Conjectural Figment

Information on the Formula Consensus Helvetica:

“COMPOSED AT ZURICH, AD. 1675, BY JOHN HENRY HEIDEGGER, OF ZURICH, ASSISTED BY FRANCIS TURRETINE, OF GENEVA, AND LUKE GERNLER, OF BASLE, AND DESIGNED TO CONDEMN AND EXCLUDE THAT MODIFIED FORM OF CALVINISM, WHICH, IN THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY, EMANATED FROM THE THEOLOGICAL SCHOOL AT SAUMUR, REPRESENTED BY AMYRAULT, PLACÆUS, AND DAILLE; ENTITLED ‘FORM OF AGREEMENT OF THE HELVETIC REFORMED CHURCHES RESPECTING THE DOCTRINE OF UNIVERSAL GRACE, THE DOCTRINES CONNECTED THEREWITH, AND SOME OTHER POINTS.'”

Here is the Formula Consensus Helvetica stating their conjectural figment that God freely covenanted with Adam the unspeakably joyous opportunity to erase Jesus Christ from history.

VII. As all His works were known unto God from eternity (Acts 15:18), so in time, according to His infinite power, wisdom, and goodness, He made man, the glory and end of His works, in His own image, and, therefore, upright wise, and just. Him, thus constituted, He put under the Covenant of Works, and in this Covenant freely promised him communion with God, favor, and life, if indeed he acted in obedience to His will.

VIII. Moreover that promise annexed to the Covenant of Works was not a continuation only of earthly life and happiness, but the possession especially of life eternal and celestial, a life, namely, of both body and soul in heaven — if indeed man ran the course of perfect obedience — with unspeakable joy in communion with God. For not only did the Tree of Life prefigure this very thing unto Adam, but the power of the law, which, being fulfilled by Christ, who went under it in our stead, awards to us no other than celestial life in Christ who kept the righteousness of the law (Romans 2:26), manifestly proves the same, as also the opposite threatening of death both temporal and eternal.

IX. Wherefore we can not assent to the opinion of those who deny that a reward of heavenly bliss was proffered to Adam on condition of obedience to God, and do not admit that the promise of the Covenant of Works was any thing more than a promise of perpetual life abounding in every kind of good that can be suited to the body and soul of man in a state of perfect nature, and the enjoyment thereof in an earthly Paradise. For this also is contrary to the sound sense of the Divine Word, and weakens the power (potestas) of the law in itself considered.

X. As, however, God entered into the Covenant of Works not only with Adam for himself, but also, in him as the head and root (stirps), with the whole human race, who would, by virtue of the blessing of the nature derived from him, inherit also the same perfection, provided he continued therein; so Adam by his mournful fall, not only for himself, but also for the whole human race that would be born of bloods and the will of the flesh, sinned and lost the benefits promised in the Covenant. We hold, therefore, that the sin of Adam is imputed by the mysterious and just judgment of God to all his posterity. For the Apostle testifies that in Adam all sinned, by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners (Romans 5:12, 19), and in Adam all die (1 Corinthians 15:21, 22). But there appears no way in which hereditary corruption could fall, as a spiritual death, upon the whole human race by the just judgment of God, unless some sin (delictum) of that race preceded, incurring (inducens) the penalty (reatum, guilt) of that death. For God, the supremely just Judge of all the earth, punishes none but the guilty” (Formula Consensus Helvetica, in A.A. Hodge, Outlines of Theology, 658). [Note: I have my own hard copy of A.A. Hodge’s Outlines, but here is an online SOURCE.]

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