The Covenant of Works

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Order of Contents

Articles
Books
History of the Doctrine
Was Christ under the Covenant of Works?
Latin

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Articles

Anthology of the Post-Reformation Era

Heppe, Heinrich – Reformed Dogmatics  ed. Bizer, trans. Thomson  (1950; Wipf & Stock, 2007)

ch. 13, ‘The Covenant of Works & the Righteousness of the Law’, pp. 281-301

Contains excerpts and references from Cocceius, Heidegger, Eglin, Martin, Maresius, Marck, Mastricht, Witsius, Braun, Olevian, Lampe, Amyraut, Wyttenback, Polanus, Wolleb & Ames.

ch. 14, ‘The Violation of the Covenant of Works’, pp. 301-320

Contains excerpts and references from Olevian, Calvin, Beza, Witsius, Keckermann, the Leiden Synopsis, Riissen, Heidegger, Wolleb, Eilshemius, Musculus, Cocceius, Mastricht, Hottinger, Walaeus, Maresius, van Til, Pictet, Polanus, Boquin, Wendelin, Hyperius, Braun, 

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1500’s

Rollock, Robert

ed. Aaron C. Denlinger, ‘Robert Rollock’s Catechism on God’s Covenants’  MAJT 20 (2009): 105-129

ch. 2, ‘Of the Word of God, or of the Covenant in General, & of the Covenant of Works in Special’  †1599  5 pp.  in A Treatise of Effectual Calling, chapters 3, 4 & 5 are also relevant.

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1600’s

Maccovius, John – ch. 12, ‘On the Covenant’, sections 4 & 7  in Scholastic Discourse: The Distinctions & Rules of Theology & Philosophy  Buy  (1644), pp. 225 & 229

Turretin, Francis – Institutes of Elenctic Theology  (P&R), vol. 1, 8th Topic, ‘The State of Man Before the Fall & the Covenant of Nature’

Q. 3, ‘Whether God made any covenant with Adam, and what kind it was.’, pp. 574-8

Q. 4, ‘Why it is called the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and why did God give Adam a law about not tasting it?’, pp. 578-80

Q. 5, ‘Why was it called the tree of life?’, pp. 580-83

Q. 6, ‘Whether Adam had the promise of eternal and heavenly life so that (his course of obedience being finished) he would have been carried to heaven?  We affirm.’, pp. 583-6

Rijssen, Leonard – Ch. 9, ‘The Law, the Fall & Sin’  in A Complete Summary of Elenctic Theology & of as Much Didactic Theology as is Necessary  trans. J. Wesley White  MTh thesis  (Bern, 1676; GPTS, 2009), pp. 82-99  Search ‘covenant of works’ for other references in the document.

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1700’s

à Brakel, Wilhelmus – The Christian’s Reasonable Service, vols. 1  trans. Bartel Elshout  Buy  (1700)

ch. 12, ‘The Covenant of Works’, pp. 355-369

ch. 13, ‘The Breach of the Covenant of Works’, pp. 369-381

Traill, Robert – ‘On Earthly Life as the Reward of the Covenant of Works’  being Stedfast Adherence to the Profession of Our Faith, Recommended in Several Sermons  (1718)  in The Works of Robert Traill, A.M. Minister of the Gospel in London  (4 vols, Edinburgh: J. Ogle, 1810), 3.39-40

Trail was Scottish; his peculiar view of the ‘promise’ of the Covenant of Works was not was an anomoly amongst the reformed.

Anonymous – ‘A Short & Plain Account of the Two Covenants: the Covenant of Works & the Covenant of Grace’  (Salop, 1761)  in Nature and Grace: or, Some Essential Differences between the Sentiments of the Natural and Spiritual Man, in Things Pertaining to Everlasting Salvation, to which is added, A Short and Plain Account of the Two Covenants, Namely the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace  (London, 1795), pp. 8-11

Brown of Haddington, John – Book 3, ch. 1, ‘Of the Covenant of Works’  in A Compendious View of Natural & Revealed Religion in Seven Books  (Glasgow, 1782)

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1800’s

Wood, Basil – A Concise Statement of the Two Covenants, the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace, or, The Law & the Gospel  (London, 1805)  17 pp.

