Are You Fundamentalist and Dispensational?

Question:

Thank you for your book on the rapture. I have found this to be a tremendous help to me in my study of eschatology. I currently attend a fundamental baptist church and bible college, and up until I read your book, I was a pre-tribber. I ask God constantly to open my eyes that I my know the truth. I think you were fair in dealing with the scriptures from a literal point of view (like us pre-tribbers are supposed to be doing) and not reading your beliefs into the text. God has given you a wonderful gift to make things simple.

On another note, what type of denominational background are you from? How are the beliefs different from fundamentalism? Are you a dispensationalist? Thank you for your time and once again, your book is excellent. God bless you.

Response:

I'm glad to see that my book was helpful to you. I am personally a Pentecostal, which would surely fall in the fundamentalist category. The term "fundamentalist" merely means that you hold to the "fundamentals" of the conservative Christian faith, such as the virgin birth, bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ and biblical inerrancy and authority. This was developed in reaction to "liberal" Christianity which denied all of these things. Within the braod category of fundamentalism there is a lot of room for variation.

As far as Dispensationalism, I would not identify with old school Dispensationalism, with their radical separation of the church and Israel for all eternity. However, many leading Dispensational scholars in recent times have seen many of the weaknesses inherent in the system and have developed what is now called, "Progressive Dispensationalism." I find myself pretty much in agreement with this position.

For an excellent introduction to PD, see this article: http://www.geocities.com/lasttrumpet_2000/pd/twpd101.html. It and the following article hit the highlights of what the differences are and why. I might point out that PD was birthed at BIOLA (Talbot) and Dallas Seminary, two leading Dispensational schools.