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Sjohn1107
Jan 22nd 2009, 05:00 AM
Do u guys think christians should learn theology?...

markedward
Jan 22nd 2009, 05:38 AM
Short answer, yes.

BrckBrln
Jan 22nd 2009, 05:49 AM
Theology is basically the study of God. How can you be a Christian and not want to study and learn about God and what He has done?

Athanasius
Jan 22nd 2009, 05:54 AM
Hrm, I'm going to go out on a limb and say yes, maybe even philosophy too.

crossnote
Jan 22nd 2009, 06:05 AM
If one studies the book of Hebrews for example, one will learn a good dose of theology without any outside books.

Biastai
Jan 22nd 2009, 06:27 AM
Hrm, I'm going to go out on a limb and say yes, maybe even philosophy too.

I see you're enjoying that Kierkegaard. Ever take a look at Epictetus? You may like it. There are striking parallels with the NT in his Discourses.

As for theology? Emphatic yes. But only if one wants to. Don't want to be too forceful. :)

Athanasius
Jan 22nd 2009, 06:31 AM
I see you're enjoying that Kierkegaard. Ever take a look at Epictetus? You may like it. There are striking parallels with the NT in his Discourses.

As for theology? Emphatic yes. But only if one wants to. Don't want to be too forceful. :)

Oh, much more than Kierkegaard ;) But yes, except for some of his convoluted statements (like the opening paragraph of The Sickness Unto Death). Haven't quite made it as far back to Epictetus, will definitely look into him.

Elouise
Jan 22nd 2009, 08:14 AM
YES!

To the best of each persons given ability.

Xel,

Have a look at Nicholas of Cusa -Vision of God if you like Soren, course he is convulted he is of his time and culture :lol: ; Jungar Moltmann is also insightful and also writes extremely well and I certainly recommend John Hicks if your interested in philosophy/Christian theology. Look out for the Faith and Philosophy Journal for Christian Philosophers in University/seminary libraries.

Have a look in the Christian ethereal library online as you can often access early Christian writings in both the language they were written and in modern English translations if you have not already found it.
There is also the NT Gateway which has access to online journal articles.
Have fun.

Scubadude
Jan 22nd 2009, 09:41 AM
Do u guys think christians should learn theology?...



Do you think it is possible for Christians to avoid learning theology?

Firstfruits
Jan 22nd 2009, 01:41 PM
Do u guys think christians should learn theology?...

According to this scripture the answer is yes.

2 Tim 2:15 (http://bibledatabase.org/cgi-bin/bib_search/bible.cgi?BIBLE=48&BOOK=55&CHAP=2&SEARCH=jesus king lord&Read=Read&FIRST=OK&HV=15) Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

God bless you!

Firstfruits

grit
Jan 22nd 2009, 02:03 PM
While I agree with the importance of theological study and appreciate the general approach to defining theology as described above and fleshed out a bit more at gotquestions?org (http://www.gotquestions.org/what-is-theology.html), I think out friend in the OP may have in mind a more formally intellectualized approach to theology, as described below:


American Heritage Dictionary:
The study of the nature of God and religious truth; rational inquiry into religious questions.
A system or school of opinions concerning God and religious questions: Protestant theology; Jewish theology.
A course of specialized religious study usually at a college or seminary.
hyperdictionary:
[n] the learned profession acquired by specialized courses in religion (usually taught at a college or seminary); "he studied theology at Oxford"
[n] the rational and systematic study of religion and its influences and of the nature of religious truth
[n] a particular system or school of religious beliefs and teachings; "Jewish theology"; "Roman Catholic theology"
Again, while these systems of studies are quite valuable, there certainly are aspects of a knowledge of God and learning of God, a simple and easy-to-understand theology, that are far more important in our relationship with God than studying God in an intesely intellectual fashion.

As one who's somewhat comfortable with the deep end of the theological pool, it's still the simple and convictingly clear things of God in daily application to our spiritual growth that seem to give us the most trouble. I mean, there's so much each of us already knows concerning how we ought to relate to God, that sometimes indeed gets overshadowed by trying to fine-tune our intellectual assessments of God.

