Kingdom through Covenant: A Biblical Middle Way?

You could say an 848-page alternative to evangelicalism’s two reigning theological systems is a bit ambitious. Or needed. Or both.

In Kingdom through Covenant: A Biblical-Theological Understanding of the Covenants (Crossway, 2012), Peter Gentry and Stephen Wellum set out to carve a new path between dispensational and covenant theology, having concluded that neither hermeneutical approach is sufficiently informed by biblical theology. Regardless of whether you end up agreeing with their conclusions, Gentry and Wellum’s proposed via media—”kingdom through covenant” or “progressive covenantalism”—is a substantial, even groundbreaking, contribution to any discussion about the intersection of exegesis, biblical theology, and systematic theology.

Reformed but not fully covenantal, baptistic but not dispensational, professors Gentry (Old Testament) and Wellum (Christian theology) of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary have made a thick and thorough case demanding a response. Of course, it’s up to you to read the book and determine if they have succeeded. Soon TGC expects to publish a forum featuring responses to this proposal by Darrell Bock, Michael Horton, and Douglas Moo.

I corresponded with Gentry and Wellum about their proposal, ironic similarities between the two dominant systems, recent accusations, and more.


It is interesting and a bit ironic, as you observe, that both dispensational and covenant theology employ a similar hermeneutic in regard to the Abrahamic covenant. What do you mean?

We first noticed this irony in thinking through the hermeneutical differences between dispensational (DT) and covenant theology (CT). DT often charges CT with reading the New Testament (NT) back on the Old Testament (OT) without doing justice to specific unconditional promises of the OT. So, for example, CT often claims that the land promise to Israel was conditional and thus forfeited by Israel’s disobedience, and, further, that it’s typological in the sense that it’s fulfilled in the new creation—not as a specific piece of real estate to Israel in the millennial age. Part of the biblical warrant for this view is that the NT doesn’t emphasize the land promise as DT claims, but instead stresses the dawning of the new creation in Christ. In response, DT contends the land promise is not typological. Instead, it is an unconditional promise given to Abraham and his seed that continues throughout redemptive history in exactly the same way as it’s given in the OT. DT stresses that we must not read the NT back on the OT; the unconditional promise of the Abrahamic covenant stands unless specifically abrogated in the NT.

Yet, ironically, even though DT charges CT with neglecting the OT at this point, CT utilizes the exact same argument, albeit for a different aspect of the Abrahamic covenant. When CT defends their view of the nature of the church as a mixed community, and specifically the link between circumcision and baptism that grounds their defense of paedobaptism, they charge credobaptists with neglecting the unity of the covenant of grace and reading the NT back on the OT. Regardless of the credobaptist’s argument that Christian baptism does not signify exactly the same thing as circumcision, and that baptism is only reserved for those who have been united with Christ and have entered into new covenant realities such as regeneration, justification, and so on, CT charges credobaptists with reading the NT back on the OT and failing to do justice to the unconditional nature of the Abrahamic covenant as found in the genealogical principle—“to you and your children”—which remains unchanged across the biblical covenants. On their own unique points, then, DT and CT use the same hermeneutic in how they understand the relationship between the Abrahamic and new covenant in God’s overall plan.

Where, most fundamentally, does dispensational theology make a wrong turn? What about covenant theology?

By “wrong” we aren’t thinking of it in the gospel sense. We hold proponents of DT and CT as dear brothers and sisters in Christ. Yet in “putting together” the Bible and considering how the biblical covenants unfold and relate to each other in redemptive history, we contend that both views go “wrong” in two related ways. (1) There is a tendency to privilege different aspects of the Abrahamic covenant while neglecting other aspects. (2) There isn’t enough attention given to the interrelationships between the biblical covenants across redemptive history, how various typological patterns are developed as the one plan of God is progressively revealed through the covenants, and ultimately how all of the covenants find their telos, fulfillment, and consummation in Christ and the new covenant.

So, for example, we argue that DT privileges the land promise of the Abrahamic covenant but doesn’t sufficiently view the land as a pattern/type, rooted in the covenant of creation, that is intertextually and progressively revealed through the biblical covenants and fulfilled in the dawning of the new creation in Christ. CT, on the other hand, privileges the genealogical (“to you and your children”) principle of the Abrahamic covenant and doesn’t sufficiently grasp how that principle is transformed in the promise of the new covenant. Whether it’s in the prophets’ expectation of the new covenant or in its reality based on Christ’s triumphant cross-work, the relationship between the head of the new covenant, namely Christ, and his children is one of faith. All who have been born of the Spirit and united to Christ by faith are Christ’s family and members of his new covenant. Further, the new covenant—by its very nature and structure—isn’t exactly the same as the old, which is precisely what you’d expect given that the old covenant (and each previous covenant) so anticipates and points forward to the dawning of the new covenant age in Christ and the better realities he wins and secures.

What are some distinctions between the Abrahamic covenant and the new covenant? What dangers result from flattening out such differences?

Much could be said in terms of distinctions between the Abrahamic and new covenant. Let us list three. (1) In terms of the plot structure of Scripture, the Abrahamic and new covenant are at different moments in redemptive history in the overall progressive unfolding of God’s eternal plan. (2) Given the Abrahamic covenant’s place in redemptive history, it serves as the means by which Adam’s role in creation will be restored and God’s salvation blessings will flow to all nations—yet the parties of the covenant, especially seen through Isaac, Israel, and epitomized in David and his sons, are all failures. Just like Adam, none of the covenant heads serves as an obedient son like he ought. As such, the Abrahamic covenant (including the later covenants) can only hope for and anticipate God to act unilaterally in his provision of a greater Adam, Abraham, Israel, and David—namely, his own beloved Son. (3) In the Abrahamic covenant the various types/patterns ultimately find their fulfillment in the new covenant. In this way, it serves as part of the plotline of Scripture that reaches its terminus and telos in Christ, who brings all the promises to Abraham to pass.

What happens when these differences are flattened? Ultimately we lose the glory of Jesus Christ and all that he has accomplished for us as God’s obedient Son, our Lord and Savior.

What about your book might readers be most surprised to learn?

First and foremost, our hope and prayer is that our readers will be surprised to find not merely a polemical discussion between DT and CT, but a work that seeks to glory afresh in the gospel of our Lord Jesus and to see in him and his new covenant work all our hope and stay, for now and eternity. In addition, given the kingdom emphasis of the work, we hope our readers will see how Jesus’ message of the kingdom is actually found on the first page of the Bible, not merely in the NT.

How would you respond to one recent accusation that Kingdom through Covenant “is not a Reformed Baptist work or Reformed at all. . . . So-called New Covenant Theology is actually a reaction against confessional Reformed Baptists, Presbyterians, and Covenant Theologians in general”?

First, we have called our position “progressive covenantalism” in order to avoid various labels, since labels often are a way of dismissing entire viewpoints. And theological positions are not monolithic. Second, we stand on the shoulders of giants and in no way dismiss historical theology, yet we take seriously Ad Fontes, Sola Scriptura, and Semper Reformanda. We’ve sought to describe how our position differs from the two dominant viewpoints in evangelical thought, yet it isn’t that our differences lead to completely novel conclusions. In fact, it’s our conviction that our book provides a better basis for the great solas of the Reformation, and that we do so in such a way that makes better sense of the “whole counsel of God.” It’s our hope and prayer that people who come from either DT or CT will not dismiss our work without giving it a fair reading and showing where our exegesis, biblical theology, and systematic conclusions have gone wrong. We will consider it a success if our book leads all of us to return to Scripture, wrestle once again with the text, and actually discuss our differences in charity, grace, and in a renewed commitment to have our theological views ever conformed to God’s Word.

  • Abram

    Thanks for the interview–I’m looking forward to reading through the forum responses!

