DARBY, SCOFIELD, & PROPHETIC DECEPTION
Alas, the great deception called modern evangelical mainstream end-times prophecy. This particular line of modern unreasoning has been reiterated so many times in the mainstream churches (particularly Baptist churches) that it is vehemently believed to be the very Word of God.
What is this deceptive prophetic reasoning? Although it is a recent creation, there is a certain amount of growth from a beginning seed concept. That initial seed could be called “dispensational theology”. Did the early church contain any hint or presence of dispensational reasoning? Not at all, although many have attempted to find it hidden in the ancient tombs.
The prominent groundbreaker and broadcaster of dispensational theology is the Scofield Reference Bible which first appeared in 1909 and was revised by the author in 1917. It is said this Bible with it’s unique (at the time) reference system was financed and encouraged by Jewish bankers living in England, to enhance and further their goal of convincing the Christian church of their self-conceived “chosen people” status.
Scofield Among several other things, the Scofield Reference Bible promoted dispensationalism, which is the belief (or teaching) that between creation and the final judgment there would be seven distinct eras (or dispensations) of God’s dealing with mankind and that these eras or dispensations are a framework for synthesizing the message of the Bible (i.e. a particular message created by dispensationalism).
It was largely through the influence of Scofield’s reference notes that dispensationalism grew in influence among fundamentalist Christians in the United States since it was most likely unknown until the publishing of the SR Bible. Scofield’s notes on the Book of Revelation are a major source for the various timetables, judgments, and plagues elaborated on by popular religious writers such as Hal Lindsey, Edgar C. Whisenant, and Tim LaHaye (all graduates of Dallas Theological Seminary which will be discussed later).
Prior to its popularization by the Scofield Bible, the roots of Dispensational Theology are traceable to John Nelson Darby and the Plymouth Brethren group within England. Darby’s teaching has become enshrined in the Scofield Reference Bible, the most popular of all reference bibles. Dispensational Theology has been refined to some extent and tenaciously defended by Dallas Theological Seminary founded by Lewis Sperry Chafer.
Dispensational teachings espouse a unique brand of pre-millennialism wedded to the doctrine of the pre-tribulation rapture of the church and to a sharp distinction between Israel and the church with separate programs for each of these elections. The teaching is known for its opinions respecting the nation of Israel during the millennial kingdom reign, in which the modern state of Israel as a nation plays a major role and regains a king, a land, and an everlasting kingdom. In other words, the Millennial reign of Christ according to dispensationalists, will be ruled by the Jews (or Israelites as they claim) while the Church age comes to an end and they are “raptured” into heaven (which is not scriptural).
Dallas Theological Seminary When we think of dispensationalism we should think simply of a sharp distinction between Israel and the church but also a distinction between these two bodies so far as the past, present, and future is concerned (i.e. the Church is merely a sidetrack to God’s dealing with the Jews – as they teach). Lewis Sperry Chafer, the founder and first president of Dallas Theological Seminary gets the accolade of being the first organized and detailed systemizer of Dispensational Theology. This DTS teaching views the Church age as a temporary interruption of the Jews/Israelites age which will continue during the Millennium, along with a few unsaved non-Jews.
By James Whisler Their own published statistics boast of their power and influence in the Christian world. Of our more than 9,000 living alumni serving in ministry worldwide:
96 serve as presidents of schools; 31 are deans of schools; 427 are faculty members at Bible schools, colleges, and seminaries; 2,502 are pastors or assistant pastors; 508 are missionaries around the world; 832 are staff members of parachurch organizations; 380 have retired from full-time ministry; A total of 78 percent of DTS graduates serve in education, churches, and parachurch organizations. DTS Alumni are ministering in all 50 of the United States and 90 countries worldwide. They serve in 62 different denominations, have established 27 international seminaries and Bible institutes, and have written thousands of books and articles.
Chances are that if you are a dispensationalist, you were influenced either directly or indirectly from this one institution.
Besides the (in)famous Hal Lindsey, other well known Dallas Theological Seminary faculty, graduates and authors include: David Jeremiah, Charles Swindoll, Zane Hodges, Scott O’Grady, Randall Price, Andy Stanley, J. Vernon McGee (host of Thru the Bible), Daniel Wallace, Jim Rayburn, Ray Stedman, John Walvoord, Dwight Pentacost, Ken Taylor (translator of the Living Bible), Joseph Stowell (president of Moody Bible Institute), Charles Ryrie (compiled the Ryrie NIV Study Bible), Chuck Swindoll, Bruce Wilkinson, Charles Ryrie, Michael Easley, Bryan Fischer, Paul Nyquist, Merrill Unger, Tony Evans, David Lucca, and Robert Jeffress.
Dispensational Peculiarities This so-called Jewish Millennial reign of Jesus and the Jews requires the extraction of the so-called temporary age or dispensation of the Church. Thus, they have inserted a pre-tribulation rapture of the Church, although other Bible teachers have advocated mid-tribulation and post-tribulation views that don’t appear to have much influence today.
The seven year (some claim only three and one –half years) tribulation doctrine is created by a complete misunderstanding of the 70 weeks of Daniel prophecy which should have concluded at the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and not at the end of 69 weeks with one additional week of seven years for a future date. If correct dating with a better knowledge of history had been employed the necessity of a future invented tribulation period would not be necessary. This future week of years has become the completely misunderstood and rewritten contents of the Book of the Revelation described with demons rising from the abyss, and strange clothed horsemen riding from the bowels of hell empowered by a demonic angelic entity.
More Scofield The Scofield reference notes are also responsible for giving life to the idea of a burning hell as eternal punishment for unsaved sinners and unrepentant, ungodly individuals. This disregards the scriptural statements claiming that Jesus died “for ALL people” and that “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow”. Are these people to confess that Jesus is Lord and then be placed into the fiery furnace of hell? I don’t think so.
Philippians 2:10-11 KJV That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; (11) And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
It also overwhelmingly emphasizes the chosen status of Jews as the “apple of God’s eye” regardless of the prophecies and teachings of Jesus claiming the Judahites of His day are fig trees with leaves but no fruit. Jeremiah prophesied that Jerusalem and Judah would be destroyed as an old pottery vessel broken into a thousand pieces which could never be repaired. Isaiah 29 states that Ariel (i.e. Jerusalem and Judah) would be destroyed in a manner that appears very similar to nuclear destruction. It also disregards Paul’s statement that true Israel consists of people believing in the Name and lifestyle of Jesus Christ.
Who is a liar? Anyone denying Jesus is the Christ. Who is an antichrist? Anyone denying the Father and the Son. Is John Hagee correct is saying the Jews have the Old Testament and worship God the Father? NO, not at all. Any person who denies the Son does not worship or have the Father either. Only by confessing the Son does not worship the Father.
1 John 2:22-23 NET Who is the liar but the person who denies that Jesus is the Christ ? This one is the antichrist: the person who denies the Father and the Son. (23) Everyone who denies the Son does not have the Father either. The person who confesses the Son has the Father also.
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