I'm often humbled by how our first sin played out, "And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat." (Gen. 3:6, KJV). It may be more rare than not, and certainly the Scriptures encourage us to study, but a pursuit of knowledge can sometimes be a dangerous and vain thing. I don't know of his religious convictions, but there's at least a bit of wisdom to be found in Thomas Gray's poetic phrase, "Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise."

tt1106
Jan 22nd 2009, 03:20 PM
God reveals himself through his word. Jesus says, I am the Way, the truth and the life.
This is not just a verse indicating that he IS the narrow gate.
It also is an illustration for the rest of us. The way indicates HOW we should live our lives, The TRUTH is the Gospel and how God has reavealed himself to us thorugh his scripture, the Life is the life of a disciple, following Jesus and bringing people to repentance and new birth.
Without studying theology and scripture, how are we to defend our faith in a world of relativism?
The short answer is Yes.

cross crusader
Jan 22nd 2009, 03:49 PM
Do u guys think christians should learn theology?...
no. Christians need to learn the Bible, not theology. Christians need to talk to God to find out what it is He is saying. Paul told timothy to study the things he was given and taught, not theology, but truth. and as far as defending our faith it seems like the only thing according to acts 2 we need is the holy spirit. seems to work fine for them, should work fine for us. has worked fine for me. people are not going to believe if you just talk to them usually, they need demonstration today, they need God's love, and that usually doesn't happen by talking their ear off about theology.

BrckBrln
Jan 22nd 2009, 04:36 PM
no. Christians need to learn the Bible, not theology. Christians need to talk to God to find out what it is He is saying. Paul told timothy to study the things he was given and taught, not theology, but truth. and as far as defending our faith it seems like the only thing according to acts 2 we need is the holy spirit. seems to work fine for them, should work fine for us. has worked fine for me. people are not going to believe if you just talk to them usually, they need demonstration today, they need God's love, and that usually doesn't happen by talking their ear off about theology.

If somebody comes to you and asks what the Bible says about prayer, you better tell them to read the Bible from cover to cover, then, because if you start pointing to all the passages that talk about prayer, you are doing systematic theology.

theBelovedDisciple
Jan 22nd 2009, 04:58 PM
Well if you are Born Again.. you will learn theology and you will be taught theology.. by whom? The Spirit Himself... He will lead you into all Truth... its impossible for someobody to be truly Born From above by the Spirit and not began to understand theology...

The problem lies with man and his understanding in interpretating the Scriptures on a 'fleshly' level.. and not the Spirit... when you have this then you have 'man theology' which is taught and taught as actually being 'inspired by the Holy Ghost'.. thats where you began to see 'cults' and 'sects' divisions... which Paul warned about and spoke out against..

Where does this confusion come from about theology? well you have to look to the spiritual source.. is satan a theologian? oh you bet... he's a master theologian.. and he's still the devil....

The Scripture warns of a time coming and its here when doctrines of devils those done by seducing spirits will be blatantly accepted.. people will follow these... now what are these doctrines of devils? are they man inspired theology based on mans interpretation of the Scripture thru the flesh and not the Holy Ghost? elevating man to God's level and brining God down to the level of the creature? you see alot of that today.. everywhere..

If you are truly Born Again from above.. there is no doubt that you will learn 'theology'.. and that from the Holy Ghost.. who will lead you into all Truth...

and you'll have many say.. just as Pilate said when confronting Jesus before His Crucifixtion.. 'what is Truth'...

after Jesus has told him.. He was Born to 'bear witness' to the Truth..

Elouise
Jan 22nd 2009, 05:24 PM
Cross crusader, that is theology.

