1st Apr 2013
Dispensational Dominionism- #3
The Gap Doctrine
In July 2012, I debated Joel McDurmon (PhD), Director of Research of American Vision in Atlanta, GA. McDurmon said the Abrahamic Land promises must be fulfilled literally and physically in the future because Abraham never received the land. (Be sure to get a set of my DVDs on “Israel and the Land Promises, Failed or Fulfilled”. Also, the book of that debate will be available shortly, and DVDs are available now- as well as Kindle).
McDurmon’s argument was that God promised the land to Abraham personally, not just to his descendants. Abraham. McDurmon argued from Acts 7:5 that Abraham never received the land promise. Therefore, Abraham must be physically resurrected from the dirt and receive the literal land promise, which is not confined to the borders delineated in Genesis 15, but, encompasses the “world” (kosmos, Romans 4:13).
I responded that McDurmon’s comments were a thinly veiled remake of the dispensational doctrine. His claims are almost exactly what Dispensationalists teach. McDurmon seeks to deflect this by noting how some church leaders believed this prior to the advent of modern dispensationalism. Of course, this does not help McDurmon, because by and large, the early church leaders who espoused that view were Chilialists, i.e. premillennialists, the first cousins to modern Dispensationalism!
McDurmon and other Dominionists have labeled my charge as a falsehood. They claim there is no resemblance between what they are teaching and the dispensational paradigm. This is simply specious and a desperate attempt to avoid the truth. Let me be very clear, however. What Joel McDurmon, and his camp is espousing is, without any doubt whatsoever, nothing but dispensationalism wrapped up in some different colored robes.
I have debated dispensationalists for years. I am intimately familiar with their theology. And I can say unequivocally that what McDurmon, and seemingly American Vision, is now advocating is nothing but what I will call “Dispensational Dominionism.”
McDurmon said that he would have no problem at all debating a Dispensationalist. He claimed he could dispatch them with ease. No, not really. As this series of articles will reveal, modern Dispensationalism will surely be thrilled with the current direction of Dominionism. Let me continue now to establish this by demonstrating that just like Dispensationalism, Dominionism posits a huge, so far now 4000 years!, gap between the land promise and fulfillment.
Dispensational Gap Doctrine
Dispensationalists posit a gap between the 69th and the 70th Week of Daniel 9:24f. It is claimed that Jewish unbelief, “The Kingdom is contingent on Israel’s acceptance of its King. Because even after his resurrection, that nation refused Him, it became impossible to establish the kingdom (Acts 3:18-26). In fact, the tribulation period did not come; if it had,, the promise of the soon coming of the Son of Man would have been a great comfort to the apostles” (Thomas Ice, End Times Controversy, (Eugene, Or. Harvest House, 2003)85). This kind of quote could be multiplied many times over, but that is not necessary.
The point is that in fact, a Gap Doctrine is crucial to Dispensational doctrine. So much so that Ice says if there is no Gap between the 69th and the 70th Week, then Dispensationalism is totally nullified: “Without a futurized (i.e. postponed, DKP), seventieth week, the dispensational system falls apart. There can be no pre-tribulational rapture, great tribulation, or rebuilt temple without the gap.” (Ice, Internet Article: www.according2prophecy.org/seventy-weeks-pt2.html.)
Let me make it abundantly clear that I am not suggesting that Dominionism has a Gap Doctrine for exactly the same reasons as the Dispensationalists. Millennialists say there is a gap because of Jewish unbelief, because of man’s rebellion. Dominionists posit a gap based solely on their presuppositional view of the resurrection and the kingdom. Of course, there are direct similarities between Dispensationalists and Dominionists in this regard, but we will discuss that later.