firstname.lastname@example.org, 10 June 2012
As the cultural ground shifts under our feet, the church often gets caught up in these tectonic quakes — unnecessarily so. Much of our stress is due to an inadequate theology. Not that our theology is wrong as far as it goes. It’s just that it has further to go. Most Christians I talk to define theology as, “The study of God.” While I affirm this definition, it leaves out the cultural and historical context in which we study God. A broader, more comprehensive definition is, “The application of God’s Word by persons in every area of life.” (Dr. John Frame) This includes the study of God.
|By Khalid Aziz|
In our Western context, several valuable methods of doing theology have developed such as Exegetical theology and Systematic theology. However too often I have seen a tendency to think that all theology that can be done has been done. This is a short step from relying on theology more than on the Word of God itself. The scope of the Bible covers all of reality while the scope of theology is limited. If the Bible can be compared to a movie, our theology would be one frame from it.
Theology can be approached from at least two perspectives. In terms of epistemology — what we should know about God, and in terms of ethics — how we should obey God. Theology can also be done on both sides of human intelligence. The cognitive side — involving conceptual knowledge and the intuitive side — involving perceptual knowledge. If the epistemological approach is ‘Side A,’ then the ethical approach is ‘Side B.’ Similarly, the cognitive would be ‘Side A’ and the intuitive, ‘Side B.’