Summary: We often think of theologians as those with high-sounding degrees but in reality we are all theologians in a very general sense. Two questions arise; are we Biblical theologians and are we GOOD Biblical theologians???
You Are A Theologian!
Today we will be reading from Deuteronomy 17:14-20
Who are the theologians of this church?
Before you answer that, what is a theologian and what is theology?
And to answer that requires a two step process.
The English word “theologian” comes from two Greek words with an English suffix.
The first is “theos” meaning “God” and the second is “logos” meaning “word”.
And then to that we add the English suffix is “ian” which means “relating to”.
Martian - someone relating to Mars
Grecian - someone or something related to the Greek culture
Politician - someone involved in politics
So, when you string “theos”, “logos” and the suffix “ian” in the word theologian it literally means a person who is in some way relating to God’s word.
Now, when a person is a theologian they engage in theology or the study of God through His word.
And, what finally happens when you engage in the study of God through His word? You end up with at least an intellectual knowledge about God.
When a theologian studies the Word of God something called theology develops and that is a series of belief that develop from that study of God’s word.
Do you want to hear something that is NOT surprising?
Pastor Karenlee and I are theologians.
Do you want to hear something that is VERY surprising?
YOU ARE ALL THEOLOGIANS!
IN FACT EVERYONE IN THE WORLD WHO HAS EVER EVEN THOUGHT ABOUT GOD IS A THEOLOGIAN!
Now, even though everyone in the world who has ever thought about God is in a sense a theologian it does not mean that everyone’s theological beliefs about God are right. Right!
An atheist is a theologian - that person has determined in their mind that there is no god.
A man named Spong who preaches in churches and teaches in Christian universities does not believe in the God of the Bible or even in the word of God at all. He is a theologian with a huge following.
A child who is hearing his Mom reading a children’s Bible book is a theologian. Their understanding of Who and What God is may be limited but they are forming their beliefs.
All learning requires three things:
1) The desire to learn
2) A knowledgeable instructor
3) Self study (home work - personal effort)
What is needed to be a Christian theologian?
1) The desire to learn
2) A knowledgeable instructor (if one is available … if not, the Bible and the Holy Spirit can and will bring enough light into the seekers heart and mind to bring about salvation and holy living)
3) Self study (home work (Bible study) - personal effort)
4) A spiritual group of fellow believers (if one is available)
Just how critical is the Word of God?
Let’s look at an example from the Old Testament.
At this point Moses is just talking about the fact that the people of Israel will one day want to have a king like the surrounding nations.
So, Moses lays down this law for the kings that will come in the future.
Let’s read Deuteronomy 17:14-20
What is the King supposed to do?
“When [the king] takes the throne of his kingdom, he is to write for himself on a scroll a copy of this law, taken from that of the Levitical priests. It is to be with him, and he is to read it all the days of his life so that he may learn to revere (Yahweh) the LORD his God and follow carefully all the words of this law and these decrees …”
1) Write a copy of the law in with his own hand
2) Keep the scroll with him
3) read it every day of his life
(Stop to prayer for help in understanding the importance of this)
We do not have any record of any king of Israel ever doing this but many scholars both Jewish and Christian believe that King David is the most likely author of Psalm 119.
Listen to what he says in verses 97-106.
Oh, how I love Your law! I meditate on it all day long.
Your commands are always with me
and make me wiser than my enemies.
I have more insight than all my teachers,
for I meditate on Your statutes.
I have more understanding than the elders,
for I obey Your precepts.
I have kept my feet from every evil path
so that I might obey Your word.
I have not departed from Your laws,
for you yourself have taught me.
How sweet are Your words to my taste,
sweeter than honey to my mouth!
I gain understanding from Your precepts;
therefore I hate every wrong path.
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.