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C HAPTER 6 Section

Title

QUICK GUIDE TO GOD’S COVENANTS Royal grant covenants were unconditional grants of property or position, given by a king as a free gift to a loyal servant. Vassal-treaty covenants were conditional diplomatic treaties and depended on whether the servant remained loyal to the king. From the perspective of covenantalists, all the covenants from Noah through the New Covenant are simply reiterations of one covenant of grace. Although dispensationalists and new covenantalists may differ on the precise nature of each covenant, they agree that the New Covenant was more than merely a renewal and fulfillment of the Old Covenant.

Covenant participants

Type of covenant

God and Creation

May include elements of both types of covenants

God will preserve his creation and bless faithfulness; Adam and Eve must obey or die (Genesis 1--3)

God and Noah

Renewal of covenant with creation

God will never again destroy all life in a flood (Genesis 9:8–17)

God and Abraham

Unconditional royal grant given to Abram as believer in God's promise

God will give the Promised Land to Abram's seed (Genesis 15:9–21)

Conditional vassal-treaty

If Israel is faithful, God will remain their God (Exodus 19--24)

God and Israel

106

Meaning of covenant

Abraham expresses his continued faithfulness to this covenant by circumcising his son (Genesis 17); some see this as a conditional vassal-treaty

God and Unconditional royal grant, Israel’s Priesthood perhaps not a separate covenant but an upholding of God's previous covenant

God will provide his people with a perpetual faithful priesthood (Numbers 25:10–31)

God and David

Unconditional royal grant

God will establish a perpetual king in the line of David (2 Samuel 7:5–16; Psalm 89)

God in Jesus with all who believe

Unconditional royal grant

God will forgive the sins of his unfaithful people and of all who believe (Jeremiah 31:31–34; Luke 22:20; 2 Corinthians 3:6; Hebrews 8:8; 9:15; 12:24)

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