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

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 102:406 (Apr 1945)
Article: A Bibliography of Dispensationalism
Author: Arnold D. Ehlert

A Bibliography of Dispensationalism

Arnold D. Ehlert

(Continued from the January-March, 1945 Number)

{Editor’s note: Footnotes in the original printed edition were numbers 19–46, replaced here in the electronic edition with 1–28, respectively.}

John Cumming (1810–1881) was a powerful preacher of the Scottish National Church. He was educated at King’s College, Aberdeen. His works outsold those of any other writer of his day. His special emphases were the Roman Church and Prophecy, and it was the opinion of many that he overdid these two themes. His works are, however, numerous and important. In his work, The Great Consummation, he has a chapter on “The Seven Grand Dispensations.” He says: “During the last six thousand years—nearly exhausted—of the history of our globe, there have been at least six distinct and independent dispensations, to be succeeded by a seventh, the glory and perfection of all that have passed-away. Just as there seem to have been six days spent in the creation of the globe, or rather in the arrangement of it, crowned by a seventh, its coronal and its glory; so there seem to have been six successive dispensations or economies, each closing with judgment, and each giving birth to another, a brighter and a better.”1 His scheme is outlined as follows:

I- Adamic, to the expulsion from Paradise

II- Antediluvian, patriarchal age, terminating with the flood

III- Noachian, ending with the burning of Sodom and Gomorrah

IV- Abrahamic, ending with the exodus from Egypt

V- Mosaic, from the Red Sea to the overthrow of Jerusalem

VI- Christian

VII- Millennium.

With regard to the seventh dispensation, Cumming says, “The mark of this seventh economy…is a new heaven and new earth, ‘wherein dwelleth righteousness.’“2 But he does not by this mean to deny what we would call the eternal state, rather that is to follow the thousand years and be of the same, or very similar, nature. The difference in his position from that of most interpreters is that he places the new heaven and the new earth at the beginning of the millennium instead of at its close.

Isaac P. Labagh, rector of Calvary Church, Brooklyn, has an interesting outline.

I- The Adamic dispensation, with its seal, the tree of life, commencing in mercy in Eden, and ending in wrath at the flood.

II- The Noatic dispensation, with its seal, the rainbow, commencing in mercy after the deluge...

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