Dispensationalism's Fallacies

Dispensationalism's Fallacies—No.2

One of the best ways of meeting the dis­pensationalist is to convince him that the Scriptures do not support the idea of dividing Biblical history up into seven dispensations, more or less, and then meet each of the errors of dispensationalism.

By W. J. YOUNG, Pastor, London, England

One of the best ways of meeting the dis­pensationalist is to convince him that the Scriptures do not support the idea of dividing Biblical history up into seven dispensations, more or less, and then meet each of the errors of dispensationalism as outlined in our former discussion. Of the seven supposed dispensations, two stand out prominently in the mind of the dispensationalist—"The Age of Law" and "The Age of Grace," or the "Law Dispensation" and the "Grace Dis­pensation," based erroneously upon the fol­lowing scriptures:

"For the law was given by [or through] Moses, but grace and truth came by [or through] Jesus Christ." John 1:17. "For sin shall not have domin­ion over you: for ye are not under law, but under grace." Rom. 6:14.

From these scriptures and others, they have drawn the conclusion that the age from Moses to Christ was an age of law, or the law dis­pensation, and that the age from Christ to the second advent is a grace age, or gospel dis­pensation; that in the former age the people were under law as a rule of life, and in the latter, the Christian is under grace, i.e., not under law as a rule of life. However, the reader will notice that John 1:17 does not speak of ages, but, of channels through which grace, truth, and law came; and that Romans 6:14 does not mean "under law" as keeping that law as a rule of life, but as being under its condemnation.

I have found from experience that Romans 5:12-21 is a key passage that baffles the dis­pensationalist. Briefly, here are the two great heads of the human family—Adam and Christ. In Adam all die, in Christ all live. Paul says in verses 12 and 20: "Wherefore, as by one man [Adam] sin entered into the world," and "where sin abounded, grace did much more abound." This shows very clearly that the superabounding, saving power of the grace of God began away back in the Garden of Eden, and not a mere two thousand years ago. Thus there is only one age of sin, law, and grace, and no man has been saved by works or law-keeping, as may be seen from the following:

The remnant of the seed of the woman , began in Eden, as recorded in Revelation 12:17. There has been a remnant according to the election of grace in every age: In the Ante­diluvian Age. Gen. 4:25, 26, margin. In Noah's day. Genesis 6; 7, In Abraham's day. Romans 4. Moses found grace in the sight of the Lord (Ex. 33:12-17), for the Lord was full of grace and truth. Ex. 34:6. As in the days of Elijah, so in the days of Paul, there was a remnant , according to the election of grace.

Romans 11: 1-6. "Neither is there salvation" through any other medium. No man in any age can boast, "for by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves ; it is the gift of God." The children of faith are counted as the seed of Abraham (Gal. 3:7), and Abraham's seed are the true heirs accord­ing to the promise. Gal. 3 :29.

The believer in futurism, having accepted Rome as his guide, has added to the Scriptures in order to harmonize his two separate and distinct special dispensations. This new addi­tion is that the Jews are God's earthly people, and that the Gentile Christians are God's heavenly people. The following brief quota­tions will show that this is so:

"Some have felt a difficulty as to the sacrifices being restored; but the difficulty vanishes when it is remembered that the sacrifices will be connected with an earthly people, and an earthly temple."—"The Blessed Hope," by "E.D.," p. 'or. The present gospel of the grace of God makes a receiver a heavenly saint, whereas the receiver of the gospel of the kingdom becomes an earthly saint."—"The Second Coining of Our Lord," by I. H. Lowe. p. 145. (Italics author's.)

"The Sabbath was given to an earthly people, and its observance prescribed under severest penalties for disobedience. The Lord's day is kept by a heav­enly people, with no legal requirements or penalties attached. The Sabbath was for Israel; the Lord's day for the church."—"The Teaching of the So-called Plymouth Brethren: Is It Scriptural!" by H. A. Ironside, p.

