September 2nd, 2013
A biblical interpretation paradigm common in conservative fundamentalist and Evangelical Christian theology. Originating from the Plymouth Brethren in the nineteenth century and popularized in the Scofield Reference Bible in the twentieth century, dispensationalism has three primary characteristics: 1) the call for a consistent literal or “normal” hermeneutic, particularly regarding biblical prophecy, 2) the separation of Israel from the church, 3) the separation of human history into several distinct epochs, “economies,” or dispensations in which God relates to mankind in distinct ways. With regard to soteriological history (history of salvation), dispensationalism teaches that salvation has always been by faith alone, by grace alone, yet the content of the Gospel has been progressively revealed through biblical history. Dispensationalism has a variety of forms and has gone through some recent developments.