Why Study Systematic Theology
welcome to this episode of real Christianity my name is Dale Partridge reach week I offer 15 to 20-minute answers to tough the illogical and pastoral question this is 100% listener supported audio Ministry of relearn. Org and for those who don't know our mission a tree learn.org is to educate and equip ordinary Christian to plant biblical confessional and missional house churches for more information just visit relearn. Org for cows
 welcome to real Christianity my name is Dale Partridge today we are talking about why study Systematic Theology as you guys know for those who are regular listeners to this podcast the show notes are available for you at relearn. Org Systematic Theology is an important discussion I think in the church today we have too many Christians who have an isolated or fragmented Theology and don't understand how the parts work within the whole So today we're going to be talking about not only what is systematic theology but why every Christian should be studying systematically but before we begin I just wanted to make a few quick announcement one is that I am still working hard on the new podcast format with a new YouTube video format that will offer a a really a training on biblical interpretation because our mission at relearn is to improve biblical
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 okay let's dive into this discussion of why study Systematic Theology I recently posted a tweet where I wrote most modern Christians have formed their theology by people they've heard instead of by scripture they've studied and obviously this is a problem for a variety of reasons we can't know our Bibles by simply allowing other people to tell us what's in it we we listen to podcast and sermons and YouTube videos and we read books and commentaries and everything in between but the one thing that we're not doing enough of its opening up our own Bibles and reading them carefully and not just reading it really it's starting to such an extent that we can begin to see the systematic theological structure of God's Redemptive plan revealed in scripture in other words
 I think that we have too many Christians and not new Christians but people who have known the Lord for decades who have a piecemeal comprehension of scripture that I chose that were very intently the word piecemeal means and I quote a process characterized by unsystematic Discovery and partial measures taken over a. Of time this is probably the best description I can think of a modern Christian to approach towards theology I'm going to read that again it says a process characterized by unsystematic discover and partial measures taken over a. Of time so you know because I'm I'm going to be briefly defining Systematic Theology in this episode I thought it was a good idea to start a by first divining define systemic thinking
 the ship that the simplest definition that I could find was quote systems thinking or systematic thinking is understanding how different parts of a system can influence one another in producing the whole now over the last 100 years Humanity has increased information right we're in the information age but that doesn't mean that we've increased intellect in fact most sociologists believe that because our minds aren't being forced to work as hard to find solutions that they did in the previous generations that we really as a society are gaining more data but in reality our individual intelligence levels are decreasing
 and because we have so much information available we often approach topics and issues in isolation and we failed to see how they're connected to and had to have influence in other parts of their system it's kind of like an information overload let's not look at something more complex. Make something more complex than it really is let's make it simple so we isolate things instead of being willing to embrace the complexity and it this is a web and when you talk about one thing you're really talking about a bunch of other things how they're connected to this constellation and our minds really want to just pull back and go let's just look at this thing and isolation instead of diving into the complexity of the connectedness of whatever we're doing now when we apply this understanding to theology in the modern Church would begin to see why
 how many Christians have on Systematic Theology that you know what I mean by that is that they take passages of scripture out of not only their immediate context but they're canonical contacts with the other that means they're their contacts within the entire Bible the Canon of scripture the word is canonical right it's a canonical viewer kanapka monocle theology means that the theology throughout the entire Bible Genesis to Revelation do they take it out of the immediate context and they also take it out of the canonical contacts and they arrived at these interpretations that neglect the greater dr. Cynthia logical conclusions by which their divinely links together let me just going to offer you an analogy that I think might be helpful for you to see and understand what I'm saying
 okay most modern musicians today are not formally trained or not classically trained musicians they learn how to play the piano or the guitar through self teaching or your teaching in a resources like YouTube videos or learning basic chords online or from a book in other words most modern musicians don't know music theory or instrumental or vocal technique or ear training they can't read or write real music like the music notes in this doesn't mean that they can play Beautiful music it simply means that they have a partial and fragmented comprehension of music as a whole and this is much like modern Christians who know some of the basics of Christian theology but don't understand Systematic Theology or biblical theology or Christ all this year so curiology how they're all
