John Gill and the History of Redemption as Mere Shadow

Exploring Gill’s Doctrine of the Covenant of Redemption

In: Journal of Reformed Theology
David Mark Rathel University of Saint Andrews Scotland

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John Gill was an influential minister and theologian of the eighteenth century. Deeply influenced by the Reformed tradition, he made significant innovation to the doctrine of the covenant of redemption. Current surveys of his theology have unfortunately not adequately explored this innovation. The primary cause of this failure is a lack of attention to Gill’s historical context, a context shaped by doctrinal antinomianism and no-offer Calvinism. This article will contextualize Gill’s thought and provide a more accurate reading of his covenant theology by arguing that he offered a unique construction of the covenant of redemption that radically minimized human agency in the reception of salvation.

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