  • Mike Farley

    Will TGC also please give us a Reformed respondent who doesn’t hold to Meredith Kline’s views of the relation of the Abrahamic and Mosaic covenants? There are differences of viewpoint on some of these points among Reformed covenantal theologies today, and Michael Horton represents only one among several legitimate options. A good candidate might be Michael Williams of Covenant Theological Seminary, who has written a book on covenant theology that differs from Horton in his way of relating the Abrahamic, Mosaic, and new covenants.

    • Mark

      I found Williams book disappointing. I thought he at best smoothed out the distinction between Covenant of Works and Covenant of Grace. He had to defend his presentation as being in accord with the WCF. He then basically argued that covenant was undefinable and then defined covenant very broadly as relationship which seemed entirely inadequate. Regardless of what one might think of republication in the Mosaic Covenant I think Kline’s organizing covenant theology along the lines of the headships of the first Adam and second Adam is helpful. Regardless, there is a lot of scholarship on covenants available that needs to be addressed.

      • Richard Lucas

        Serious question: What contemporary published theologian(s) best represent Classic Covenant Theology (of the WCF variety)?

        • Mark

          I am not aware of a single accessible book that I could recommend. I read Palmer Robertson’s “Christ of the Covenants” which was good but I disagreed with several points. Definition “Bond in Blood Sovereignly Administered” is probably not broad enough. Robertson rejects the notion of a covenant of redemption with which I disagree. Williams book seemed similar to the so-called “monocovenantalism” of some of the federal vision guys, or along the lines of John Murray and Archibald Alexander. Kline is profound, creative and not very accessible. Kline also based his ideas on the treatment of Ancient Neareastern treaty forms on Mendenhall who was I believe among the first to recognize similarities between ancient Hittite treaties and the structure of Biblical covenants. This can be helpful if treated appropriately. However, there is more recent scholarship on Neo-Assyrian treaties etc. that were not addressed. For example, the Abrahamic Covenat appears to be most like a Neo-Assyrian Land Grant.

          You know what I might recommend. One of Kline’s students wrote a book called “Tale of Two Adams” that MAY be good. I started to read it but did not finish. You can find it here online:

          That might be a good starting place but I would recommend reading a number of things along with your Bible as you do in order to get a more comprehensive understanding of biblical covenants. I’m probably not being much help but I am not aware of only one book I would recommend. There has been some diversity of thought on covenants throughout the history of the Reformed/Presbyterian Churches.

          If you want to get some idea of where “Kingdom Through Covenant” is coming from before reading the book look up “New Covenant” Theology. They basically teach that the OT was abrogated, including the 10 commandments, but then re-established in Christ. Kline’s thought may move closer to that perspective but stays within the bounds of the WCF in my view; at least it doesn’t inlcude total abrogation and re-establishment under the NT. I’m an amateur so hope I have overly mis-characturized anyone.

          • Richard Lucas


            I appreciate your response. Yes Mendenhall built on the structural analysis done by Viktor Korosec in 1931 of Hittite treaties by applying it to the covenants in the OT in the mid-50s. It was left to Meredith Kline, in the early 1960s, to make full application of Mendenhall’s insights to Deuteronomy, recognizing that the whole book is a covenant renewal document. A flood of studies on the ANE treaties and their relationship to the OT covenants came out in the two decades following Mendenhall, but once the dust settled, in 1977 Kenneth Kitchen provided a helpful synthesis and summary of the external evidence and their applicability to the biblical material.

            As Peter Gentry noted in this interview:


            CT continues to refer to the work done by Kline and doesn’t interact as much with where the current state of the discussion is in ANE studies (from the last 40 years). One of the things that Kline did was take cutting edge biblical scholarship and utilize it within his theological framework (but not without innovations along the way). It seems as though many in CT today have followed his teachings, but not his example. Just a glance through the bibliography for Part 2 in KTC on pages 793-809 will give you an idea for where to jump into the current state of the discipline.

            In reference to your comment about the nature of the Abrahamic Covenant, I think you would benefit from reading chapters 7 and 8 in KTC, particularly pages 252-256 where he interacts with the studies by Hasel, Hess, Wenham and Matthews on the nature of the covenant relationship.

