why study theology?

©2019 dan bulkley | ask@lifefellowship.org

A Biblical Look at the Reasons for God-ly Thinking

some questions to consider

i corinthians 14:20

Brothers, do not be children in your thinking. Be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature.

How can we grow up in our thinking if we don’t even know God, our example of mature thinking?

ii corinthians 10:5

We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,

How can we make our thinking obedient to Christ, when we don’t know Him or His ways?

matthew 16:23

But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”

Can you think like someone you don’t even know? If we are to think like God, we have to know Him.

john 7:24

Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.”

How can we figure life and circumstance out if we don’t know the Orchestrator hidden behind the surface of things?

philippians 4:8

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

We need to pursue right thinking. If God and His Word do not meet this command to exercise right thinking, what does?

colossians 3:1-4

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

If Christ is our life, then how can we ever even begin to set our minds (think, study, learn) on things above if we don’t know His character, nature, works, thoughts, desires, etc.?

exodus 33:13

Now therefore, if I have found favor in your sight, please show me now your ways, that I may know you in order to find favor in your sight. Consider too that this nation is your people.”

To maintain a beneficial relationship with God you have to KNOW Him and His ways! Therefore, shouldn’t we study Him and His ways?

i peter 3:15

but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,

Is Christ Lord? If so, how do you know that? Do you know enough to even think on that?

philippians 2:12-13

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure

How are you going to exercise your faith and salvation if you don’t even understand the One saving you?

jeremiah 9:23-24

Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, 24 but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.”

Do you really know and understand the Lord? Did you know that He wants us to KNOW HIM? Would your spouse be happy if you knew him/her the same way you know the Lord?

hosea 6:3

Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord;

his going out is sure as the dawn;

he will come to us as the showers,

as the spring rains that water the earth.”

We are commanded to KNOW Him. How do you know and love your family effectively? Have you made that same effort towards God?

my notes:

truth to consider

john 17:3

And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.

Eternal life is KNOWING God!

hebrews 5:11-6:3

About this we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. 12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, 13 for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. 14 But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.

1 Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, 2 and of instruction about washings, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. 3 And this we will do if God permits.

It is most difficult to walk in the ways of God when you don’t have a firm grasp of Who He is, What He does, How He does it, and Why He does it.

matthew 10:16

“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.

We need to be wise in how we live in this World, to be shrewd yet innocent, is only from thinking on God and His ways.

my notes:

ephesians 4:14

so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes.

If you don’t know what you believe…prepare for a rough life.

ii peter 2:1

But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.

galatians 4:17

They make much of you, but for no good purpose. They want to shut you out, that you may make much of them.

There are people actually trying to deceive you…guard yourself from destruction by knowing and growing in the Truth! jude 19-23

supporting scriptures

jude 19-23

It is these who cause divisions, worldly people, devoid of the Spirit. 20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. 22 And have mercy on those who doubt; 23 save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.

my notes:

the practical benefits of studying God Himself

romans 12:2

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Want the ability to know God’s will for your life? Renew your mind by KNOWING Him and thinking His way.

romans 8:6

For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.

If you have a mind set on thinking, studying, and learning the Holy Spirit, you are acquiring LIFE and PEACE!!!!

john 8:32

and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Want FREEDOM from all your bad attitudes, fears, doubts, sins, etc.? It starts with God and eventually circles back to the Lord Himself.

ii peter 1:2-3

May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. 3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,

Grace, peace, godliness, life, satisfaction…EVERYTHING we need comes through the knowledge of the Lord! philippians 4:13

supporting scriptures

philippians 4:13

I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

pursuing the knowledge of God

matthew 6:33

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Seeking the benefits of walk with God, but being uninterested in the study of God is like wanting well-managed finances but not wanting to budget or do any math. To our natural minds we don’t see the immediate, practical applications of studying God, so it is something we pass off as reserved for Pastors, Teachers and Book-nerds. “It’s a fine study if you are into that, but I want to just know what God wants me to do.” Try it this way, “It’s a fine thing for accountants and math-geeks to know about budgets and accounts, but I’m not into math. I just want you to tell me what to do with my money now.” That kind of mentality will get you into serious financial trouble again and again because your money will be out of order if you do not have a working knowledge of math and continual budget.

Or try erecting a building without a proper foundation. You might get it all up at times, but it will come crashing down when trouble arises luke 6:47-49 . To have a strong building you have to have a strong and solid foundation. Christ is the foundation of your faith and life colossians 2:6-7. If we don’t lay a foundation, or even retro-fit our life with the Foundation you are setting yourself up for a collapse. If your faith is to stand the test of hardship you must know who you believe ii timothy 1:12 !

my notes:

supporting scriptures

luke 6:47-49

Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: 48 he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. 49 But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.”

colossians 2:6-7

Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, 7 rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.

ii timothy 1:12

which is why I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed, and I am convinced that he is able to guard until that day what has been entrusted to me.

To have a continual, blessed walk with the Lord you can’t just ask a pastor or teacher what to do from moment to moment. You need to know your God, His Word and His Ways! If you hope for all the blessings of God’s love, but you are not seeking after HIM, you are actually missing and maybe totally ignant of the greatest blessing of all; God Himself. So the study of God theology is not a pursuit just for the learned or theologians. It is the pursuit of all God’s people. He is the beginning of all blessings…and He is the end romans 11:36 revelation 22:13 . Study Him!

my notes:

supporting scriptures

romans 11:36

For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.

revelation 22:13

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”

my notes: