Jared Smith on the Biblical Covenants

4 The Spiritual And Perpetual Covenants—Works And Redemption

Some of the points I cover in this teaching video:

I believe the major biblical covenants may be arranged under two headings: (1) Two spiritual and perpetual covenants—Redemption and Works; (2) Four earthly and temporary covenants—Noahic, Abrahamic, Mosaic and Davidic. The New Covenant, properly speaking, is not an actual covenant, but rather, an explanation of the Covenant of Redemption to the Jewish people as a nation, within the context of the Mosaic economy and its laws.

In this study, an explanation is given for the two spiritual and perpetual covenants: First, aligning these covenants with the Framework of Sovereign Grace; Second, emphasizing how the Covenant of Redemption is one and the same with the Covenant of Grace; Third, showing why the Covenants of Works and Redemption are identified as “spiritual” and “perpetual”.

[As a side note, the Reformed Baptist denomination, a section of which has amped up its claims to be the modern day representatives of the English Particular Baptists, subscribe to a seventeenth century covenantal framework reflective of the Westminster Confession of Faith and that of Presbyterianism. In their view, the covenant of redemption is relegated to the backdrop of an ‘eternity past’ with a conditional covenant of works God made with Adam before the Fall and a conditional covenant of grace God made (or promised to make) with the elect in Christ after the Fall. They do not understand the Particular Baptists of succeeding centuries rejected the notion of a conditional covenant of grace, believing there to be only the covenant of redemption (which they termed the covenant of grace) and the covenant of works God made with Adam before the Fall. Benjamin Keach, for instance, while signing the 1689 Baptist Confession, three years later confessed to changing his view on Article 7, rejecting an additional (and conditional) covenant of grace. That the Reformed Baptists, generally speaking, do not understand the reforms and developments of the Particular Baptists of succeeding centuries is epitomized by a statement made by one of their popular leaders. I will not disclose the name as I wish not to embarrass or spark a controversy, but he wrote that “Benjamin Keach…denied the covenant of redemption. Keach was aware that this set him apart from others.” No, Keach denied an additional (and conditional) covenant of grace, believing the covenant of grace is one and the same with the covenant of redemption. This is the view to which I hold and it is the representative view of the mainstream Particular Baptists of the eighteenth to twenty-first centuries. Yes, we (the Particular Baptists) still exist today as a separate denomination. Just because the Reformed Baptists have adopted the 1689 Baptist Confession as their statement of faith, does not make them Particular Baptists or representatives thereof.]

Jared Smith, Muntinlupa, PH (18/11/2022)