Why Fundamentalist Protestants are Wrong on Dispensationalism

by Steve Ray on August 29, 2019

Why Fundamentalist Protestants are Wrong on Dispensationalism and the OT Law  By Steve Ray

Dear Jerry:

I haven’t heard from you in quite some time and I was thinking that it’s my turn to take you out to lunch since you paid the bill at Zingerman’s last time. Things are going very well for us and I hope they are for you as well. We are involved with two families who are coming back to the Church, one from Temple Baptist (where two other families are carrying on serious discussions with us) and another family that has been hopping around various Evangelical churches.

I ran across a curious verse the other day when I was looking up some information on the charismatic gifts Christ gave the Church. By the way, do you believe in the gifts? If I remember right, when we went to Calvary Baptist (where you go now) they did not.

They thought the verse in 1 Corinthians 13:10, “But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part shall be done away,” referred to the passing away of the charisms when the New Testament was canonized. If this was the best argument against the continuation of the spiritual gifts that could be retrieved from Scripture, I always thought it was a rather weak argument (Endnote 1).

I don’t see anywhere where Scripture says the spiritual gifts (Rom. 12; 1 Cor. 12, 14; Eph. 4) would be discontinued or self-retiring. It amazes me still that Fundamentalist love to claim the biblical high ground by claiming to be the “literalists” and yet they pass over major portions of Paul’s epistles, the word of God, and act as though the verses are either irrelevant or no longer the word of God.

You may find it interesting that the charisms are very evident in the Church after the apostles since the apostles left no word that the gifts would cease. Tertullian (c 160-c. 225) encourages the new converts into the Church to “ask the Father, ask the Lord, for the special gift of his inheritance, the distribution of the charisms.” (Irenaeus [c. 130-200 AD], Disciple of Polycarp) (Endnote 2) says it would “be impossible to enumerate the charisms throughout the world the church has received from God.” (Against Heresies 2:32, 4).

Origen also speaks “the rain . . . of the divine charisms.” (Commentary on the Psalms 64:11). It is quite evident from the history of the early Church that the spiritual gifts remained. I find it curious that the Fundamentalists disregard them, dismissing (or even rejecting) the gifts and provisions of the Holy Spirit.

However, that is not what I was going to ask you about. While I was doing some reading on this topic, I came across a verse in 1 Corinthians 14:34 that made me think of you. It says this: “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.” I thought this was a strange verse in light of your Dispensational tradition. Do you know when the Dispensational view came into vogue?

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