[Theos God logos rational utterance]

cross crusader
Jan 22nd 2009, 06:41 PM
If somebody comes to you and asks what the Bible says about prayer, you better tell them to read the Bible from cover to cover, then, because if you start pointing to all the passages that talk about prayer, you are doing systematic theology.
no i am speaking biblical truths. not theology. there is a difference between theology and truth that is all i am stating. theology leads to sectarianism and denominations. truth leads to freedom and application.

cross crusader
Jan 22nd 2009, 06:50 PM
Cross crusader, that is theology.

[Theos God logos rational utterance]
i dont believe so, if it is then Christ is the greatest theologian of all time. Same with Peter and James and John, are these also theologians? were they studying theology? So instead of Apostles we should call them the 12 theologians according to this reasoning. we are to study doctrine not God. we are to prove God and abide in Him and KNOW Him. not study Him like biology or chemistry. let me ask this, our earthly fathers, are we studying them to find out who they are or what the mean or what our relationship with them is all about? Or do we know these things because we KNOW them? we experience these attributes with our earthly fathers because we spend time with them, intimate time, close personal time where we find out their heart and passions, not because we dissect them like a frog in biology 101.

Biastai
Jan 22nd 2009, 09:15 PM
For some, a relationship with God is strengthened and nurtured through theology, contemplation, philosophy....etc, and also the Bible of course. For some, not all I said. It is their mental equivalent to Jacob's wrestling with the angel to be blessed. Who's to say the guys over here are having a true relationship with God and the guys over there are just reading theology and lack a relationship? That's a part of their relationship as it has been in my own. The Lord will call those who are his own through various avenues.

theBelovedDisciple
Jan 22nd 2009, 09:30 PM
Can one 'study' the Scriptures... studying theology?.... read this book and that book.. search the Sciprtures diligently and be lost?

Oh most certainly .. it was evident back in Jesus's day and its evident today...

And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.

And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him ye believe not.

Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.


Nobody will be in Heaven because they have a 'degree' in Theology... or have attained greatness or notoriety in 'it'... Your there because of Him...and what He DID for you on that bloody tree.....and He will lead you and guide into all Truth. Are your studies of the Scriptures.. are they led of the Spirit or of the flesh.. Your studies in it and the results of it... you can put a term on it.. 'theology'.... should Glorify God and the Person of Jesus the Christ.. not oneself or how many 'degrees' one has attained..... its not about man.. but God Himself...

cross crusader
Jan 22nd 2009, 09:47 PM
For some, a relationship with God is strengthened and nurtured through theology, contemplation, philosophy....etc, and also the Bible of course. For some, not all I said. It is their mental equivalent to Jacob's wrestling with the angel to be blessed. Who's to say the guys over here are having a true relationship with God and the guys over there are just reading theology and lack a relationship? That's a part of their relationship as it has been in my own. The Lord will call those who are his own through various avenues.
our realtionship through God is only strengthened through Him and his word. that is it, nothing else.

matthew7and1
Jan 22nd 2009, 09:48 PM
I don't know if we "should" but I would like to learn more.

BrckBrln
Jan 22nd 2009, 09:56 PM
What does everybody think theology is?

Biastai
Jan 22nd 2009, 10:01 PM
What does everybody think theology is?

"The study of the nature of God and religious truth; rational inquiry into religious questions."

I thought the definition posted on the previous page was pretty good. But yes, it seems to mean different things to different posters here. We seem to range in definition from Pharisaic-type rigidly scientific knowledge of the Bible to studies about God.

Biastai
Jan 22nd 2009, 10:13 PM
our realtionship through God is only strengthened through Him and his word. that is it, nothing else.

Your relationship, maybe. Not mine. I supplement with other resources. If someone who studies the Word in its original languages has information I want, I will gladly take it. Philosophers write about the nature of God also, and I want to know what they think. Science is based on the observaton of God-created things and phenomena, and I want to know about that too. There's no need to set the same standards for a relationship with God across the board as long as God and the Bible are not neglected.

cross crusader
Jan 22nd 2009, 10:37 PM
Your relationship, maybe. Not mine. I supplement with other resources. If someone who studies the Word in its original languages has information I want, I will gladly take it. Philosophers write about the nature of God also, and I want to know what they think. Science is based on the observaton of God-created things and phenomena, and I want to know about that too. There's no need to set the same standards for a relationship with God across the board as long as God and the Bible are not neglected.
Rom 10:17 (http://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Rom&c=10&v=17&t=NKJV#comm/17)So then faith [comes] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
case rested.

