New Covenant Theology and the Decalogue, Part II

Part I

Editor’s Note: Someone has been gracious enough to let me know about a response to Marcellos’ book by John Reisinger entitled In Defense of Jesus, the New Lawgiver.The reader can purchase both books, but I will focus exclusively on Barcellos’ in these reviews.

The book is endorsed by several prominent Reformed Baptist  and a few strict subscriptionist Presbyterian writers. This says a few things:

a) These scholars are committed to the London Baptist Confession and Westminster Confession of Faith. This implies a certain confessional presupposition.

b) These writers have a high view of Scriptures. George Knight, for instance, delivered a lecture at Greenville Seminary many years ago about the necessity of Scriptures to all of life. The other endorsers will happily agree.

c) These writers all share a common distaste for Dispensationalism. Kenneth Talbot writes: “…this new teaching (NCT) is nothing more than implicit dispensationalism.” Further, he says that Barcellos’ book “has brilliantly identified the unbiblical errors upon which this man-made doctrine has been established.” In their estimation, NCT is simply a resurrection of another error.

d) The debate centers around exegetical concerns. All writers affirm that Barcellos is capable of critiquing NCT exegesis.

e) All endorsers of this book believe strongly in the continuing validity of the Ten Commandments in the New Testament age.

I can summarize Barcellos’ and his defenders’ theology in the following three statements:

a) High view of biblical authority.

b) Commitment to Confessionalism.

c) Belief in the Continual Validity of the Ten Words to the modern day, which includes a high view of the sabbath (4th commandment).

NCT advocates will certainly concur with the first, but take exception with the second and third.

In the next post, I will focus on the preface to the book.

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About Uri Brito

I am the Pastor of Providence Church (CREC) in Pensacola, Fl.
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3 Responses to New Covenant Theology and the Decalogue, Part II

  1. Greg Gibson says:

    Talbot writes: “…this new teaching (NCT) is nothing more than implicit dispensationalism.”

    Talbot is incorrect. NCT denies Disp’s. 2 major points:
    1. The literal herm.
    2. Israel and the Church are distinct.

    All Christians are “disp.” to some extent. For example, Covenant Theologians are disp. in believing that the so-called civil law and ceremonial law were for Israel, and have been cancelled. NCTs believe that Christ cancelled the whole law of Moses, and we obey all that Christ commanded.

  2. Uri Brito says:

    Yes, you are correct about what NCT denies, however, Talbot’s critique is that it still mirrors Dispensationalism in its rejection of OT law for NT people. I know Talbot’s work well enough to know that this is what he is referring to.

    Further, confessional Presby’s do not believe civil laws are abolished. The WCF state the general equity therein are still applicable (see Bahnsen and Gentry).

    On another point, CT’s like Meyers and Jordan find the ceremonial laws still valid in teaching the NT Church liturgical patterns (Lev. 9). See The Lord’s Service by Jeff Meyers. I will deal with these points in future posts. Thanks for visiting and I always welcome your observations.

  3. Pingback: New Covenant Theology and the Decalogue, Part III « Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam

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