Dispensationalism


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Dispensationalism is a nineteenth-century evangelical development based on a futurist biblical hermeneutic that sees a series of chronologically successive "dispensations" or periods in history in which God relates to human beings in different ways under different Biblical covenants.

As a system, dispensationalism is rooted in the writings of John Nelson Darby (1800–1882) and the Brethren Movement.[1]:10 The theology of dispensationalism consists of a distinctive eschatological "end times" perspective, as all dispensationalists hold to premillennialism and most hold to a pretribulation rapture. Dispensationalists believe that the nation of Israel (not necessarily the same as the state of Israel) is distinct from the Christian Church,[2]:322 and that God has yet to fulfill His promises to national Israel. These promises include the land promises, which in the future result in a millennial kingdom where Christ, upon His return, will rule the world from Jerusalem[3] for a thousand years. In other areas of theology, dispensationalists hold to a wide range of beliefs within the evangelical and fundamentalist spectrum.[1]:13

With the rise of dispensationalism, some conservative Protestants came to interpret the Book of Revelation as predicting future events (futurism), rather than predicting events that have taken place throughout history (historicism)[4][5][6] or predominantly associated to the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 (preterism).

Contents

Concepts

Progressive revelation

One of the most important underlying theological concepts for dispensationalism is progressive revelation. While some non-dispensationalists start with progressive revelation in the New Testament and refer this revelation back into the Old Testament, dispensationalists begin with progressive revelation in the Old Testament and read forward in a historical sense. Therefore there is an emphasis on a gradually developed unity as seen in the entirety of Scripture. Biblical covenants are intricately tied to the dispensations. When these Biblical covenants are compared and contrasted, the result is a historical ordering of different dispensations. Also with regard to the different Biblical covenant promises, dispensationalism places emphasis on to whom these promises were written, the original recipients. This has led to certain fundamental dispensational beliefs, such as a distinction between Israel and the Church.

Historical-grammatical interpretation

Another important theological concept is the emphasis on what is referred to as the historical-grammatical method of interpretation. This is often popularly referred to as the "literal" interpretation of Scripture. Just as Israel literally experienced the curses spoken of in the Old Testament, dispensationalists believe that they will one day, literally, receive the blessings spoken of in the Old Testament. Just as it is with progressive revelation, the historical-grammatical method is not a concept or practice that is exclusive just to dispensationalists. However, a dispensational distinctive is created when the historical-grammatical method of interpretation is closely coupled with an emphasis on progressive revelation along with the historical development of the covenants in Scripture.

Distinction between Israel and the Church

All dispensationalists hold to a clear distinction between Israel and the Church. Israel is an ethnic nation[7] consisting of Jews, beginning with Abraham and continuing in existence to the present. The church consists of all saved individuals in this present dispensation - i.e., from the "birth of the Church" in Acts until the time of the Rapture.[8] The distinction between Israel and the Church is not mutually exclusive, as there is a recognized overlap between the two.[1]:295 The overlap consists of Jewish Christians (such as Peter and Paul) who are ethnically Jewish and also have faith in Jesus Christ. Dispensationalists also believe that toward the end of the Tribulation, Israel as a nation will turn and embrace Jesus as their Messiah right before His second coming during the Great Tribulation. The spectrum of teaching on Israel and the Church may be depicted as below:[9]:

Spectrum of Belief about Church - Israel Distinctions
Advocates Dual Covenant
Theology
Classical
Dispensationalism
Progressive
Dispensationalism
New Covenant
Theology
Covenant
Premillenialism
Covenant
Theology
Supersessionism

Classical dispensationalists refer to the present day Church as a "parenthesis" or temporary interlude in the progress of Israel's prophesied history.[10] Progressive dispensationalism "softens" the Church/Israel distinction by seeing some Old Testament promises as expanded by the New Testament to include the Church. However, progressives never view this expansion as replacing promises to its original audience, Israel. [11]