            I didn’t intend to obscure the intention of my question. Several commenters expressed dissatisfaction with Michael Horton as a representative for CT. They suggested Michael Williams, but then you in turn also thought he was an inadequate representative. So, I was trying to discern who exactly would be the best current scholar for the task from your perspective. If its Kline’s brand of CT that you like, probably one of the best current exponents of his views is Lee Irons.

            Lastly, I appreciate your desire to not mis-characterize anyone, but having read most of the book already, I’m afraid that indeed you have, especially with how they would explain the relationship between the OT (including the Decalogue) and the NT. The exegesis in KTC is fresh, and the arguments persuasive enough that I think you would be rewarded by a careful reading yourself.

            • Mark

              My Characature was based on NCT stuff I’ve read on the web, since I’ve not read the book. I was a member of Lee Irons church some time ago and check out upper-register every once in awhile. I would be interested in something along the lines of Kline but updated with recent ANE scholarship while staying within Reformed/Covenantal commitments. BT apart from ST anchor can get pretty fanciful. (Although I think BT has had some corrective influence on dispensationalism). I don’t think such a creature exists though. I personally think too many dismiss Kline because of his creativity or because of the Framework View of creation. However, I think even if one rejects framework Kline has a lot of helpful ideas. Anyway, it sounds like from what your saying KtC may be the best thing out there in this regard. There was a critical review of William’s book on that I largely agree with, however, don’t dismiss it on account of me. However, don’t take me wrong; Williams is not Federal Vision so far as I can tell. I would be interested to see how NCT and/or KtC treats CoW/CoF re WCF. The other thing I find helpful in Kline/Van Til, etc. is the notion that creation itself is covenantal; i.e., covenant isn’t an afterthought relative to creation, especially the creation of Adam.

              One thing that puzzles me in some of the NCT & progressive dispensational discussions I’ve seen is a failure to acknowledge the influence of Reformed BT, e.g., Geerhardus Vos for example.

              Thanks for your insights. I would like to read the book although I’ll be on the lookout for undermining the continuity between the OT and NT. At the same time you probably guessed I also think too many in my CT camp smooth out the discontinuity, e.g., take the 10 commandments in a completely ahistorical way. I think there is even an inconsistancy b/w the WCF and WC on this point.

            • Mark

              @Richard, yes, that link looks interesting. Some of the things he’s saying are new seem Klinean to me, although I’m sure developed and/or updated in some ways. For example, the idea that man’s imaging of God is covenantal. I think Kline is pretty strong on the relationship (at very least implies covenant) between God and Adam as a son of God (e.g., in Kingdom Prologue). Kline sees creation as fundamentally covenantal and of course Adam is the covenant head.

              I thought Williams was very weak on the Creation Covenant (CoW). There’s been that big debate over “merit” between Kline on the one hand and others who want the CoW to be strictly gracious. I just ignore that whole debate and frame it in terms of “inheritance.”

              Anyhow, thanks for the insights. I need to read the book. …after I’m done with Beale’s NT BT.

  • Derek Rishmawy

    Yeah, I’d like to see a couple of different Reformed views as well, although I’d love to see a Horton review. He’s one of the main players out there and has a knack for clearly laying out issues. I think this book would probably merit a couple of reviews at least.
    Is there any way of contacting G.K. Beale to interact with it given his expertise in dealing with the Old Testament’s fulfillment in the New? That’d be a brilliant piece of work.

    Thanks for the interview!

  • Richard

    Interesting stuff! Though from the title I thought it was going to be an attempted synthesis of Covenant Theology and the biblical theology of Goldsworthy…

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  • Peter Green

    I second Mike Farley’s request! Picking a Reformed respondent who holds an idiosyncratic view of the relationship between the Abrahamic and Mosaic covenants just seems strange. Mike Williams would be a great choice, though Jack Collins, or Greg Beale would also be more than capable.