Morgan, James – A Sermon on the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace  Ref  (Abingdon, VA, 1818)

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1900’s

Berkhof, Louis – Man in the Covenant of Works, HTML, 1949, 19 paragraphs from his Systematic Theology

Venema, Cornelius P. – ‘Recent Criticisms of the Covenant of Works in the Westminster Confession of Faith’  Mid-America Journal of Theology, vol. 9/3, Fall 1993, pp. 165-198

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2000’s

Ward, Roland – in The Presbyterian Banner (March, April & October 2002)

‘Creation & Covenant: Covenant Theology in Outline’

‘Some Thoughts on Covenant Theology & on Justification’, pt. 1 & 2

Sproul, R.C. – ‘The Covenant of Works’  5 paragraphs

Perkins, Harrison – ‘Covenant of Works & the Christian Life’, pt. 1, 2, 3, 4  The Evangelical Presbyterian Magazine (2019)

Perkins is a professor of systematic theology in the Free Church College of the Free Church of Scotland.

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Books

1500’s

Rollock, Robert – Some Questions & Answers about God’s Covenant & the Sacrament That Is a Seal of God’s Covenant: With Related Texts  ed. Aaron C. Denlinger  Buy  (Pickwick, 2016)  106 pp.

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1600’s

Walker, George – The Manifold Wisdom of God. In the Divers Dispensation of Grace by Jesus Christ, in the Old & New Testament, in the Covenant of Faith, Works. Their Agreement & Difference  (London, 1641)

Walker (bap.1582-1651) was an English clergyman, known for his strong Puritan views.

Calamy, Edmund – Two Solemn Covenants Made Between God & man : viz. the Covenant of Works & the Covenant of Grace. Clearly Laid Open, Distinguished & Vindicated from Many Dangerous Opinions; the right knowledge of which will be very profitable to all those that have escaped the first & are confirmed in the second…  (London, 1647)

Calamy the Elder (1600-1666) was a Westminster divine.

Rutherford, Samuel

A Survey of the Spiritual Antichrist: Opening the Secrets of Familism & Antinomianism…  & Diverse Considerable Points of the Law & the Gospel, of the Spirit & Letter, of the Two Covenants…  (London, 1648)

The Covenant of Life Opened, or a Treatise of the Covenant of Grace, containing Something of the Nature of the Covenant of Works…  (Edinburgh, 1655)

Bulkeley, Peter – The Gospel-Covenant, or, The Covenant of Grace Opened: wherein are Explained, 1. The Differences Betwixt the Covenant of Grace & Covenant of Works…  (London, 1653)

Bulkeley (1583-1659) was an influential early, non-conformist Puritan minister who left England for greater religious freedom in the American colony of Massachusetts.

Strong, William – A Discourse of the Two Covenants: wherein the Nature, Differences & Effects of the Covenant of Works & of Grace are Distinctly, Rationally, Spiritually & Practically Discussed, Together with a Considerable Quantity of Practical Cases Dependent Thereon  (London, 1654/1678)

Strong (d. 1654) was an English, Independent divine.

Fisher, Edward – The Marrow of Modern Divinity… with Notes by the Rev. Thomas Boston  (d. 1655; Philadelphia: Presbyterian Board, 1850)

Blake, Thomas – Vindiciæ Foederis, or, A Treatise of the Covenant of God Entered with Mankind in the Several Kinds & Degrees of it, in which the Agreement & Respective Differences of the Covenant of Works & the Covenant of Grace of the Old & New Covenant are Discussed  (London, 1658)  Table of Contents

Blake (c.1596-1657) was an English Puritan clergyman and controversialist of moderate Presbyterian sympathies.

Cocceius, Johannes – The Doctrine of the Covenant & Testament of God  Buy  (RHB, 2016)  544 pp.

Covenant and Testament in the title refers to the Covenant of Grace, but the work significantly deals with the Covenant of Works, which Cocceius, and his followers, had an idiosyncratic view on (not recommended).

