The Blood Covenant
A Primitive Rite and Its Bearings on Scriptureby H. Clay Trumbull, 1893
The blood covenant was the most solemn, binding agreement possible between two parties in ancient times. Even among many primitive peoples in recent times, shadows and variations of the practice have been found. If we are to fully understand the biblical covenants, we must understand how they were viewed by the men with whom God established the covenants. By studying the similarities in the various rites of blood agreement, we get a more complete picture of God’s redemptive plan for the human race.
In The Blood Covenant, Mr. Trumbull explores these variations and makes some very insightful observations which shed a great deal of light on passages of Scripture which otherwise seem curious or inconsistent. The call for Abraham to sacrifice Isaac, for example, becomes a sacred matter of honor once the magnitude of the covenant relationship is grasped.
Most importantly, the full impact of the agreements made by God with man facilitate a greater appreciation for both the Old and New Covenants. The elements of communion become more than just a ritual or a memorial of a sacrifice; they become the re-enactment of the covenant bond. It is important to know what we have been granted under the New Covenant so that we may share what truly is good news with those around us.
- Lecture I: The Primitive Rite Itself — Sources of Bible Study; An Ancient Semitic Rite; The Primitive Rite in Africa; Traces of the Rite in Europe; World-Wide Sweep of the Rite; Light from the Classics; The Bond of the Covenant; The Rite and its Token in Egypt; Other Gleams of the Rite
- Lecture II: Suggestions and Perversions of the Rite — Sacredness of Blood and of the Heart; Vivifying Power of Blood; A New Nature through New Blood; Life from any Blood, and by a Touch; Inspiration through Blood; Inter-Communion through Blood; Symbolic Substitutes for Blood; Blood Covenant Involvings
- Lecture III: Indications of the Rite in the Bible — Limitations of Inquiry; Primitive Teachings of Blood; The Blood Covenant in Circumcision; The Blood Covenant Tested; The Blood Covenant and its Tokens in the Passover; The Blood Covenant at Sinai; The Blood Covenant in the Mosaic Ritual; The Primitive Rite Illustrated; The Blood Covenant in the Gospels; The Blood Covenant Applied
- Appendix — Importance of this Rite Strangely Undervalued; Life in the Blood, in the Heart, in the Liver; Transmigration of Souls; The Blood-Rite in Burmah; Blood-stained Tree of the Covenant; Blood-Drinking; Covenant-Cutting; Blood-Bathing; Blood-Ransoming; The Covenant-Reminder; Hints Of Blood Union
- Supplement to Second Edition — Reception and Criticisms of First Edition; Vital Union by Substitute Blood; Blood Makes Unity: Eating Shows Union; Ethnic Reachings after Union with the Divine; The Voice of Outpoured Blood; Gleanings from the General Field