Dispensationalism (Jimmy Alexander)
Today we tackle a listener requested topic! Although no one on this episode is fully committed to dispensationalism (Rob is in the “Progressive Covenantalism” camp; the verdict is still out with Rick; and Jimmy leans towards dispensationalism, although he is not 100% convinced) we do our best to give it a fair shake!
So what exactly is dispensationalism? See the following definition below from The Baker Compact Dictionary of Theological Terms:
Definition: An evangelical framework for constructing theology that employs the concept of dispensation as its organizing principle. Related to the Greek term oikonomia, dispensationalism in its classical form (nineteenth to mid-twentieth century) featured seven dispensations: innocence, conscience, government, promise, law, grace, kingdom/millennium. Three other varieties are ultra-, revised, and progressive dispensationalism. Key tenets:
A literal interpretation of Scripture (while accounting for figurative language).
Different divine purposes for Israel and the Church, with the latter not replacing the former.
Blessings for ethnic Israel that are both political/national and spiritual.
Premillennial eschatology with a pretribulational rapture of the Church.
If you want to dig deeper into Dispensationalism, Progressive Dispensationalism, Covenant Theology, Progressive Covenantalism, New Covenant Theology, etc. (and we recommend you do), check out the recommended resources below.
Progressive Covenantalism: Charting a Course between Dispensational and Covenantal Theologies (Stephen Wellum; Brent Parker)
Kingdom through Covenant (Second Edition): A Biblical-Theological Understanding of the Covenants (Peter Gentry; Stephen Wellum)
God's Kingdom through God's Covenants: A Concise Biblical Theology (Peter Gentry; Stephen Wellum)