There are two major Greek words from which the concept of dispensations is derived.

The first is oikonomia, from which our English words "economy"; and "ecumenical" are derived. This Greek word means to manage, to regulate, to administer, to plan. It is translated as dispensation in 1 Corinthians 9:17; Ephesians 1:10' 3:2; and Colossians 1:25,
 
The second is aion, which means "age". This word emphasizes the time dimension of a dispensation.
 
The word "dispensation" therefore refers to the specific way that God administers His program and His will in the world, over a specific time period.
 
Each of the Dispensations is founded on a divine Covenant, specified and described in the Bible. 
 
Importance of Studying the Dispensations 
 
Understanding the dispensations clears up all sorts of confusion. For example, many people cannot understand whom Cain married. Obviously, he married one of his sisters, since there were no other women to marry. These people know that today, a man should not marry a near relative, or perhaps they are aware that the law given to Moses for Israel forbids marriage to near relatives. People often assume that this rule was always in effect. But in reality, Cain lived 2500 years before God instituted the statute against marrying a near relative.
 
Here is a list of Dispensations through Bible History (since the creation of Adam) with indication of the covenant/s that apply in that dispensation:
 
The Dispensation of Innocence < The Edenic Covenant
 
The Dispensation of Conscience < The Adamic Covenant
 
The Dispensation of Government < The Noahic CovenantThe Adamic Covenant
 
 
 
 
The Dispensation of Judgment (the 7-year Great Tribulation) < The Noahic CovenantThe Adamic CovenantThe Abrahamic Covenantthe Land Covenantthe Davidic CovenantThe New Covenant
 
The Dispensation of the Millennium (the 1000-year Kingdom) < The Noahic CovenantThe Adamic CovenantThe Abrahamic Covenantthe Land Covenantthe Davidic CovenantThe New Covenant..
 
The Dispensation of the New Creation (Eternity Future) < The Noahic CovenantThe Abrahamic Covenantthe Land Covenantthe Davidic CovenantThe New Covenant.
 
As shown above, each of the Dispensations is governed by one or more Covenants. 
 
To understand the relationships between the Dispensations and Covenants, with Covenants as the starting point, 
go to The Covenants Page.

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