Dispensationalists proclaim in their statement of faith many of the same beliefs that the Reformed faith does, except in the areas of the literal interpretation of the millennium, which clearly should be seen in a symbolic sense, as we have shown in a previous lesson; and the approach to Israel and the church.

Dispensationalism definition

To be accurate, their definition of Dispensationalism is as follows:

The literal method of interpretation is the key. Using the literal method of interpreting the biblical covenants and prophecy leads to a specific set of core beliefs about God's kingdom program, and what the future will hold. For our study of end times, this is applied by the recognition of a distinction between Israel and the Church, and a promised future earthly reign of Christ on the throne of David. (The Davidic Kingdom.) This leads a person to some very specific conclusions about the end times.

·        Israel must be regathered to their land as promised by the covenants. (If interpreted literally)

·        Daniel's seventieth week specifically refers to the purging of the nation Israel, and not the Church. These were the clear words spoken to Daniel. The church doesn't need purging from sin. It is already clean.

·        Some of the warnings in Matthew 24 are directed at the Jews, and not the Church (since God will be finishing His plan with national Israel)

·        A Pretribulation rapture (Israel is seen in Daniel as the key player during the tribulation) (God removes the elect when he brings judgment on the world. i.e. Noah, John 14)

·        Premillennialism - A literal 1000 year Millennial Kingdom, where Christ returns before the Millennium starts. Revelation 20 doesn't give us a reason to interpret the 1000 years as symbolic. Also, dispensationalists see the promised literal reign of Christ in the OT. Note the chronological order of events between Revelation 19-21.

They are in conflict with Scripture in their teaching about the separation between Jews and gentiles, as proven in the following passages:

Ephesians 3:4-6 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles and prophets.  6This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.

They are in conflict with Scripture in their teaching that the church does not need purging from sin and that it is already clean, exposes their misunderstanding about the division between the visible and invisible church. The visible church is refined and wickedness purged from among it.

Matthew 18:17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

I Corinthians 5:12  What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13God will judge those outside. "Expel the wicked man from among you."

Matthew 24:10-13 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other. 11And many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold. 13But he who stands firm to the end will be saved.

Isaiah 48:10 See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.

Daniel 11:35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.

Daniel 12:10 Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.

Hebrews 12:7, 8, 11  Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father. 8If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. 11No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

They are in conflict with Scripture when they assert that “some of the warnings in Matthew 24 are directed at the Jews” and cause of this distinction is “God will be finishing His plan with national Israel” which is circular reasoning: their conclusion is based on what their doctrine says and not Scripture.

They are in conflict with Scripture when they claim the existence of the Pretribulation rapture based on the premise that God removes the elect when He brings judgment on the world and then they refer to Noah and John 14. It is not clear which part of John 14 they claim as proof text. Their assertion that God removes the elect during judgment is in conflict with Matthew 24 and Mark 13 in which a time is described when there would be such a severe tribulation that the time had to be shortened for the sake of the elect. If God removed the elect before bringing judgment on the world, then these passages are speaking about some of the elect that were left behind, which is absurd.

Furthermore, the details of the tribulation, such as “you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death,” “flee to the mountains,” “it will be dreadful for pregnant women and nursing mothers,” and “pray that your flight will not take place in winter or the Sabbath” are all indicating that the elect would be fleeing for their lives. How does that rhyme with the Pretribulation Rapture, which is supposed to snatch the elect up? Why would the elect be fleeing and put to death? It does not correlate with Scripture.

Although some of their critics proclaim Dispensational Premillennialism as a cult, citing their deviations from the basic beliefs of the doctrine of Christ, one must distinguish between the denial of the pillars upon which the Christian doctrine rests and the denial of lesser aspects of the doctrine.  Dispensationalists profess in their statement of faith the doctrine of the Trinity, and that through Christ alone through faith alone salvation is possible and other scriptural correct professions. Their differences with Scripture do not rise to the level of a cult, denying that Christ is the Son of God, or that Christ is God, for instance.  We ought to consider their scriptural variances as at the same level as that of the Baptists, or the Methodists and others who attach to clear scriptural teaching the imaginations of man.

