What is theology? It is often defined as the study of God. Simply, the object of theology is God. Thomas Aquinas once said, “Theology is taught by God, teaches God, and leads unto God.” His words are important. If we think of theology as merely study, it can encourage us to treat our daily “God-thoughts” as a mind exercise. For many of us, theology is simply about getting our doctrine right, and has little to do with worship or communion with God. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Theology is more than a group of dead theologians debating Greek, Hebrew, and Latin phrases. It is what we think about God.
Why should I care? First, if theology “is taught by God, teaches God, and leads unto God”, then we should care about theology because it is all about God. I once heard someone say that true theology leads to worship. When you care about theology, you care about the true things of God. And the true things of God… they are glorious, aren’t they?
So let’s dig our noses into the pages of God’s Word, trusting that “all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17) Let’s study God by the means of His inspired Word given to us. And let’s worship the God we are growing to love more and more as He reveals Himself to us. That is true theology. It matters.
Cami saysFebruary 11, 2011 at 3:10 pm
I love this.
Jean Christophe Gibbons saysFebruary 11, 2011 at 5:05 pm
Indeed of what good is theology if no one can see God in us. What a tragedy: You know about God, but you don’t know him. You might as well be totally ignorant of Him.
Shannon saysFebruary 11, 2011 at 5:20 pm
Wonderful! I read Dug Down Deep recently, by Joshua Harris. It is essentially about the same thing. He points out that everyone has a theology, whether they know it or not. Atheists, Oprah, you, and I. But is our theology correct? Is it based on the absolute truth of the word?
Garret saysFebruary 11, 2011 at 9:34 pm
AMENN! yes, it does matter!
Maryland Spencer saysAugust 5, 2012 at 7:42 pm
Having done academic theological studies I realise it’s necessary (just). But sadly it’s still bordered within the limits of the opinions of dead “thinkers”. I agree with Jean – if we “know God” we’ll know about Him – but merely knowing about Him has led some “theologians” into strange apostasies and away from knowing Him. Biblical study is good (and needs historical context) but it must be remembered that Jesus is the Word of God. Even the famous Heb. 4:12 passage uses the pronoun “His” and begins with us entering our rest – pertaining to Jesus. Plus western theology misses much of the focus from Jerusalem which the Orthodox retained – eg God’s mysteries and our “ascension” into Christ-likeness. As Jean said – if we don’t show that in our lives, what’s the point?