John Calvin’s Refutation of Dispensationalism

Over 400 years ago John Calvin wrote in his Institutes a stunning refutation of modern dispensationalism:

“From the preceding observations it may now be evident that all those persons, from the beginning of the world, whom God has adopted into the society of His people, have been federally connected with Him by the same law and the same doctrine which are in force among us: but because it is of no small importance that this point be established, I shall show, by way of appendix, since the fathers were partakers with us of the same inheritance, and hoped for the same salvation through the grace of our common Mediator, how far their condition in this connection was from ours. For though the testimonies we have collected from the law and the prophets in proof of this, render it sufficiently evident that the people of God have never had any other rule of religion and piety, yet because some writers have raised many disputes concerning the difference of the Old and New Testaments, which may occasion doubts in the minds of an undiscerning reader, we shall assign a particular chapter for the better and more accurate discussion of this subject. Moreover, what would otherwise have been very useful, has now been rendered necessary for us by Servetus and some madmen of the sect of the Anabaptists, who entertain no other ideas of the Israelitish nation, than a herd of swine, whom they pretend to have been pampered by the Lord in this world, without the least hope of a future immortality in heaven.” (From The Similarity of the Old and New Testaments, Bk. II, X, 1).

In the next paragraph Calvin says,

“The covenant of all the fathers is so far from differing substantially from ours, that it is the very same; it only varies in the administration.”