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Dispensationalism is a religious interpretive system for the Bible. It considers Biblical history as divided deliberately by God into defined periods or ages to each of which God has allotted distinctive administrative principles.

John Nelson Darby began teaching Dispensationalism in the mid-1800s. Dispensational theology did not become popular until Cyrus Scofield published the Scofield Reference Bible in the early 1900s. The belief in a distinction between Israel and the church did not become prominent until a government began calling themselves Israel in 1948.

The Levites were appointed the Church in the wilderness by Moses and the early Church, appointed by Christ, believed that the "Bishops, presbyters(elders) and deacons occupy in the church the same positions as those which were occupied by Aaron, his sons, and the Levites in the temple." Jerome, Ep. 146

The present definition you get on the internet includes three different definitions:

  1. exemption from a rule or usual requirement.
  2. a system of order, government, or organization of a nation, community, etc., especially as existing at a particular time.
  3. the action of distributing or supplying something.

The word dispensation only shows up four times in the Bible.[1] But the actual Greek word is oikonomia which only means dispensation in the sense of stewardship.[2]

When you read the word "dispensation" are you thinking the meaning of "stewardship"?

Are you thinking of "a system of order, government, or organization of a nation, community" or "the action of distributing or supplying something."

If you are thinking an "exemption from a rule or usual requirement" that is not what oikonomiameans so no one should apply that definition. The early Church had a daily ministration which was practicing Pure Religion. The early Church was the welfare system of Christians because they did not depend on the "free bread" of Benefactors who exercised authority. Christians did not depend upon the "system of order, government, or organization of a nation" of Caesar nor did they look to their "action of distributing or supplying" their free bread because those benefits were a snare.

: These Levites who had been "called out" could receive the Freewill offerings of the people but could not own any property[3] in their own name as a personal estate.[4] They did own property but held that property in common because they belonged to God[5] rather than themselves. They like the "called out" of Christ owned all things in common[6] but could not own property[7] as a personal estate.
"Bishops, presbyters(Elder) and deacons occupy in the church the same positions as those which were occupied by Aaron, his sons, and the Levites in the temple." Jerome, Ep. 146.
Both the Levites, who were the Church in the wilderness, and the early Church appointed by Christ were "called out" to be a peculiar people who were to serve those who would repent and seek the ways of God.

Mosaic dispensation,an appointment, arrangement, or favor, as by God. a divinely appointed order or age: the old Mosaic, or Jewish, dispensation; the new gospel, or Christian, dispensation. The true Mosaic dispensation was managed by the Levites.

Also, no one advocated the dispensational theology of a pretribulation rapture in church history as a concept until the 1800s.

New Covenant Theology (or NCT) is a Christian theological position teaching that the person and work of Jesus Christ is the central focus of the Bible. ... It shares similarities with, and yet is distinct from, Dispensationalism and Covenant Theology.

Covenant theology (also known as Covenantalism, Federal theology, or Federalism) is a conceptual overview and interpretive framework for understanding the overall flow of the Bible. It uses the theological concept of a covenant as an organizing principle for Christian theology.

Premillennialism is often used to refer specifically to those who adhere to the beliefs in an earthly millennial reign of Christ as well as a rapture of the faithful coming before (dispensational) or after (historic) the Great Tribulation preceding the Millennium.

The main premise of premillennialism is that Jesus will literally return to the earth before (pre) the millennium begins and that He himself will inaugurate and rule over it. This is also tied to Dispensationalism while the preterist believes Jesus did appear at the fall of Jerusalem when many prophesies were fulfilled. If early Christians continued being the One form of government Jesus appointed during the decline and fall of the Roman Empire then the rise of kings crowned by the Roman Church in 1066 and beyond was the rise of beasts and the unchaining of Satan. That would put the world in the period where they could all be deceived even the elect if it were possible.[8]

The Grace Movement (Hyper-dispensationalism, Mid-Acts Dispensationalism, ultra-dispensationalism, or more rarely, "Bullingerism" to which 'ultra-dispensationalism' properly applies) is a Protestant doctrine that basically views the teachings of the Apostle Paul both as unique from earlier apostles and as foundational ...

Preterism holds that Ancient Israel finds its continuation or fulfillment in the Christian church at the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. The term preterism comes from the Latin praeter, which Webster's 1913 dictionary lists as a prefix denoting that something is "past" or "beyond".

Judaizers is a term for Christians who decide to adopt Jewish customs and practices such as, primarily, the Law of Moses. They are distinct from Jewish Christians in that they were not originally Jewish, though often consider themselves descended from various lost tribes of Israel. This term Judaizer is derived from the Koine word Ἰουδαΐζειν (Ioudaizein) used once in the Greek New Testament (Galatians 2:14)

So are you attending to the weightier matters?

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Pharisees | Sadducees | Zealot | Essenes | Levites |
Messianic Judaism | Menahem the Essene | Sanhedrin |
Altars | Clay and Stone | Red Heifer | Golden calf |
Freewill offerings | Religion | Pure Religion | Public religion |
Christian conflict | Paganism | Denominations | Dispensationalism |
Benefactors | Corban | Daily ministration | Calendars |

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  1. 1 Corinthians 9:17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.
    Ephesians 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:
    Ephesians 3:2 If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:
    Colossians 1:25 Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfil the word of God;
  2. 3622 οἰκονομία oikonomia oy-kon-om-ee’-ah from 3623; TDNT-5:151,674; {See TDNT 539 } n f AV-dispensation 4, stewardship 3; 7
    1) the management of a household or of household affairs
    1a) specifically, the management, oversight, administration, of other’s property
    1b) the office of a manager or overseer, stewardship
    1c) administration, dispensation
  3. 05159 ^הלחנ^ nachalah \@nakh-al-aw’\@ from 05157 (in its usual sense); n f; AV-inheritance 192, heritage 27, inherit 2, possession 1; 222
    1) possession, property, inheritance, heritage
    1a) property
    1b) portion, share
    1c) inheritance, portion
  4. Numbers 18:24 "But the tithes of the children of Israel, which they offer [as] an heave offering unto the LORD, I have given to the Levites to inherit: therefore I have said unto them, Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance."
  5. Numbers 3:12 And I, behold, I have taken the Levites from among the children of Israel instead of all the firstborn that openeth the matrix among the children of Israel: therefore the Levites shall be mine;
    Numbers 3:45 Take the Levites instead of all the firstborn among the children of Israel, and the cattle of the Levites instead of their cattle; and the Levites shall be mine: I am the LORD.
    Numbers 8:14 Thus shalt thou separate the Levites <03881> from among the children of Israel: and the Levites shall be mine.
    Deuteronomy 26:13 Then thou shalt say before the LORD thy God, I have brought away the hallowed things out of mine house, and also have given them unto the Levite , and unto the stranger, to the fatherless, and to the widow, according to all thy commandments which thou hast commanded me: I have not transgressed thy commandments, neither have I forgotten them:
  6. Acts 2:44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; Acts 4:32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.
  7. Luke 14:26 "If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple." Luke 14:27 "And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple." 28 For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? 29 Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, 30 Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. 31 Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand? 32 Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and desireth conditions of peace. Luke 14:33 "So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple."
  8. Matthew 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if [it were] possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Revelation 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.