Thursday, May 17, 2012

Practical Theology

What do you think of when you hear the word “theology”? Unfortunately for many people the word conjures up visions quite removed from their daily life. It is often assumed to be a word more closely associated with a library than a living room, a classroom rather than a workplace, and ideas rather than people. The truth of the matter though is that in the Christian life one cannot separate the knowledge we have of God and our practical everyday walk. As we consider the inexhaustible wisdom of God’s revelation of Himself in His Word we are drawn to think more deeply upon Him. The result is not impractical or academic but rather calls attention to the majesty and greatness of God and His Word. Unfortunately most Christians neglect a disciplined study of the things of God and prefer a more devotional and experiential approach. Often this is accompanied by the assumption that theological study is unnecessary for the average person and is the calling of only a small subset of people within the Church.

Sadly, this sets up a false separation between growing in knowledge and living the Christian life as if the two were not interdependent. The result is that many people are deprived of a deeper interaction with God and a strengthened confidence in the truth of the Bible as objective and unchanging truth. By learning about God and His truth we come to know the Lord in a more intimate way.

Theology (the study of what is true about God) need not be stiff, academic, or detached. I read two great articles today at the housewife theologian website that address the need for women in particular to be engaged in theological study. These articles, How Well Do YouReally Know the Person You Love and Reflections on Women and Theology do a wonderful job of calling attention to an important issue in the Church today. Disciplined Bible study and theological reflection should be encouraged for all Christians regardless of their demographics. The Bible does not categorize us based upon our demographic or market segments. These are just a couple of a number of articles over there that not only deal with important topics but are also great examples of how to communicate theological truth in a balanced, practical, and accessible way. 

I encourage you to read them.

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