Does Theology Matter?

Our Wednesday Bible studies at Wilkesboro Baptist Church this year have been focused around a study of Theology. Theology is the study of God.

In the academic sense, theology can be separated into several categories:

  • Biblical theology—Investigates how each author or book of the Bible considers a particular doctrine. 
  • Historical theology—How different doctrinal ideas arose and were developed in history (over time). 
  • Systematic theology—Is a collection of Bible doctrines that flows out of an organized, logical framework relating the doctrines of Scripture to one another.
  • Practical theology—Connects doctrines to daily living. 

Our Wednesday night study has focused primarily on Systematic Theology. We are currently exploring the doctrine of revelation: God revealing himself to us through Jesus Christ and his Word, the Bible.

One issue that has been on my mind during the preparation and delivery of this series is the importance of understanding basic theology in the life of the Christian.

The reality is that nearly everyone does theology. Anytime, anyone claims to speak for God or interprets some verse of Scripture, that person is engaging in theology. For example, when a parent says to a child, “God wouldn’t want you to behave like that,” that is theology. Or when a politician quotes a verse of Scripture to caption a plank in their party platform, that politician is engaging in theology.

What is troubling is how poorly equipped many Christians are in the doctrines of their faith. I propose that each Christian needs even more understanding and engagement theologically.

“We need to have a faith seeking understanding.”

Augustine, 4th Century Church Father

We will never fully know God this side of heaven. But by studying God’s Word, we can know more about God. We will never have a perfect faith until we are glorified, but we can grow in our faith as we grow in our understanding of God.

If you’re reading this post, let me challenge you to learn more about God, what God has to say about his world, and what God has to say about you. Here are some practical things you can do to learn what God wants you to know.

  • Open the Bible and read God speaking to you.
  • Make a commitment to faithful church attendance where you can worship God and learn from his Word.
  • Read good books that build your faith. I’m encouraging our church members to read Introducing Christian Doctrine, by Millard Erickson during our study of theology.
  • Follow blogs that might increase your understanding and help you apply your faith.
  • Subscribe to podcasts and theological conversations that build your faith. We are uploading this theology series to our Wilkesboro Baptist Church podcast page as well as making the lessons available through iTunes. If you have an iPhone with a podcast app., just search for Wilkesboro Baptist Church.

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