New Covenant Theology is the middle-ground between dispensationalism and supersessionism. In Covenantalism, the church is not a replacement for the nation of Israel but an expansion of it where Gentiles are "grafted into" the existing covenant community.[12]

Dispensations

The label "dispensationalism" is derived from the idea that biblical history is best understood through division into a series of chronologically successive dispensations. The number of dispensations held are typically three, four, seven or eight. The three- and four-dispensation schemes are often referred to as minimalist, as they recognize the commonly held major breaks within Biblical history. The seven- and eight-dispensation schemes are often closely associated with the announcement or inauguration of certain Biblical covenants. Below is a table comparing the various dispensational schemes:

Start of the Church Age

Mainstream dispensationalists such as Scofield [13][14] and Ironside [15] identify Pentecost, in the second chapter of Acts, with the start of the Church as distinct from Israel; this may be referred to as the 'Acts 2' position. So-called hyperdispensationalists believe that the church started after Acts 2, focusing primarily on the ministry of Paul. Advocates of the 'mid Acts' position, such as Darby [16][17] identify the start of the church after the stoning of Stephen in Acts 7, or with the salvation of Saul in Acts 9,[18] or with Paul's first missionary journey in Acts 13. The 'Acts 28' position, most notably expounded by E. W. Bullinger, begins the church after the 28th and concluding chapter of Acts. Hyperdispensationalists are considered divisive[19] notably because they reject[20] the rite of water baptism practiced by almost all Christian denominations.

History of the development of dispensationalism

Eschatology

Dispensationalists are premillenialists who affirm a future, literal 1,000 year reign of Jesus Christ which merges with and continues on to the eternal state in the "new heavens and the new earth,"[21] and they hold that the millennial kingdom will be theocratic in nature and not mainly soteriological, as it is viewed by George Ladd and others who hold to a non-dispensational form of premillennialism. Dispensationalism is known for its views respecting the nation of Israel during this millennial kingdom reign, in which Israel as a nation plays a major role and regains a king, a land, and an everlasting kingdom.

The vast majority of dispensationalists hold to the pretribulation rapture, with small minorities holding to either a mid-tribulation or post-tribulation rapture.[22]

Comparison of Christian millennial interpretations
Range of Bible Chapters
Schemes Genesis 1-3 Genesis 3-8 Genesis 9-11 Genesis 12
to Exodus 19
Exodus 20 until
Birth of the Church
Church Age
until Rapture
Revelation 20:4-6 Revelation 20-22
7 or 8 Dispensational
Scheme


Innocence
or Edenic
Conscience
or Antediluvian
Civil Government Patriarchal
or Promise
Mosaic
or Law
Grace
or Church
Millennial Kingdom Eternal State
or Final
4 Dispensational
Scheme


Patriarchal Mosaic Ecclesial Zionic
3 Dispensational
Scheme
(minimalist)

Law Grace Kingdom
Wiki letter w cropped.svg This section requires expansion.

History

The concept of arranging of divisions in Biblical history dates back to Irenaeus in the second century. Other Christian writers and leaders since then, such as Augustine of Hippo and Joachim of Fiore (1135–1202), have also offered their own arrangements of history.[1]:116 Many Protestant and Calvinist writers, including Herman Witsius, Francis Turretin, and Isaac Watts also developed theological schemes and divisions in history, in particular after the Westminster Confession of Faith noted "various dispensations." Other concepts such as premillennialism and the rapture also predated dispensationalism as a system. Stemming from the Reformed tradition emerged the Covenant Theology, which deals with biblical history as different covenants between God and mankind, but not dispensations.

As a system, dispensationalism is rooted in the Plymouth Brethren movement in the 1830s of Ireland and England, and in the teachings of John Nelson Darby (1800–1882). The original concept came from Darby's interpretation of 2 Timothy 2:15, "...rightly dividing the way of truth."

