Q54 : Scofield Study Bible and the Millennial Kingdom

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Q54 : Scofield Study Bible and the Millennial Kingdom

I am brand new to your site. I have a question regarding Bibles. I have just about every version I can think of except the TNIV and The Old Scofield Bible. Can you tell me which is better: the Old Scofield or the New Scofield? I am very wary of Liberal scholarship. If it helps, I just finished reading the Millenial Kingdom by John F. Walvarood ... What a wonderful book. I get into a lot of discussion/debate with Covenant theologians/Amillarian thinkers ... I would like more information.

A54 : by Tony Garland

Unfortunately, I'm not very familiar with the changes between the Old Scofield and New Scofield Bibles so I can't speak with any insight as to whether the changes reflect liberal scholarship—which is something to be wary of as you observe.

I have both the Old and the New, for reference purposes. The New does have several advantages (Arabic numeral chapter numbers in cross-references, more readable type). They have also clarified some of the notes. For example, the original Scofield has this unfortunate quote at John 1:16

As a dispensation, grace begins with the death and resurrection of Christ... The point of testing is no longer legal obedience as the condition of salvation, but acceptance or rejection of Christ...

This note, when taken in isolation, seems to infer that salvation in the previous dispensation was by legal obedience. Obviously, this is not what Scofield believed. (I discuss this in more depth in my article, Does Dispensationalism Teach Two Ways of Salvation?a) However, the note has been taken by some in this way.

The new version has a much different treatment (at John 1:16) which says, in part:

Under the former dispensation, law was shown to be powerless to secure righteousness and life for a sinful race (Gal. 3:21-22). Prior to the cross man's salvation was through faith (Gen. 15:6; Rom. 4:3), ...

thus rectifying the misleading note in the original. As to other doctrinal differences, I'm not qualified to comment as I'm just not that familiar with either edition.

Walvoord's book on the Millennial Kingdomb is a classic and excellent treatment of the topic.

I had the immense honor or visiting Dr. Walvoord in his home in a suburb of Dallas a little more than a year before he went to be with the Lord. Dr. Mal Couch, who wrote his autobiography, arranged a special 'surprise visit' for a number of us who were students at Tyndale Theological Seminaryc and were in Dallas for coursework. You can imagine how thrilled I was to be able to meet this grand man. His character and wit was every bit what I had hoped. I still have a photo of the visit sitting on my bookshelf.

Regarding the Millennial Kingdom, I can recommend a number of additional resources to consider:

May God bless you as you continue to study this important topic within His Word.

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