The Difference between Dispensationalism and Covenant Theology?

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by Jesus is Lord, May 13, 2004.

  1. Jesus is Lord

    Jesus is Lord
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2002
    Messages:
    260
    Likes Received:
    0
    Please forgive my ignorance!

    I read in another thread that a church moved from Dispensationalism to Covenant Theology. What is "Covenant Theology"? What is the difference?

    Thanks for your help.
     
  2. Ronald

    Ronald
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2004
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    0
    Covenant theology is simply how God receives men, women and children into salvation as his people.

    Under the Old covenant men were received by agreeing to the law of Moses and this was signified by each male child being circumcised on the eight day. If ANYONE agreed to these requirements, they were then considered a child of God and a member of the nation of Israel.

    When our Lord died upon the cross a NEW covenant went into effect, which nullified the old. All who now placed their faith IN the finished work of Christ and received him as their Lord and Savior became a Christian. At first, there were only messianic Christians, but through Paul's ministry the gentiles were brought in THROUGH Faith. So BOTH the Jewish believers and the gentile believers now became ONE NEW MAN or Body. This body is called "the Church of Christ." Now just as circumcision was a sign of the covenant with Israel, a circumcism WITHOUT HANDS was now done to all those who became Christians. And this was the circumcism OF THE HEART. This was accomplished by the Holy Spirit himself. Col 2:10-12, I Cor 12:13

    Now our Reformed brethren will say "water baptism" is the sign or New Testament circumcism. But this could not be. For Christian baptism IS administered WITH HANDS. The hands of the one doing the baptizing. Paul said in Colosians that tis is an "operation OF GOD" WITHOUT HANDS.

    Also being under the New covenant we are no longer UNDER the demands of the Old Law Covenant. But under the "law of Christ" which we are guided by the Holy Spirit through Faith.

    I have only given you a brief answer to your question. I hope I have helped you. God Bless.
     
  3. Pete Richert

    Pete Richert
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2001
    Messages:
    1,283
    Likes Received:
    0
    Both Covenant theology and dispensationalism believe that a man is saved by grace through faith. Any other statement is either a strawman, a misunderstanding, or harping on a few extremists within the group. The only difference might be that covenant theologians would say that OT saints put their faith in the coming messiah while SOME dispies MIGHT say they put their faith in other things, such as God in general, and were not specifically told about the coming messiah; this is all debatable.

    Where Covenant theology and dispensationalism differ is that dispensationals see the church as seperate from Israel and that the program of Israel will be restarted with the continued promises and destinies, apart from the church in this age. Covenant theology on the other hand, see the church as the extention of Israel or Israel transformed as gentiles were added on equal standing with the Jews. They DO NOT say the church replaced Israel and if this appears later in this thread I am beginning to believe people either are purposly slanderous or simply can't read (and I am not even a covenant theologian). Some Covenant theologians believe all references to Israel in the NT are to this new group of "true Israel", that is those Israelistes with circumsized hearts as well as being circumsized and the gentiles added in with circumsized hearts as well. They therefor see non of these references to a future engathering of ethnic jews. Others, however, believe some passages are the spiritual Israel and some ethnic Israel and see a great engathering of Ethnic jews in the last times.

    Both sides of very commendable arguements and scripture. Both sides are honoring to Christ's plan to redeem. I myself find myself in the middle on a lot of the issues.
     
  4. Dan Todd

    Dan Todd
    Expand Collapse
    Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2003
    Messages:
    14,452
    Likes Received:
    0
    Romans 3:28, "Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law."

    No one has ever been saved by keeping the law - in fact it is impossible to keep the law. The only law that has ever counted is the one that says "The soul that sinneth shall surely die."

    Believers before Jesus Christ were saved by faith. Faith the God would send the promised Messiah. Believers after Jesus Christ are saved by faith. Faith that God did send the promised Messiah.
     
  5. Pete Richert

    Pete Richert
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2001
    Messages:
    1,283
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is the part that is debated. There have been some recent threads where Pastor Larry defends a different view.
     
  6. PastorGreg

    PastorGreg
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2000
    Messages:
    794
    Likes Received:
    0
    Covenant theology is “A system of theology which attempts to develop the Bible’s philosophy of history on the basis of two or three covenants.”
    One covenant was with Adam, another with Christ.
    In CT Old Testament law is still in place unless specifically abrogated by the NT. Tends to intermix Israel and the church, tends to amillenialism, tends to emphasize the "cultural mandate" - simplistically stated, that Christians are to take over government, the arts, etc. and clean up society thus leading into the kingdom.

    Dispensationalism believes that God has revealed His truth progressively over time and thus interacted with people differently in different dispensations - takes end times prophecy literally.
     
  7. PastorGreg

    PastorGreg
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2000
    Messages:
    794
    Likes Received:
    0
    Covenant theology is “A system of theology which attempts to develop the Bible’s philosophy of history on the basis of two or three covenants.”
    One covenant was with Adam, another with Christ.
    In CT Old Testament law is still in place unless specifically abrogated by the NT. Tends to intermix Israel and the church, tends to amillenialism, tends to emphasize the "cultural mandate" - simplistically stated, that Christians are to take over government, the arts, etc. and clean up society thus leading into the kingdom.

    Dispensationalism believes that God has revealed His truth progressively over time and thus interacted with people differently in different dispensations - takes end times prophecy literally.
     
  8. PastorGreg

    PastorGreg
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2000
    Messages:
    794
    Likes Received:
    0
    Get ahold of the book, "There Really Is A Difference," it does a good job of comparing the two systems. Unfortunately, in my diminished mental capacity, I can't remember the author's name. [​IMG]
     
  9. HankD

    HankD
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2001
    Messages:
    15,126
    Likes Received:
    319
  10. WallDoctor

    WallDoctor
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2004
    Messages:
    46
    Likes Received:
    0
    Pastor Greg, You said:

    "tends to amillenialism, tends to emphasize the "cultural mandate" - simplistically stated, that Christians are to take over government, the arts, etc. and clean up society thus leading into the kingdom."

    This sounds more like Post-Millenialism. Amillenialism simply teaches that the the Millenium began at Christs resurrection to Christs Return and teaches that Rev 20 when speaking of Satan being loosed for a while is really talking about a Great time of Persecution and Tribulation against the church right before Christ Returns in Judgement. Ammillenialists don't believe that things will get better before then Only worst or fluctuate. Seeing that the church will face a lot of small AntiChrists before the big one.

    I only know this because I was solidly in the Amillenial Camp and I did not believe what you stated. [​IMG] (I am currently borderline Amillenial as I restudy the issue because of questions which I have concerning it)

    I agree with a lot of the information you gave.

    I am also Covenant but really taking my views to task on that too.

    At this point not accepting Dispensationalism and questioning Covenant Theology I'm with out a real position......If anything I'm some hybrid right now. "Progressive Revelation Covenant Theology with God saving a Jewish Remnant" Maybe.... I am thinking that I don't agree with the Covenant idea of an Overarching Covenant of Grace....but I don't accept the dispensational distinction of Israel and Church today. I've read a bit on NCT and PD which are appealling.

    Maybe this will spark some new insights.

    WallDoctor
     
  11. Daniel David

    Daniel David
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    5,316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jesus and Paul were New Covenant dispensationalists. That is all I need.
     

Share This Page

Loading...