Darby traveled extensively to continental Europe, New Zealand, Canada and the United States in an attempt to make converts to the Brethren movement. Over time, Darby's eschatological views grew in popularity in the United States, especially among Baptists and Old School Presbyterians.[2]:293

United States of America

John Nelson Darby is recognized as the father of dispensationalism,[1]:10,293 later made popular in the United States by Cyrus Scofield's Scofield Reference Bible. Charles Henry Mackintosh, 1820–1896, with his popular style spread Darby's teachings to humbler elements in society and may be regarded as the journalist of the Brethren Movement. CHM popularised Darby more than any other Brethren author.

As there was no Christian teaching of a “rapture” before Darby began preaching about it in the 1830s, he is sometimes credited with originating the "secret rapture" theory wherein Christ will suddenly remove His bride, the Church, from this world before the judgments of the tribulation. Dispensationalist beliefs about the fate of the Jews and the re-establishment of the Kingdom of Israel put dispensationalists at the forefront of Christian Zionism, because "God is able to graft them in again," and they believe that in His grace he will do so according to their understanding of Old Testament prophecy. They believe that, while the methodologies of God may change, His purposes to bless Israel will never be forgotten, just as He has shown unmerited favour to the Church, He will do so to a remnant of Israel to fulfill all the promises made to the genetic seed of Abraham.

Dispensationalism was first introduced to North America by James Inglis (1813–1872), through a monthly magazine called Waymarks in the Wilderness (published intermittently between 1854 and 1872).[citation needed] In 1866, Inglis organized the Believers' Meeting for Bible Study, which introduced dispensationalist ideas to a small but influential circle of American evangelicals. After Inglis’ death, James H. Brookes (1830–1898), a pastor in St. Louis, organized the Niagara Bible Conference to continue the dissemination of dispensationalist ideas. Dispensationalism was boosted after Dwight L. Moody (1837–1899) learned of “dispensational truth” from an unidentified member of the Brethren in 1872. Moody became close to Brookes and other dispensationalists, and encouraged the spread of dispensationalism, but apparently never learned the nuances of the dispensationalist system.

Dispensationalism began to evolve during this time, most significantly when a significant body of dispensationalists proposed the "pre-tribulation" rapture. Dispensationalist leaders in Moody's circle include Reuben Archer Torrey (1856–1928), James M. Gray (1851–1925), Cyrus I. Scofield (1843–1921), William J. Erdman (1833–1923), A. C. Dixon (1854–1925), A. J. Gordon (1836–1895) and William Eugene Blackstone, author of the bestselling book of the 1800s titled, "Jesus is Coming" (endorsed by Torrey and Erdman). These men were activist evangelists who promoted a host of Bible conferences and other missionary and evangelistic efforts. They also gave the dispensationalist movement institutional permanence by assuming leadership of the new independent Bible institutes such as the Moody Bible Institute (1886), the Bible Institute of Los Angeles—now Biola University (1908), and the Philadelphia College of the Bible—now Philadelphia Biblical University (1913). The network of related institutes that soon sprang up became the nucleus for the spread of American dispensationalism.

The efforts of C.I. Scofield and his associates introduced dispensationalism to a wider audience in America through his Scofield Reference Bible. The publication of the Scofield Reference Bible in 1909 by the Oxford University Press for the first time displayed overtly dispensationalist notes to the pages of the biblical text. The Scofield Reference Bible became a popular Bible used by independent Evangelicals and Fundamentalists in the U.S. Evangelist and Bible teacher Lewis Sperry Chafer (1871–1952), who was influenced by C.I. Scofield, founded Dallas Theological Seminary in 1924, which has become the flagship of dispensationalism in America. More recently, the Baptist Bible Seminary in Clark Summit, Pennsylvania (USA), become another dispensational school.

The Grace Movement, which began in the 1930s with the teaching ministries of J.C. O’Hair, Cornelius R. Stam, Henry Hudson and Charles Baker has been labeled "ultra" or "hyper" dispensationalism. The term serves to distinguish a theological system that departs from the tenets of dispensationalism.

