The Center of Theology

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by swaimj, Oct 30, 2009.

  1. swaimj

    swaimj
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    Would you describe your theology as being:

    A. God-centered

    B. Gospel-centered

    C. Christ-centered



    Do you see any distinction between these three?
     
  2. Jarthur001

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    A. God-centered or better...theocentric

    Yes very much so.

    The other views may cause you to reject parts of the Bible, or have a wrong view of God.
     
  3. Revmitchell

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    No all of it is true. To focus on one can lead to grave error.
     
  4. Benjamin

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    I might say Christ-centered, past, present, future, with a strong emphases on the Gospel and the Trinitarian nature and characteristics of God.

    But also thought just to say all. I don't know...can't really sum it up without all three. Is this a trick?
     
  5. swaimj

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    Benjamin, I ran across this question on another site recently, so I thought I'd ask it here. No tricks (as if this were Halloween or something :) )I think that I, too, would describe my theology as Christ-centered as opposed to the others. I can think of verses that might support either of the other options, but God has revealed himself in these last days to us through His Son and the work of Christ does encompass past present and future as you say.
     
  6. Tom Butler

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    I think you have it right. You do not have to make a choice between the Christ and God, for the Christ is God. Since he is the living Word, to be Christ-centered is to be gospel-centered as well.
     
  7. Jarthur001

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    Speaking of Oct 31, Martin Luther too held to christocentric theology and this lead to his rejection of the book of james.

    The reformers held to a theocentric theology mainly because of thedoctrine of the sovereignty of God. But also that Christ the sent One of God was also God in the flesh.

    Vos said that the Bible is a book about God. While this is rather simple...and I would say too simple, it is true. I would say it is a book about .....
    God's Kingdom,
    God's people,
    and God's mediator.

    That pretty much sums it up. :)
     
    #7 Jarthur001, Oct 31, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 31, 2009
  8. Jarthur001

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    While this is true in part, it is true only in light of Jesus as the Judge of mankind. Gospel-centered theology leaves judgement unanswered. In other words, one must know of the bad news before the good news has meaning.
     
  9. Jim1999

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    If we fail to rightly define who God is, we will fail in all other delineations of the Godhead. Theology has always been defined as "the science of God and of the relations between God and the universe." A.H. Strong, Systematic Theology. Faith is taught. The facts of Jesus are taught. Everything flows from a proper understanding of God.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  10. kyredneck

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    Well put, IMO.

    The OP kinda sorta reminds me of the question, 'What do you consider as the main theme of the Bible?'; to which MY answer would possibly be (can't say with finality), 'The Revelation Of God Through The Lord Jesus Christ'.

    Everything that we see in the scriptures that Christ was, God is.

    No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. Jn 1:18

    for in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily, Col 2:9

    Ye search the scriptures, because ye think that in them ye have eternal life; and these are they which bear witness of me; Jn 5:39

    .......but then there’s ‘The Absolute Sovereignty of God’, and, ‘Redemption’ as themes also; and a myriad of ‘threads‘ that are carried out through the entire Book.......
     
    #10 kyredneck, Nov 1, 2009
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  11. OldRegular

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    I am not sure why the distinction between God centered or Christ Centered since Jesus Christ is God. However, that being said I believe that theology must begin by understand the Triune God as Creator. If God is not creator why would there be a gospel?
     
  12. Tom Butler

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    I agree. Any gospel presentation which ignores the bad news is incomplete. Just as "God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life" is a distortion. Paul Washer preached that the lost person is likely to respond "Wonderful, I love me, too, and I have big plans for my life as well."

    I would much prefer "If you are lost, God has a terrible plan for your life."

    Your point is well-taken.
     
  13. swaimj

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    I think that OT believers were necessarily God-centered. God revealed himself in the OT through creation, but most clearly through the Mosaic law and covenant and through the Abrahamic and Davidic covenants. They were focused on the law, but that was the prism through which they knew God. Their focus was on pleasing God by obeying his law.

    Today, we want to please God as well, but the prism through which we do this is quite different. We please God by knowing Christ through faith. Our faith is in Christ and in His finished work--the gospel, but the outworking of our faith is not by keeping the law, but by seeking to be more like Christ in His humanity. In an ultimate sense we are God focused, but our specific focus is on Jesus. We are focused upon his redemptive work which is both salvific and sanctifying.

    So, OT believers were God focused by means of God's revelation of Himself primarily in the law. NT believers are focused upon God through His revelaltion of Himself in Christ through the gospel.
     
  14. preachinjesus

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    just saw this thread...I was out of the country when it was originally posted...apologies for the delay

    C. Christ-centered

    I believe Christology is the defining locus of theology. As Paul says in 1 Corinthians 2:2, "I am resolve to know nothing among you except Christ and Him crucified."

    Absolutely. While "God-centered" and "Christ-centered" fall under a Trinitarian understanding, Theology Proper and Christology are two different subjects.

    I honestly am not sure what a "Gospel-centered" theology looks like. Maybe I'm stuck in an academic mindset but it doesn't even seem to be a good category.
     
    #14 preachinjesus, Nov 21, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 21, 2009
  15. Tom Bryant

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    Not sure how they differ but I would be Christ centered in my theology of the 3 choices. I guess my best choice would be Bible centered.
     
  16. Peggy

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    I vote for Christ-centered.

    Joh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
    Joh 1:2 He was in the beginning with God.
    Joh 1:3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.
    Joh 1:4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men.
     
  17. Jim1999

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    I think I will stick with Strong's definition of theology: "The science of God and of the relations between God and the universe."

    Without a correct view of God, we will fail in all other aspects of theology, including Christology.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  18. swaimj

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    I see your point, Jim, but, as Christians, we would not know God apart from His revelation of Himself in Jesus Christ. And we are coming to know God more through growth in our relationship to Christ. We have to be Christ-centered.
     

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