As I am preparing for church planting in January, I want to clarify a theological position. I affirm Progressive Dispensationalism.
Tenets of Progressive Dispensationalism include:
Tenents of Progressive Dispensationalism
- Is not Replacement Theology; Progressive Dispensationalists assert that God will keep His promises made to “Israel according to the flesh,” the genetic descendents of Jacob.
- Acknowledges a future 7-year Tribulation followed by a 1,000 Millennium with Christ personally present and reigning from Jerusalem.
- Affirms that the nation of Israel (in the Millennium) will be exalted as a nation with a rebuilt Temple and sacrificial offerings (that the Messianic Age is compatible with Temple worship is demonstrated in Acts 21:17-26).
- Is similar to (the Messianic Jewish scholar) David Stern’s “Olive Branch Theology” espoused in Restoring the Jewishness of the Gospel.
- Does see the church fulfilling many Old Testament prophecies (and thus differs from Traditional Dispensationalism on this point), but in a less literal sense or incomplete sense; Progressives break rank with Traditionals by concluding that the church was anticipated in the Old Testament (but not clearly). The term “mystery,” when used in reference to the church, is not defined as “something previously unrevealed,” (as in Traditional Dispensationalism) but “previously revealed unclearly.”
- Views the church as being blessed through Israel; Progressives avow that God has never stopped working with Israel (some Jews now believe, and He is provoking others to jealousy); the Jews will rebuild the Tribulation Temple largely in unbelief; although the 144,000 will be saved during the earlier part of the Tribulation, most Jews will not believe until the Battle of Armageddon, as interpreted from Zechariah 12.
- Essentially recognizes the more literal fulfillment of prophecy (which is Traditional Dispensationalism’s strong suit) but accepts how the New Testament authors quote and apply the Old Testament to the church (Traditional Dispensationalism’s most vulnerable point).
- Is a “now, but not yet” viewpoint (as argued by C. Marvin Pate in The End of the Age Has Come); the Kingdom Age is breaking forth now, but will have a complete fulfillment during the Millennium.
For additional study: