, all foresignifying Christ to come,k
which were for that time sufficient and efficacious, through the
operation of the spirit, to instruct and build up the elect in faith in the
by whom they had full remission of sins, and eternal salvation; and is called,
the Old Testament.m
i 2 Cor. 3:6-9.
k Heb. chap. 8 to
10; Rom. 4:11; Col. 2:11,12; 1 Cor. 5:7.
l 1 Cor. 10:1-4;
Heb. 11:13; John 8:56.
m Gal. 3:7-9,14.
VI. Under the gospel, when
Christ the substancen
was exhibited, the ordinances in which this covenant is dispensed are
the preaching of the word, and the administration of the sacraments of Baptism
and the Lordís Supper,o
which, though fewer in number, and administered with more simplicity and less
outward glory, yet, in them it is held forth in more fulness,
evidence, and spiritual efficacy,p
to all nations, both Jews and Gentiles;q and is called the New Testament.r
There are not therefore two covenants of grace differing in substance, but one
and the same under various dispensations.s
n Col. 2:17.
o Matt. 28:19,20; 1
p Heb. 12:22-28;
q Matt. 28:19; Eph.
r Luke 22:20.
s Gal. 3:14,16; Rom
3:21-23,30; Ps. 32:1 with Rom. 4:3,6,16,17,23,24; Heb. 13:8; Acts 15:11.
Confession of Faith (index)