Review of Prophecy and the Church by Oswald T. Allis

Prophecy and the Church, An Examination of the Claim of Dispensationalists that the Christian Church is a Mystery Parenthesis which Interrupts the Fulfillment to Israel of the Kingdom Prophecies of the Old Testament, by Oswald T. Allis, Presbyterian and Reformed, 1945, Third Printing 1972, 339 pp.
In Prophecy and The Church Oswald T. Allis argues that following a hermeneutic of strict literalism, dispensationalists reject as allegorical many of the traditional Christian interpretations of Old Testament prophecy fulfillment in the New Testament. This pushes the fulfillment of these prophecies out to a yet future period, and makes the Church itself a parenthesis in God’s history not predicted in the Old Testament. But defending this futurism leads to various fanciful allegorical interpretations, conflicting with the original supposition of strict literalism and thereby proving dispensationalism false.
Allis makes his case exegetically, working from passage to passage through the Scriptures. But he is sometimes difficult to understand, and the version of the book I have inexplicably changes to a smaller font size for some paragraphs. As these paragraphs are not quotes, I’m left guessing that they either signify material copied from Allis’s previous writings or perhaps were reduced to accommodate the publisher’s space constraints.
The book might make a good reference for contesting the dispensationalist interpretations of various passages. But, as I understand, the dispensationalists have modified their positions considerably since the time Allis wrote, and so his critique is likely quite dated.
 

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