This third volume in the Biblical Theology set explores the final and culminating special grace covenant: the new covenant. It examines new covenant formation, life under the new covenant, and eschatological fulfillment of the goals of the new covenant, which also fulfills the eschatological trajectory of all the divine-human covenants taken together in God's plan of redemption.
Ancillary discussions include what the author calls a "soft Arminian" approach (which is explored and rejected) to foreknowledge and election, recognition that the new covenant is not, and cannot be, a renewal of the Old covenant, a proposal for understanding righteousness, throughout the Bible, as faithfulness to God's nature, with the resultant conclusion that God's own righteousness is his faithfulness to himself, and not merely his faithfulness to some product of his (such as the Old covenant), and a concluding amillennial understanding of the end times.
This work must be taken into account in all future thinking about the important theme of covenant. All students of the Bible and theology will benefit from Niehaus’s insights that build on and advance previous research on the topic.
—Tremper Longman III, Robert H. Gundry, Professor of Biblical Studies, Westmont College, CA
Niehaus brings to culmination his lifelong study of ancient near eastern covenants and their importance for understanding biblical covenant as the foundation to biblical theology. He contends that Scripture in its entirety and God’s relationship with human life from creation are covenantal in nature. By showing a pattern in God’s covenantal designs, he demonstrates the cohesive message of the Bible. Every scholar and pastor will benefit from this refreshingly new and lively written approach.
—Kenneth Matthews, Professor of Divinity, Old Testament, Beeson Divinity School, Samford University, AL
“That gift is no mere status: it is a dynamic reality whereby as we live in Christ we are no longer slaves to sin.” (Pages 147–148)
“To return to the Great Commission discussion, there is no curse for us in the new covenant because Jesus has borne the curse entailed in the Adamic covenant and implied in the sin-defining Mosaic covenant—not only the physical but more importantly the spiritual death expressed in the Father’s forsaking him (Matt. 27:46).” (Page 142)
“To be fully in the image of a god—or of God—therefore one would have to have the god—or God—dwelling in oneself” (Page 28)
“Israel failed to be God’s witness to the world. By contrast, the church has been and can continue to be that sort of witness, in the power of the now-indwelling Spirit.” (Page 142)
“He sent human armies described as locusts in judgment against Israel as portrayed in Joel. He will send demon-locusts against the world at the eschaton.” (Page 292)
Jeffrey J. Niehaus (Ph.D., Harvard University) is Professor of Old Testament at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, where he has taught since 1982. He is the author of numerous scholarly articles and books. In addition to being a biblical scholar, Niehaus is a poet who earned his Ph.D. in English Literature from Harvard.