There are no valid Scriptural grounds for thus adding to the Word. How sad it is to think that the dispensationalist, through the darkness of futurism, has so muddled Christen­dom until it has two special dispensations, two kinds of saints, two gospels, two hopes, two inheritances, thus making God a respecter of persons, and casting reproach upon His Holy name and Word. The Bible clearly represents one gospel, one Shepherd, one hope, one faith, one fold or body into which both Jews and Gentiles are baptized. Eph. 4:1-6.

There is no room for caste in God's plan. He is no respecter of persons. He "so loved" in every age. His love is infinitely broader than the measure of the dispensationalist's mind. He is wholly spiritual (John 4:24), and does not beget earthly or carnal beings. His children in all ages are spiritual, i.e., born from above. John 3:1-6. The true common­wealth of Israel (Eph. 2 :1 1, 12) is made up of the children of faith from the beginning of the world. "In Isaac shall thy seed be called." Gen. 21 :12 ; Gal. 4:28, 29.

Many have drawn the conclusion from the figures used for the promised seed—dust, stars —that the former indicates the earthly people and the latter the heavenly people. But that the figures have no reference to character, but to numbers, may be seen from the fact that the numbers of the people were compared to the stars in the days of Moses. (See Deut. I:10; 10 :22 ; 28 :62 ; Neh. 9:23; Heb. 11:13.) 

Others have reasoned from Paul's statement in i Corinthians to :32 that there are three classes of people. However, study will show that there are only two classes. For, said Paul, there is no difference between the Jew and the Gentile as sinners, or when baptized into the church.

There have ever been only two classes of people in all ages of the world—the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent; the saint and the sinner; the saved and the un­saved; those who are born after the flesh and those who are born after the Spirit ; the church of God and the synagogue of Satan; the chil­dren of the kingdom and the children of the wicked one; the righteous and the unrighteous; the children of light and the children of dark­ness.


Ministry reserves the right to approve, disapprove, and delete comments at our discretion and will not be able to respond to inquiries about these comments. Please ensure that your words are respectful, courteous, and relevant.

comments powered by Disqus

By W. J. YOUNG, Pastor, London, England

December 1939

Download PDF
Ministry Cover

More Articles In This Issue

Forward Despite All Difficulties

There has never been a time when the chil­dren of God did not have to face difficulties in their efforts to promote the interests of His sacred cause.

Proper Attitudes in Our Publications

How much of the message dare we print? Shall we compromise and teach error? Shall we keep silent on such cardinal truths as the Sabbath and the second advent?

Editorial Defenders of the Faith-2

In article No. 1, Professor Andreasen set forth several guiding principles which show how our editors and periodicals may be defenders of the faith. Near the close, he pointed out certain landmarks which all workers would do well to keep in mind. Those discussed were, maintaining true Funda­mentalism, and the right use of the Testimonies. He continues with the next point, on the doctrine of creation.

The Pastor's Yearly Program

The year's program should be divided into certain well-defined periods.

Conference Directory Invaluable

In a conference as large as Michigan, with one hundred seven churches which have a combined membership of more than ten thousand, a comprehensive church directory is imperative if efficient and effective work is to be accomplished.

Obtaining Names in an Effort

As a preliminary to getting large numbers of names, we must get large congregations.

The Evangelist and Music

We need to recognize the place of the consecrated musical evangelist.

Return of Science to Religion

It is true that science can do much to make the world more com­fortable and to fill it with an abundance of those materials that make for the welfare of mankind. But when science was adopted into the realm of philosophy and came near to being a religion, it utterly failed to live up to expectations.

Facing India's Problem—No. 2

Probably every indigenous worker and every missionary in India, including those in our own ranks, could point to examples of individuals and groups who have improved their economic and social status by becoming Christians.

Native Evangelism in Africa

The gospel did not reach Africa as soon as it did other lands, and for ages Africa has been sleeping in the darkness of sin.

View All Issue Contents

Digital delivery

If you're a print subscriber, we'll complement your print copy of Ministry with an electronic version.

Sign up

Recent issues

See All