Dispensational Publishing House Launches - Paul Scharf, Editor in Chief

"Dispensational Publishing House, Inc. opened its website this week at DispensationalPublishing.com—beginning a new era in the promotion of classical dispensational theology."

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TylerR's picture

Editor

If Larkin said it (or drew a really cool chart depicting it), I BELIEVE it!

No, I'm not serious . . .

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and an Investigations Manager with a Washington State agency. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?

Rob Fall's picture

an interesting venture.

Hoping to shed more light than heat..

mmartin's picture

You've heard of the rise of the Young, Restless, & Reformed . . . . .

Prepare for the next great fad:  Young, Restless, & Dispensational.

 

Is that sort of like the rebel alliance rising up to take down the dark side & Darth Vader?  :-)!

 

 

 

Ed Vasicek's picture

Mmartin, "Young, Restless, and Dispensational" would be a GREAT fad!

I wonder if they will consider me in their camp, since I am technically a Progressive Dispensaitonal.  Sadly, Progressive Dispensationalists are often accused of being Covenant-- which is far from true.  I am pretrib, believe in a future Millennial temple, with sacrifices, the future exaltation of the Jewish Nation, and the distinct nature of the church which began at Pentecost.  What makes me a PD is that I believe that just as the literal Tabernacle had a spiritual signficance in Christ and the Church -- but the literal still happened, so I believe that the promises in the literal millennium will be kept literally, but are pre-shadowed in a spiritual sense in the church.

So many of us PDs clearly consider ourselves in the Dispensational Camp.

Some PDs might be closer to Covenant on some points, just as some traditional dispensationalists are closer to Covenant on some points. Think of the great Presbyterian dispensationalists who still sprinkled infants and considered that baptism.

 

"The Midrash Detective"

Larry Nelson's picture

 

Ed Vasicek wrote:

Think of the great Presbyterian dispensationalists who still sprinkled infants and considered that baptism.

 

Heard this somewhere a while ago:

A Presbyterian and a Baptist were discussing baptism.  The Presbyterian asked the Baptist, "So, if the person goes into the water up to their neck, is that alright?" 

The Baptist replied, "No." 

The Presbyterian pressed on, "How about up to their forehead, then?" 

The Baptist reiterated, "No, no, no!"

"Aha," cried the Presbyterian, "So you admit that it's the water on top of the head that really counts!"  

ScottS's picture

I was excited to hear about the venture, and then disappointed to find one of their points was for "every resource at DPH ... will hold to these distinctives," and then finding one of those being "a conviction that the church will be raptured prior to the coming tribulation."

I consider myself a Dispensationalist, but am not convinced that this timing of the rapture is a correct biblical interpretation, nor by any means a "theological necessity" with respect to dispensational closure.

I would have preferred the publishing house to have allowed more freedom of discussion regarding that point through their offerings. Still, I trust the work will be beneficial in other ways.

Scott Smith, Ph.D.

The goal now, the destiny to come, holiness like God—
Gen 1:27, Lev 19:2, 1 Pet 1:15-16

Ed Vasicek's picture

Scott, I agree with you.  We need to separate the pretrib rapture from dispensationalism.  I am a pretrib man myself, but it is nothing to separate over; it is certainly not as abundantly clear as God's determination to keep His Word to Israel.  I think some people leave dispensationalism precisely because it is so often aligned with pretribulationalism.

"The Midrash Detective"

Paul J. Scharf's picture

Thanks to SharperIron for running this information, and thanks to everyone for their kind (and other interesting Lol thoughts.

As far as progressive dispensationalism goes, that is covered in our Core Principles: http://dispensationalpublishing.com/about-us/

We are not ruling out publishing the work of a PD on a specific topic, or in a debate book, etc. Also, we are not running a secret club that only some can join. So you may see the writings of some who are not "as dispensational" as others Smile But our purpose is to promote traditional dispensationalism.

As far as the pre-trib issue goes, I would argue that someone who is "dispensational" but not pre-trib is really not dispensational at all in terms of his theological system, regardless of how similar he might be in many areas. We are certainly willing to allow freedom of discussion, but this is where we are coming from in terms of our purpose and the basic requirement for major authors.

