Christian Theology: What is it, exactly?

What is Christian theology?

“Theology” simply means “the study of God.”

While some are vocational theologians, all Christians are theologians. 

Paul’s instructions to Timothy (and us) were a command, not a suggestion:

Study and do your best to present yourself to God approved, a worker who has no reason to be ashamed, accurately handling and skillfully teaching the word of truth. (emphasis mine)

Sometimes the term “Christian” is attached to “theology” because “God” can mean different things to different people.  So “Christian theology” offers clarity in that it is the study of the biblical, Triune Godhead, manifested equally in the Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.

Through responsible theologians of modernity, God has graciously provided us with a myriad of solid Study Bibles from which we can better understand each biblical passage as we read and study.  We truly are without excuse as Christians for not having at least a little bit of a grip on the basic doctrines of the Christian faith as well as how to teach them to others.

Oxford’s Alister McGrath offers the following:

“We can think of theology as primarily, but not exclusively, as the discipleship of the mind (Jesus said, “You shall the Lord your God will all your heart, soul, mind and strength.”) – a profoundly interesting and satisfying exploration of the intellectual riches of the Christian faith and their implications for the life and witness of the Christian church.”

I’d like to leave you with a wonderfully simple definition of theology.  It comes from Anselm of Canterbury in the 11th century.  He said,

“Theology is faith seeking understanding.”

Fall in love with your Bible, Nick