Thursday, September 24, 2009

I Was a Teenage Dispensationalist (Revisited 2009)

Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr., Th.D., Director, NiceneCouncil.com

I am the Director of NiceneCouncil.com, which produces and distributes much evangelical and Reformed theological material. One of our main ministries is our witness against the errors in dispensationalism and the naivete of dispensationalists. Dispensationalism has absolutely saturated the American evangelical mind and has, conversely, diluted the integrity of the Christian witness to our culture and the world. Hence we have developed an important video documentary The Late Great Planet Church (see our on-line store at: NiceneCouncil.com). And also this very blogspot: AgainstDispenationalism.com. We are serious in our anti-dispensationalism.

In that you are a visitor to this blogspot, perhaps a personal testimony from me would be of interest. (If you are not a visitor, how in the world are you reading this blog? Nobody actually lives here. I rest my case.) Sometimes it is helpful to read the testimony of others, especially regarding their current theological standing and its historic development. This might be especially interesting in light of my and NiceneCouncil.com’s strong position against dispensationalism.

Though dispensationalists are our brothers in Christ.... And though they affirm the same Scriptures that we do, and with equal conviction.... We must recognize this “in house” squabble as being significant. In fact, we feel that dispensationalism is embarrassing the evangelical Christian faith (with its naivete and its frequent calls for the End). We believe our brothers need to be challenged to look more carefully at Scripture in order to learn where they have fumbled.

In my next blog I will write a letter to dispensationalists, challenging them to reconsider their foundations. In this one I will provide my testimony regarding my dispensational background, showing them my previous involvement in the system and my dispensationalist credentials.

My Early Dispensational Experience

I once was a dispensationalist. I have the spiritual experience and the academic credentials of a certified dispensationalist. But you might say that I raptured out of the system. Though I was a teenage dispensationalist I am now a mature covenantalist. In other words, I was once a dispensationalist but I got over it. Leaving dispensationalism — where virtually all of my family resided — was emotionally difficult. But in the final analysis it was a matter of “thus saith the Lord.” Leaving dispensationalism was like being born-again again. The impact on my spiritual life and development was just that great.

As a sixteen year-old teenager I was converted to Christ under a dispensational youth ministry at a Bible camp at Florida Bible College in Boca Raton, Florida (1966). I was sent there by my uncle, Rev. John S. Lanham, a dispensational pastor. My uncle was generously stepping in to help my sister and me through our parents divorce (my uncle was my mother’s brother). While at that youth camp, and on the very first night, I heard the gospel preached from Ephesians 2:8–9. Right then and there God wonderfully opened my heart to his gospel. I knew that I now had eternal life. Though I am now Reformed, I must confess that God used an altar call to save me!

Naturally I returned home with great enthusiasm for the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. I knew the truth and the truth had set me free. I immediately began attending my uncle’s dispensational church in Chattanooga, Tennessee (Calvary Bible Church). There I was schooled in the Scofield Reference Bible. In his preaching my uncle would often say: “If you have a good Bible, turn to page so-and-so for our next text.” My hope was built on nothing less / than Scofield’s notes and Moody Press. I was so eager to learn that within two years I soon was teaching a youth Sunday school class.

While there I developed a great facility with the church’s dispensational charts and graphs, and put them to good use. Furthermore, I had a dispensational bad of honor: a well-marked Scofield Reference Bible. None of that newfangled New Scofield Reference Bible stuff for me: I had the old Bible. If it was good enough for Scofield, it was good enough for me.

As I was studying Engineering at the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga (1969–70), I began attending a campus ministry conducted by Kay Arthur, who is now well-known for her Precepts Ministries International. Kay happened also to be our Youth Director at Calvary Bible Church. She was a dynamic and effective teacher; I was an excited and committed Christian eager to learn.

(As an interesting aside, I also daily played table tennis with a UTC classmate, Timothy George. He has since demonstrated himself to be a remarkable Reformed scholar: He has Th.D. from Harvard University and has been the dean of Beeson Divinity School at Samford University since 1988. He is the author of Theology of the Reformers and other scholarly works. I can’t remember if I could beat him at table tennis. I do remember he was quite good at it, though. And I used to be also, as a member of the Junior United States Table Tennis Association. But I digress.)