“…describes the entire biblical history as a series of events by which an original covenant of works is gradually annulled, bringing new phases in the history of the covenant of grace. He shows that God’s standard way of relating to mankind is through covenant, which, at its heart, is friendship with God.” – Bookflap

Flavel, John – Vindiciæ Legis & Fœderis: or, A Reply to Mr. Philip Cary’s Solemn Call, wherein he Pretends to Answer All the Arguments of Mr. Allen, Mr. Baxter, Mr. Sydenham, Mr. Sedgwick, Mr. Roberts, and Dr. Burthogge for the Right of Believers’ Infants to Baptism, by Proving the Law at Sinai & the Covenant of Circumcision with Abraham were the Very Same with Adam’s Covenant of Works, & that Because the Gospel-Covenant is Absolute  (London, 1690)

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1700’s

Hopkins, Ezekiel – The Doctrine of the Two Covenants, wherein the Nature of Original Sin is at Large Explained…  (London, 1712)  Table of Contents  This is also in vol. 2 of his Works.

Hopkins (1634-1690) was a reformed, Anglican divine in the Church of Ireland.

Hog, James – Some Select Notes Towards Detecting a Covered Mixture of the Covenant of Works, & of Grace: With the Danger of that Evil; & a Few Advices for Remedying Thereof. Contained in a Letter to a Friend Upon the Head  Ref  1718  20 pp.

Hog (c.1658-1734) was a Scottish minister at Carnock, known for his role in the Marrow Controversy within the Church of Scotland.

Taylor, Richard – Discourses on the Fall and Misery of Man: and on the Covenant of Grace  Ref  1725  379 pp.  Pages 1-2 give the title to the first part of this work as “Of the state of man by creation; and of the covenant of works”

Herman Witsius footnotes this work under the statement:  “The formularies of the Protestant Churches in general, and the writings of the most eminent Reformed Divines…” – On the Apostles’ Creed, Note XII, p. 386

Wilson, David – Palæmon’s Creed Reviewed & Examined: wherein Several Gross & Dangerous Errors, Advanced by the Author of the Letters on Theron & Aspasio, are Detected & Refuted; & the Protestant Doctrine Concerning the Covenant of Works & the Covenant of Grace, Conviction of Sin, Regeneration, Faith, Justification, Inherent Grace, etc., Vindicated from the Cavils and Exceptions of that Author, and shown to be entirely conformable to the Apostolic Doctrine concerning the several points afore-mentioned, vol. 1, 2  (London, 1762)

Wikipedia:  “Theron and Aspasio, or a series of Letters upon the most important and interesting Subjects [by James Hervey, 1724-58, an Anglican clergyman], which appeared in 1755, and was equally well received, called forth some adverse criticism even from Calvinists, on account of tendencies which were considered to lead to antinomianism, and was strongly objected to by Wesley in his Preservative against unsettled Notions in Religion.

Besides carrying into England the theological disputes to which the Marrow of Modern Divinity had given rise in Scotland (the Marrow Controversy), it also led to what is known as the Sandemanian controversy as to the nature of saving faith.”

Mellen, John – Fifteen Discourses upon Doctrinal, connected Subjects: with Practical Improvements, viz. On the Primitive Covenant of Work, or Law of Nature.  On the Eternal Obligation of the Law of Nature. On the Universal Condemnation of Sinners by the Law & Covenant of Works.  On the Impossibility of the Sinner’s Justification by the Law in the Sight of God…  (Boston, 1765)  570 pp.  Table of contents

Mellen appears to be fully orthodox.  While maintaining justification by faith alone, he understands Christian obedience as a New-Covenant condition to be in respect of non-meritorious consequent conditions, as the Reformed Orthodox held.  See the Intro to the page, The Necessity of Good Works.

Gib, Adam – Kaina kai Palaia [New & Old], Sacred Contemplations in 3 Parts, I. A View of the Covenant of Works…  II. A View of the Covenant of Grace…  3. A View of the Absolute & Immediate Dependence of All Things on God…  (Philadelphia, 1788)

Gib was a leading Scottish secession minister of the old lights.

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1800’s

Duncan, James – A Treatise on the Covenant of Works, Man’s fall and his recovery through Jesus Christ  Ref  (Pittsburgh, 1813)

Colquhoun, John – A Treatise on the Covenant of Works  (Edinburgh, 1821)  300 pp.

Colquhoun was a very experiential, evangelical Church of Scotland minister.

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2000’s

Gault, Brian C. – The Covenant of Creation: an Exegetical & Theological Investigation of the Image of God in Genesis 1:26-28 as the Sign & Seal of the Covenant of Creation, & of the Covenant of Works in Genesis 2:16-17 as the Fourth Stipulation of the Covenant of Creation  a Masters Thesis (Reformed Theological Seminary, 2003)

Barcellos, Richard C. – The Covenant of Works: Its Confessional & Scriptural Basis (Recovering Our Confessional Heritage)  Buy  (Reformed Baptist Academic Press, 2016)

Barcellos is a Particular Baptist.

