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Dispensational and Foundational Truth
pp. 186 - 190
As an introduction to his Alphabetical Analysis of Truth, 100: H. Welch divides the
subject into three sections, (1) Doctrinal Truth, (2) Dispensational Truth, (3) Practical
Truth. He explains each section in this way:
(1) "Doctrinal Truth embraces all that has been revealed concerning the Being and
Attributes of God, and all that God has done, commanded, promised or foretold in
creation, law and grace." This is truth that time does not alter. It is basic or foundational.
"All have sinned and come short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3: 23) is true under
whatever dispensation we may be called. "God is just" is as true under grace as it was
under law. There is therefore a permanence about foundational truth.
(2) "Dispensational Truth takes note of the purpose of the ages, the changes that have
been introduced since creation, such as may be denominated the dispensation of
Innocence, Law, Earthly Kingdom, Grace, Church, Mystery, etc., and the office of
dispensational truth is to decide whether any particular doctrine--be it command,
promise, calling or prophecy--does or does not pertain to any particular individual or
individuals." Dispensational truth would lead the believer to distinguish between the
blessing that says `the meek shall inherit the earth' (Psa. 37: 11; Matt. 5: 5), and
those blessings which are described as all `spiritual' and to be enjoyed `in heavenly
places' where Christ is enthroned (Eph. 1: 3, 19-23; 2: 5, 6). To those who discern
`things that differ' (Phil. 1: 10 margin), these two statements cannot mean the same thing
if words are allowed to have their normal meaning.
Under the law of God given through Moses sin and its forgiveness was linked with
animal sacrifice (Lev. 4: and 5:) and this could not be ignored. To do so meant
discipline and punishment. Today no Christian who sins is involved with animal
sacrifice, for the great Antitype, Christ Himself, the Lamb of God, has made the one
necessary sacrifice for sin, namely giving Himself, so doing away with the O.T. types and
shadows which are no longer necessary, as the epistle to the Hebrews so clearly shows.
Because of this, we now have a dispensation of grace resting on the finished work of the
Saviour. The O.T. dispensation of animal sacrifice has passed, having achieved its
object. This is no problem when the Scriptural setting of each is realized and
(3) Practical Truth. This should be obvious, for it is the practical working out in
experience, of the doctrine or instruction given to us in the Word of God.
However, problems will arise if (1) and (2) are not understood and acted on, and some
dispensationalists seem to be confused here. It has been pointed out that, in reading the
Word of God, we should note "the address on the envelope", that is to say to recognize to
whom the passage of Scripture is addressed. This is right, but we must not draw wrong
conclusions. The name and address of the person on the envelope decides who is the