Why Study Theology?

Why study theology? Isn’t loving Jesus enough? There seems to be this idea that studying what God says in the Bible – applying our minds to God’s Word – is somehow mutually exclusive to loving God. For me, they are directly connected. The more I learn about God, who he is and what he has done, the more I want to worship him and the more I grow to know him and love him.

There has been a move for some time in the evangelical church to dumb things down. Many sermons these days are light-hearted pep talks, or self-help advice on how to live a better life, with the added bonus of some pop-psychology thrown in. They tend to be light on Scripture and theology and heavy on feelings and experience. The result is that this is producing flaky Christians who are not sure what the Bible teaches and are fuzzy on what the gospel is.

By contrast, the witness of Scripture consistently encourages Christians to grapple seriously and engage deeply with the Word of God. The Psalmist writes, “I rejoice at your word like one who finds great spoil.” (Psalm 119:162). Paul exhorts Timothy to “do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15). God desires that we rejoice in his Word as we engage with it seriously and learn to correctly divide it. Why? Because it is the primary way through which he has revealed himself to us. Therefore if we want to get to know our God better, we are to carefully study his Word. Careful study of God’s Word means that we engage in “theology,” or the “study of God”, as it is through his Word that we understand who God is. Good theology springs from the revelation of Scripture. It reveals to us God’s character and his attributes. It draws out the great themes of the Bible, like God’s covenants with his people and his promise to redeem them from their sins through his Messiah. Ultimately good theology brings us the gospel: it reveals Jesus Christ as the fulfilment of God’s promises to his people, as the One who has forgiven their sins by his atoning death on the cross and his resurrection on the third day. 

Scroll to Top