Ward, Roland – God & Adam: Reformed Theology & The Creation Covenant  Buy  (Tulip Publishing, 2019)  262 pp.

The work is partly historical and partly systematic.

“I have assigned Rowland Ward’s book God and Adam…  for almost two decades in my Covenant Theology courses at Reformed Theological Seminary.  It is the best short survey of the history and development of Reformed opinion on the topic…” – J. Ligon Duncan

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On the History of the Doctrine of the Covenant of Works

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From the Early Church to the Present Day

Fesko, J.V. – Death in Adam, Life in Christ: The Doctrine of Imputation  in Reformed Exegetical Doctrinal Studies series  Buy  (Mentor, 2016)

The first part is historical, the second exegetical, the third doctrinal.

Ward, Roland – God & Adam: Reformed Theology & The Creation Covenant  Buy  (Tulip Publishing, 2019)  262 pp.

The work is partly historical and partly systematic.

“I have assigned Rowland Ward’s book God and Adam…  for almost two decades in my Covenant Theology courses at Reformed Theological Seminary.  It is the best short survey of the history and development of Reformed opinion on the topic…” – J. Ligon Duncan

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In the Early Church

Qutoes

Augustine

The City of God, XII.21  in Nicene & Post-Nicene Fathers, First Series, ed. by Schafff, Philip, vol. 2  (Peabody, Massachusetts:  Hendrickson Publishers, 1999), p. 241  HT: W. White

“Man, on the other hand, whose nature was to be a mean between the angelic and bestial, [God] created in such sort, that if he remained in subjection to His Creator as his rightful Lord, and piously kept His commandments, he should pass into the company of the angels; and obtain, without the intervention of death, a blessed and endless immortality.”

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Against Julian (c. 420), 1.6.24 in The Fathers of the Church: A New Translation, 35:28-29  HT: D. Ritchie  Augustine is here arguing against the pelagians.

“If Adam by his great sin condemned all the human race in common, can an infant be born otherwise than condemned?  And through whom except Christ is he freed from this condemnation?  And if even in Lazarus he says that mortality, cast out from eternity, loved the world of the dead, who of mortals is not touched by this fault and mischance by which the first man fell from everlasting life, which he would have received if he had not sinned?  If the Devil made mortal all who could have been immortal, why do even infants die if they are not subject to the sin of the first man?  And even infants be saved from the power of death except through Him in whom all shall be made to live?”

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A Treatise on Nature and Grace, Against Pelagius (415), 2, 3, 4 in NPNF1, 5: 122.  HT: D. Ritchie

“Therefore the nature of the human race, generated from the flesh of the one transgressor, if it is self-sufficient for fulfilling the law and for perfecting righteousness, ought to be sure of its reward, that is, of everlasting life, even if in any nation or at any former time faith in the blood of Christ was unknown to it.  For God is not so unjust as to defraud righteous persons of the reward of righteousness…  Man’s nature, indeed, was created at first faultless and without any sin; but that nature of man in which every one is born from Adam, now wants the Physician, because it is not sound. … This grace, however, of Christ, without which neither infants nor adults can be saved, is not rendered for any merits, but is given gratis, on account of which it is also called grace.  ‘Being justified,’ says the apostle, ‘freely through His blood.'”

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In the Medieval Church

Foord, Marty – ‘The Covenant of Works Pre-Reformation’  2014  4 paragraphs, blog post

Foord has found a proto-Covenant-of-Works in Gregory the Great’s (540-604) Moralia on Job and in Boethius’ (480-524/5) De Fide Catholica.  The latter quote is given in full.

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From the Reformation to the 1900’s

Fesko, J.V. – The Covenant of Works: The Origins, Development & Reception of the Doctrine  in Oxford Studies in Historical Theology Series  Buy  (Oxford Univ. Press, 2020)  324 pp.

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On the Post-Reformation:  1500’s – 1600’s

Romanist

Dissertation

Denlinger, Aaron Clay – Ambrogio Catarino’s Doctrine of Covenantal Solidarity with Adam & its Influence on Post-Reformation Reformed Theologians  (Univ. of Aberdeen, 2009)

Catarino was a Romanist who, in 1532, seems to have been the first one to expressly and more fully develop the notion of a covenant based on works between Adam and God.  This served as a precedent for reformed theology’s later development of the Covenant of Works.