Dispensationalists deny that their doctrine only came into being in 1830 and that first century scholars showed in their writings the same notions upon which Dispensational Premillennialism has been built. They claim the following:

While the opponents of Dispensationalism will point out that as a system of theology it is relatively new, it is notable that there is evidence from the early church writers that there was clearly an understanding that God dealt with His people differently in progressive dispensations. A small reference to some of these writings is found in 'The Moody Handbook of Theology" by Paul Ennis. He mentions the following Christians as being in the history of the development of Dispensationalism.

Justin Martyr (A.D. 110-165)

Iranaeus (A.D. 130-200)

Clement of Alexandria (A.D. 150-220)

Augustine (A.D. 354-430)

Of the above Ryrie says "It is not suggested nor should it be inferred that these early Church Fathers were dispensationalists in the modern sense of the word. But it is true that some of them enunciated principles which later developed into Dispensationalism, and it may be rightly said that they held primitive or early dispensational concepts."

It is easy, but inaccurate, to infer from writings, which acknowledge that there is a difference in God’s dealings with man in various stages of history, that it is proof of a position of Dispensationalism, even an embryonic understanding. Their seven dispensations are:

  1. Innocence - Adam
  2. Conscience - After man sinned, up to the flood
  3. Government - After the flood, man allowed to eat meat, death penalty instituted
  4. Promise - Abraham up to Moses and the giving of the Law
  5. Law - Moses to the cross
  6. Grace - The cross to the Millennial Kingdom
  7. Millennial Kingdom - A 1000 year reign of Christ on earth centered in Jerusalem

Nobody can deny that these stages (and others) did exist and neither can anyone deny that God dealt differently with the world during these stages. That does not make one a dispensationalist, as they agree. Their parting with Scripture lies in their definition, as we have quoted on page 656.

So, if the early church writers wrote about God’s actions that correlated with the stage (or dispensation) in which his people lived, it would be absurd to extrapolate those writings as early cause for the modern doctrine of Dispensationalism, in spite of their denial that they suggest it, which they obviously do otherwise why refer to these writers?

There has been an early (historic) Premillennialism doctrine, which the Dispensational Premillennialists adopted and changed, which makes it important that we show the differences between early, Historic Premillennialism and Dispensational Premillennialism.

We see that a major shift took place in 1830, positioning Dispensationalist Premillennialism so far from Historic Dispensationalism that one can hardly consider first century expressions of the different ways in which God dealt with man at various times as foreshadowing their beliefs today.

Differences between Dispensational Premillennialism and Historic Premillennialism.

Reworked from: THE BIBLE AND THE FUTURE by Dr. Wick Broomall

Historic Premillennialism taught that

Dispensational Premillennialism teaches that

Church was in the fore-vision of the Old Testament prophecies.

The church is not in the scope of Old Testament prophecies.

Old Testament prophecy’s task was to announce Christ’s 1st and 2nd Advents.

The Old Testament prophecy’s task was to foretell the kingdom of the Jews.

Christ would die for man’s sin at the specific time.

The earthly kingdom should have been established at Christ’s 1st Advent.

The present age was ordained by God and predicted in the Old Testament.

The present age was unforeseen in the Old Testament and was introduced as plan “B” when the Jews rejected Christ.

Time divisions are unimportant as long as there is a millennium after the 2nd Advent.

There are seven divisions of time: seven dispensations of which the 7th (the millennium) comes after the 2nd Advent.

The 2nd Advent would be one event.

The 2nd Advent will be in two phases: The 1st phase is a secret rapture and the 2nd phase is the visible Revelation. These phases are separated by the Great Tribulation.

Certain signs must precede the 2nd Advent.

No sign precedes the 1st phase of the 2nd Advent (secret rapture); it may happen at any moment. A sign will precede the 2nd phase (visible revelation-phase), which is the Great Tribulation.

