Friday, January 06, 2006

Christian Dispensationalism

Respublica on Pat Robertson. (Diane is the person I turn to for the Christian take on things,
This may come as a surprise to journalists who always define Robertson as "Christian spokesman" or "Christian broadcaster". He does not speak for or hold a view of Scripture that in any way places him alongside most Christians theologically. He is a dispensationalist. And an embarrassment. More like a sensationalist when the cameras turn on. Dispensationalism briefly defined is: A method of interpreting the Bible that divides history into distinct eras or "dispensations" in which God deals with man in a distinctive way and, in some cases, in which God's ethical standards change. In other words, God changes to fit each situation.

Christian theologians would say dispensationalists like Robertson have a wrong view of scripture. So why do Christians sit quietly by each time Robertson and his ilk get up before the news cameras and spout doctrine in the name of Christ. I know how embarrassing it is to be painted with his broad brush. Enough already! I'm begging you, all you news people, please. Get someone else as your Christian spokesman. There are so many thoughtful, knowledgeable, scriptural churchmen out there. Find someone else.

1 comment:

The Eastvold Blog said...

As far as I'm concerned, that post is right on.

In fact, don't be so sure that Robertson is representative of all dispensationalists either. Quite simply, he isn't.

I know Robertson makes entertaining reading (and he must certainly be more fun for a nonreligious reporter to quote than a more responsible perspective), but--for an evangelical Christian who tries seriously to grapple with these issues--I find this trend disturbing.

More to the point, Robertson is a has-been within the religious right whose only hope of extending his notoriety is by making outlandish statements that embarrass his fellow believers. I'm not going to join the bandwagon of Christians going after his scalp (leave the old man alone), but I would like to go on record as saying that his opinions are no longer relevant. If you want to know what religious conservatives think, talk to those of us who still have a vested interest in the American polity.