One of the hardest points to get a dispensationalist to understand, is that they must give up their fantasy that they interpret the Bible “literally”. FEW DISPENSATIONALISTS WOULD CLAIM THAT THE REVELATION PASSAGE ABOUT THE WITNESSES ARE ACTUAL TREES AND LAMPSTANDS, yet they insist that they are interpreting literally.
These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands which stand before the Lord of the earth. Rev. 11:4
See Also: The Two Witnesses
If we hear that something is “hotter than a little red wagon”, no English speaker will think that the subject is a mode of transportation that is red in color or of a particularly high temperature. The Bible is full of such phrases.
Another point that readers of scripture, or for that matter any literature, needs to determine, is what kind of literature are we looking at? It is a made up story i.e. parable, historical narrative, poetry, etc.? All too often the reader of Scripture uses the wrong kind of hermeneutics on the wrong passage. The rules are different for historical narrative than for prophetic narrative, and that is slightly different from prophetic poetry.
FYI: The first thing is, who wrote the passage and to whom was it written?
Prophecies are rarely as literal as the dispensationalist would have us believe.
I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” Gen 3:15
No one teaches that a literal snake and a man will have a brawl; nor that a woman has “seed”.
5 Now Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers they only hated him the more. 6 He said to them, “Hear this dream which I have dreamed: 7 behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and lo, my sheaf arose and stood upright; and behold, your sheaves gathered round it, and bowed down to my sheaf.” 8 His brothers said to him, “Are you indeed to reign over us? Or are you indeed to have dominion over us?” So they hated him yet more for his dreams and for his words. 9 Then he dreamed another dream, and told it to his brothers, and said, “Behold, I have dreamed another dream; and behold, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me.” 10 But when he told it to his father and to his brothers, his father rebuked him, and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves to the ground before you?” 11 And his brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the saying in mind. Gen. 37:5-11
No literal sheaves bowed, nor did the literal sun, moon or stars move in anyway.
Wounded for our Transgressions
4 Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed. Is. 53:4-5
This bears little resemblance to a crucifixion. It appears to be closer to a bad whipping than a death.
As the Days of Jonah
For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so will the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. Matt. 12:40
In reading the book of Jonah, would anyone ever see this as a prophecy of Messiah in the grave? Even hearing it explained, the followers of Jesus were at a loss as to what he meant.
See Also: Known to be Fulfilled