During my time at UTC Jack and Kay Arthur established a dispensational youth ranch in Chattanooga. It was known initially as Outreach Youth Ranch, but soon became Reachout Youth Ranch (due to a conflict of names with another local ministry). My future wife (Melissa) and I greatly enjoyed Kay’s challenging instruction. This youth ministry quickly evolved into Precepts Ministry (1970), which has become an international Bible study ministry of dispensational convictions taught by Kay Arthur. The next year Melissa and I married (July 31, 1971). We were glad the Rapture was delayed a little while.

My Academic Dispensational Training

As I developed spiritually and grew in my understanding biblically, I experienced an increasingly strong desire to learn the Bible better so that I might teach it more accurately. You might say that I wanted to “rightly divide the word of truth” — into the proper dispensations, of course. So I transferred from UTC’s Engineering program to Tennessee Temple College, a few blocks away from UTC in downtown Chattanooga. There I majored in “Biblical Studies.” I like to tell people that when I took a calculus class at UTC, the Lord called me to ministry. (Don’t tell my daughter-in-law, Sara, who teaches calculus in advanced math classes in high school! She graduated from Covenant College where they teach that sort of thing.)

While at Temple my dispensational understanding was fleshed out and given a more thorough theological foundation and super-structure. I studied under some very effective Bible teachers, such as Dr. Wymal Porter and Dr. Dennis Wisdom. In fact, I became friends with Dr. Wisdom. I even took him to visit another dispensational teacher friend of mine outside of the Temple community. He wanted to discuss with this gentlemen the question of whether the “bride of Christ” is to be distinguished from the larger body of Christians, like Eve was drawn out of a part of the body of Adam.

This gentlemen that Dr. Wisdom and I visited taught that the “bride of Christ” was a special designation for a smaller realm of “strongly committed” Christians in the Church. He taught that God distinguished these faithful Christians from those merely born-again and largely uncommitted, carnal Christians. This friend worked with me at my uncle’s dispensationalist bookstore, Lanham’s Bible Bookshop on Brainerd Road in Chattanooga. Dr. Wisdom soundly refuted him, arguing that the whole born-again community of believers makes up the bride of Christ. I was relieved; I was on the inside.

Returning now to my college experience: Despite my great appreciation for the teaching skills of Dr. Wisdom, I remember that in the course on “Premillennialism” he made the (oft heard) claim: “You will not find a liberal premillennialist, though you will find many liberal amillennialists.” (I believe this derived from our course textbook by Ryrie: The Basis of the Premillennial Faith.) I don’t know what possessed me, but I asked him in class: “But don’t we find a lot of premillennial cults, like Mormonism and the Jehovah’s Witnesses?” Perhaps the Greek courses and the hermeneutics study I was receiving at Temple was already beginning to expose flaws in the system. However, at that time I wrote this off as a mere problem I was having with indigestion.

In May of 1973 I received my B.A. degree in “Biblical Studies” at Tennessee Temple College (cum laude, nonetheless; I think this was “with praise” that I was leaving). Now I was schooled in the Bible and theology and held a degree in the field. I was increasingly eager to enter into some full-time Christian teaching — perhaps teaching at a college or seminary. So I enrolled at a dispensationalist, Grace Brethren school: Grace Theological Seminary in Winona Lake, Indiana (August 1973). While there I received further and deeper instruction in dispensationalism at the graduate level (I was there from 1973–75).

But in a course on soteriology, I began to research the question regarding “Lordship salvation.” In my research I stumbled on a powerful passage relating Peter’s Pentecost sermon in Acts 2: “Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne” (Acts 2:29–30).

It suddenly and powerfully struck me: Peter was declaring that Christ was raised up to sit on David’s throne at his resurrection! If that were true, then we were currently in the kingdom of Christ. And if that were true, then dispensationalism was mistaken. What was I to do? My system was falling down around me, even as I studied it at a deeper, graduate level.

My Ultimate Dispensational “Rapture”

In that I had Calvinistic convictions (I was a member of the “Calvinist Underground” at Tennessee Temple College), I thought I should read something by a Reformed scholar. I looked through the Grace Seminary library (where my wife was a librarian) and found O. T. Allis’s masterful work Prophecy and the Church. That was it. He destroyed my dispensationalism. I was now a Christian without a theological home.

As a result of this, three Grace Seminary friends of mine and I drove all night to get to Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson, Mississippi. We attended a few classes, talked with the Administrator, and liked what we saw. Soon thereafter all three of us raptured out of Grace Seminary and enrolled at Reformed. While studying at RTS we were swept away by our new theological hero, Greg L. Bahnsen.