Ed, I want to meet that guy who left the dispensational movement because he has "had it up to here" with the pre-trib rapture. I guess he wants to go into the tribulation really bad!! Smile

Church Ministries Representative for the Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry

ScottS's picture

Thanks Paul,

Perhaps you need to clarify how you define "traditional dispensationalism" when you follow-up saying

I would argue that someone who is "dispensational" but not pre-trib is really not dispensational at all in terms of his theological system

Ryrie in Dispensationalism (2007) does not have pretrib rapture as one of the three sin qua non's (see pages 46-48). He does consider it an outgrowth of one of those, the first, the Distinction between Israel and the Church, and thus "has become a part of normative dispensational eschatology" and "a regular feature of classic dispensational premillennialism" (173), but it is still not a sin qua non. That is precisely the point of my contention. I believe a distinction between the Israel and the Church does not necessarily warrant a pretrib rapture, and I also contend that a more literal reading of Scripture (which is his second sin qua non; though it should have been first in my opinion) leans away from it—but that is where the discussion resides among dispensationalists.

To Ryrie, I would add Stallard's clarifying point about theological method, that dispensationalists interpret the NT in light of the OT, or as he stated it in "Literal Interpretation, Theological Method, and the Essence of Dispensationalism" Journal of Ministry and Theology 1 (1997):5-35 (here specifically p.34):

The preservation of the literal interpretation of the Old Testament at all points of theologizing in the light of progressive revelation

Essentially, I believe Stallard has hit on a distinctive point of Dispensationalism with respect to refining the point of "literal interpretation."

At any rate, whether one accepts Stallard's revised sin qua non or not, the pretrib rapture is, in my mind, open for discussion within the sin qua non categories, and thus while it may be "regular" and currently "normative" as a dispensational understanding, I believe it should not be, as you stated, a defining factor necessary to a dispensational theological system.

I only state the above, again, as a disappointment about the guidelines. You are certainly free to keep the standards as you have set, and again, I believe much good for dispensational theology will still come, despite not allowing "major authors" to have a differing view on the rapture.

Scott Smith, Ph.D.

The goal now, the destiny to come, holiness like God—
Gen 1:27, Lev 19:2, 1 Pet 1:15-16

Paul J. Scharf's picture

Thanks Scott,

I appreciate your thoughtful response.

I am with Ryrie and Stallard -- and am not trying to say anything different than they are on the points they are addressing.

Ryrie hits the nail on the head -- the pre-trib rapture is a primary outgrowth of the essentials of dispensational thought.

Also, we could say it in this additional way: At this late stage of the game, dispensational theology is a real thing... and the pre-trib rapture is a big part of it -- whether one likes that or not. Thus, both philosophically and pragmatically, I believe I can question whether someone who denies the pre-trib rapture is truly a traditional dispensationalist.

Along the same lines -- practically speaking -- who and where are these non-pre-trib traditional dispensationalists?! As they say, he may not be in a class by himself, but it would not take long to call the roll... Smile

Church Ministries Representative for the Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry

ScottS's picture

You ask:

who and where are these non-pre-trib traditional dispensationalists?!

John F. Walvoord in “Posttribulationism Today: Part V: Dispensational Posttribulational Interpretation,” Bibliotheca Sacra 133 (1976), categorized Robert Gundry as "first of all, a dispensationalist who distinguishes Israel from the church" (18), even though he attempted to hold a dispensational posttribulational rapture view.

In his The Pre-wrath Rapture of the Church (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1990), Marvin Rosenthal acknowledges his "heroes" of the rapture before shifting his view were Walvoord, Ryrie, and Pentecost (25); he was approaching the rapture differently, but still from traditional dispensational understandings.

Gleason Archer is recognized by some as a dispensational premillennialist, yet argued for a mid-tribulation view in chapter 3 of Three Views on the Rapture (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996).

Perhaps not all would agree that these three men are essentially traditional dispensational in their approach to Scripture. Again, it does boil down to what one thinks is essential to being a traditional dispensationalist. But assuming one does not define a traditional dispensationalist as necessarily holding pre-trib rapture (i.e. making it a sin qua non), but rather the actual sin qua non points, then an argument can be made for these three men, and others who hold positions akin in some way to them, as falling within the confines of traditional dispensational views otherwise.

Scott Smith, Ph.D.

The goal now, the destiny to come, holiness like God—
Gen 1:27, Lev 19:2, 1 Pet 1:15-16

T Howard's picture

I take it from reading through the website that this will be a fundamentalist take on dispensationalism. In other words, you envision your primary audience to be fundamentalist pastors?

Ed Vasicek's picture

Thanks for starting this sight.  Looking forward to good things from it!