There are two resurrections, the righteous before the Millennium and the unrighteous after the Millennium.

A third resurrection, which is the “tribulation saints” at the 2nd phase of the 2nd Advent.

The book of Revelation is a picture in symbolic form of the present age.

The book of Revelation is a “futurist” view of the “Great Tribulation” or Daniel’s 70th week, which is unfulfilled.

The teachings of Scripture are to be adhered to, excluding some scholars who held the Premillennial view.

A more dogmatic view of Scripture should be adhered to and introduced new interpretations that were unknown until 1830.


Dispensational Premillennialists were misled in 1830 to devise a doctrine that is more of human imagination than the orthodox teaching of Scripture.  When encountering Premillennialism, one ought not to harshly confront the professors of the doctrine, except to consistently propose that the teachings of Scripture ought to lead the believer and not the believer seeking passages in Scripture to justify his beliefs.

The following passages should give us some instruction on this matter.

I Timothy 4:16 Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

II Timothy 2:23-26 Don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels 24and the Lord's servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. 25Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, 26and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.

II Timothy 4:2 Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction.

[1]The most profound variance with Scripture is Dispensationalism’s view of Israel and the church. Dispensationalism sees Israel as an earthly people with earthly promises and the church as a heavenly people with heavenly promises. Membership in Israel is by natural birth.[2] One enters the church by supernatural birth. Dispensationalists view Israel and the church as having distinct eternal destinies. Israel will receive an eternal earthly Kingdom, and the church an eternal heavenly Kingdom.

Darby, the father of Dispensationalism, stated the distinction in the clearest of terms "The Jewish nation is never to enter the church." Ryrie considers this the most important dispensational distinction, and approves the statement that the "basic promise of Dispensationalism is two purposes of God expressed in the formation of two peoples who maintain their distinction throughout eternity."

In contrast, Christian theology has always maintained the essential continuity of Israel and the church. The elect of all the ages are seen as one people, with one Savior and one destiny. This continuity can be shown by examining a few Old Testament prophesies with their fulfillment. Dispensationalists admit that if the church can be shown to be fulfilling promises made to Israel their system is doomed.

If the church is fulfilling Israel's promises as contained in the new covenant or anywhere in the Scriptures, then [dispensational] premillennialism is condemned. [3]

In the following table a comparison is made between what the Old Testament says and its fulfillment in the New Testament.


Old Testament

New Testament

Promise to Israel -

"Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, Which cannot be measured or numbered. And it shall come to pass in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not My people,' There it shall be said to them, 'You are sons of the living God.' -Hosea 1:10


Fulfillment in the church -

What if God, wanting to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, and that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory, even us whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles? As He says also in Hosea: "I will call them My people, who were not My people, And her beloved, who was not beloved." "And it shall come to pass in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not My people,' There they shall be called sons of the living God." -Romans :22-26

Promise to Israel -

Then I will sow her for Myself in the earth, And I will have mercy on her who had not obtained mercy; Then I will say to those who were not My people, 'You are My people!' And they shall say, 'You are my God!'" -Hosea 2:23


Fulfillment in the church -

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy. -1 Peter 2:9-10

Promise to Israel -

"On that day I will raise up The tabernacle of David, which has fallen down, And repair its damages; I will raise up its ruins, And rebuild it as in the days of old; -Amos 9:11


Fulfillment in the church -

"Simon has declared how God at the first visited the Gentiles to take out of them a people for His name. "And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written: 'After this I will return And will rebuild the tabernacle of David, which has fallen down; I will rebuild its ruins, And I will set it up; So that the rest of mankind may seek the LORD, Even all the Gentiles who are called by My name, Says the LORD who does all these things.' "Known to God from eternity are all His works. -Acts 15:14-18



In the same manner there are many Old Testament passages referring to Israel that are in the New Testament applied directly to the church.