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By the Reformed

Quotes

Andrew Woolsey, Unity & Continuity in Covenantal Thought  (RHB, 2012), p. 145

“He [Sherman Isbell] followed Althaus in seeing Melancthon’s natural law theory as underlying Ursinus’s development of foedus naturale.  Isbell claimed Fenner was “[t]he first Reformed theologian to print the phrase foedus operum,” and Rollock as “the first to use it in direct reference to Adam’s state of innocency,” at a time when the idea of the covenant was beginning to attain significance as an organizing principle of theology.”

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Aaron C. Denlinger, ‘Robert Rollock’s Catechism on God’s Covenants’  MAJT 20 (2009), pp. 106 & 108

“The notion of a pre-fall covenant between God and humankind…  was first explicitly articulated by the Heidelberg theologians Zacharias Ursinus (in his 1584 Catechesis Major) and Caspar Olevianus (in his 1585 De substantia foederis gratuiti inter Deum et electos).  The specific terminology of a “covenant of works” (foedus operum) was employed by Puritan theologians Dudley Fenner (in his 1585 Sacra Theologia) and William Perkins (in his 1591 Golden Chain).  Continental theologians Amandus Polanus, Franciscus Gomarus, and Johannes Piscator each made mention of a pre-fall covenant with Adam in their works.  However, these theologians did not discover quite the theological potential in that notion that Rollock did.  Lyle Bierma’s judgment regarding Olevianus’s treatment of the pre-fall covenant is worth noting here.  He writes:

“Unlike Cocceius and the Puritan covenant theologians of the
seventeenth century, Olevianus does not treat the covenant of creation as the biblical-historical or theological foil for the covenant of grace.  Never once does he directly compare or contrast the two.”

This observation could be extended to each of those theologians who had, by the time that Rollock published his catechism [1596], made reference to the pre-fall covenant.  But in Rollock’s work the practice of comparing and contrasting the covenants of works and grace is perfected.  And thus, in Rollock’s catechism, the twofold covenant scheme, barely developed by previous authors, assumes a structural significance that it lacks in earlier Reformed literature.

It would be wrong, perhaps, to suggest that Rollock employs a twofold covenant scheme to structure his theology in toto—this catechism is, after all, specifically concerned with “God’s covenant” (and thus with particular anthropological, christological, and soteriological points); it is not a catechetical summa theologiae.  But certainly one might say, on the basis of this work, that Rollock utilizes the twofold covenant scheme to structure—in a way that is genuinely unique for his time—an holistic account of humankind’s initial creation in God’s image, fall through Adam’s sin, redemption by virtue of Christ’s saving work, and progress towards eternal life.  In Rollock’s catechism, then, the polarity
between the covenant of works and covenant of grace serves, quite simply, to maintain and uphold very basic Protestant reformational distinctives—distinctives such as the singular role of grace, faith, and Christ in the economy of salvation (the Reformation “solas”), and the difference between law (God’s promise of benefit to the individual contingent upon his/her obedience) and gospel (God’s promise of benefit to the individual contingent upon Christ’s obedience).

Indeed, if the particular manner in which a theologian employs the notion of a pre-fall covenant of works is taken into consideration (in addition to the mere affirmation, by a theologian, of such a covenant), one might plausibly suggest Rollock to be, on the basis of this catechism, the first genuine covenant theologian in the Reformed tradition. Such a suggestion would, at least, serve to highlight the ways in which his covenantal thinking built upon the work of previous theologians, rather than simply reiterating it, and also anticipated the work of later Reformed thinkers.”

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Theses

Isbell, Sherman – The Origin of the Concept of the Covenant of Works  Ref  Masters Thesis, Westminster Theological Seminary (1976), 192 pp.