The contrasts between law and grace, prophecy and mystery, Israel and the Church, the body of Christ were promoted by Scofield, Barnhouse and Ironside, then studied and taught by O'Hair, Stam and other "grace" teachers. It is however contended by dispensational teachers such as Charles C. Ryrie, J. Dwight Pentecost and Arnold Fruchtenbaum that ultradispensationalism is removed enough from dispensationalism to not any longer be dispensationalism at all. Nevertheless, ultradispensationalism continues to be forcefully advocated by many - most notably, through the works of poet-theologian Jack Royerton whose work has generated an ultradispensationalist groundswell especially among young artists and folk singers.

Dispensationalism has become very popular with American evangelicalism[citation needed], especially among nondenominational Bible churches, Baptists, Pentecostal and Charismatic groups.

Most mainline Protestants generally reject dispensationalism. For example, the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) termed it "evil and subversive" regards it as a heresy.[23]

Influence

Dispensationalist chart of the Jehovah's Witnesses

Dispensationalism rejects the notion of supersessionism, sees the Jewish people as the true people of God, and sees the modern State of Israel as identical to the Israel of the Bible.

John Nelson Darby taught, and most subsequent dispensationalists have consistently maintained, that God looks upon the Jews as his chosen people even as they remain in rejection of Jesus Christ, and God continues to have a place for them in the dispensational, prophetic scheme of things. Dispensationalists teach that a remnant within the nation of Israel will be born again, called of God, and by grace brought to realize they crucified their Messiah. Dispensationalism is unique in teaching that the Church is a provisional parenthesis, a "mystery" period, meaning that it was not revealed in the Old Testament, directly, which period will end with the rapture of the church and the Jewish remnant entering the Great Tribulation. Israel will finally recognize Jesus as their promised Messiah during the trials that come upon them in this Tribulation. Darby's teachings envision Judaism as continuing to enjoy God's protection literally to the End of Time, and teach that God has a separate 'program', to use J. Dwight Pentecost's term, for each Israel and the Church. Dispensationalists teach that God has eternal covenants with Israel which cannot be broken.

While stressing that God has not forsaken those physically descended from Abraham through Isaac, dispensationalists do affirm the necessity for Jews to receive Jesus as Messiah. They hold that God made unconditional covenants with Israel as a people and nation in the Abrahamic, Palestinian, Davidic and the New Covenant. Dispensationalism has had a pronounced effect on Christians' attitude toward Israel; many thousands of Christians are presently lovers of Israel, and Zionists, because they believe that God has not rejected Israel as His people.

Judaism

Christian dispensationalists sometimes embrace what some critics have pejoratively called Judeophilia—ranging from support of the state of Israel, to observing traditional Jewish holidays and practicing traditionally Jewish religious rituals. (See also Christian Zionism, Jewish Christians, Judaizers, and Messianic Judaism (below)). Dispensationalists typically support the modern state of Israel, recognize its existence as God revealing His Will for the Last Days, and reject anti-Semitism.[24]

Messianic Judaism

Dispensationalists tend to have special interest in the Jews because the dispensationalist hermeneutic honors Biblical passages that list Jews as amongst God's chosen people (the others would be the Gentiles in the church, and proselytes to Judaism). Some Messianic Jews (Messianic Judaism), however, reject dispensationalism in favor of a related but distinct hermeneutic, called Olive Tree Theology.[25] The name "Olive Tree Theology" refers to the passages of Romans 11:17-18: "If some of the branches were broken off, and you, a wild olive, were grafted in among them and have become equal sharers in the rich root of the olive tree, then don't boast as if you were better than the branches!"

Antichrist

Some dispensationalists, such as the late fundamentalist Jerry Falwell, have asserted that the Antichrist will be a Jew, based on a belief that the Antichrist will falsely seem to some Jews to fulfill prophecies of the Messiah more accurately than Jesus did.[26]

However, many dispensationalists do not accept this belief, and claim that a number of scriptures do not cite any evidence, such as Daniel 9:27.

