When we say we are doing theology or that we are theologians, we are saying that we have a word about God. The Word Theology itself is made up of two words; Theos & Logos. Theos means God and of course Logos means word. Anyone who has a word about God is a Theologian. Whether you are a believer in the resurrection or not. Even an Atheist is a theologian because they have a theology of God. That there is not one.
So, the question is not, "Are you a Theologian?" but, "What kind of Theologian are you?". Are you good theologian or a bad theologian? The answer to this question brings us to the concept of Philosophy.
Philosophy is also made up of two words; Phileo & Sophia. Phileo is one of the four greek words for love. This type of love is distinct from the other three. Let's look at all four quickly.
- Storge - love you have for your family; naturally occurring and not forced.
- Eros - passionate or sexual love for your marriage partner; this is where we get the English word erotic.
- Agape - the most powerful and noblest love; sacrificial; more than a feeling it's an act of will.
- Phileo - The love of a best friend or close relationship that seeks to make each other happy.
Sophia is wisdom. When combining these to words we are saying that we love wisdom. Wisdom and knowledge are different. Knowledge is what I'm trying to provide in The Theology Pit, wisdom is what you do with that knowledge.
A smart man learns from his mistakes but, a wise man learns from the mistakes of others.
In the Gospel of Matthew Jesus was asked what was the greatest commandment in the law? He was able to sum up the ten commandments as this, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. The second is like it: Love you neighbor as yourself. All the law and the prophets depend on these two commandments." (Matt 22:37-40)
If you claim to love God without your heart, full of envy, hatred, and malice toward his Church and His people, some will say you are not a Christian! Or, at the very least, that you do not act as one.
If you claim to love God without your soul, unsympathetic, indifferent to others, just going through the motions, some will say you are not a Christian! Or, at the very least, that you do not act as one.
If you love God without your mind, uneducated in theology, philosophy, doctrine, history, and biblical literacy, some will say: "Here is a true believer! Here is one who has faith! Here is one whom the Spirit can work through! Give him a platform and microphone and let him build Megachurches! He must be broadcast for all the world to see! We will judge others by this measure!"
If you love God with your mind, you will be hated by some Christians. You will be hated by the world. You will be mocked as a "know it all" and you will get depressed. But, God is there with you and for you. Hold to Him, his word and in the righteousness you have in Christ.
Depression, loneliness, and isolation are what I generally feel after times of study with fellow believers. Sometimes I want to just keep my mouth shut and be liked as one of the flock rather than open it and be seen as someone who is abrasive or confrontational just for the sake of argument. While this is not my intent, I see it in the faces of those around me. Even if it's never said to me.
Listening to The Theology Pit may come at a price. You will learn about your historic Christian faith. You will become more confident for Christian leadership. But, in the end, there will be many that you can teach but few you can truly talk to.
Love God. Love Wisdom. Love each other. This is Philosophical Theology. This is the hard road of the The Theology Pit.