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Chapter 7: Of God's Covenant

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Chapter 7

7.1 The distance between God and the creature is so great, that (although reasonable creatures owe obedience to Him as their Creator) they could never have attained the reward of life except by an act of voluntary condescension on God's part. This He has been pleased to express by way of a covenant.1

(1) Job 35:7-8; Psalms 113:5-6; Isaiah 40:13-16; Luke 17:5-10; Acts 17:24-25

7.2 Moreover, as Adam had brought himself and his posterity under the curse of the law by his fall, it pleased the Lord to make a covenant of grace.1 In this covenant He freely offers to sinners life and salvation by Jesus Christ, requiring from them faith in Him that they may be saved,2 and promising to give His Holy Spirit to all who are elected to eternal life, to make them willing and able to believe.3

(1) Genesis 3:15; Psalms 110:4 with Hebrews 7:18-22 and 10:12-18; Ephesians 2:12 with Romans 4:13-17 and Galatians 3:18-22; Hebrews 9:15
(2) John 3:16; Romans 10:6, 9; Galatians 3:11
(3) Ezekiel 36:26-27; John 6:44-45

7.3 This covenant is revealed through the Gospel; first of all to Adam in the promise of salvation by the seed of the woman, and afterwards step by step until the full revelation of it was completed in the New Testament.1 This salvation rests on that eternal covenant transaction between the Father and the Son which concerns the redemption of the elect.2 It is by the grace of this covenant alone that all the descendants of fallen Adam who have ever been saved have obtained life and blessed immortality. Human beings are now utterly incapable of gaining acceptance with God on those terms by which Adam stood in his state of innocency.3

(1) Genesis 3:15; Romans 16:25-27; Ephesians 3:5; Titus 1:2; Hebrews 1:1-2
(2) Psalms 110:4; Ephesians 1:3-11; 2 Timothy 1:9
(3) John 8:56; Romans 4:1-25; Galatians 3:18-22; Hebrews 11:6, 13, 39-40