Such dispensationalists claim that this "prince" will be of the same people that destroyed the Jewish city in 70 AD, i.e., of Roman origin and therefore will not be Jewish. However, other dispensationalists base the nationality of the army that destroyed Jerusalem as compromising an Arab and Syrian ethnicity, and therefore the Antichrist, or the "prince", shall not be of Roman origin, but middle eastern.[27][28]

In turn, this "prince" will stand up "against the Prince of princes" and destroy many "by peace" (Dan 8:25); and will be responsible for the false "peace and safety" that will precede the destructive day of the Lord (1 Thess 5:2–3). Some believe this man will be a Jew, based in part on John 5:43, where the Lord stated that the unbelieving Jews would receive another who "shall come in his own name" (as opposed to the Lord Himself, who came in the Father's name). Further evidence is taken from Daniel 11:37, "Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all", although in a passage as late as Daniel, a better translation is probably, "He will reject the gods (Eloha) of his fathers." The prophet Daniel refers to this man as "a vile person", who will "obtain the kingdom by flatteries" (Dan 11:21). This belief is not essential to dispensationalism.[citation needed]

Darby himself taught the Antichrist will be a Jew, and the Beast, a separate person, will be the political leader of the revived Roman empire.[29]

World politics

Dispensationalism teaches that Christians should not rely on spiritual good from earthly governments (though they are to pray for peace in the state or country which they are in, and believe that government is ordained by God (Rom 13:1-7)), or success in any endeavor to be prominent in the present world, or start a church kingdom, since the Kingdom of God is seen as yet to come. Instead, people should expect social conditions to decline as the end times draw nearer. Dispensationalist readings of prophecies (such as Daniel 9:27, “And he [the Antichrist] will make a covenant [a peace contract] with the many [the nation of Israel along with the nations that oppose it] . . . ”) often teach that the Antichrist will appear to the world as a peacemaker. Dispensationalists are usually not inclined to look upon the actions of the United Nations with favor, because they view this entity as working toward ungodly goals, such as contributing to the erection of the superstructure for the coming government of the Antichrist. Almost all dispensationalists reject the idea that a lasting peace can be attained by human effort in the Middle East, and believe instead that "wars and rumors of wars" (Matt. 24:6) will increase as the end times approach. Dispensationalist beliefs often underlie the religious and political movement of Christian Zionism.

Dispensationalists teach that churches which do not insist on Biblical literalism set forth an inconsistent method of interpretation with respect to the area of Bible prophecy, and view it as a step towards theological liberalism which rejects Scripture being inerrant. They are averse to ecumenism and other attempts to create church organizations that cross denominational boundaries such as the World Council of Churches.

United States politics

Political analyst Richard Allen Greene has argued that dispensationalism has had a major influence on the foreign policy of the United States. This influence has included continued support for the state of Israel.[30]

Political commentator Kevin Phillips points out in his book American Theocracy (2006) how dispensationalists and other fundamentalist Christians, together with the oil lobby, have provided political support for the invasion of Iraq in 2003, without approval of the United Nations.