I graduated from RTS with a Master of Divinity degree in 1977 and entered the pastorate just three months later. And the rest, you might say, is history. I was now totally disenchanted with dispensationalism and was busy extricating my mind from all of its constructs (which took some time). I was well on the way to a consistently Reformed theology. Dispensationalism was now anathema.

My Seeking Dispensational Testimonies

So that is my story, and I’m sticking to it. What is your testimony regarding dispensationalism? I would love to hear a paragraph or two testimonial. What brought you out of the system?

And if you have some friends who have converted out of the system, please have them come to our blog site and give their testimonies. We won’t tell anyone. :)

19 comments:

Dave said...

I read your post with interest.

I find it interesting that you refer to the naivete of dispensationalists (which is quite condescending) while using a very debatable interpretation of the passage in Acts to dismiss the entire system of dispensational theology out of hand. I would suggest that it begs the question of naivete if one would so easily accept (or promote) the idea that this seals their fate - as if dispensationalists have never read the passage or dealt with it as responsible exegetes.

NiceneCouncil.com said...

Dave:

Thanks for your response. Your comment, however, is quite mistaken. You complain that I refer to "the naivete of dispensationalists" but that I then acted naively myself when I rejected the system "out of hand" when I "so easily accept[ed]" a "debatable interpretation of the passage in Acts." You are very much mistaken at two levels.

First, you misread my blog. You think I stated that the mere reading of this one passage led me "to dismiss the entire system of dispensational theology out of hand." Please re-read my statement to discover what I actually said. Please note:

(1) I state that I was in the process of "research." Research does not involve a mere quick reading: it is contemplative, exegetical analysis. In fact, I didn't just look at this one passage for a few moments. I began to trace out ("research") other related passages to evaluate the matter.

(2) I state that after researching the passage I wondered: "If that were true, then we were currently in the kingdom of Christ. And if that were true, then dispensationalism was mistaken." "If" is an important word that you overlooked. Twice. I did not immediately dismiss dispensationalism.

(3) I then state that after my "research" of this passage (which by the very nature of the case involved other related passages) "my system was falling down around me." The present participle indicates it was in process of falling down; it did not fall down all at once.

(4) I do not declare that I had totally abandoned the system until I write the following: "I looked through the Grace Seminary library (where my wife was a librarian) and found O. T. Allis’s masterful work Prophecy and the Church. That was it. He destroyed my dispensationalism." Allis was an internationally noted evangelical scholar who taught at Princeton Theological Seminary. His book was around 300 pages long. It was exegetically rigorous. Accepting Allis' rigorous, scholarly analysis after I researched, is not an example of naivete.

Second, you misconstrue the meaning of "naivete." Consider the following:

(1) One is not naive when he carefully researches a matter. For instance, I would not say Walvoord and Ryrie were "naive." They obviously carefully researched their books according to acceptable academic standards. I would say they were "wrong" (based on counter-evidence), not "naive."

(2) When I complain about the naivete of dispensationalism, I am referring to dispensationalism as a very visible public movement. I am especially refering to its very public, frequent, mistaken "calls for the end." These have led to numerous complaints from scholars --- both Christian and secular --- , which bring ridicule upon the larger Christian faith. I think of such books as Robert Fuller's Naming the Antichrist, Paul Boyer's When Time Shall Be No More, Richard Kyle's The Last Days are Here Again, and C. Marvin Pate's, Doomsday Delusions.

(3)The popular, best-selling dispensational presence is embarrassingly naive. And it is all over the air waves and in the bookstores. Consider the following book titles:

Planet Earth — 2000: Will Mankind Survive?;

I Predict 2000;

Prophecy 2000: Rushing to Armageddon;

The 90’s: Decade of the Apocalypse;

How Close Are We?: Compelling Evidence for the Soon Return of Christ;

Storm Warning;

The Final Countdown;

Armageddon: Appointment with Destiny;

The Rapture Book: Victory in the End Times;

Earth’s Final Days;

Storming Toward Armageddon: Essays in Apocalypse;

Final Approach: The Opportunity and Adventure of End-Times Living;

Is This the Last Century?

Sam Hughey said...

