New Covenant Theology And Futuristic Premillennialism -- By: Richard L. Mayhue

Journal: Masters Seminary Journal
Volume: TMSJ 18:2 (Fall 2007)
Article: New Covenant Theology And Futuristic Premillennialism
Author: Richard L. Mayhue


New Covenant Theology And Futuristic Premillennialism

Richard L. Mayhue

Senior Vice President and Dean
Professor of Pastoral Ministries and Theology

New Covenant Theology (NCT) advocates have correctly abandoned the non-biblical covenants of Covenant Theology (CT). However, with few exceptions, they have inconsistently maintained CT’s eschatologies, which usually reject a future premillennial kingdom on earth, ruled over by Christ for 1, 000 years in fulfillment of OT unconditional promises made to Abraham and David. After surveying the current theological landscape among prominent NCT writers, seven compelling reasons for embracing Futuristic Premillennialism (FP) are discussed: (1) Hermeneutics Is a Presupposition, Not a Theology, (2) Careful Exegesis Is Required, Not a Presupposed Theology, (3) Unconfused and Separate Identities for Israel and the Church, (4) Preservation of the Jewish Race and Israel, (5) Unconditional Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants, (6) Proper Order of Christ’s Return and Christ’s Reign, and (7) Promises of an Irreversible Restoration for the Nation. Because of these seven determinative, biblical facts, the only eschatology which would be consistent with NCT’s denial of the non-existent covenants espoused by CT would be FP.

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This essay builds upon the four previous articles in this issue of TMSJ, dealing with New Covenant Theology (NCT): A Critique. If you have not yet read Dr. Barrick on how NCT relates to OT covenants and Dr. Vlach on how NCT relates to Covenant Theology (CT), please do so before proceeding here.

NCT is to be commended for having recognized the absolute lack of biblical evidence for the three covenantal mainstays of CT, i.e., Covenant of Grace, Covenant of Redemption, and Covenant of Works. NCT has advanced the theological discussion by limiting their studies to covenants that are clearly and repeatedly taught in Scripture, e.g., the Abrahamic, Davidic, and New Covenants.

We interact here with NCT in that they limit God’s promises for Israel in the

future and miss the futuristic aspects of the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants. In this, they unnecessarily and erroneously rejoin their CT brothers in proposing that the NT church has replaced OT Israel and thus inherited God’s land, ruler, and kingdom promises from the supposedly disobedient and disinherited Jews. As a result, the eschatological options for NCT are essentially no different from those of CT.

Bed-Rock Hermeneutics

Why would NCT rejoin CT at the point of eschatology? Dr. Barrick’s assertion that their presupposed eschatology drives their hermeneutic ra...

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