8 minute read
Blessed are those who keep his testimonies, who seek him with their whole heart.
– Psalm 119:2 ESV
The Bible is a storybook of a people who were chosen by God to deliver the message of deliverance from sin, which we had entangled ourselves. God is more than anything we could ever hope to know and he has delivered to us a book that explains what he wants us to know. Our job is to see what He wants to tell us. Our next job is to listen to what He has told us.
Theology is a topic that may scare many off but if that is you: do not be alarmed. I promise that theology is nothing to be scared of; it’s simply the study of God. Only a few minutes a day will greatly improve how you interact with the world in a Christian fashion.
About three years ago, I had no theological experience and could not tell you one side or the other of any view people had concerning issues like the spiritual gifts, baptism, or the way God saves. Fast forward to today, and not only can I explain the different positions, I have confidence to share my own views among other believers. I believe that you all are able to be great theologians. R.C. Sproul once said: “Everyone is a theologian” . Even though everybody is a theologian, to be a good theologian you’ll need to put in some work.
May I encourage you? You can be good theologians. Learning theology helps to understand God and what he has done better. Simple steps like reading scripture or discussing concepts with friends are great places to start. If you don’t already, you can learn words like “imputation” or “justification” that help you understand what God has done better.
One example I can give to show how theology helps is the concept of God’s jealousy. People often step back and proclaim things like “God can’t be jealous. Jealousy is a negative emotion.” For the most sense, they are right. What happens, however, when you run into passages that say God is jealous? “I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me” (Exodus 20:5, which is part of the Ten Commandments). This is where theology helps. Theologians will look to see in life when there are times that jealousy is a good thing. Husbands and wives should be jealous for their spouses. If they are married, no one else should experience the privileges which come from that marriage. There is a healthy level of jealousy because that is something that belongs to them and their spouse alone.
Noting this, we can look at God’s relation to his people. They are a people who are set apart for Him. We belong to Him. No wonder God is a jealous God when we stray away and do things against his will. But there is also a benefit of jealousy. God keeps us for Himself.
Christians often ask this question: Can I be possessed by a demon? It’s a scary thing to consider that. Fear not! The concept of jealousy is yet again a good thing that God possesses. If God is a jealous God, He will not share you with anyone. Not some false god. Not a demon. Not even Satan himself. God is a jealous God that has almighty power on his side (the doctrine of God’s omnipotence if you wish to research that further). Since God is all-powerful, and He is jealous, you can be assure that no demons can possess a child of God.
Theology is making sense of God and the world he has made. It does not take degrees or special skills to be a theologian. All it takes is a desire to know God and to pursue Him with your heart, and your mind. Theology will help you see clearly and with more grandeur. Let me challenge you to take time this week to learn one concept of God better. It will be worth the time you put in.
As a Bible college student, I have a passion for people to take theology seriously. I see a trend towards apathy in the church culturally, but a deep passion growing in the lives of young believers. My desire is to help inform all believers, young, old, and in-between, to think through why they believe what they believe. I believe a faith founded on reason is a faith rarely shaken.
Though I’m going to Bible college right now, doesn’t make me a super-believer. I like playing games with friends, chatting around the table, cooking, and wasting time when I could do something more productive. If someone like me can view the world as God tells me to, so can anyone.
I’m passionate, and really hope you are too. Like everyone, I have topics that get me excited. How do we navigate Christianity in this post-modern era? How do we engage gender issues both inside and outside of the church? How do the songs we sing effect how we think? I love and encourage people to get excited and talk about what they love. Conversations are much more engaging when you talk about these things rather than the weather.
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