Christology and dispensationalism

Dispensationalism demarcates the Old from the New Testament in such a rigid and strained way that it makes God's dealings with Israel as different and unrelated to his dealings with the New Testament church.

While differences are there, since the Old Testament was more preparatory, anticipatory and prophetic (looking forward), and also typological in character, the link and organic unity cannot be denied. God has one people, one fold, one church that extends throughout the ages; God has exhibited his Son as the One Saviour of mankind. It is to be maintained, therefore, that the Christ that saves us is the same Christ who was revealed (though in shadowy form) to men from Adam till his Incarnation.

A study of Old Testament Christology brings out the salient features of what kind of hope and faith the Old Testament saints entertained within their hearts. Just as Abraham looked forward to the day of Christ, even so we depend upon Christ's appearance in the flesh to make atonement for our sins. They awaited for a King (Isaiah 9); we confess that this King is Jesus Christ.

They knew that God would establish a new covenant with them; we are partakers of that covenant, ratified by the blood of Christ. Dispensationalism states that the New Testament church age is a parenthesis, since the Jews rejected their King, and so the Kingdom (Millenium) was postponed. But this is a sad failure to notice that the prophecies concerning Christ found their fulfilment in his coming.

And he came to establish (and did establish) that promised kingdom of grace. Proper Old Testament Christology will deliver us from the errors of dispensationalism; it will invite us to see how the church is the new Israel (Galatians 6:16); and that the Messiah for whom Moses suffered (Hebrews 11:24-26) is the Messiah in whom we trust.