Biastai
Jan 23rd 2009, 03:44 AM
Rom 10:17 (http://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Rom&c=10&v=17&t=NKJV#comm/17)So then faith [comes] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
case rested.

Not much of a case at all actually. My resources are not substitutes for the word of God. The purpose for my use of them is to supplement and augment my understanding of God and his word.

My heart's Desire
Jan 23rd 2009, 04:09 AM
I took a gander at some formal theology courses and decided I'd rather stick with the Word and outside sources as needed, concordance, history etc.

cross crusader
Jan 23rd 2009, 04:14 AM
Not much of a case at all actually. My resources are not substitutes for the word of God. The purpose for my use of them is to supplement and augment my understanding of God and his word.
let me ask this first, are those things essential for someone or even yourself to understand God? Are they needed? if so then why didnt the early christians have such things, i mean the apostles and such. why is it that christians today feel they need them? the answer lies in this: because we dont fully rely on Him. if and this is a big if, christians today would come to the realization that everything we need is in the bible,(for the record i believe that we can have revelation beyond it) then there wouldnt be any need for outside sources to grasp revelation or even understanding of God.
the only point i am making is that it is not really needed. all we need is the Holy Spirit. Jesus tells in John
Jhn 16:13 (http://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Jhn&c=16&v=1&t=NKJV#comm/13)However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into ALL TRUTH; for He will not speak on His own [authority], but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.

Biastai
Jan 23rd 2009, 04:41 AM
let me ask this first, are those things essential for someone or even yourself to understand God? Are they needed? if so then why didnt the early christians have such things, i mean the apostles and such. why is it that christians today feel they need them? the answer lies in this: because we dont fully rely on Him. if and this is a big if, christians today would come to the realization that everything we need is in the bible,(for the record i believe that we can have revelation beyond it) then there wouldnt be any need for outside sources to grasp revelation or even understanding of God.
the only point i am making is that it is not really needed. all we need is the Holy Spirit. Jesus tells in John
Jhn 16:13 (http://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Jhn&c=16&v=1&t=NKJV#comm/13)However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into ALL TRUTH; for He will not speak on His own [authority], but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.

That theological study was essential I never said. For myself personally, I feel it is most helpful. The early Christians and apostles are much less farther removed than I am from the days of our Lord and saviour. The word has reached me after passing through different languages, canonizations, translations, cultures, etc. I feel that I can benefit from information given by experts on the culture, language, and historical background of Biblical times and so therefore, I enlist their help. The Spirit has lead me to do this and it has greatly enhanced my love for the word and my faith in general. If you do not feel the need to do the same, I'm glad for you and would not compel you to feel that you should. You may even view me as one of weaker faith if you'd like.

Here's what I think of this overall. Theology is an interest of mine and has greatly helped me. I would recommend these pursuits for those who have hit a wall in their Bible studies and would like to jumpstart their interest again. What I will not do is state that all believers in general should be required to do so just because it has been a good approach for me.

Just curious. This is the definition of theology given in this thread...

"The study of the nature of God and religious truth; rational inquiry into religious questions."

Exactly, what problem do you have with such studies?

cross crusader
Jan 23rd 2009, 01:25 PM
That theological study was essential I never said. For myself personally, I feel it is most helpful. The early Christians and apostles are much less farther removed than I am from the days of our Lord and saviour. The word has reached me after passing through different languages, canonizations, translations, cultures, etc. I feel that I can benefit from information given by experts on the culture, language, and historical background of Biblical times and so therefore, I enlist their help. The Spirit has lead me to do this and it has greatly enhanced my love for the word and my faith in general. If you do not feel the need to do the same, I'm glad for you and would not compel you to feel that you should. You may even view me as one of weaker faith if you'd like.