Kenneth,

I also came out of Dispensationalism (kicking & screaming), but I came out. I wasn't desiring to turn my back on the only belief system I ever knew or have my whole world turned upside down or hoping my fellow brothers/sisters in Christ would think of me as an heretic. However, I can truly state now that having 'left Dispensationalism behind' (pun intended), I discovered I never really knew Dispensationalism from a Biblical perspective, only Biblical words and phrases, and that my whole world became right-side up and only a few of my fellow brothers/sisters in Christ think I'm an heretic.

What changed my view did not result from searching for another belief system because I was tired of the one I had, rather concerns about the only belief system I had such as questions I couldn't answer from a pure Biblical perspective without Dispensational props to support the belief system. The problem (one of many actually) was that as a Dispensationalist, not being told there were other belief systems and not knowing that I should allow my views to be challenged, I remained quietly snuggled in my camp of Dispensationalism. When I moved (literally) away from my Dispensationalist church and brethren, I began to be challenged by other Christians, introduced to books which were not Dispensational and then the Internet was discovered (thanks Mr. Gore!).

One of the first things I remember experiencing was a bit of anger (not the malicious sinful type) because I was never informed about other belief systems or the criticisms against Dispensationalism. After all, I was in the trenches of free-will theism and I should have been allowed to decide for myself if Dispensationalism truly had Biblical grounds to defend it, or not. It disturbed me greatly that this information was deliberately withheld from me and I was allowed to know only what I was told to believe. Now, this does not in anyway whatsoever excuse me from seeking that information. I am solely responsible for what I believe and for the knowledge I accrue.

This new-found way of thinking (outside the box, without throwing the box away) led me to discovering the history of my Baptist beliefs (the good and the bad). I discovered a passion for knowledge and especially for my Baptist historical background. At the time (18 years ago) there was little (very little) Baptist history sites on the Internet and I really didn't know which were the most reliable books on the subject. After seeking a church which met my desire to grow into God's word from a Biblical perspective instead of a Dispensational perspective, I was led to a Reformed Baptist church where I met many who had made the same trek I was then making. They were of immense assistance and I am still a member of that church today. It was truly amazing to discover that Dispensationalism was not the only belief system Christians (and Baptists) have historically held and because of this I was inspired to create a website (The Reformed Reader) for the very purpose of introducing Baptists to their historical beliefs, including the fact that there are other belief systems than Dispensationalism

Thanks Kenneth for presenting Dispensational teaching in the light of Scripture, instead of the light of traditions.

Dave said...

I carefully read your post and understand that you were changed your mind during a process of research - but I think you did indicate that your reading of this verse was a catalyst. So, my comment was related to a misinterpretation of that verse being the catalyst to abandon dispensationalism. I apologize for characterizing it as "out-of-hand."

In this response you clarified what you meant by "naivete" - and excluded men like Walvoord - who never did any date-setting. However, your initial post appeared to be much more sweeping. That was my concern because it was not a fair representation.

I think a survey of responsible dispensational scholars would reveal that very few of them would engage in anything approximating date-setting. In the 25 years since I was saved at age 26, I have never personally met any dispensationalist who would dare set a date - and am acquainted with some of the most well-known dispensational theologians.

However, it is extremely unfortunate that some, even quite a few, have made far too many extreme statements correlating current events with fulfillment of prophecy.

I do think each generation is potentially the "terminal" generation. But then, that is also true for someone who holds to Covenant theology. We both believe in the second-coming of Christ - and since no one knows the day or hour, but there are also "birth-pains" preceding his coming - then current events could suggest that any given generation may be close to his coming. It might be the next generation - it could potentially be 10 generations from now.

But the Scriptures indicate that there is only one regathering of Israel into the land. It isn't complete, but it is underway. The question that may be unanswered is whether or not the regathering could span more than one generation. Of course, this presumes that one accepts that there is still a future for national Israel. The unconditional nature of the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants, which both have a land component, do seem to indicate that national Israel must occupy that land in peace. (I know you understand this from your time studying and accepting dispensational theology.)

Obviously, this all involves a lot more exegesis than I have time to engage in on your blog - because of my own ministry. I do find it unfortunate that a growing number of Covenant adherents have moved from a "non-dispensational" position to a more radical "anti-dispensational" position as is suggested by your blog title.

Dave James
The Alliance for Biblical Integrity
www.biblicalintegrity.org

Anonymous said...

I was looking around your site. I am still confused about this topic. Someone pointed me to this sermon:http://www.straightwalk.org/resources/Sermon+Guard+Your+Doctrine+01.wma

If dispensationalism is what this guy is attacking, then I certainly disagree with that view. God is not a racist...

