What Is Theology, Anyway?


I’m putting together a quick post today, as Part 6 of my Feeling Well series isn’t quite ready and I have piles of homework due. So, I thought I might define theology before I write loads of posts about it, just to be clear and concise, (and also because ‘clear and concise’ is pretty much my middle name when it comes to writing).

Anyway, theology…

The Merriam-Webster online dictionary says theology is: “the study of religious faith, practice, and experience; the study of God and God’s relation to the world.” This is a very basic definition, but it is also very true.

Theology is about God (literally, theos – God and logos – word, so ‘words about God’) and it is the study of the way we think of God, the attributes we ascribe to Him, His works and the relation between Him and us. The term tends to cover a lot of other topics too, from philosophical or logical proofs for the existence of God to the historicity of Christ, to Church teaching, sacraments and practical Christianity as well as much more. In a more practical sense, however, theology is often focused on figuring out who God is and who we are as Christians and human beings in light of what we learn about Him.

As a theology major I study things ranging from exegesis of Scripture to Christology and logic, to the sacraments, Catholic Church teaching and liturgy, and everything in between. All the subjects and areas I am studying, and will study these next few years, teach me more and more about God, the world and about myself and where I fit into all of this as a Christian.

Join me and, hopefully, enjoy with me learning about theology, thus (I hope) getting to know God and the self better, as well as what its role in the world is.