Old Testament

New Testament

Spoken to Israel -

"And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days. "And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD. And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the LORD Shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance, As the LORD has said, Among the remnant whom the LORD calls. -Joel 2:28-32

Applied to the church -

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place..."But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 'And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy. I will show wonders in heaven above And signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD. And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the LORD Shall be saved.' -Acts 2:1,16-21

Spoken to Israel -

'And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.' These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel." -Exodus 19:6

Applied to the church -

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; -1 Peter 2:9

Spoken to Israel -

"My tabernacle also shall be with them; indeed I will be their God, and they shall be My people. -Ezekiel 37:27


Applied to the church -

And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will dwell in them And walk among them. I will be their God, And they shall be My people." -2 Cor 6:16

Spoken to Israel -

"Speak to all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say to them: 'You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy. -Lev 19:2

Applied to the church -

But as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, "Be holy, for I am holy." -1 Peter 1:15-16

Spoken to Israel -

"Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah-- -Jer 31:31

Applied to the church -

Likewise He also took the cup after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you. -Luke 22:20


According to their own declaration, the doctrine of Dispensational Premillennialism is condemned.

The Pretribulation Rapture is not always correctly understood and we will take a brief look at the doctrine.

We have seen that the dispensationalist's understanding of "dispensation" invalidates the reality of grace in any age, how the dispensational "Kingdom Offer" impugns the honesty of God and makes the gospel nothing more than an afterthought, and how presumed distinctions between Israel and the church deny the New Covenant to either.

We will now examine how the peculiarly dispensational doctrine of the Pretribulational Rapture further illuminates these errors.

The novel doctrine of the Pretribulational Rapture is the product of their distinction between Israel and the church. The removal of the church to heaven preceding the Tribulation period, when the stopped prophetic clock begins ticking for Israel again with the "Seventieth Week of Daniel", was Darby's innovation.

Darby broke not only from previous millenarian teaching but from all of church history by asserting that Christ's second coming would occur in two stages. The first, an invisible "secret rapture" of true believers could happen at any moment, ending the great "parenthesis" or church age, which began when the Jews rejected Christ.[4]

Scofield also taught this doctrine along with Chafer, Ryrie, Walvoord, etc. At dispensational schools, failure to hold steadfastly to the doctrine of the Pretribulational Rapture may have dire consequences.

...the doctrine of a Pretribulational Rapture of the church seems to be a litmus test of orthodoxy. To "outsiders," including classic premillennialists, this doctrine is not crucial, if it is believed at all. But not only is it vigorously maintained in Dallas Dispensationalism, but deviation from it causes a person to be suspect and institutions to shake and sometimes split.[5]

It is unfortunate that "outsiders" - historic premillennialists, postmillennialists, and amillennialists - have not taken this distinctively dispensational doctrine more seriously, for it is here that dispensational theology stands or falls. It is the doctrine of the Pretribulational Rapture that proves conclusively that Dispensationalism is not, as dispensationalists claim, a return to Biblical theology - but rather a further separation from the teaching of Scripture and the point at which some brand Dispensational Premillennialism as a pseudo Christian cult.

Most arguments against Pretribulationism have focused upon showing that the doctrine is a new development in theology and cannot be found in the scriptures. Various orthodox commentators and theologians, from the ranks of each of the millennial views[6], have presented this case with considerable skill. We will therefore take a different tack, and show that the doctrine is in direct opposition to the everlasting Gospel of Christ Jesus.

Most earlier dispensational theologians agreed that the Old Testament saints would be resurrected along with the church in the Pretribulational Rapture. Alexander Reese, a classic premillennialist, destroyed this position with convincing scriptural arguments locating the resurrection of the Old Testament saints at the Day of the Lord at the end of the Tribulation.[7]

Daniel 12:1, 2  "At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people--everyone whose name is found written in the book--will be delivered. 2 Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt."