“…a study by Isbell Sherman. He traces the development of federal theology through Wolfgang Musculus, Peter Martyr, Peter Vermigli, Stephen Szegedi, Zacharius Ursinus, Kasper Olevian, Johannes Piscator, Dudley Fenner, Thomas Cartwright, William Perkins, Robert Howie, Robert Rollock, and Francis Gomarus. It is only then that he turns to Lausanne, to consider the English translation of the works of William Bucanus.” – Bill Berends – ‘Christ’s Active Obedience in Federal Theology’Vox Reformata (2004), p. 46

Smedley, Todd Matthew – The Covenant Theology of Zacharias Ursinus  PhD thesis  (Aberdeen, 2012)

Abstract:  “…the covenant theology of Zacharias Ursinus, which in many ways broke new ground for the development of Federal Theology in the sixteenth century with his introduction of the foedus naturale.  For the first time in its development he describes the prelapsarian economy to be covenantal and thus opens the way for a bicovenantal scheme to eventually become a distinctive feature of Reformed theology.”

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Articles

Vos, Geerhardus – pp. 6-9 of ‘The Doctrine of the Covenant in Reformed Theology’  and throughout

Bierma, Lyle – chs. 2 & 5  of German Calvinism in the Confessional Age: The Covenant Theology of Caspar Olevianus  (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1996)

McGiffert, Michael – ‘From Moses to Adam: The Making of the Covenant of Works’  The Sixteenth Century Journal, Vol. 19, No. 2 (Summer, 1988), pp. 131-155

Letham, Robert – ‘The Foedus Operum: Some Factors Accounting for Its Development’  The Sixteenth Century Journal, Vol. 14, No. 4 (Winter, 1983), pp. 457-467

Denlinger, Aaron C.

‘Calvin’s Understanding of Adam’s Relationship to His Posterity: Recent Assertions of the Reformer’s ‘Federalism’ Evaluated’  CTJ, 44 (2009): 226–250

‘Meritum ex Pacto in the Reformed Tradition: Covenantal Merit in Theological Polemics’  MAJT 31 (2020): 57-87

White, J. Wesley – ‘The Dutch Reformed Doctrine of the Covenant of Works’  (2008)  17 paragraphs

White translated Rissen’s elenctic theology for a Masters thesis.

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1600’s

Books

Stoever, William Kenneth Bristow – The Covenant of Works in Puritan Theology: the Antinomian Crisis in New England  PhD thesis  Ref  (Yale Univ., 1970)

Ostella, Christopher Adam – The Merit of Christ in the Covenant of Works: Francis Turretin and Herman Bavinck Compared  Ref  a Masters Thesis  (Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, 2007)

Parr, Thomas – A Backdrop for the Gospel: William Strong (d. 1654) on the Covenant of Works  Ref  a Masters Thesis  (Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, 2018)

Perkins, Harrison – Catholicity & the Covenant of Works: James Ussher & the Reformed Tradition  in Oxford Studies in Historical Theology Series  Buy  (Oxford University Press, 2020)  312 pp.

See a review here.

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Articles

Muller, Richard – ‘The Covenant of Works and the Stability of Divine Law in Seventeenth Century Reformed Orthodoxy: A Study in the Theology of Herman Witsius and Wilhelmus A Brakel’  1994  25 pp.

Perkins, Harrison – ‘Reconsidering the Development of the Covenant of Works: A Study in Doctrinal Trajectory’  Calvin Theological Journal  (2018)

Abstract:  “This paper argues that proper historical method for tracing theological development looks at what sources we can prove an author used and demonstrates how that authors changed from those previous sources. This essay examines the history of the covenant of works, using Archbishop James Ussher as the terminal point of development, and analyzing how he appropriated and modified material from sources he named as important to him.”

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On the 1800’s

Ostella, Christopher Adam – The Merit of Christ in the Covenant of Works: Francis Turretin & Herman Bavinck Compared  Ref  a Masters Thesis  (Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, 2007)

Dahl, James David – Charles Hodge on the Imputation of Adam’s Sin  Ref  Masters thesis  (Grand Rapids Baptist Seminary, 1988)

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On the 1900’s

Article

Pronk, C. – ‘The Covenant of Works in Recent Discussion’  18 paragraphs

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Book

Ives, Psyche Joy – Recasting John Murray’s Covenant Theology: a Contextual Re-examination  Ref  Masters theis (Westminster Seminary, California, 2016)  See the very helpful abstract at the link.

