Antinomian is pleased that Evangelista has silenced Nomista and so asks Evangelista to explain the covenant of grace. In this section, Evangelista turns his conversation to the nature of God, and the inseparable work and interaction between God’s attributes: Truth, Justice, Mercy and Wisdom.
Truth and Justice demand that since man had sinned, and therefore man must die;
Mercy, pleaded for pity and kindness, appealing to the great court in heaven: “Satan seduced mankind and plunged human beings into misery and death. Have mercy!”
Justice replied, “When I am offended, I must be satisfied and have my right; and therefore I require, that man, who disobeyed God must face the judgment of God.
Read this bit on the wisdom of carefully, it is the wisdom of God that his mercy and justice meet in the eternal Son.
Then wisdom became an umpire, and devised a way to reconcile truth, justice and mercy.
Two things needs to be done to bring about reconciliation between God and mankind.
(1.) A satisfaction of God’s justice.
(2.) A reparation of man’s nature.
A middle and common person must have zeal towards God and compassion towards man,
Such a person would have man’s guilt and punishment translated on him, satisfying the justice of God, and as having a fullness of God’s Spirit and holiness in him, might sanctify and repair the nature of man.
Of the promise made to Adam
God made a promise to Adam, on the same day he sinned, by sacrificing an animal as a sign of Christ, to cover the shame of Adam and Eve.
As soon as Adam broke the covenant with God, then justice would have been immediate, God would have moved swiftly to summary execution, to the destruction both of Adam and the whole creation, had not Christ, at that very time, stood as the ram [or rather the lamb] in the bush, and stepped in to perform the work of the covenant.
Adam was saved by faith in Christ, who Adam perceived was the promised offspring of Eve, symbolised by the sacrifice of animals, shedding of blood, who would crush the serpent’s head.
The promise renewed to Abraham.
Promises of God were made to Abraham and his seed (not seeds). The singular pointing to Christ.
The paschal lamb is a type of Christ; the Red Sea a type of baptism; the manna and water in the desert a type of communion and so to the covenant and law at Sinai in the next chapter.
- Fisher sees Christ in all the scriptures, being symbolised by blood shedding to provide skins for Adam and the promise of God to provide a descendant of Eve who would crush Satan’s head. Do you think Fisher is right to see Christ signified this way when there is no direct reference to Genesis 3 in the rest of scripture?
- Fisher understands that, because of God’s justice, execution would have swiftly followed Adam’s disobedience (In the day you eat of it, you shall surely die). Adam is not executed in that day. Fisher believes that Christ stood in the way of execution, offering himself as the ram (or lamb), in Adam’s place. What other reasons could be given for Adam not being executed by God in that day? What can be said of these reasons from the rest of scripture?