Stages of Religious Faith in the Classical Reformation Tradition the Covenant Approach to the Ordo Salutis
|Author: ||Poole, David|
This study surveys the main strands of the theology of covenant from biblical times up to the period before Johannes Cocceius (1603-69). The writings of German scholars, including Kutsch, are reviewed (often for the first time in English) along with many American scholars in the vanguard of research on the theology of covenant. Covenant can be employed in the context of a contract (two-sided) or a decree, ordinance or promise (one-sided). God's dealings with man come firmly within the ambit of the latter usage and this is how the Hebrew berit in the Old Testament and the Greek diatheke in the New should be interpreted. Having defined covenant as employed in the Scriptures, Dr. Poole then traces the use and interpretation of covenant in the Early Church and Scholasticism before examining its treatment in the Reformation and the ensuing development of a federal system and order of salvation, a scheme which reached its zenith with Cocceius; however, it is suggested that not a few bricks forming the basis of Cocceius' baroque structure were laid by his older colleague at Franeker in the Netherlands, Johannes Cloppenburg (1592-1652), and the final chapter of Dr. Poole's work examines Cloppenburge's federal theology. The influence of the theological faculty at Franeker extended far beyond the Netherlands, reaching even to the New World. The literary and socio-political dimensions of covenant thought are considered in the appendices. This is a revised edition of the dissertation originally published as The History of the Covenant Concept from the Bible to Johannes Cloppenburg: 'De Foedere Dei'
". . . largely historical and makes a valuable contribution to the continuing interest in the covenant concept in post-reformational and British theology. . . . essential reading for all those interested in the history of covenant theology." - Reformed Theological Review