Rawlings School of Divinity


Doctor of Philosophy


H. Wayne House


the moral law, decalogue, justice, reformed theology, biblical justice, covenant theology, Ten Commandments, New Covenant, Torah, Liberation Theology, social justice, social gospel, evangelical, hermeneutics, exposition, covenant code, the law in the New Testament, the New Testament use of Old Testament, Exodus 21:1-23:33, Torah Psalms, Psalm 119, James 2:1–13, natural law, vaccine mandates, vaccine passport, Lord's Day, church worship, biblical morality, ethics, biblical ethics, the Pentateuch, Mosaic law, Covenant of Grace, partiality, impartiality, sociological exegesis, hermeneutic of suspicion, Marxism, grammatico-historical, Great Commission, ecclesiology, discipleship, sanctification, local church, church, righteousness, obedience, covenantal faithfulness, Reformed Baptist, psalter, Westminster, London Baptist Confession, 1689 LBCF


Ethics in Religion | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion


This dissertation aims to establish a biblical theology of justice (מִשְׁפָּט), ascertaining the commands and references to justice in Scripture are comprehensively and exclusively rooted in the Moral Law of the Torah, summarized in the Ten Commandments, and embedded in the Covenant of Grace (Old and New), making it binding on New Covenant believers and inextricably attached to the church’s Great Commission mandate. To this end, the study examines the concept of justice in the OT and the Moral Law, contrasting Reformed evangelical hermeneutics with the modern iteration of Liberation Theology in connection with the application of biblical justice. Additionally, the study examines the Reformed understanding of the Torah’s historical meaning and canonical significance to the church of the Old and New Covenants. The study will present three pericopes as expositional evidence supporting the thesis undergirding this dissertation: Exodus 21:1-23:33, Psalm 119, and James 2:1-13. First, the study will show how the Covenant Code (Exod. 21:1-23:33) is itself an exposition of the concept of justice found in the Decalogue, which is the Moral Law. The other two expositions represent the application of the Moral Law in the devotional life of an OT saint (Psalm 119), and another represents the application of the Law to the NT saints (James 2:1-13). Afterward, the research applies the findings to a contemporary case study to demonstrate the covenantal applicability of the Moral Law in the New Covenant. Indeed, a Reformed hermeneutical framework applies a covenantal understanding of the Moral Law, demonstrating its revelatory and practical function to the New Covenant saints. Finally, the study concludes with principles for applying the Moral Law to the New Covenant church because it is the same commandments Christ delivered and commissioned his followers to teach the nations.