The word theology is derived from two Greek words: Theos (God) and logos (speech or reason). Therefore, theology in its simplest terms is rational discussion about God. It has been described as "the science of God and his relationship to man and the world" and "the attempt to reduce religious truth to an organized system." Systematic theology is any study that answers the question, "What does the whole Bible teach us today?"
If you would like to understand these basics about the Christian faith—such as the doctrines of the Bible, God, Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, mankind, the church, salvation, and the future—download this six-session course today.
Definitions, Disciplines, and Authority
The Doctrine of the Bible
The Bible is the inspired Word of God.
2 Timothy 3:16–17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:21
The Old and New Testaments are verbally inspired by God, the only written revelation from God to us. The Bible is infallible and the authoritative rule of faith and conduct for humanity.
The Doctrine of God
There is one true God.
Deuteronomy 6:4; Genesis 1–2; Matthew 28:19
God is called by many different names but God is one. God is eternally self-existent. God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent. He is the creator of the heavens and the earth. He has revealed himself in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
The Doctrine of Mankind
Adam and Eve sinned, affecting us all.
Genesis 1:26; 2:17; 3:6, 14–19, 23; Romans 3:23; 5:12–19; Ephesians 2:11–18
By a voluntary act of will, Adam and Eve disobeyed God. That first sin had several repercussions.
The Doctrine of Christ and Salvation
Our salvation comes only through Christ.
Matthew 1:18–23; 28:1–6; Acts 1:9, 11; 2:22; 10:37–38; 1 Corinthians 15:4; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Philippians 2:9–11; Hebrews 7:26; 1 Peter 2:22, 24; 1 John 3:4–5
Jesus Christ is the second person of the Trinity, the eternal Son of God. The Scripture declares his virgin birth, his sinless life, his miracles, his substitutionary death on the Cross, his bodily resurrection from the dead, and his exaltation to the right hand of God.
The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit and the Church
The Holy Spirit dwells in believers and guides the church.
Mark 16:15–16; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 12:1–28, 31; 13:1–13; 14:1, 12; 26–33; Galatians 5:22–23; Ephesians 4:11–16
The nine fruits of the Spirit are the by-product of a Spirit-filled life and evidence of spiritual maturity. The church is the body of Christ and has a three-fold purpose: To evangelize the world, to worship God, and to equip for ministry.
The Doctrine of the Future
There will be a final judgment.
Matthew 25:31–46; Romans 2:1–9; 1 Corinthians 4:5; Revelation 20:11–15
There will be a final judgment in which the dead will be resurrected and judged according to their works. Those whose names are written in the Book of Life will be resurrected and will stand at the judgment seat of Christ to be rewarded for their good deeds.
This Study Through the Bible Course is based on the National Community Church series called "Theology 101," written by Heather Zempel.
Total number of pages—88