 put together the problem arises that when people who have not been formally trained
 in theology act like they have or think that they are more of an expert than they are or begin to teach others as if they are qualified to do so and I'm not saying that nobody's qualified unless you're systematic Theologian I'm saying that we are very loose handed with this if you look up on YouTube how to lead a Bible study you're likely going to see lots of young people in their teens and early twenties offering instructions on how to lead Bible studies instead of
 church Elders who have been tried and true tested have been trained have shown the fruit in their life have Decades of a study experience offering their wisdom on how to host a Bible study and so that's kind of a small example of what I'm talking about here and yeah when it comes to training
 you know we we have to remember there's a lot of the people out there that are like you know hey the disciples never went to Seminary you know they didn't get trained I always tell people we have to remember that Jesus chose twelve devout Jews who knew the tour has since childhood and then they spent three years under Jesus's daily teaching and gospel Doctrine all before Jesus sent them out to teach others or minister to others so I do think there is a strong with the argument for training before teaching others and and there was again that analogy between
 we have a similar situation go to the Musicians doesn't mean that you can't play great music if you're not classically trained or formally trained the same thing as it doesn't mean that you can't have a really great understanding of the gospel and you can preach A good sermon but we have to recognize that there is a formal systematic theological architecture that we should be aware of so that we can be humble enough to go I'm operating into territory that I don't really know
 and I need some help here instead of believing that all I've read it therefore I know it and I know all about it and I'm confident up to get on stage or to preach something or to make a YouTube video about it we just need to be a little bit more careful with that ultimately we live in a culture who thinks that we are experts in a field because we read a book on the topic or took a certification class for a few weeks again we just need to be willing to know where were week in Theology and theology takes
 years decades to really grasp it is the Bible is not an easy book to understand and I would argue that it's the most complex book on Earth and the theological and doctrinal structure of scripture is probably some of the highest if not the highest thinking
 I'm on Earth as well and so unfortunately most modern Christians are weak and Systematic Theology because we again are unwilling to see how the parts are really connected to the whole and how the whole is connected to the parts now why is this so important that we look at the illogical or theological sorry theology systemically I think in the simplest terms without sound theology we can't rightly worship Christ going to say that one more time without sound theology we can't rightly worship Christ
 John chapter 4 Jesus speaking to the woman at the well and he explains to her you know that her people the Samaritans were worshiping God incorrectly. He closes his argument is section there by saying God is spirit and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth Charles Spurgeon once spoke to this concept and he said if we choose a false way of worship we shall before long choose to worship a false god
 and quote ultimately what would I want you guys to grasp year is that the river of worship must flow down the banks of Truth
 if we remove the bank so that the illogical boundaries the river begins to flow into invalid territory and this is what Systematic Theology does it creates banks for the river it gives us our gives our worship really a Channel or a system by which it can properly flow it creates the boundaries of the balance by which we view God and prevents us from taking isolated passages and ideas and creating new canals and trenches that really lead us down to falsehood
 and this is vital because
 what we're realizing as we get older is that everything is the illogical suffering is very theological marriage is very theological depression is very theological parenting is very theological finances are very theological the point I'm trying to make here is that sound theology cultivates a clear outlook on life in the vast majority of people's trials a self-inflicted trials are really a result of bad theology Pastor once told me if you believe wrong you'll never live strong and I think that's a hundred percent correct but you know we must have a right view of God and a right view of ourselves and a right view of the bridge that's Jesus who spans the gap between us and God
 and we have to have these write views if we're to live and think and feel and experience life the way that God intended us to
 so practically speaking
 where do we go from here
 I guess basically it means that Christians
 need to see both the individual parts of scripture and the whole
 we need to not only know that Christ came but also we need to know that his coming was promised and the Old Testament and why his coming is vital for Humanity in a wheat wheat we don't only need to know that our sin is covered by the blood of Christ but we also need to know why God demands blood and not water sweat tears we need to know that God is Sovereign but we also need to know all the passages that defined the extent of his sovereignty and I can go on and on and on about the interconnectedness of Theology and how vital it is to have a system that is not compromising itself that's not contradicting itself
