Harrison Perkins On The Covenant Of Works In 7 Minutes And 7 Seconds

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  1. Doesn’t Hebrews 9:16 tell us that where a covenant is, there must also of necessity be the death of the one making it? So if Adam had kept God’s command to him, surely there would have been no death, and, therefore, no covenant? Is this why the earliest chapters of Genesis refrain from any reference to the Covenant of Works, because it only became a covenant in the breach of it, whatever it had been before?

    • I’ve entered into multiple covenants with no bloodshed whatever. No deaths when I signed my mortgage; none at our wedding. Where was the bloodshed in the making of the Davidic covenant?

    • I don’t think your mortgage covenant was a covenant in the biblical sense of the word (To use words outside their biblical meaning and then build doctrines on that use can be very dangerous – For example, Annihilationism got into Evangelical circles by misapplying the non-biblical meaning of the word “immortality” to doctrine, and the seeds of this had been sown by the great preachers of the last 200-300 years) – Biblically, was a covenant made every time someone borrowed money?
      Your wedding vows were merely an invocation of the Covenant of Grace to what the vows declared to be a marriage situation – Christ died to make that possible. The Davidic covenant was paid for at the Cross, as were all other biblical covenants involving the Elect (The Covenant of Works is either paid for at the Cross by Christ, or paid for only in part in hell by the inhabitants thereof).

      • Anthony,

        My point is that not all covenants were made with blood even in Scripture. You’ve absolutized a general statement that was intended to be understood in a particular context.

    • Adam and Eve took wedding vows, but before the fall, so their marriage was not built on the covenant of grace. Yet, their marriage was a covenant (Mal. 2:14). When was blood shed when God made a covenant with the day and night (Jer. 33:20-21)? That would be an odd one to require bloodshed. Further, you making your entire case on a pretty debated verse about which scholars have not reached consensus even in lexical issues. The clearer passages interpret the less clear, and there are plenty of passages that show some kinds of covenants can be made without death. Further, a proper translation of 9:17 shows that this death can be “dead bodies” or “dead things” and there’s no reason that Adam could not have cooked a covenantal feast from one of the animals in the Garden to confirm the covenant with God.

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