    Also, this quote surprised me: “CT often claims that the land promise to Israel was conditional and thus forfeited by Israel’s disobedience.” Perhaps some covenant theologians argue that, but do most? A much better way of expressing it is that the “land” promise is expanded in the New Covenant to include the whole earth (“the meek shall inherit the earth”). Jesus defines the extent of the “Promised Land” as “Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the ends of the earth,” when he commissions the eleven (soon to be twelve) apostles–i.e., New Israel–to conquer the the land (Acts 1). Jesus is the New Moses (he teaches the apostles for 40 days) and the apostles are the New Joshua/New Israel (they receive the Holy Spirit–see Joshua’s commission in Numbers and Deuteronomy).

    Israel did not “forfeit” the land–Israel received and is receiving the land! Jesus is the ultimate “Israel” (as seen in the gospels, especially Matthew, where he recapitulates Israel’s history, and John 15, where he is the *true Vine*–cf. Psalm 80:8-19, Isa 5:1–7, Jer 2:21, Hos 10:1, etc.). Jesus receives the promise of the land (as well as every other promise–in him all the promises of God receive their “yes”), and those who are united to Jesus through baptism receive the promises as well. Thus, the Church, which is the body of Christ, receives the promise of the land as well. Though Jesus is the ultimate Israelite, the Church is a continuation (not a replacement!!) of Israel.

    This is all solid covenantal theology–there is no forfeiture of the land, at least necessarily, in CT.

    • Richard Lucas


      Some Covenant Theologians argue the forfeiture of the land promise to Israel based on disobedience, and some argue that the land functions typologically and expands to the whole new creation (such as you did above), and finally some argue both! That’s why the authors in the question above mention both (to complete the quote you cited):

      “So, for example, CT often claims that the land promise to Israel was conditional and thus forfeited by Israel’s disobedience, and, further, that it’s typological in the sense that it’s fulfilled in the new creation—not as a specific piece of real estate to Israel in the millennial age.”

      As you well noted in your desire to have a different representative of CT to respond, not all of Covenant Theology is completely monolithic. Different proponents put together the covenants a little differently. I think the question that the authors of Kingdom Through Covenant are trying to get to, is how do we discern which is the more “biblical” way of doing it.

      I look forward to reading the responses from the three scholars mentioned above, and any others who are willing to provide a review.

      • Peter Green

        Richard, thanks. I suppose my exposure to CT has been limited to those who would not argue that Israel forfeited the land. Thanks for the clarification.

        Still, when critiquing dispensationalism or covenantalism, it seems to me that one ought to critique, in a sense, the lowest common denominator. Otherwise, one runs the risk of having one whole wing of CT (or dispensationalism) saying, “Yes I agree with you, but I still remain a thoroughgoing covenantalist–you haven’t proven your case.”

        And re: Horton: Certainly there are different forms of CT, and I am sure Horton will be incisive, but Horton’s views on the Abrahamic/Mosaic covenant are both novel and the minority report in the Reformed tradition, so it seems strange to have him as the “Reformed” representative. Wouldn’t it make sense to at least include a more mainstream covenantal theologian?

        • Richard Lucas

          Peter, I too agree that the best representation of a view should be held forth, especially if it is being critiqued. You aren’t saying this, but I don’t think the authors are holding up any straw men to knock down though.

          Pages 56-80 of KTC outline “Covenant Theology and its Varieties” and yes Horton (who is no doubt a major player in contemporary Covenant Theology) is cited, but so are a lot of other authors.

          Horton follows Kline in seeing the Mosaic Covenant as a republication of the Covenant of Works. I grant that Kline had some novel constructions of CT (cf. his view that baptism was a sign of malediction), but he was also very influential and still has many who follow his views today (especially with the ANE parallels in covenant structure).

          I do think it is somewhat difficult to say who best represents Historic/Classic/Traditional Covenant Theology. The influence of Vos (which I think is a good thing) obviously wasn’t present in older forms of CT. And many within CT have departed from wanting to describe the relationship with Adam as a Covenant of Works (Murray, Robertson, Dumbrell, and Hoekema as but some examples). Some understand the NC as simply a renewed covenant, and some give it a greater sense of newness (but again in what sense?).

