Posted by: Hope | August 27, 2007

The Origin of Christian Theology

I’ve been in hunt of what I want to write on today. I love to write, but sometimes (like now) I simply do not know what to write on. I guess some people call it writers block, but I don’t like that. It’s not like I’m writing a song, or a book. It’s just a blog, on my thoughts. I don’t know why I sometimes struggle so much to find something to discuss. I hate it. But I’m trying to not go a day without at least writing something. With that, I suppose I’ll just mention something I read on a forum today that I actually found kind of interesting.

This person made the point that most of todays Christian theology comes from Paul. If you get into a debate with someone, most of the time they’re quoting Paul, or other letters in the NT…but hardly ever do you see people quoting Jesus to prove something. Why is this? Why didn’t Jesus teach us Christian theology? He does teach us somethings, but very little. It’s all in parables. And its mostly all about the walk we have in Christ. Also some stuff about hell too. But I can’t really recall him really saying anything in the subject of theology or apologetics. Why didn’t he teach what people (believers, Christians) are supposed to believe in…in detail? “And better yet, why didn’t he write it himself and make sure it was transmitted?”

This is the link to where you can find this. I basically said the same exact thing as he did in the post.
http://foru.ms/showpost.php?p=38063984&postcount=1

This is actually kind of a serious problem to me. Most of the things believers believe in weren’t even written by God, but by man. Not even written by Jesus himself. How could this possibly be a reliable thing? A reliable belief?

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Responses

  1. Most of the things believers believe in weren’t even written by God, but by man.

    To be a Christian means to emulate Jesus. Using this argument, a lot of Christians – mainly Protestants – tend to concentrate on what (they imagine) Jesus would do rather than following what the New Testament says they should do or believe. Since being a Christian simply means to be Christ-like (and presumably to accept Jesus as the Son of God), there are no real universal beliefs that all Christians hold.

    Why didn’t Jesus teach us Christian theology? He does teach us somethings, but very little . . . Why didn’t he teach what people (believers, Christians) are supposed to believe in…in detail?

    Again, since being a Christian means to be Christ-like, there was no way Jesus would directly teach his followers Christian theology unless he happened to be a narcissist. Also, Jesus was a Jew and quite possibly a religious one. He said himself that he did not come to abolish the [Jewish] laws or make some new ones. What he would want from his followers (i.e., Christians) was to love God, love their neighbors, and probably to obey the rest of those laws.

    “And better yet, why didn’t he write it himself and make sure it was transmitted?”

    1. Unlike us bloggers, he wasn’t narcissistic enough to think his thoughts would (eventually) matter.

    2. His followers at the time were most likely illiterate anyway – not especially interested in a certain activity called “reading.” Fishermen, prostitutes, and the sick? Not the type of people who would sit around and reflect on what Jesus said and/or what he really meant. Theology and debates are for those who have too much spare time on their hands.

  2. Well if you want to be exact, then man actually wrote the Gospels also. Jesus didn’t sit down himself and record the events. The Old Testament (the Law and the Prophets) were all written by the hands of men also. When looking at the Bible, 2 Timothy says, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,”

    So all of the good book is inspired by God. Thats something that is important. If it was not, then could the Bible be the infallible word of God?

    Much focus is on the books of Acts through Revelation because they deal with the New Testament church, which is where we are today.

  3. …But “2 Timothy” was also written by who? Man. Doesn’t that just seem a bit odd? For a man to say that what he writes is inspired by God. Thats not only odd, but maybe a bit arrogant too 😛 Kind of a coincidence also. I mean, wouldn’t you expect someone that was beginning a religion to say that what they write is inspired by God? I mean, wow! If someone told me what they spoke to me on the street was inspired by God…I’d probably have to either A) laugh at them or B) be kind of impressed…. (B only if for some odd reason I believed them).

    Besides, if it is inspired by God then there shouldn’t be contradictions…right?

  4. What are the contradictions you’re concerned with? You definitely hit the nail on the head: All of the Bible was written by man, and faith is what leads one to believe it was inspired by God. Without faith, you have no religion.
    If you’re looking for scientific proof then, believe in engineering or something. But wait, doesn’t that contain “theory” also?

  5. Well contradictions never bothered me much because when I came across them I just canceled them out by just going with the idea that the bible is not infallible. I said this simply because it was written by men and has been translated X amount of times. (and the fact that I found little contradictions) So I never *really* allowed it to bother me much.

    http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/jim_meritt/bible-contradictions.html

    There’s a quick link to a bunch of random contradictions. Some of them refer to physical things, like bugs, and stuff and how they don’t have this or don’t do that…those don’t bother me at all. It’s the stuff that has to do with much treasured scripture by Christians. Like the tomb, and things with Jesus.

  6. Most of these contradictions are easily explained. Anyone can twist words around from one verse to another. It is their aim to cause people to doubt, so why would they be 100% honest? Unless we understand the context of these verses, the hermeneutics, then we can translate them any way we wish. Let those who have ears to hear, let them hear. If they do not, then all of this, the Bible, Jesus, Christianity, will not and cannot make sense.

  7. Requiring Jesus to have written original theology still work with an idea that what is needed is some final answers from God. Maybe that wasn’t the idea. Maybe God never intended to send down the “perfect book”. Maybe the Bible is just the way in which people tried to talk about a reality which is so much bigger than they are. And they did this with all of the contradictions, mistakes etc. we find in the Bible. Maybe the fact that this imperfect book has been forming people in their relationship with Transcendence, with God, is part of the “miracle”? Read Brian Mclaren’s The Story We Find Ourselves In.

    Somehow people are having real experienc of God, but not in the way of miracles, or Bible verses being sung out of heaven, that we were taught in Sunday School

  8. Do not read anything by Brian McLaren. Just a suggestion. 🙂
    Why? Well, McLaren is known for his anti-biblical views. Many people, in and out of the emerging movement, have expressed concern over his ungrounded theology. Things such as calling God a “chick”, advocating open theism, and denying hell, are just a few things that associated with him.

    2 Tim 4:3-4
    For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.


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