The Doctrine of the Covenant and Testament of God by Johannes Cocceius


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RHB.  hb.  544pp. Classic Reformed Theology Series.

Johannes Cocceius (1603-1669) was a prominent Bible scholar who taught at the universities of Bremen, Franeker, and Leiden. As a gifted linguist, he produced a Hebrew lexicon, commentary related to every book of the Bible, and several theological treatises.

Cocceius's contributions to covenant theology simultaneously sparked theological controversies and further fruitful dialogue for understanding the progressive nature of salvation history. The Doctrine of the Covenant and Testament of God describes the entire biblical history as a series of events by which an original covenant of works is gradually annulled, bringing new phases in the history of the covenant of grace. He shows that God's standard way of relating to mankind is through covenant, which, at its heart, is friendship with God.

Casey Carmichael's translation of Cocceius's book is monumental, providing the first English edition of a work that helped shape Reformed theology for centuries. Historical theologians have long noted Cocceius's work as a crucial text in the development of federal theology, and now this translation will open access to a wider range of readers and is sure to spur further interest and research in Reformed expositions of covenantal thought. The introduction by Willem J. van Asselt, the world's leading scholar on Coccieus's life and theology, provides the historical context for understanding the importance of the book and a summary of the significant contributions it made to Reformed theology.


Table of Contents:
Introduction by Willem J. van Asselt
1. The Covenant of God in General
2. The Covenant of Works
3. The First Abrogation of the Covenant of Works by Sin
4. The Second Abrogation of the Covenant of Works by the Covenant of Grace
5. A Fuller Explanation of What Was Set Out in Advance
6. The Application of the Testament and also the Sanction and Confirmation of the Covenant of Grace
7. The Ability to Receive in the Covenant of Grace and Its Inducement
8. The Constancy of the Covenant of Grace
9. The End of the Covenant of Grace
10. The Third Abrogation of the Covenant of Works by the Promulgation of the New Testament in the Type of the Old Economy
11. The Differences between the Former Period and the Later in the Economy of the Covenant of Grace
12. The Benefits of the New Testament
13. The Sacraments of the New Testament
14. The Office of Bishop under the New Testament and the Government of the Church
15. The Fourth Abrogation of the Covenant of Works by Death of the Body
16. The Fifth Abrogation of the Covenant of Works by the Resurrection of the Body



“One of the leading Reformed theologians in the seventeenth century, Johannes Cocceius made an enduring contribution to the development of covenantal theology in the Summa Doctrinae de Foedere et Testamento Dei. The treatise represents a classic statement of federal theology and one of its most influential treatments in the development of Reformed thought.This elegant and nuanced edition by Casey Carmichael and Willem van Asselt is the first English translation of Cocceius’s most important work and should become a standard text for students interested in the history of Reformed theology.” —Charles H. Parker, professor of history, Saint Louis University

“Johannes Cocceius was one of the seventeenth century’s most influential and controversial Reformed theologians, yet today he is little known and less well understood. Casey Carmichael has done all interested in the thought of that era an enormous service by making Cocceius's Summa Doctrinae de Foedere et Testamento Dei available in English for the first time.”—Philip Benedict, professor emeritus, University of Geneva’s Institute for Reformation History



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