Is this the essential difference between dispensationalism and covenant theology? That the Jewish race is given some kind of special, exalted place?

NiceneCouncil.com said...

Anonymous:

Yes, a defining element in dispensationalism is its exaltation of Israel above all other peoples. This is true even in the millennium as Jews rule over Gentile Christians. Notice some of the following dispensational comments.

Charles Ryrie (The Basis of the Premillennial Faith) : "Israel, regathered and turned to the Lord in salvation, will be exalted, blessed, and favored through this period."

J. Dwight Pentecost (Things to Come): "The Gentiles will be Israel’s servants during that age. . . . The nations which usurped authority over Israel in past ages find that downtrodden people exalted and themselves in subjection in their kingdom. And these are not unsaved Gentiles: The Gentiles that are in the millennium will have experienced conversion prior to admission."

Herman Hoyt (The Meaning of the Millennium): "The redeemed living nation of Israel, regenerated and regathered to the land will be head over all the nations of the earth. . . . So he exalts them above the Gentile nations. . . . On the lowest level there are the saved, living, Gentile nations."

Thomas Ice (Dominion Theology: Blessing or Curse?): "God will keep his original promises to the fathers and will one day convert and place Israel as the head of the nations."

John Walvoord (The Millennial Kingdom): "Israel will be a glorious nation, protected from her enemies, exalted above the Gentiles. . . . In contrast to the present church age in which Jew and Gentile are on an equal plane of privilege, the millennium is clearly a period of time in which Israel is in prominence and blessing. . . . Israel as a nation will be exalted."

Arnold Fruchtenbaum (Popular Encyclopedia of Bible Prophecy): "In the millennium Israel as a nation will rule over the Gentiles."

mark pierson said...

Kenneth,
My journey out of dispyism started when I took to meditating on chapters like Galatians 3:26-29, and Ephesians 2:11-22 and 3:1-12. I did not at the time realize that there were other systems of interpretation. All I could do was shake my head and wonder why I could not see dispensational claims of an Israel/Church distinction hold up when these chapters were considered.

Question: do you really think that dialogue is possible with the anti-lordship brand of dispensationalism of Robert Wilkin or even Lou Martuneac?

rreece said...

"I looked through the Grace Seminary library (where my wife was a librarian) and found O. T. Allis’s masterful work Prophecy and the Church. That was it. He destroyed my dispensationalism."

In reading through your post and responses and above quote, I failed to see any mention of the finest work written on dispensationalism, "The Greatness of the Kingdom" by Alva McClain. To me this seems to be a noticeable pattern from the greater majority of covenantalists. Your familiarity of Grace Theological Seminary most certainly had to have exposed you to this work for honest consideration of "dispyisms" (a term used in a later response)position.

While I do agree that many of the prominent dispensationalist's have errored greatly in predicting current events into God's eschatlogical timetable, McClains treatment of the text was forthright and genuine.

I wonder whether one's experience in Arminianism, extreme dispensationalism and the like can have a strong tendency to influence the swing of textual criticism.

I too have felt the liberation from bad theology (I.e. from Arminanism into the doctrines of grace and Christ's Lordship.) But rather than chucking the hope of Israel as a nation that God will use to usher in the future in the normal interpretation of Scripture, I still rejoice in that hope as clearly spelled out By Dr. McClain. There still is a good school (DBTS) that presents it's dispensationalism honestly

Having laid my head on the chopping block of the covenentalists, be gentle!

NiceneCouncil.com said...

Reece:

No chopping block here! You had a very nice response. Thanks for reading and interacting.

I would point out, though, that McClain's book was written long ago and doesn't have too much influence in the discussion (as you noted!).

The interaction has tended to be with living dispensational scholars like Ryrie, Pentecost, and (until recently) Walvoord.

By the way, my postmillennialism has a future for Israel. But not as a political entity, but as a racial entity. I believe they will be saved and enter Christ's kingdom which he established in the first century.

Anonymous said...

Ken, I was pushed over the edge by Acts 2, which identifies the Davidic kingdom of the OT with Jesus' present session; Daniel 2, which predicts that the everlasting earthly and ever-growing kingdom was to be established during the ancient Roman Empire ("feet of iron-and-clay" mixture); and 1 Corinthians 15, which sets the Second Advent immediately after, not before, the subjugation of Christ's enemies.

Your own work, of course, has been a constant benefit.