 and this this doesn't mean that we remove all mystery are there are still Mysteries but there is a wonderful systematic map already developed and I want to talk about that for a second cuz I understand that this can be in credibly overwhelming and and I admit it is just a matter of theology is a lifelong study but let's just take a moment and thank God for church history thank God that the Lord has raised up the faithful men and women over the past two thousand years who have stood on the shoulders of theologians who have stood on the shoulders of Theologian to have codified and systematized Evangelical theology for us
 it doesn't mean that it's inspired by the Holy Spirit but it has been kicked and evaluated for Centuries by individuals with with the Holy Spirit and those
 Creeds and confessions that have stood the test of time
 I should say they demand our respect and they demand our attention at the very minimum
 and we have these wonderful confessions and Creeds actually did an episode on this is 125 talking about confessions and Creeds but we have confessions like the Westminster statement of faith or Westminster Confession of faith and the 1689 London Baptist confession of faith that present again a time-tested systematic theological overview but if you want to dive deeper we also have
 you know modern books like John MacArthur's biblical Doctrine or Wayne grudem Systematic Theology that are incredible resources for us to start having a systematic view of the Gospel of of scripture
 and so I'll get ready to close out here in a second but you know you might be asking the question where do I begin
 I would start by reading a version of those statements of faith that I mentioned just a second ago they're available in updated language as well so you know much of a written Old English originally the Westminster Confession of Faith you can get the original Banner of Truth sells it you can also get the 1689 confession which I personally find more alignment with even though I love the Westminster Confession I just like the way that the 689 is put together I think it's a little simpler to understand and it's a Baptist and I'm not a presbyterian but it's about his confession and you can find that at founders.org and it's only about eighty pages and I know that sounds like a lot but you when you read through this you go wow
 is amazing power washer actually did a video on Instagram TV not long ago maybe six months ago he was getting an interview or in a tour of his personal library in his office and he got over to the section that have the confessions and Creeds and he said when I read these confessions and Creeds I was so angry he said I had been studying for so long and I found these books that had come and organized the conclusions that took me years to get to all the nice book that I'd never read and I done the same thing and it's amazing to go wow
 this is a great resource for my family for our home for our church to be a confessional Church to stand behind these interpretations of biblical Doctrine and you can do the catechisms that do with it again some of those are available at founders.org Tom ascol who is the president over there I had him on an interview not too far back in the Theologian series you might remember him personally for a book if you want to dive deeper I recommend doctor MacArthur biblical Doctrine it's next to my bed and I try to read a few pages a week and it's just a wonderful overview of the Bible Doctrine and Theology and helps develop at systematic View
 but overall guys just be willing to open up your Bible be willing to study it be willing to look at the parts in light of the whole and the whole inside of the parts and then check your interpretations not with your emotions or your experience or what somebody's told you but by looking to a variety of time-tested resources and pass the illusion who have labored over these doctrines for decades one thing that I do is if I want to find an interpretation I'll find a commentary
 I'll try to come to my own conclusion through prayer and evaluation of attacks and historical cultural context in the grammar and I'll look at this and then I'll look at a commentary from the 50s or 60s and then one from the 1700s and one from the 1800s and one from the 1900s in a modern one and when I see that over five hundred years five different guys who never met each other and likely never read each other's commentaries all came to the same conclusion
 it's pretty rare that conclusion and interpretation is wrong and so that's just a system that I've done so hopefully this is a helpful episode episode for you guys on understanding the reason why we should study Systematic Theology thank you guys for listening to this episode it's just such a pleasure to study and to share these lessons to you guys again working on that new episode for Matt that's coming soon and if you want to support our ministry you can do that are either. Org forward slash donate if you haven't left a review of the reviews really do help the exposure to show you simply just need to go to your podcast app and you just have to start but if you write something I will read it thank you to all of you who have left those reviews they mean a lot on that note my name is Dale Partridge this is real Christianity and we will see you next week
 thank you for listening to this episode of real Christianity if your regular was no to the show would you perfectly consider making a donation to support our ministry efforts simply visit relearn. Org forward slash donate again at 3 learn.org for donate and for those looking to explore the idea of joining or planting a church in your home you can download our free pdf ebook title the basics of biblical House Church I disagree learn.org for house last week do you have a theological question you would like answered on the show submit your question at relearn. Org forward slash question thanks for joining us on this episode of real Christianity we will see you next Wednesday