What is your theological background, and how has it shaped your view of history?
I’ve written a little book about my own personal spiritual journey. I was raised in a Methodist family, and it was in high school that I fell in amongst the Dutch Reformed and started going to a Reformed church. That was where I was converted.
So from the very beginning of my active Christian life I was in Reformed circles. And those Dutch Reformed circles embraced the Reformation as it was expressed in the Heidelberg Catechism and the Belgic Confession of the sixteenth century. They also very much embraced the developing covenant theology that became more articulated as a system in the seventeenth century.
So Reformed and covenant theology, in my experience (and, I think, properly for us today), are mutually supportive notions. Covenant theology helps us understand how the Bible holds together Old and New Testament: the covenant of works in the garden, the covenant of grace after the fall into sin. It helps us understand the work of Christ: Christ came to fulfill the covenant of works and to actualize the covenant of grace for us.
So covenant theology is really helpful, both to understand Christ and to understand the way the Scriptures are put together. And I think it really deepens our appreciation of the character of Reformed theology.
This transcript is from a live Ask Ligonier event with W. Robert Godfrey and has been lightly edited for readability. To ask Ligonier a biblical or theological question, just visit Ask.Ligonier.org or message us on Facebook or Twitter.