Fiction

Dispensationalist themes form the basis of the popular Left Behind series of books. However, not all dispensationalists agree with the theology of authors Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e Blaising, Craig A.; Darrell L. Bock (1993). Progressive Dispensationalism. Wheaton, IL: BridgePoint. ISBN 156476138X. 
  2. ^ a b Elwell, Walter A. (1984). Evangelical Dictionary of Theology. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House. ISBN 0801034132. 
  3. ^ Ryrie, Charles Caldwell (1986). Basic Theology. Wheaton, Ill: Victor Books. ISBN 089693814X.  p. 508-509
  4. ^ Gerhard Hasel, 'Crossroads in Prophetic Interpretation: Historicism versus Futurism', paper presented to the 1990 World Ministers Council, July 3, 1990, Indianapolis, Indiana
  5. ^ Francis Nigel Lee, 'John's Revelation Unveiled', 2000
  6. ^ David Pio Gullon, 'Two Hundred Years From Lacunza: The Impact Of His Eschatalogical Thought On Prophetic Studies And Modern Futurism', The First International Jerusalem Bible Conference, June 1998
  7. ^ Ryrie, Charles Caldwell (1965). Dispensationalism Today. Chicago: Moody Press.  page 137
  8. ^ Harry A. Ironside. "Not Wrath, but Rapture". http://www.gotothebible.com/HTML/notwrath.html. "The prophetic clock stopped at Calvary; it will not start again until "the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.'" 
  9. ^ Mike Stallard. "PROGRESSIVE DISPENSATIONALISM". http://faculty.bbc.edu/mstallard/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/PDChallenge.pdf. "Ladd starts the eschatological kingdom in the Gospels. Progressives start the kingdom with the ascension of Christ. The most significant difference, however, is that Ladd treats the Church as a kind of “New Israel” in his commentary on Revelation. Progressive dispensationalism in no way advocates that the Church replaces Israel as in Ladd and in a more developed way in Covenant Theology (including brands of covenant premillennialism)." 
  10. ^ Harry A. Ironside. "The Great Parenthesis". http://www.plymouthbrethren.org/article/10425. "It is the author’s fervent conviction that the failure to understand what is revealed in Scripture concerning the Great Parenthesis between Messiah’s rejection, with the consequent setting aside of Israel nationally, and the regathering of God’s earthly people and recognition by the Lord in the last days, is the fundamental cause for many conflicting and unscriptural prophetic teachings. Once this parenthetical period is understood and the present work of God during this age is apprehended, the whole prophetic program unfolds with amazing clearness." 
  11. ^ Mike Stallard. "PROGRESSIVE DISPENSATIONALISM". http://faculty.bbc.edu/mstallard/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/PDChallenge.pdf. "some OT promises can be expanded by the NT. However, this expansion is never viewed as replacing or undoing the implications of that OT promise to its original audience, Israel. For example, the Church’s participation in the New Covenant taught in the NT can add the Church to the list of recipients of the New Covenant promises made in the OT. However, such participation does not rule out the future fulfillment of the OT New Covenant promises to Israel at the beginning of the Millennium. Thus, the promise can have a coinciding or overlapping fulfillment through NT expansions of the promise." 
  12. ^ Vern Poythress (1986). "Understanding Dispensationalists". pp. section 12. http://www.frame-poythress.org/Poythress_books/bdisp/bd4.html#12. Retrieved 2011-03-01. "Now some Jews have been cut off from their place in the olive tree, so that Gentiles might be grafted in. But Jews in their cutting off remain cultivated olive branches, and they can be grafted in again. This is quite consistent with the fact that there is only one holy (cultivated) olive tree, hence one people of God, and one root." 
  13. ^ Charles Caldwell Ryrie (1995), Dispensationalism, "(p.53) ...the Scofield Reference Bible... is Watts's [dispensational] outline, not Darby's!" 
  14. ^ Isaac Watts (1812). The Harmony of all the Religions which God ever Prescribed to Men and all his Dispensations towards them. http://books.google.com/?id=xsUOAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA327&dq=isaac+watts++Harmony+of+all+the+Religions#v=onepage&q=pentecost&f=false. "The kingdom of Christ, therefore, or the christian dispensation was not properly set up in all its forms, doctrines and duties, till the following day of Pentecost, and the pouring down of the Spirit upon the Apostles" 
