Breaking the Cycle: Dispensational Distinctions

Rev. Dr. Robert L. Harrison, PhD - Break the Cycle

Praise the Lord.

I want to invite you out to our Sunday afternoon services from 3:00pm – 4:30pm.

Before I get into the message I just want to say that I am honored to have been asked by one whom I consider to be one of my surrogate sons in Christ, Bro. Corey Givens, to be his Spiritual Advisor as he navigates the potentially treacherous waters running for the soon to be vacant seat of Karl Nurse on the city Council.

DISPENSATIONAL DISTINCTIONS – THE PRINCIPLE OF RIGHTLY DIVIDING THE WORD – PART 1

Dispensationalism is a hermeneutical system that comes from the word meaning stewardship. Distinguishing dispensations is a Biblical hermeneutic interpretation of the whole history of man. By using a consistent literal interpretation it organizes the differences where God acted with mankind and employed different activities that changed. A literal interpretation also takes into account figurative language, symbols and patterns. This all makes a large difference when one interprets prophecy. Because these all relate to a literal fulfillment.

There are different types of dispensational views. Some break it down to two dispensations, making the distinction of the law covenant and the new covenant. However, there are more than two covenants, some see as many as seven. C.I. Scofield, of the Scofield Bible, (along with other dispensational teachers), have taught this.

There are numerous changes through the ages; certainly the introduction of the gospel reveals a change in dispensations, from law to grace. While many point to Darby as an originator,  this concept was employed by some in the early church and developed into a systematic theology as were many other portions and topics of the Scripture.

There are those who vehemently oppose dispensationalism pointing out that not until the 1800s was it taught John Darby, founder of the Plymouth Brethren movement. While he and others may have introduced some new facets to this, even the Ante-Nicene Fathers, the early church pastors and apologists had some similar divisions that modern dispensationalists hold.

The Bible speaks of Adam to Abraham, from Abraham to Moses, from Moses to Christ, and from Christ to the tribulation that will lead mankind into the Millennium and afterwards an eternal state.

Without understanding the different Covenants one cannot see distinct dispensations, this is essential in rightly dividing the Word of Truth (II Timothy 2:15), or one can come to the conclusion of the church being Israel, or the church always existing.

The word times, ages is aion in Greek, in Eph. 1:10 “ that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth— in Him.”

Eph. 3:2 “if indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you”

The word for dispensation in Greek is oikonomia; meaning an administration (of a household or estate); specifically, a (religious) “economy”:

Thayer’s the management of a household or of household affairs

a) specifically, the management, oversight, administration, of other’s property

b) the office of a manager or overseer, stewardship

c) administration, dispensation

Dispensation- Gr. oikonomia, means “the management of household affairs.” the mystery of the gospel would become known in this last dispensation, it was not known before.

God the Father is the Dispenser of the Gospel benefits that comes by Christ the Son and through the Holy Spirit to those who are believers put in the body, the Church.

1. The coming of Jesus at the first advent, “in the fullness of time,” was one of these “times.”

2. The descent of the Holy Spirit, when “Pentecost was fully come” (Acts 2:1) is another.

3. The conversion of the Jews at the end of the tribulation, “when the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.”

4. The second coming of Christ, the “restitution of all things,” the millennial kingdom. The messianic age begins with the king physically present on earth to rule the nations.

5. The new heaven and earth, finishes “the dispensation of the fullness of times.” in Eph 2:7 “The ends of the ages’ (1 Cor. 10:11); “the times to come.” Before the new order of things.

We have a Bible word for “AGE.” The Bible refers to “ages past” (Eph. 3:5), “ages to come” (Eph. 2:7), and “all ages” (Eph. 3:21) all in the same letter by Paul.

Before I do I want to give you a few warm up scriptures that will help to bring this key one to light. Top of Form

Till next week,

God Bless.

Rev. Dr. Robert L. Harrison, PhD

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