Posted in January

Week 4 Homework (due 1/30/17)

Textbook Outline:

Who Needs Theology? Chapter 7, Constructing Theology in Context

    1. What Kind of Constructive Theology Do We Need?
      1. “Theology’s constructive task is to set forth the unity and coherence of the biblical teaching about God, ourselves and the world in the context in which God calls us to be disciples”
      2. Biblically constructed theology
      3. Culturally constructive theology
    2. How Do We Contextualize Theology?
      1. Starting with the Bible gives the goal of discovering the doctrine within the Bible
      2. Starting with culture gives the goal of discovering spiritual aspects within the contemporary world
      3. “Draw the content of our beliefs from the Bible. The form must arise from questions and concerns of contemporary men and women.”
      4. Start with a trialogue- interaction of Bible, heritage, and culture
      5. Understanding the Bible and reading our culture is interrelated; it cannot be separated
    3. How Do We Systematize Our Theology?
      1. Integrative motif- systematize theology by structuring doctrines around concepts

Who Needs Theology? Chapter 8, Bringing Theology to Life

    1. Theology and Life
      1. “Theology and life are interdependent.”
      2. “Theology is the pursuit of wisdom.”
    2. Living as Christian Theologians
      1. Listen to culture
        1. determine what should be listening to
        2. scrutinize cultural phenomena
        3. appraise and respond to culture
      2. engage in grave social questions through theologically informed eyes
        1. apply Christian convictions to the situation
    3. Viewing Life Through Theological Eyes
      1. “Being a disciple demands that I view myself through the lenses of Christian faith, a process that involves at least two critical aspects.”
        1. Understanding myself according to Christianity
        2. Live according to convictions

Who Needs Theology? Chapter 9, An Invitation to Engage in Theology

    1. What is Necessary for Being a Theologian?
      1. Care to know God over ideas about Him- a heart for God
      2. Be dissatisfied with current understanding- desire greater comprehension
      3. Willingness to work- “no pain, no gain”
    2. The Risks and Rewards
      1. Reward: Theology worships God with our minds
      2. Reward: Theology answers questions contemporary Christians have
      3. Reward: Theology provides a belief system during spiritually dry times
      4. Risk: Theology can cause substitution- intellectualize overrides faith
      5. Risk: Change church affiliation
      6. Risk: Being misunderstood
    3. Becoming a Reflective Christian
      1. Learn the tools (Bible, theological heritage, contemporary culture) in order
    4. Thinking Critically and Reflectively
      1. Journal my thoughts on Christian beliefs
      2. Engage in theological reflection with others

Question Response

  1. My Approach to Theology
    1. What is theology?
      1. Studying and analyzing God, as well as His role in our lives, to understand life and how we should live.
    2. Who needs theology?
      1. The book, Who Needs Theology, made it clear that everybody needs theology.
        1. Everybody already practices theology (is a theologian), as they ponder the questions of life, existence, religion, etc.
        2. People are theologians of their religion or non-religious worldview.
  2. My Practice of Theology
    1. The Bible
      1. I read the Word of God to hear His heart and plan for the world and myself
      2. I study the Word of God (by looking at the Hebrew/Greek words) to further understand the meaning of the scriptures and relate it to my life
    2. Prayer/Worship
      1. Prayer allows me to share my concerns/thankfulness with God and opens the door for me to hear from Him
      2. Worship allows me to revere God and feel/recognize His presence in my life

While I have grown-up in the church, I have heard little usage of the word “theology”.  During my time in this course, I would like to understand how to incorporate theology in every moment of my life.  One aspect is talking to God more, to develop a closer connection to Him.  I also wish to ponder deeper questions of life, suffering, evil, etc., instead of covering the questions with a simple trite.  In questioning these things, and praying more often, I hope to greater understand God and His purpose, while drawing near to Him and His heart.