  15. ^ Harry A. Ironside. "Wrongly Dividing The Word of Truth. Chapter 3: The Transitional Period. Is the Church of The Acts the Body of Christ?". http://www.plymouthbrethren.org/article/181. "Here we are distinctly informed as to the way in which the Body has been brought into existence, and this is exactly what took place at Pentecost." 
  16. ^ Larry V. Crutchfield. The Origins of Dispensationalism: The Darby Factor. "Darby sees Stephen's testimony as the hinge upon which the transition between the Jewish and Christian order of things swings, for Stephen had seen Jesus in the heavenlies (undoubtedly a reference to Acts 7:55). 'Thus', says Darby, 'he formed the linked between Jewish rejection and the position and state of the church which followed.' At the death of Stephen, the 'Gentile dispensation' began as a distinct thing because that event serviced as a witness that the Jews were resisting the Holy Spirit just as their fathers had." 
  17. ^ John Nelson Darby. "The Collected Writings Of J. N. Darby, Ecclesiastical No. 1, Volume 1: The Character Of Office In The Present Dispensation". http://www.plymouthbrethren.org/article/10884. "Stephen formed the link between Jewish rejection and the position and state of the church which followed...Stephen was the closing of the Jewish ‘possibility of the dispensation.' But a new scene now opens—the regular Gentile form and order of the dispensation in the hands of the apostle Paul, the apostle of the uncircumcision, the apostle of the Gentiles. Did he then derive it from the apostles? or was he indeed a successor to our Lord by earthly appointment and derivation? No; in no wise." 
  18. ^ Robert C. Brock. "The Teachings of Christ". http://www.bereanbiblesociety.org/articles/1017958318.html. "The ministry of Christ did not stop with His ascension in the first chapter of the book of Acts. Christians have failed to realize that when Saul is saved in Acts 9, a NEW ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ is begun by God, and this NEW ministry ushers in this present age of grace. Saul's name is changed to Paul, and he is designated as the Apostle of the Gentiles (Romans 11:13). He is given revelations from the risen Christ, and these are the revelations embracing Christianity." 
  19. ^ Sarah Pulliam (2007-10-10). "Christianity Today magazine, "Dispensational Dustup: Student dismissed from leadership for 'potentially divisive' beliefs."". "Northwestern College in St. Paul, Minnesota removed a senior [Josh Strelecki] as student ministries director because of theological views that some at the college called "hyper-dispensational [and] potentially divisive"...Strelecki holds to three controversial beliefs: that the book of James was written for Israel and not for the church; that the church started with Paul and not at Pentecost; and that Israel was saved by faith and works, not by faith alone... Northwestern upholds a broadly evangelical doctrinal statement..." 
  20. ^ John Nelson Darby. "The Collected Writings of J. N. Darby, Ecclesiastical Writings " The Collected Writings Of J. N. Darby, Ecclesiastical No. 4, Volume 20: A Reply To Defence Of The Doctrine Of Baptismal Regeneration". http://www.plymouthbrethren.org/article/10884. "if Christianity were the new covenant, which it is not, the Holy Ghost is the seal of faith now as circumcision was then. Matthew 28 was never carried out. The mission to the Gentiles was given up to Paul explicitly (Gal. 2) who was not sent to baptize..." 
  21. ^ Rev. 21
  22. ^ Walvoord, John F (1990). Blessed hope and the tribulation.. [S.l.]: Contemporary Evangelical. ISBN 0310340411 9780310340416. 
  23. ^ bible.org
  24. ^ http://www.foigm.org/
  25. ^ David H. Stern, Messianic Jewish Manifesto, The Complete Jewish Bible, and The Jewish New Testament Commentary .
  26. ^ "Weeks ago, Falwell said he was at peace with death". http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/news/story/7479490p-7374395c.html. Retrieved 2007-05-17. [dead link]
  27. ^ http://www.joelstrumpet.com/?p=2440
  28. ^ http://www.lastdaysmystery.info/from_where_the_antichrist_comes.htm
  29. ^ "The Hopes of the Church of God, John Nelson Darby". http://rarebooks.dts.edu/viewbook.aspx?bookid=1271. 
  30. ^ Greene, Richard Allen (2006-07-19). "Evangelical Christians plead for Israel". BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/5193092.stm. Retrieved 2007-03-20. 

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