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Theology, - Book Report/Review Example

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From time immemorial, man has been in the search for God and the various religious beliefs in the history of humanity illustrate this unrelenting quest for God. The development of systematic theology is essential for man in order to understand the one true God of the Bible…
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It is essential to have a general understanding of theology as there are elements of theology that must be intelligible or comprehended by humans. Therefore, exegesis and systematization of theology can help in revealing the truths about God and it is essential for the Christian theology to be Bible-based in order to present the truths about God. Christian theology can be broadly divided into three varieties - theology based on era, theology based on viewpoint and theology based on focus. An example of theology based on viewpoint is the Calvinistic theology whereas the biblical theology is an example of theology based on focus. The Modern theology is an example of theology based on era. Ryrie maintain that the exegesis is striving to explain the truth and the exegetical studies must be made before theological systemization can occur. The Bible is the most essential source to comprehend the dispensational periods. Although Old Testament theology has an incomparable role in the Holy Scriptures, it would be incomplete without the contribution of the New Testament truth. It is fundamental to realize that the theological systems have vital limitations and this system is limited by biblical revelation. As Charles Ryrie maintains, 'silence not clever logic is the best answer' for such limitations.
It is fundamental for a student of theology to be a believer in the Holy Scriptures and he cannot merely depend on intellect alone. Thus, the student of theology must understand the worth of God to have meaningful worship. Significantly, the foundational principle of theology, according to Ryrie, is the question of authority and how authority varies within the "Christian" spectrum. Subjectivism and reason dominates the authority in liberalism and the believer in liberalism assumes that God communicates with humans through emotions, human reason and feelings. Liberalism can be described as a mixture of anthropology and psychology. Neo-Orthodoxy is objective in the sovereignty of God, but subjective in the experience of faith. Conservatism stands at the opposite side of the authority spectrum and two types of conservatism are Catholicism and Protestantism. In the Catholic Church, the authority rests in the church itself. Furthermore, the Bible is interpreted by the church. Ryrie maintains that, throughout history, the ecumenical councils and popes have made pronouncements which are considered infallible and therefore binding on the church. Therefore, it is essential to recognize that Catholicism does not place authority in man as liberalism teaches. On the other hand, Protestantism, which is another type of conservatism, places the entire authority on the Word of God. This type of authority, which is based on scripture, eliminates subjectivism whereas liberalism considers humanistic views as authority. According to Protestantism, the views, creeds and guidelines of the church are fallible unless this authority has biblical backing. While talking about biblical truth, Charles Swindoll specifically mentions two terms - inerrancy and infallible - which are used by the theologians to describe biblical truth. Some theologians prefer the term 'inerrancy', as the term 'infallible' may mean that they are unfailing in accomplishing their purpose of bringing salvation.

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