Theological Encyclopedia and Terminology
developed by Benjamin Warfield at Princeton Theological Seminary in the 19th century.
the word “THEOLOGY” means…….
English word “theology” is formed from two Greek words ; “Theos”
which means “God” and “logos” which can mean “word”
, “study” or “discourse”. Thus when
combined, we can derive that theology is a study about God or a study of God.
There are six departments
of instruction in the discipline of theological studies.
establishes the validity of the other departments as it defends the Christian faith from heresy and wrongful attacks. The
use and practice of apologetics vindicates the Christian philosophy of life against all other philosophies and lifestyles.
The purpose of the use of apologetics is not to prove other religions or philosophies
as incorrect in their own standing, but rather to bring the focus on the completed work of Jesus Christ through the assured
reliability of the Holy Bible’s accounting of salvation. There are four basic arenas of apologetics; Classical Apologetics;
Reformed Apologetics; Evidential Apologetics; Fideist Apologetics.
Exegetics consists of six sub-disciplines
Canonics deals with what books belong or don’t belong in the Bible.
Textual Criticism is divided into two arenas. “Lower Criticism”
seeks to examine original texts to determine what was the author is really saying. “Higher
Criticism” often undermines the received tradition of the church, and looks at the Bible as a human document.
Biblical Languages is the study of Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek, looking closely at the definitions and grammar used in
the original manuscript copies.
4). Biblical History and Archeology examines the historical and cultural development that supports
Biblical data and enhances the historical background.
Hermeneutics is the science of interpretation that seeks to determine the exact meaning of the text, thus minimizing
personal bias, theological concepts and cultural distance.
Exegesis is the actual reading out and the interpretation of the texts, desiring to understand the impact that the
text had on its original hearers.
is described as “the history of special revelation”. Biblical Theology organizes the data of scripture in a chronological
manner. The biblical theologian is interested in the historical relation of the various truths. Biblical Theology traces the
maturing of various doctrines from Old Testament to the New Testament.
English word “systematic” comes from the Greek words “synestemi”, “synistano” which translated
means “to put together”, “to organize” or “to comprehend”. “Systematic Theology”
is an organized study or discourse about God. Systematic Theology asks the question “What is the truth about God?”.
There are two key components in doing Systematic Theology. They are the reliance on Scripture and the consensus of the faithful
as recorded in the creeds and confessions throughout church history; It is the study of the nature of God and his relationship
with His creation.
examines the history and the development of the church’s reflection on revelation. Revelation is how God communicates
His truth to humanity. It examines how dogma was and is developed. It also seeks to understand the dialogue between competing
doctrinal viewpoints, and how did the church responded to theological and doctrinal challenges down through the centuries.
Theology is the study which seeks to apply all of the truths within the context of the church community, such as Pastoral
care and counseling, liturgical issues of worship and Christian education. There
is also an emphasis and focus on methodology. Practical Theology is a the generally the congregationally visible and productive
aspects of theological studies.