Title: Christ and the Covenants: Recipient, Fulfillment, or Mediator?
The notion of covenant is both popular and controversial within biblical theology. Systems divide over whether the Scripture contains covenants not directly labeled as such. Further, occupying the center of the debate on all sides, are questions related to Jesus Christ and His relationship or involvement in each of the biblically-stated covenants. Hermeneutical implications raise questions such as: Are all the covenants fulfilled in Jesus rendering them forever satisfied? Does Scripture present Jesus as the main or even sole-recipient of the covenants, and if so, which ones? Is Jesus the mediator or dispenser of the covenants? Is there an aspect where Jesus assumes all three roles without collapsing their promised future fulfillment in national Israel?
This paper will explore and answer these questions and will defend the final option presented above: Jesus relates to the biblical covenants as recipient, fulfillment, and/or mediator—and does so without collapsing any promised future for national Israel. In order to advance this thesis, the paper’s method will be driven by a consistent, grammatical-historical hermeneutic and its application limited to four of the seven of the directly-stated biblical covenants in the OT, typically identified by their biblical nomen: Abrahamic, Mosaic; Davidic; and New Covenant.
Cory M. Marsh, Th.M. is Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies at Southern California Seminary in El Cajon, CA. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Biblical Theology at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.