Written by Mary Todd Christian. Media by Jack Dawdy.
Theology can sound intimidating. When you think “theology,” you may think of confusing terms and words that are way over your head. If you are a young lady that grew up in a church tradition like mine, studying theology might have always seemed like a “man thing,” and only men were the aspiring theologians. (Disclaimer: I understand this view is not true of all woman.) Many of us might think that we’re not qualified or smart enough to understand. Thankfully, theology helps guide through understanding the nature of God. With this understanding in mind, here are some reasons why women should read and study theology.
1. To Learn About and Know God
This is probably the biggest “Sunday School answer” you will read on my list, but this is so important. As women, we tend to read countless books on how to be a good wife, a woman that leads, a Godly homemaker, or teacher. I’m not saying that any of these books/studies are bad, but they do not necessarily study the nature of God. We are commanded to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ. How are we to do this if we don’t study and strive to know our Creator?
2. Theology Helps Us Form and Biblically Support Opinions
If you grew up in church and were basically born in the church nursery like myself, you maybe find it difficult to support the views you uphold. This may be because they were taught to you your entire life, and you didn’t actually have to research the material yourself. Studying theology gives us the opportunity to actually dig into scripture that might have been spoon-fed to us as children. It also allows us to read other viewpoints that might challenge our way of thinking, and that’s okay! In doing so, we can learn to biblically support our views and opinions on topics that are important to us.
3. To Understand and Uphold the Sufficiency of Scripture
Scripture is absolutely necessary to our understanding of Christ and our salvation. When we begin to diligently study theology and scripture together it increases the weight of its importance in our Christian walk. Scripture revives us and gives us wisdom (Psalm 19:7-9). This is something that is engrained in us when we study theology. For some of us women who don’t feel “smart enough,” we can take heart from this verse that we will grow in wisdom when we study the law of the Lord.
4. It Keeps Us Grounded and Humble
Studying theology reminds us that we are here for a purpose. It also reminds us that there is no way we can do everything on our own. As women (and humans for that matter) we like to be in control, which unfortunately, causes us to forget Who is ultimately in control. It reminds us that we have to be dependent on Christ for everything. If we think we can do it on our own, we’re fooling ourselves.
There’s good news, ladies (and men if you’re reading this).
You don’t have to be a theologian to study theology! Books like Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin, Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, The Explicit Gospel by Matt Chandler, and Practical Theology for Women by Wendy Alsup, are just a few books that are geared towards those just starting to dive into studying theology. So don’t be intimidated and don’t overwhelm yourself. If anything, let these points encourage you that you don’t have to “know it all” to read theology. Most importantly, theology isn’t just for the men, and it isn’t just for women. In the words of R.C. Sproul, “Everyone is a theologian, the real question is whether you’re a good one or not.”