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Life in Oxford 2013

Who should study theology and how?


Although it is of special relevance to the church, the subject is broadly relevant and significant to life as a whole, rather than being exclusively church focused. The study of theology could well prove to be as vital for a politician or entrepreneur called by God to work in the world, as it is for a minister in the church.

Indeed we believe that this kind of vision for the use of theology will be necessary to influence the secular mind.


Having set this broad Kingdom agenda we need to remind ourselves that all good theology is rooted in church life. The church was always the plan of God from the beginning, and it is Jesus himself who builds it.

How do we make sure then that we do not emphasise theology for the church at the expense of theology for the Kingdom or vice versa?

The answer must surely be to both retain and aim for the original apostolic model, which includes concurrent work and preaching of the gospel (2 Thess. 3 vs. 7-8). This does not necessarily mean Christian work should not be full time and paid, only that apostolic foundations should never be forgotten.

This 'theological economy' is related to the concept of Jesus' mandate to preach good news to the poor in which he avoided creating a class of theologians and religious experts based on any unnecessary hierarchical knowledge structure. Instead he focused his theology and teaching on the crowds, the future church and her leaders.