A Bibliography of Dispensationalism -- By: Arnold D. Ehlert

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 102:405 (Jan 1945)
Article: A Bibliography of Dispensationalism
Author: Arnold D. Ehlert


A Bibliography of Dispensationalism

Arnold D. Ehlert

(Continued from the October-December Number, 1944)

Dispensationalism since 1825

The year 1825 seems to be the logical dividing-line between the old and the new dispensationalism. This is not to forget that many of the roots of later systems are to be found in works before that date, nor that much of the older philosophy is carried over to the later period. As late as 1929 a rather substantial volume appeared in England on the subject by George Croly in which he seems utterly to ignore almost all of the dispensational literature since 1825, and indeed much of that before. He might as well have dated his book 1829 so far as the doctrinal content is concerned.

Much has been said about the rise of so-called modern dispensationalism. Many date this beginning with John Nelson Darby, who first wrote on the subject in 1836. It is no doubt true that the Plymouth Brethren, of whom he was a prominent pioneer, colored the doctrine to a considerable extent, but it will appear readily to him who takes the pains to compare all the writers enumerated in this bibliography just how much this contribution was, and how much is to be traced to other various sources.

John Eagleton of Huddersfield has a book on the Covenant of Works which has a dispensational aspect to it, as many of them do. He says, “If then, my brethren, the sons of Adam are saved pursuant to God’s purpose and grace given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, all the dispensations of providence since the world began, must be in

harmony with that original purpose.”1 Contrary to what one might suppose from the title, the author of this work denounces the concept of the covenant of works. It is “a scholastic fiction.” It is interesting that Eagleton uses the term Edenic dispensation.2 But this was the second dispensation, the first, which he does not name, being of necessity pre-Edenic, was a dispensing of the “privileges of man’s creation-state.”3 The succeeding dispensations are not outlined, but the author speaks of “every dispensation of Providence from the creation to the conflagration of the universe.”4 John Dick (1764–1833), professor of theology in the United Secession Church, has two lectures in his work on theology that ought to be consulted, even though there is no clear enumeration of the various dispensations outlined. He is convinced that Christianity, while it is not “a republication of the law of nat...

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