Daniel 12:8-13  I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, "My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?" 9He replied, "Go your way, Daniel, because the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end. 10Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand. 11"From the time that the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that causes desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days.  12Blessed is the one who waits for and reaches the end of the 1,335 days. 13"As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance."

No dispensationalist would argue that the "time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation", the "abomination of desolation", and the taking away of the daily sacrifice is not a reference to the time of the Tribulation. Yet, Daniel is told that the resurrection follows these events.

Dispensationalists then, for the most part, amended their position to separate the resurrection of the Old Testament saints from the rapture.

... many careful students of premillennial truth have come to the conclusion that the opinion that Israel's resurrection occurred at the time of the rapture was a hasty one and without proper Scriptural foundation. It seems far more preferable to regard the resurrection of Daniel 12:2 as a literal one following the tribulation, but not to be identified with the pretribulational rapture of the church... The church will be raised at the time of the rapture before the tribulation, and the Old Testament saints, including Israel, at the beginning of the millennial reign of Christ.[8]

On this point, the dispensationalist has moved even further away from Scripture. In order to preserve the precious doctrine of the Pretribulational Rapture of the church, they raise the Old Testament saints apart from the saints of the church age. We note that this is consistent with the dispensational understanding of "dispensations" and with their distinction between Israel and the church. It also reveals that the longstanding charge made by orthodox Christianity that Dispensationalism teaches multiple methods of salvation is absolutely true, contradicting their statement of faith. Let us look at some of the texts concerning the resurrection of the saints.

I Corinthians 15:50-55  I declare to you, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed-52in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. 54When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: "Death has been swallowed up in victory. 55"Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?"

I Thessalonians 4:15-17 According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.

In these classic dispensational proof texts of the Pretribulational Rapture, we see that the righteous dead are raised first, and then those who are alive and remain are translated into incorruptible bodies and gathered to Christ. How, then, can the dispensationalists justify the concept of the Old Testament saints being raised at some later point in time?

Some people are startled by the thought that the Old Testament saints will not be resurrected until the end of the Tribulation. But keep in mind that the rapture is a promise to the Church, and the Church only.[9]

We see that the dispensationally imposed distinction between Israel and the church is at the root of this argument. They say that the Old Testament saints are not "in Christ" and therefore will not arise to everlasting life at the same time as the church saints.

According to dispensationalists, the Old Testament people are not the heirs of the Holy Spirit, are not regenerated by Him, and are not grafted by Him into Christ in the same way that the New Testament people are.[10]

...the verse simply says that the dead in Christ will precede the living in Christ in the rapture. If you are saying that Daniel would be included in "the dead", then you have to show that Daniel is "in Christ". If you will study the NT you will see that "in Christ" refers to the baptism in the Holy Spirit. "For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free--and we were all given the one Spirit to drink"...There is no way that Daniel was part of the body of Christ. This verse in 1 Thess 4:16 simply does not apply to him. The Holy Spirit did not permanently indwell believers in the OT. It is not really people or time period that delineates the church--it is the Holy Spirit. Personal faith in Jesus Christ--which is what the passage is referring to--was not an option for OT saints. They are not in view in this passage. It is referring to people who do have the option of this personal faith in Jesus...OT saints are "in Christ" in that sense that the death of Jesus is the basis for the salvation of anyone--past, present, future. However, they were not part of the body of Christ, in the sense of being permanently indwelt by the Holy Spirit.[11]

The technical term for the Church is those who are "in Christ." 1 Thess. speaks of those who have died "in Christ" being resurrected at the time of His coming IN THE AIR. The context has ONLY the Church in mind.[12]

This dispensational distinction between the OT & NT saints, the church & Israel, is what causes some critics to deny Dispensationalism any claim to Christianity at all, for in that very distinction Dispensationalism teaches multiple methods of salvation. By excluding the OT saint from the ekklesia (church) the dispensationalist is required to produce some means, other than partaking of the New Covenant in Christ, for one or the other of the groups to be granted eternal life. The teaching of the church for the last 2,000 yrs precludes this, as does our Lord.