"The Midrash Detective"

TylerR's picture

Editor

The site was launched by Randy White, who I believe is a Southern Baptist. 

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and an Investigations Manager with a Washington State agency. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?

T Howard's picture

TylerR wrote:

The site was launched by Randy White, who I believe is a Southern Baptist. 

I understand, but the organization holds to a strong preference for the KJV/NKJV (and I imagine the MT) in its publications. There aren't many conservative evangelicals who hold that position or advocate it (Robinson and Pierpont being notable exceptions). Even Ryrie and members of the Council on Dispensational Hermeneutics don't hold to this strong preference for the KJV/NKJV (MT).

This seems to narrow the audience to fundamentalist-leaning individuals, imho.

TylerR's picture

Editor

I wouldn't worry too much. He's just a guy who likes the KJV. I wrote to Bro. White a little while back on an unrelated matter, and watched a sermon of his as a result of our brief discussion. He references the Greek, and even disagreed with the KJV at one point. I think you're simply dealing with a conservative guy who likes the KJV/NKJV. I saw a recent article on their website which referenced the NASB, so I wouldn't be worried. 

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and an Investigations Manager with a Washington State agency. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?

T Howard's picture

Tyler, perhaps you're correct. However, based on the website they desire to change the conservative evangelical scholarly opinion about dispensationalism.Their peculiar position on the KJV/NKJV (MT) will actually hinder their ability to do that with conservative evangelicals or with CE scholarship.

Paul J. Scharf's picture

T - Thanks for your interest. Changing "the conservative evangelical scholarly opinion about dispensationalism" sounds like a lofty goal! Please pray for us!! Smile

Regarding Bible versions, the statement on our "About Us" page speaks for itself: "We are committed to serious Bible study based upon the use of the original languages. We choose to be judicious in our use of English Bible versions. While it may be necessary to utilize multiple versions in our publications, the use of such versions does not necessarily constitute an endorsement of them by DPH. Our preference is to base our works on the texts of the King James Version or the New King James Version." (http://dispensationalpublishing.com/about-us/)

As Tyler noted, we have already used the NASB, so I am not sure what problem you see.

We doubtless would refrain from printing something that refers to many different versions and paraphrases for variety's sake, as is the case sometimes with popular Christian books. Also doubtless, such an author would probably not seek to partner with us in the first place.

On the other hand, if someone were comparing how various versions treat a specific word or phrase, that would be a different matter.

I hope that helps.

Church Ministries Representative for the Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry

T Howard's picture

Paul J. Scharf wrote:

As Tyler noted, we have already used the NASB, so I am not sure what problem you see.

Paul, The only problem I see is that you already face an uphill battle for acceptance w/in CE scholarship. Why add another reason for the CE community to dismiss dispensationalism or your materials by insisting that "the King James Version of the Bible is the closest literal English translation" and holding a preference for the KJV/NKJV (MT) in your published materials?

Just an observation though.

Paul J. Scharf's picture

T - I see your point, but I think you may be reading too much into this...

The statement you quoted about the KJV is from Dr. White's blog, expressing his personal view. Other authors will not be required to abide by that statement in practice—and certainly not in belief.

The statement that relates to other authors is the one I quoted above, from "About Us." It is an institutional policy, if you will, and does not rule out the use of any versions—it simply clarifies what our regular practice will be. There is no statement there about Greek text types.

Obviously these points could all be debated and better solutions sought, but overall, again, I think your concerns will be satisfied.

Also, I want to pick up on something else you keep going back to, because it is a fascinating and important subject. Is our goal to wade into the academy in an attempt to convince CE scholars of the need for dispensationalism? I guess it depends on what that means.

First, could this even be said to be the goal of the Council on Dispensational Hermeneutics or the Pre-Trib Study Group Conference? I truly doubt it.

Or, is Answers in Genesis, for instance, with its full complement of world-class scientists, making a huge impact on "CE scholarship" in terms of its views of origins and earth history? I think we know the answer. I see DPH as operating in a similar realm, at least for the most part.

We do want to promote real, true Biblical scholarship—which may or may not play in the marble halls of our most "esteemed" institutions. But in our first two weeks we have already run articles from two highly-qualified and capable contributing authors, with lots more to come, Lord willing. Stay tuned—it's going to be good!

 

 

Church Ministries Representative for the Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry

Darrell Post's picture

Paul,

Congratulations on the new venture.

DP