On Being an “Amateur” Theologian

When I write here, I make no claims of knowing what I’m talking about.  I mean, yeah, I do to an extent, but I’m by no means a scholar, nor do I expect to see anything I write here listed in the Works Cited section of a PhD theology textbook.

The thing is, I realize it, and I am cognizant of that when I write things.  As I’m typing (even right now) I’m asking myself, is this opinion or fact?  Do I know for sure that this best represents the truth of a matter, or do I believe it because my biases lead me to?

Many verses in the New Testament state that we are all ministers of the word.  We all have God-given gifts of one sort or another, and we are to use them to further God’s work in this world.  I get that.  One of my talents (at least I’d like to think so) is writing, so that’s what I do here on occasion.

However, some people take the “we’re all ministers” sentiment too far, claim divine knowledge, and assume everything they write about God and his creation is 100% fact.  The opinion they have is the only one which makes sense to them, therefore it’s the only one that is correct.  When information that doesn’t fit that view comes along?  Why it’s false, of the the devil, and intended to lure you into sin.  (Sin being anything that doesn’t fit with their opinion.)

We do not know everything.  No prince, pope, or potentate knows everything about everything.  No human being has a direct connection to God.  Together we can figure bits and pieces of it out, eventually working together to come to a unified conclusion.  But no one person, or group, or denomination, or even religion know everything there is to know about the mysteries of the universe.

Sometimes we will be 100% correct on one matter, and crazily wandering about left field on another.  It happens.  The key is to be cognizant that it will happen at some point.  Do not be over-confident in all your views just because one of them happens to be an insightful nugget of wisdom.  Consider how much dirt you have to sift through to find one speck of gold.

That’s what I do here.  I don’t make any claims to be a scholar.  I’d hazard a guess that I possess an above-average knowledge of theology, but that’s only because I attended a Baptist university and took a lot of theology electives.  If I see something that puzzles or intrigues me, I “sift the dirt” and look for the nugget of wisdom.  Sometimes I find something insightful, other times I just get my hands dirty and go away puzzled.

That’s what this blog is – a place for me to pan through the waters of wisdom, use goofy alliterative metaphors, and search for insight into the world.  So if you read something here that you disagree with, or can polish up a bit, feel free to chime in.  I’m just doing this because I enjoy studying theology and writing.  I’m no expert.



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