Here's what I think of this overall. Theology is an interest of mine and has greatly helped me. I would recommend these pursuits for those who have hit a wall in their Bible studies and would like to jumpstart their interest again. What I will not do is state that all believers in general should be required to do so just because it has been a good approach for me.

Just curious. This is the definition of theology given in this thread...

"The study of the nature of God and religious truth; rational inquiry into religious questions."

Exactly, what problem do you have with such studies?
I guess it is the word study....makes it so impersonal, makes it not a relaionship but a dissertation, it is like instead of asking my dad a question i get all the books on his life and try to understand by other means than the source. Man is fallible and i dont wanna leave my understanding to someone elses thoughts.it is like that game telephone, the truth often gets distorted along the line.

RogerW
Jan 23rd 2009, 02:02 PM
I guess it is the word study....makes it so impersonal, makes it not a relaionship but a dissertation, it is like instead of asking my dad a question i get all the books on his life and try to understand by other means than the source. Man is fallible and i dont wanna leave my understanding to someone elses thoughts.it is like that game telephone, the truth often gets distorted along the line.

Greetings Cross Crusader,

I hear what you're saying, and agree it is always better to go to the source...IF possible. What if your father had died before you were born or before you got a chance to ask him about himself? In that case you would have to rely on others, who knew him to tell you about him. The same is true of Scripture.

Yes, God has given us His Spirit to guide us and teach us all things. But He also gave His church gifts; "And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers" (Eph 4:11). We are not all equally adapt in understanding Scripture, and some, without realizing do not rightly divide the Word of truth. For this reason we have all manner of different doctrine, some sound and some not so sound. Knowing this God gave some men greater ability to rightly divide, rightly teach and rightly exspound upon His Word. Why would we not want to take advantage of this wonderful gift God has given us?

Therefore, go to the source; His written Word, and diligently search and meditate upon it. But don't become an isolated Christian thinking you have the Holy Spirit and therefore you have all truth. Take advantage of the knowledge great Christian men of old and even presently have been given for His body. Don't be blindly led by anyone, but search to see if what they say aligns with Scripture, and when it does, praise God that He has given you others to confirm that your understanding is either good or needs to be re-thought, or perhaps altogether discarded.

Many Blessings,
RW

cross crusader
Jan 23rd 2009, 03:56 PM
Greetings Cross Crusader,

I hear what you're saying, and agree it is always better to go to the source...IF possible. What if your father had died before you were born or before you got a chance to ask him about himself? In that case you would have to rely on others, who knew him to tell you about him. The same is true of Scripture.

Yes, God has given us His Spirit to guide us and teach us all things. But He also gave His church gifts; "And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers" (Eph 4:11). We are not all equally adapt in understanding Scripture, and some, without realizing do not rightly divide the Word of truth. For this reason we have all manner of different doctrine, some sound and some not so sound. Knowing this God gave some men greater ability to rightly divide, rightly teach and rightly exspound upon His Word. Why would we not want to take advantage of this wonderful gift God has given us?

Therefore, go to the source; His written Word, and diligently search and meditate upon it. But don't become an isolated Christian thinking you have the Holy Spirit and therefore you have all truth. Take advantage of the knowledge great Christian men of old and even presently have been given for His body. Don't be blindly led by anyone, but search to see if what they say aligns with Scripture, and when it does, praise God that He has given you others to confirm that your understanding is either good or needs to be re-thought, or perhaps altogether discarded.

Many Blessings,
RW
i think you have misunderstood me, i totally agree with you. i am saying outsides sources other than the bible or pastors or teachers and apostles and prophets and evangelists. Most theology majors that i have encountered have a bunch of ideas taught to them that are really not scriptural, even some of the afore mentioned who studied theology.i think i believe it becomes more about head knowledge rather than heart knowledge. that is where i have a problem, the simple exposing of false doctrine that most people accept as truth. does that make sense?