          On the other side of the aisle, I’m sure there are many dispensationalists who aren’t happy that Bock is representing them! From their point of view, Progressive Dispensationalism isn’t historic, or traditional dispensationalism, and therefore might actually be more friendly to this new proposal than they would. All of the scholars who participate in the Council on Dispensational Hermeneutics (for instance) would disagree that Bock best represents them.

          For the purposes of what TGC is trying to do in this forum, I think having one scholar from each “camp” so to speak is sufficient, but I too would love to see responses from other versions of CT to this new proposal of Progressive Covenantalism. And perhaps Michael Williams, for instance, would take up the task.

          Lastly, since you originally mentioned the fulfillment of the land promise, I think you would be quite happy with the way that the authors of KTC explain this on pages 703-716 based on the understanding you described above.

          • Peter Green

            Richard, thanks again for your response. Simply reading through this TGC article did make me suspect that I would agree with much of the book (perhaps even more than I might agree with Horton’s response!).

            And insofar as dispensationalists are dissatisfied with the choice of Bock, I am symapthetic for the same reasons I wish CT had more representatives as well. Still, I suppose it would be unreasonable to have every variation of DT and CT represented, so I can understand picking just one or two respondents.

    • Mark

      At the risk of butting in, Kline, Beale and others tie the land promise in with the Garden of Eden and Isreal becomes a kind of Adam. Of course these Adams fall and ultimately point to the NC 2nd Adam, and finally the New Heavens and New Earth. Beale in “The Temple and the Church’s Mission” also ties together Eden, land and temple/tabernacle. Very interesting things to think on.

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  • Moe Bergeron

    It is good to see TGC following this important work by Wellum and Gentry. They’ve got to be two of the bravest theologians of our day knowing that folks from the major systems will not take their work lying down. (That’s already evident.) Truth be told the great divide between Covenant Theology and Dispensational Theology is quite telling. We have to be honest here. The “divide” means that one system or the other, or perhaps both, are to some extent in serious error.
    At the very least, “Kingdom Through Covenant” may help us realize that we need to get back to God’s Word to bring an end to the great divide. Our God can’t be too happy with it.

  • Jason Price

    Thanks for the heads up TGC, Dr. Wellum was my Systematic teacher, and it should be interesting to read his thoughts on this issue. I have never been completely satisfied with either dispensationalism or covenant theology.

  • danny

    I purchase from Monergism, but I was very upset by their recent slam on this book and dismissal of it as “unbiblical.” I’m looking forward to more fair treatment of the material, and to reading it myself. To be honest, I’ve believed some of the ideas this book seems to present for quite some time, so I’m excited to see these issues dealt with in print.

    • Doc B


      I too was disappointed in Monergism’s attack on the book. So I bought it from Amazon. I guess I’ll be buying more stuff there, or WBS than from MB now.

    • Mark

      Since Monergism is an explicitly Reformed/Covenantal website I’m not sure why you’d be surprised they would not promote a book arguing for New Covenant Theology contra CT. I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t promote books on credobaptism either.

      • danny

        Who said they were surprised that Monergism didn’t promote the book?
        I said I was disapponted that they attacked the book, and in the way they did it. Attacking a book and choosing not to promote it are not the same. There are thousands of books they don’t promote, but I’ve never seen them go out of their way to be so blatantly disrespectful of a book in overtly denouncing it.
        Their “announcement” was also incredibly inadequate in terms of at least being fair and respectful to brothers in Christ in a market of ideas.

  • Dan Lioy

    I wonder how this new work relates to my 2006 essay titled “Progressive Covenantalism as an Integrative Motif of Scripture” (, and which I also included as a separate, revised chapter in my 2011 monograph titled “Evolutionary Creation in Biblical and Theological Perspective” (Peter Lang) (

    • danny

      I wasn’t wondering.

