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Title: Dispensing dispensationalism : a critical analysis of the 1917 Scofield Reference Bible
Author: Perry, Hilary M.
ISNI:       0000 0004 7657 3657
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2018
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Dispensing Dispensationalism explores the hermeneutic of Cyrus Ingerson Scofield as found in the second edition of the Scofield Reference Bible, published in 1917. It seeks to prove that this is no ordinary reference Bible but is a volume which employs the annotation of selected texts to promote a classical dispensationalist interpretation. It also aims to contextualise Scofield in succession to John Nelson Darby and as predecessor to later dispensationalists such as Lewis Sperry Chafer, Charles Ryrie, Craig Blaising, Darrell Bock and Robert Saucy. The works of these and other authors are considered alongside the Scofield Reference Bible and case studies giving scholarly analyses of three important sections of the annotation are included at the end of the thesis. Tables and graphs are provided throughout the thesis for illustration and clarification. Dispensing Dispensationalism analyses the Scofield Reference Bible in relation to a general dispensational hermeneutic and to six elements which are essential to dispensationalism: its commitment to a literal interpretation of the biblical text and to evangelical doctrine, its employment of a dualistic interpretation of the text which sees Israel and the Church as eternally separate entities, its use of the concepts of dispensations and covenants, its expectation of the imminent pretribulational rapture of the true Church, and its focus on apocalyptic and millennial expectations. This study reveals that the Scofield Reference Bible fulfils each of these criteria and continues to propagate a form of dispensationalism which was extant at the turn of the twentieth century. This may be termed 'classical dispensationalism'. Since the Scofield Reference Bible is still a best-selling Bible today, it acts as a time-capsule, promoting older ideas at a time when dispensationalism in its progressive form has developed and changed.
Supervisor: Finney, Mark T. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available