On the Duty of Covenanting and the Permanent Obligations of Religious Covenants (1853)

Q. What is a covenant?

A. A covenant is a mutual engagement between two parties, in which certain performances are stipulated on the one hand, and certain promises on the other.

Q. Wherein does a covenant differ from a law, a vow, and an oath?

A. 1. It differs from a law in this, that it supposes mutual stipulations, while in a law there is no stipulation whatever, but simply the authority of a superior enjoining obedience on an inferior.

  1. It differs from a vow, inasmuch as, while a covenant supposes engagement on both sides, a vow supposes engagement on one side only; a person who vows engaging to perform some particular service without any promise being supposed to be annexed to the performance.

  2. It differs from an oath; an oath being nothing more than a solemn appeal to God for the truth of some assertion that is made, without, as in a covenant, either an engagement to duty, or promise of reward.

  3. In a covenant, then, there is engagement by two parties-in a vow there is engagement by one party only-in an oath there is no engagement at all.

Q. Does a covenant, whilst it differs from each, at the same time suppose the existence of a law, and include both an oath and a vow?

A. Yes. 'A covenant proceeds upon the supposition of something being obligatory, and here is the idea of law. It implies an engagement to perform what is admitted to possess the obligation.'

Please visit SWRB's home page at the 'Outside Web Link' below.

Jan 2, 2005
Deuteronomy 29:10-13
Add a Comment
Only Users can leave comments.
    No Comments
SA Spotlight