John 6:53-56  Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him.

The following points are of interest:

No one has life who does not partake of the New Covenant in Christ's Blood. The OT saint must partake, as does the NT & tribulation saint, in order to have life.

ALL who partake are raised at the LAST DAY. That day is the "end of the days" prophesied to Daniel in

Daniel 12:13  "As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance."

ALL who partake are "in Christ" and He in they.

ALL THE SAINTS are promised the same resurrection, by the same Blood, at the same time.

Hebrews 9:15  For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance--now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.

Hebrews 11:9, 10 By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.

Hebrews 11:13, 16  All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. 16Instead, they were longing for a better country--a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

Hebrews 11:39, 40  These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. 40God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

The dispensationalist, ignoring the clear teaching of scripture and the historic church, denies the existence of the general assembly, and falls back to perdition by advocating shadows as the means of salvation for the OT & Tribulation saint, all in order to preserve the delusion of the Pretribulational Rapture.

Hebrews 12:22-29  But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly. 23To the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the judge of all men, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect. 24To Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel. 25See to it that you do not refuse him who speaks. If they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, how much less will we, if we turn away from him who warns us from heaven. 26At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, "Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens." 27The words "once more" indicate the removing of what can be shaken--that is, created things--so that what cannot be shaken may remain. 28Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe. 29For our "God is a consuming fire."

The dispensational argument that proclaims that the OT saint is somehow saved because of Christ - rather than being "in Christ" by partaking of the New Covenant in His Blood - is opposed to orthodox Christian doctrine of salvation.

The truth will inevitably manifest itself. It has in [the] dispensational [doctrine of salvation]. The truth is that another way of salvation, which is somehow connected with Christ, but not resting on Christ is a DIFFERENT way. The dispensationalist at this point is, unconsciously perhaps, consistent with himself. He does not regard the Old Testament people of God as second, third, or fourth class citizens of the Kingdom of God. They simply are not citizens at all. While dispensationalists roundly assert that Old Testament people were saved by Christ, there is NO WAY IN THEIR THEOLOGICAL SYSTEM they could be.[13]


[1] Reworked from John H. Gerstner, Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth: A Critique of Dispensationalism (Brentwood TN: Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1991). NOTE: This study does not attempt to fully address Dispensational Premillennialism but merely point out the errors that might cast confusion on clear scriptural teaching.

[2] Ryrie, Dispensationalism Today, pp.137-140

[3] Ryrie, THE RELATIONSHIP OF THE NEW COVENANT TO PREMILLENNIALISM (unpublished Master's thesis, Dallas Theological Seminary 1947), p. 31

[4] W.A. Hoffecker, Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, "Darby, John Nelson," pp. 292-3.

[5] John H. Gerstner, Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth: A Critique of Dispensationalism (Brentwood, TN: Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1991), 47.

[6] Alexander Reese (premill.), O.T. Allis (amill.), W.E. Cox (amill.), Greg Bahnsen & Kenneth Gentry (postmill.) are notable among others

[7] Alexander Reese, The Approaching Advent of Christ (Marshall, Morgan and Scott, London, 1937; reprint, Grand Rapids MI: Grand Rapids International Publications, 1975), 328 p.

[8] John F. Walvoord, Israel in Prophesy (1962; reprint, Grand Rapids MI: Zondervan, 1977), 116, 118.

[9] David R. Reagan, The Master Plan: Making Sense of the Controversies Surrounding Bible Prophecy Today (Eugene OR: Harvest House, 1993), 123.

[10] John H. Gerstner, Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth: A Critique of Dispensationalism (Brentwood TN:Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1991), 206.

[11] "Resurrection Apart from Christ?" Bill Barton, Armageddon, FamilyNet, 10/21/93.

[12] "Rapture," Gary Nystrom, Armageddon, FamilyNet, 5/28/94.

[13] John H. Gerstner, Wrongly Dividing the Word of Truth: A Critique of Dispensationalism (Brentwood TN: Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1991), 169.