Much respect,

P. Andrew Sandlin

Robert Brady said...

You asked for testimonies of how one came out of Dispensationalism.
My pilgrimage from Dispensationalism to a Covenant faith took place slowly over a span of forty years. I owe my understanding of the authority and inerrancy of Scripture to dispensational teachers. Billy Graham was one of my early heroes in the faith. His decision to trust that the Bible was “God breathed” and sufficient “that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” became my conviction as well. However, slowly I began to question key doctrines taught by dispensational teachers that did not seem to be supported by Scripture. I questioned doctrines such as two “second comings” of Christ, a future Jewish millennium, and a central focus on an ethnic nation of Israel as the key to interpreting end times prophecy. For years I dismissed these concerns, telling myself that these doctrines were simply related to one of several eschatological schemes, none of which affected other essential doctrines of the Christian faith. Therefore, like many I saw Dispensationalism as solely an eschatological interpretation that could be believed or not believed without serious damage to one’s theology as a whole. I no longer believe this.

Robert L. Brady, D.Min.

Don said...

I was indoctrinated into Dispensational Premillenialism. I saw a contradiction when I was told by several seasoned ministers to stay away from the Book of Revelation because it would harm me as a reletively young Christian when the book itself promised a blessing for those who read it. I had been saved for about fifteen years and had spent several years in Bible college in preparation for entering the ministry when I read Gary DeMar's book,"Last Days Madness". This was the beginning of my exodus from a failed eschatology. I have read quite a few books since then. I am a convinced partial preterist post millenialist today. Thank you for your ministry.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Gentry,
Just wondering... Is this the only area in which your profound ignorance shines through? Or, are there others?
As I said, just wondering!
Have a nice Eschatology, Sir!

NiceneCouncil.com said...

I hope this is the only one. But I confess, all I can do is hope such.

David said...

The first crack in my system came in 1973 when I read the NT twice in a 3-month period specifically trying to understand the rapture. From the plain reading of the text, it seemed clear that there is only one second coming including both rapture and visible return.

When I asked a dispensationalist for help, he handed me "Things to Come". I think Mr. Pentecost would be very unhappy to hear that reading his book completely destroyed my faith in dispensationalism. His hyper view of the church being some kind of interruption in the "real" plan of God ran totally contrary to the NT. And his constant gymnastics for interpretation made it abundantly clear that everything was driven by the lens that he used to read the text. There was no "plain reading" of scripture anywhere in sight.

What did become clear was that if dispensationalism were true, then no layperson could possibly read the Bible and get it "right" without having it explained by a professional. Because the violence they must do to the text in order to maintain harmony in the system is actually in contradiction to their own claim to literal interpretation. So it is impossible to read it for yourself.

Now, many years later, I see that was only the tip of the iceberg.
Much worse, they put the kingdom of God completely out of reach, just as the Pharisees did in Jesus' day. Dallas Willard's "Divine Conspiracy" presents a much more meaningful, hopeful understanding of Kingdom that can actually change a person from the inside out, not just fill your head with doctrine.

Jen Fishburne said...

Dr. Gentry, you have a very powerful testimony of where you've been and how God brought you out. I will spare you my long story, but one area that really caught my attention was how many brides does God have? Another was the fact that the New Covenant was given to Israel, yet Hebrews clearly tells us, as well as Christ Himself, that it is NOW.

I mostly came to comment on this particular post because of what you wrote about Kay Arthur. I have used her Bible study materials for years and find the method very productive for seeing the truth of Scripture, sans dispensationalism. Maybe that is because I used the method without any of her commentary! But I was wondering if you recommend any other Bible study method in place of Precepts, or do you still see the value of the method without her commentary?

Scott P said...

have you considered progressive dispensationalism? it is closer to covenant theology than classical disp. It was popularized by Robert Saucy, Blaising and Bock.

Scott P said...

have you considered progressive dispensationalism? it is closer to covenant theology than classical disp. It was popularized by Robert Saucy, Blaising and Bock.

Biker Bob said...

How interesting (the mystery of providence) how paths cross. I graduated from Tenn Temple in '82 (Bible), and had started wondering about some of the assertions of dispensationalism my senior year, so you know where I went to get some books that weren't carried in the TTU bookstore? Lanhams! It was another 7 or 8 years, after more study and re-examination of the tenets of dispensationalism, that I could not longer with a clear conscience adhere to that system.