Thursday, July 28, 2011

Why People Don't Study Theology


Wayne Grudem, in his Systematic Theology, gives a few reasons why the Christian should study theology. He says the basic reason is that Jesus commands us to do so in the Great Commission when He said to teach others "all that He commanded." "The task of fulfilling the Great Commission includes therefore not only evangelism but also teaching" (27).

But he gives another reason why we should study theology. It benefits our lives. It helps us overcome our wrong ideas. It helps us to make better decisions later in life on new questions of theology we might have. But it also helps us grow as Christians (28-29). If you get to root of our actions, you will always find a belief. It is not a matter of whether we are theologians or not, the only question is whether we are good theologians or bad ones. Everyone has thoughts of God and how He interacts with us. But do you have the same thoughts as God has? That's the question. But the answer is usually seen in the way we respond in our life.

As I was reading his points as to why people should study theology, I began to wander, "Why do people not study theology?" It's a good question. Maybe you should ask yourself, "Why do I not study theology?" Let me offer several suggestions as I thought about it, and after asking the same question to my elders. Here are several reason why I think people don't study theology.

1.  It Takes To Much Work.

It is difficult. We live in the world of wanting things easy. To study and really learn theology, it takes effort. Sorry Staples, there is no EASY button when it comes to learning theology or doctrine.

2.  It Takes To Long.

As well as taking too much work, it takes too long. We want it easy, but we want it quick. We want the 5-minute devotions. Have you ever stopped to ask yourself why we feel the need to want to do our study of God as quick as we can? Think about that for a minute (if you have the time).

3.  We Don't Want It To Change Us.

Let's be honest, if we study theology, at some point we are going to be forced to change. That can be an intimidating concept to grasp. We have grown comfortable with our view of God and ourselves, even if it is not based on good truth.

4.  They Are Not Challenged To Do It.

This is probably a reason that is directed at us leaders of churches. Sometimes, I wonder if people do not study theology because we have not asked them to do it. We have lowered the bar because we are scared that people will not do it. I was taught early on in ministry that people will rise or fall based upon the expectations placed upon them. Let's put the cookies on the top shelf, not on the lowest possible.

What Are Some Other Reasons You Think People Do Not Study Theology?

1 comment:

  1. I think some people would say it is because they have a "simple faith." They don't need to no any more than the "basics." This usually equals no growth and when hard times come, so called "simple faith" will not carry them through. We need the meat of biblically informed theology to carry us through when we face the trials of life.

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