In Chapter 9 Calvin notes the importance of seeing Christ in both. He references the fact that there were signs shown all throughout the Hebrew Bible alluding to the coming Messiah and ties it to the revelation of Christ that is found in the Gospels. Calvin does define what he means by Gospel stating, “I confess, indeed, that inasmuch as the term Gospel is applied by Paul to the doctrine of faith (2 Tim. 4:10), it includes all the promises by which God reconciles men to himself, and which occur throughout the Law”. One of the key aspects is the attention paid to the already/not yet tension that has to be held when speaking about seeing Christ in both; “Only there is this difference to be observed in the nature or quality of the promises, that the Gospel points with the finger to what the Law shadowed under types”.
Chapter 10 speaks to the similarities of the two parts of the Bible. The first similarity stresses that since the beginning of time all those who believe have the same bond through the law, doctrine, and salvation by way of Christ (as understood within their respective revelations within the Hebrew Bible and New Testament). The word here that we all understand is: Covenant. The difference is found however in how covenant is administered. The unity is found though in the Old Testament belief in immortality, God’s free mercy, and Christ as mediator. Calvin also speaks to the sacramental similarities between baptism and the Lord’s supper in the New Testament to the “carnal baptism” through the passing in the sea with the cloud from God that protected them and eating and drinking from the spiritual rock that followed them: Rock was Christ, found in the Hebrew Bible (Lane states this is a “distinctly Reformed position).
The Differences between the two are spoke to by Calvin in Chapter 11. There are five main differences that Calvin notes which include:
1. 1. The heavenly heritage is understood in the Hebrew Bible through earthly benefits. The flip of this is found in the New Testament - Our earthly benefits are where we begin to get a glimpse of our heavenly heritage.
2. 2. The Hebrew Bible only gives a glimpse or an “image of truth” whereas the New Testament brings to fruition the reality of the “image of truth” in and through Christ.
3. 3. The third difference is where the covenant is written. The old stone, tablets, vs. on our hearts.
4. 4. The fourth is the purpose of the covenant. In the Hebrew Bible it enslaves through the law where in the New Testament there is freedom in Christ.
5. 5. The final difference is who is included in the covenant. The Hebrew Bible shows that there is One nation included where in the New Testament it includes all peoples.
My question: There is much time and energy spent discussing and debating how people understand our Jewish brothers and sisters fit into the New Covenant. It appears that Calvin believes this is a non-question as they are included. Do you agree or disagree and why?