Theological Training

In an age of biblical illiteracy, the notion of engaging towards the deeper issues of God is evidently set aside for the “leaders” of today’s church.  Many church attendees believe that, “while theologians may have a place, the serious study of doctrine is seen as something which need not bother ordinary Christians, and indeed may even hinder their Christian life if they go into it too deeply” (Know The Truth 1982, 11).  Though these sentiments are wrong, they still exist among the laity and even the leadership of the church.

In his book, The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind, Mark Noll unveils the essence of such anti-intellectualism by stating , “For an entire Christian community to neglect, generation after generation, serious attention to the mind, nature, society, the arts—all spheres created by God and sustained for his glory—may be, in fact, sinful” (23).  Church leaders must not only have a firm grasp of the study of God, but they must also train the laity to follow in this quest with understanding and joy.

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~ by Dave Smith on November 7, 2008.

2 Responses to “Theological Training”

  1. In my experience, a contributing factor to theological illiteracy is extreme forms of sola scriptura. In other words, people emphasize the authority of Scripture so much that it deems all other sources of the theological effort either unnecessary or irrelevant. If Scripture is the only for of truth, then why turn to history, reason, or philosophy to help construct our theology?

  2. Perhaps there’s just a lack of good teachers and outlets for them to teach?

    We all know theological training is perceived as impractical and boring. I heard one person say recently theological training (actually bible studies) has become so “fill in the blank” (i.e. interested only in the routine and safety of the right answers).

    How have today’s leaders contributed to this problem? Have we modeled the practicality of theology? Have we provided a structure within our church community for a theological training that is compelling to its participants?

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