Salvation

As each dispensation is discussed and man’s responsibilities explained, it should be noted that the topic does not concern salvation. In no dispensation is God managing the affairs of mankind by saving them. Likewise, it is never man’s responsibility to be saved. The manner in which man is to conduct himself on the earth and the need, provision, and means of his salvation are two different questions, and therefore, two different conversations.

One common objection to Dispensationalism is that it teaches more than one way of salvation—one in each dispensation. Because dispensationalists make distinctions and state that God works in different ways at different times, critics apply this principle to the subject of salvation. They ask, “how can God work in different ways at different times? The purpose of his work on this earth is the salvation of mankind.” Therefore, they conclude that any differences are equated with differences in the doctrine of salvation. If that were true, dispensationlists would be the greatest of heretics.

In response to this criticism, dispensationalists teach that salvation is always based upon the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It was Christ’s sacrifice that allows any person, from Adam to the last person born during the kingdom, to be saved. On this basis, salvation is always by God’s grace through man’s faith. Abraham is the classic textbook case. The Apostle Paul states that Abraham was saved in Genesis 15 when “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness” (Rom. 4:3). What did Abraham believe? To the dispensationalist, it seems clear from Genesis that Abraham believed in the special revelation that God had given to him.

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