Why Christians Should Be Theologians
I remember being in a meeting once with a number of youth pastors. We discussed a variety of subjects ranging from life stories to philosophy of ministry. Then I asked a question, “How do you guys go about teaching theology to your students?”
The looks on their faces were priceless. One eventually responded saying, “We’re not big on theology.”
Those words rang in my mind for a long time after that meeting. It bothered me that these ministers were teaching young people and ignoring theology. Theology is more than just a systematic study of God it is a constant growth in the knowledge of the mystery of Christ. Paul understands this very well when he writes:
“For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” (Col. 2:1-3)
This is theology at its core. Studying theology gives us a deeper “assurance and understanding” of the mystery of God. That mystery fully shown in Christ. I appreciate this definition of theology given by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary:
“the study of religious faith, practice, and experience; especially : the study of God and of God’s relation to the world”
The last line is the most intriguing to me. Not only is theology just the study of God but a huge aspect of that is how God relates to the world. That relationship was most evident in the way Christ interacted with God’s creation. Why wouldn’t we want to study that? Why is theology only something for the greatest minds to mull over? Christian theology needs to be nothing short of vibrant and growing.
Is there head knowledge involved with theology? Of course there is but along with head knowledge is life change. Theology centered around a willingness to explore truth will change the way you think about God. It will change the way you speak about him. But most importantly it will change the way you live.
Here is a youtube video entitled, “Theology Matters”. This video compliments the point I am trying to communicate in a more creative way.
May all of us be theologians that grow in grace and truth. And may our theology be centered around the mystery of God shown in Jesus Christ.