I began journaling in earnest in 1990. In 2005, I was introduced to the world of internet weblogging. As I look back at my entries, I can observe how God has brought me through from “old life” and purpose to “new life” and purpose one step at the time, one change at the time, one stage at the time, one revelation at the time. Progressive revelation of God, individually through circumstances, Word, Spirit, and the guidance of others and progressive revelation for his people collectively through the red line of his leading observed in Scriptures, Old Testament and New, are principles that i have come to appreciate with age and understanding. Both, the age and the understanding, are gifts from God and I am grateful, too, that he led me to capture some of the steps along the way in my journals/blogs so that I can see my own growth in my Christian walk.
This week I found myself doing a review of theological notions about the “progressive” nature of the Scripture and the progression of God’s revelation to us through it. Something in a women’s Bible study caused me to consider the topic of “ecclesiology” (beliefs about The Church and our relationship to it) and that led to a revisiting “dispensationalism” and covenant theology. Dispensationalism is one theological view of God’s progressive revelation to his people that teaches that there have been a number of distinct ‘dispensations’ or eras of Christianity’s history and development. Each one is defined by specific characteristics, stands pretty much on its own, and gives way to the next one at specific times observable in history and Scripture. We are, according to its teaching, in the dispensation of The Church which will be followed by the Millenial Dispensation, the rapture and the return of Christ. There are a lot of fine points to it and it is not necessary to go into all of them here. There is, however, another view, covenant theology which follows a more gradually flowing and evolving covenant of God with his people from Adam and Eve to believers today. I grew up in a dispensational theology tradition, but through the years have grown into a covenant theology understanding and interpretation of Scripture. The covenant theology seems more cohesive, coherent and consistent….all of which seem to me to be more in keeping with the character of God. And so, in addition to “growth”, another theme of my teaching is “covenant.” Sandra Richter’s Epic of Eden was a significant advance in my understanding of covenant and this theological interpretation of Scripture.
But then again, what do i know?