Abstract:  “Murray argued that the Covenant Theology would benefit from a recasting of the terminology to a more felicitous and biblical formulation. As part of this recasting, he…  restricted the ‘covenant’ term to the history of redemption and the Covenant of Grace; replaced the common label ‘Covenant of Works’ with the ‘Adamic administration’; rejected all notions that the Covenant of Works itself (especially the notion that obedience could merit eternal life”) was not abrogated; and strongly condemned the terminology that suggested the Covenant of Works had been ‘republished.’…

…this work understands Murray’s own recasting to be an deliberate attempt to employ the work of his predecessors (most notably Geerhardus Vos’ late condemnation of the ‘covenant’ term) in a strategy to restore the covenant terminology to the most felicitous earlier formulation of the early Reformation, which he and many of his nineteenth and twentieth century predecessors had already determined was the most biblically accurate covenant concept…”

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Was Christ Under the Covenant of Works?  No, He was under the Covenant of Redemption.

Article

Anonymous – pp. 10-12 of The Snake in the Grass: or, Remarks upon a book, entitled, The Marrow of Modern Divinity: touching both the Covenant of Works and of Grace, etc. Originally done by E.F. about the year 1645: and lately revised, corrected and published by the Reverend Mr. James Hog  (Edinburgh, May 14, 1719)

Get Witsius

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Quote

Rijssen

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Latin Artcles

1600’s

Martin, Matthew

Notes on Bk. 3, 16. ‘Of the Bond [Pactione] of the Covenant of Nature’  in Summary Heads of Christian Doctrine…  (Heborne, 1603), pp. 403-4

Martin was German reformed.

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Tract 1, Of the Word & Sacraments in General, & in Specific of the Sacrament of the Covenant of Nature Before the Fall  in Of the Seals of the Covenants of Nature and of Grace, in 5 Tracts…  (Brema, 1618), pp. 17-40  ToC

Heidegger, Johann H.

A Theological Dissertation on the Covenant & Testament of God  (Zurich, 1692)  52 pp.

This deals with both the Covenant of Works and the Covenant of Grace.

Miscellaneous Positions on the Works of Nature & Grace  (Zurich, 1695)  4 pp.

Marck, Johannes à – ch. 14, ‘The First State of the Integrity of Man, and a view of the Image of God & the Covenant of Works’  in A Compendium of Christian Theology, Didactic & Elenctic  (Amsterdam, 1696; 1722), pp. 276-294  See specifically sections 13-24, pp. 286-294 on the Covenant of Works.

This work appears to fully expound the Covenant of Works, even against those who deny it, such as the Arminians.  However, Marck later wrote The History of Paradise, which De Moor says denies the Covenant of Works.  Hence Marck is probably the one that Mastricht says first held to the Covenant of Works and then later came to deny it. 

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1700’s

Vitringa, Sr., Campegius – ‘Of the Covenant of Works’  in The Doctrine of the Christian Religion, Summarily Described through Aphorisms, vol. 2  (d. 1722; Leiden, 1769), pp. 237-249  See also ‘On the State of Integrity’, pp. 216-236.

Stapfer, Johann – Analysis 35, ‘Of the Offices of the First Parents, or of the Covenant of Works, Gen. 2:16-17’  in Theology Analyzed, vol. 1  (Bern, 1761), pp. 217-227

Stapfer (1708-1775) was a professor of theology at Bern.  He was influenced by the philosophical rationalism of Christian Wolff, though, by him “the orthodox reformed tradition was continued with little overt alteration of the doctrinal loci and their basic definitions.” – Richard Muller

De Moor, Bernardinus – ch. 14. ‘Of the First State, of the Integrity of Man, & a View Here of the Image of God & the Covenant of Works’  in A Continuous Commentary on John Marck’s Compendium of Didactic & Elenctic Christian Theology, vol 3  (Leiden, 1761-71), pp. 1-108  See especially sections 13-24, pp. 52-108 on the Covenant of Works specifically.  ToC

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Dutch

Roell, Hermann Alexander – The True Doctrine of the Upright Creation…  (Utrecht, 1690)

Roell (1653-1718) was a Dutch reformed professor of philosophy and theology at Franeker and a professor of natural theology at Utrecht.  This work is against Johannes Vlak (c.1635-1690), who denied the Covenant of Works in his Three Dissertations (1689), written against Melchior Leydekker.

Roell, however, had a rationalist streak, and was a leader in promoting that trend in the reformed Dutch Church in that era.  Such rationalist views, after his involvement, were later condemned by numerous synods.

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Related Pages

The Works of the Westminster Divines on Covenant Theology

The Covenant of Grace

The Covenant of Redemption