2021 Call for papers – Council on Dispensational Hermeneutics

“Developing a Dispensational Worldview”

Date of Conference: September 15–16, 2021
Location of Conference: Sugar Land Bible Church, Sugar Land, TX (Houston Area)

This is a call for papers for the 2021 Council on Dispensational Hermeneutics.  The Council is an academic study group for traditional dispensationalists although observers from other theological traditions are welcome to attend. This year’s focus is on developing a dispensational worldview.  We are interested in investigating aspects of constructing a Christian worldview from a dispensational perspective. In particular, what makes the dispensational worldview any different from other evangelical expressions of worldview.  In addition, the whole issue of systematic theology as Christian worldview opens up some methodological observations that need to be discussed. We hope you will join us for this important interaction. As usual, we desire not simply a theological debate but an evaluation of the hermeneutical and methodological positions involved as we engage in interaction about the theme. We want to answer “why” we hold the views we affirm.

We may be asking specific individuals to do various topics as well as receiving your proposals.  Off-topic proposals will be considered but those concerning the chosen theme will be reviewed first.  All proposals with full title and descriptions (not more than 200 words) should be emailed to the Executive Director, Dr. Mike Stallard, at mstallard@foi.org. The deadline for topic proposals to be turned in is June 4, 2021.  The entire Steering Committee of the Council will decide collectively which papers are accepted.  This process usually does not take long.  The deadline for presentation papers to be turned in is September 1, 2021 in order to be posted at the Council website.

This year there is a modest registration fee of $25 for the Council to help cover the costs of the meeting. Approved speakers for the conference do not have to pay the registration fee. Registration will be online at the Council website:  www.dispensationalcouncil.org.

Topics that we are requesting members to consider are the following:

  • One particular area of interest is the issue of how dispensational views of continuity and discontinuity affect the crafting of a biblical worldview. Several areas could be addressed:
    • Examination of various approaches to the use of the OT in the NT (or OT used in the OT)
    • Exploration of particular OT passages used in the NT
    • Contribution of particular biblical authors to a biblical worldview (Moses, Job, Isaiah, John, Paul)
    • Evaluation of the dispensations as part of the development of a dispensational philosophy of history in the progress of revelation
    • Revisiting the teaching of Charles Ryrie concerning the changes to the content of faith throughout history – how much did OT saints understand about God’s plan of redemption?
    • Investigation of transitions between dispensations
  • Application of a dispensational worldview to sharing the gospel of eternal life and the pursuit of practical Christian living
  • Comparison of the traditional dispensational worldview to other Christian expressions of worldview
    • Replacement theology, covenant theology, progressive covenantalism, historical premillennialism, progressive dispensationalism
  • Comparison of a dispensational worldview to pagan expressions of world view in the current society
  • Elaboration of biblical responses to specific issues of current “cancel culture” (follow up to the themes of the last two Councils)
  • The valid use of the Psalms for application to Christian living today
  • How to construct theology from a dispensational point of view
  • Defend the proposition that developing systematic theology is equivalent to developing a Christian worldview
  • Development of dispensational understanding of traditional categories of worldview thinking
    • A dispensational approach to epistemology
    • A dispensational approach to metaphysics
    • A dispensational approach to ethics
    • A dispensational approach to socio-political thought

Other topics related to the theme are welcome as well.  These are suggestions to help us think about the issues.

As always, we will attempt to have an appropriate pastor’s panel to make sure our discussions stay grounded in concern for the local church.  We will make every effort to livestream each plenary session.

Again, final papers are to be submitted to Dr. Stallard by September 1, 2021 at the email listed earlier.  There will be no remuneration for presentation of papers.  Council attendees need to provide their own transportation to the Council site.  Information on area hotels will be provided on the Council website.

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