      • Mike


  • Tim Muse
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  • Sarmishta Venkatesh

    I do not think that what Profs. Wellum and Gentry and elucidating here is radically new. There’s a man by the name William Einwechter who propounded this theology ( or alteast gave shape to this ) about 5 yrs ago. It’s the classic Baptist answer to not being labeled “Dispensational” yet wanting to see the Big picture through the lens of covenants. I find it more a backward integration of the Baptistic ideology of baptism, without moving that peg, along with covenant theology. You can listen to Bill Einwechter’s series here:

    An interesting Puritan Board discussion on this “middle-ground” covenant theology is found here

  • Brian Davidson

    Nice post, Matt. Thanks.

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  • M Craig

    Thank you for the post. I’m looking forward to reading the book.

  • Moe Bergeron

    Interesting comments with regards to where Wellum and Gentry may have derived some of their seed thoughts. As someone who has been close to this theological conversation for at least three decades I can say with a certainty that it grew out of the Law and Grace controversy within Reformed Baptist circles. A major voice in its early development was John G. Reisinger. His “Four Seeds of Abraham” has served as an important influence for many within the movement. In recent years others including non-Baptists have joined in on the conversation. With the growing interest in Biblical Theology I believe scholars such as Wellum and Gentry will continue to uncover the wells that were covered over by the systems.

  • Richard Zuelch

    Haven’t seen the book yet, but I’m already wondering how it compares and contrasts with Robert L. Saucy’s “The Case for Progressive Dispensationalism” from the 1990s, which might take the Gentry/Wellum view and look at it from the other side. Just a hunch, though.

  • Matt Smethurst

    For those interested, here’s an essay that demonstrates Wellum and Gentry’s basic hermeneutic and distills one of their central arguments in the book:

  • Mark

    Hopefully I’ll get to read it one of these days, but from all the press I’m having a hard time understanding what is really new in this book (and/or “New Covenant Theology”) other than annhialationism between the OT & NT and a defense or credo baptism which …. yawn. Kline’s BT was kingdom administered through covenant. There’s been something written on just about every “BT center” of the Bible plus Beale’s multi-stranded story line approach, which I thought was helpful. Vos’s approach was progressive revelation. Then there’s Robertson, Murray, Ridderbos, Gaffin, …. Is this book really as profound and new as the marketing says? Not trying to be a jerk, just sayin’ ….

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  • Mark

    Here’s another article by Gentry that may be of interest.

    “Kingdom Through Covenant: Humanity as Devine Image” although I’m a bit puzzled as to why he doesn’t cite Kline.

  • Mark

    Here is a link addressing all the “controversy” surrounding KtC and monorgism’s decision not to carry it. The blogger is favorable to the book but bullet-points some reasons others might be critical. It might be helpful to someone.

  • taco


    How soon is soon for TGC to post the followups you spoke of?

    • http://twitter/mattsmethurst Matt Smethurst


      The reviews have been submitted and we’re now in the editing phase. Hopefully they’ll be published within the next couple of weeks.


      • taco

        Awesome, I am really looking forward to reading them.

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  • Brandon

    There is another “biblical middle way” between covenant theology and dispensationalism, but it is over 300 years old. Regretfully, it was largely forgotten because the works were not republished.

    17th century particular baptists developed a covenant theology that was quite distinct from WCF. Among other things they
    1) Identified the covenant of grace with the new covenant exclusively
    2) Saw the church as the true/spiritual Israel, but saw national Israel as a type of the church
    3) Agreed with Wellulm’s concerns about how to view the Abrahamic covenant

    It is regretful that their writings are not more widely available. Wellum’s work would have benefited greatly from interacting with them.

    A recent website was created to help explain this view and compare it to WCF, dispensationalism, NCT/Progressive Covenantalism, and 20th century reformed baptists. Though these were the editors and signatories of the 2nd London Baptist Confession of Faith, their views were actually quite different from much of what has been written by reformed baptists over the last 50 years.

    • Brandon

      *I should say between WCF and dispensationalism

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