But is the incarnation really the key to understanding how the eternal and unchanging God relates to the world in his acts of creation and providence throughout history?
Just as the Son assumes the contingent properties of the human nature while remaining essentially the same as divine, so God as creator and sovereign has become contingently what he was not eternally, while remaining unchanged in his divine essence.
Moreover, even if we grant that God's act of creation can somehow be construed as covenantal condescension there is nothing in this article to suggest that covenantal condescension as such must include the ontological acquisition of new properties of being.
Oliphint writes, "Because the condescension of the Lord takes place from the beginning, we should understand God's dealings with creation as necessarily entailing that God has assumed properties not essential to him." , 221.
His blessedness, happiness, self-satisfaction, as well as all his other infinite perfections, were absolutely the same before the creation of anything." , ed.
Examining mobile technology for teaching and learning. Specifically, studying the use of iPod touch devices for English Language Learner and how teachers use iPads in their instruction
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(1) It is striking that neither Oliphint nor Shannon offers much discussion of Oliphint's central thesis and arguably his most innovative proposal, that God relates himself to the world by taking on "covenantal properties" in addition to his essence.(2) Shannon's article in particular contends that Oliphint advances the Reformed commitment to Scripture by rejecting presumably corrupt elements of the classical Reformed doctrine of God.
His program of reading theology proper through the lens of Christology is fairly straightforward: "Because the person of Christ is the quintessential example of God's remaining who he is essentially, even in his interaction with creation, we would do well to think carefully about how our understanding of Christ's person helps us to see what is taking place throughout covenant history as God relates to his human creatures" (, 182).
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That is, if the Son's union of two natures is the model for explaining how God relates his divine nature to newly procured covenantal properties--which Oliphint believes are required for God to relate to the world as the one who decrees, creates, sustains, and redeems; actions that are surely attributed to the Father and Spirit--then it must be that the Father and Spirit each subsist in the same twofold manner as the Son, as divine and creature.
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Moreover, insisting that it is about the creator-creature relation in general, as Oliphint does, (10) tends to obscure the clear emphasis upon the disproportionality between creaturely works and divine reward.