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The Three Dispensations.

The Three Dispensations.

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Published by glennpease
By DANIEL STEELE, D.D.

IN John Fletcher's portrait of St. Paul as a
model evangelical preacher, he very em-
phatically insists upon a thorough knowledge
of the three great eras of spiritual life. These
he denominates the dispensation of the Fa-
ther, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
By DANIEL STEELE, D.D.

IN John Fletcher's portrait of St. Paul as a
model evangelical preacher, he very em-
phatically insists upon a thorough knowledge
of the three great eras of spiritual life. These
he denominates the dispensation of the Fa-
ther, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

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Published by: glennpease on Jan 29, 2014
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THE THREE DISPENSATIONS. By DANIEL STEELE, D.D. IN John Fletcher's portrait of St. Paul as a model evangelical preacher, he very em-phatically insists upon a thorough knowledge of the three great eras of spiritual life. These he denominates the dispensation of the Fa-ther, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. He who is unacquainted with the peculiarities of experience under these different dispensations cannot successfully apply Gospel truth, and give full proof of his ministry. For these dis-pensations, though in the order of develop-ment they were successive, are now co-exist-ent. Of those accepted of God, now dwelling on the earth, some are in the dispensation of the Father, some in that of the Son, and others in the dispensation of the Holy Spirit. The first are characterized by the fear of God, servile fear, with little love. This fear influ-ences conduct and shapes character. They fear God and work righteousness. They are
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142 Love Enthroned. kept from sinning, and are incited to purity and well-doing. They have no joy of the Holy Ghost, but only that which flows in the channels of nature, the approval of conscience for their right actions. Not having God's love shed abroad in their hearts by the Holy Spirit, they are in doubt of their acceptance with God, and are often distressed when the written or unwritten law thunders its threatenings in their ears, " though visited at times with a few scattered rays of hope." They exist in all lands, but chiefly in non-evangelical countries, papal, pagan, and Mohammedan. Now and then an honest Deist, a devout Unitarian, with the head warped by early implanted error, but a sincere heart, may be found amid the full blaze of Gospel truth, still serving God in the same dispensation with uncircumcised Abram in Mesopotamia. In this view we find ground for charity toward the less enlightened sub-
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 jects of God's kingdom, and strong motives for the abatement of bigotry. We learn to deal tenderly with those Cornelian souls whose prayers and alms go up for a memorial before God. We approach them, not with de-nunciations, but with invitations, while we The Three Dispensations. 143 magnify Christ, and from our own experience assure them of the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe. By indiscrim-inately lumping them together with avowed Atheists and willful sinners, the incautious preacher gives them needless offense, and hedges up the path of advanced truth into their minds. In Christian lands these wor-shipers of the Father must be distinguished from those who reject the Son because of the strictness of his requirements, the inflexible terms of discipleship, and the spiritual inter-pretation of the moral law planting a thorn-
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