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Difference Between Biblical Study and Biblical Theology
Christian studies provide a plethora of terms to keep in mind, which can often be confusing for the readers and followers of Christianity. However, it is easy to confuse the terms when you don’t know what every term means. One among them is the difference between study and theology. Although they mean the same on a surface level, they are vastly different when you speak of biblical concepts.
On the surface level, theology deals with studying the Bible, but there is a significant difference in that too!
What is the difference?
In layperson’s terms, theology deals with the study of God, but biblical studies deal with reading Bible itself. When studying with the lens of studies, you tend to read the Bible book by the book, where theology will take a topical approach. The biblical study generally divides the Bible into common themes and categories, which will help the readers, deliver the overall message systematically.
According to Dr. Tiberius Rata, although we can divide the theme and extract messages from both ways, there is always overlap in certain concepts. He states that whenever a person studies the Bible, they are undergoing both theological and biblical knowledge because the readers get to understand God’s creation, His rule, God, and also about humanity.
Theology v/s Biblical studies
People often ask which form of study is better, and the answer always depends on the goal and the lesson people want to take from the book. Studying the scripture through both lenses is a plus, which helps one understand God’s teaching.
Biblical studies deal with exploring the Bible and finding a teacher to extract maximum knowledge from the scripture. It also deals with the fundamental lessons and the ways of life preached by Jesus to humankind. However, exploring Christian doctrines falls under the biblical theology umbrella, which helps one understand the book better.
Who is it applied to?
Although Biblical studies and theologies can be practiced by everyone interested in learning about Jesus, they can be majored by students interested in studying and preaching God’s work to the world.
A biblical study or biblical theology major is for students who are passionate about learning the Bible and imparting the knowledge t the world to be a better Christian today. It is also taken up by students who are interested in implementing God’s work in the work-life or serving their lives as pastors in Churches and those who wish to have a growing relationship with God. A degree in this subject can help students with the following work opportunities:
· Teachers and professors
· Directors of Church
· Social workers
· Camp counselors and many more
Conservative Women mentioned in the Bible
There are various types of women mentioned in the Bible – wives, daughters, mothers, victors and victims, women powerless to change their destinies, and women who created some historical remarks. The ancient societies mentioned in the Bible were deemed patriarchal, mainly because they highlighted the dominance of men in society. For example, the marital and inheritance laws favored men and women, restricted sexual power, and adultery was a crime for women subjected to stoning.
Aside from the patriarchal law followed in the Bible, it also talks about heterarchy. Heterarchy acknowledges the different power sectors of people in the society, which again had their hierarchical arrangements. According to the verses mentioned in the Bible, women also had powers in the system, but they were separate and very different from men.
The Bible also portrays the different types of women who carried various roles, especially in the forefront of the public sector. They are mentioned because they perform tasks out of the ordinary.
Women, sex, and the laws surrounding them
The patriarchal society was first established in 3000 BCE and later followed by many Bronze and Axial Age groups. The Hittites, Assyrians, Persians, and Akkadians of the eastern societies regarded women as the inferior class and gave them a subordinate position. However, this was followed by a few exceptions in the third millennium BC, when women started being considered equal o men.
On the contrary, the position of women in the Western states of Egypt was high, and they were exposed to legal rights with equal powers as men. However, according to history books, even though women could rise to the power of queens in Western society, it seldom empowered female subjects.
In ancient societies, women were typically given the domestic power of maintaining and raising a family, except for Sparta, which treated men and women equally. However, in Greece and other parts, classic authors like Aristophanes, Philo, Socrates, Plato, and many more, popularized women’s empowerment and stated that women are s bad as men.
In Biblical law, the forgiveness of women for adultery and insignificant sexual practices was not an option for mercy and forgiveness. The lovers had to die if caught in the act. However, such punishments were not mentioned for men. Women could apply for divorce after they proved their worthiness, or she was drowned for the asking. Sexual relationships between two unmarried couples result in marriage, and if the husband later accuses his wife of losing her virginity, she is stoned to death.
Biblical Theology: A Complete Walkthrough
In short terms, Biblical theology refers to the theology of the Bible. It is what the biblical writers write in their books about the Bible and studying God in particular. It also holds convictions about Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, and God’s work in creating a human history on earth. It is mainly introduced to the people to represent the teachings of Jesus, by various writers.
Understanding biblical theology, written by various writers, depends on how we interpret texts or scripture. Therefore, it is best to use a historical, descriptive, and inductive method to understand the true sense of the term.
Historical approach to biblical theologies
When we view biblical theology through a historical lens, it talks about the teachings of the Bible by understanding each page and verse of the scripture. Generally, meaningful explanations a provided by various biblical writers.
An inductive approach to biblical theologies
An inductive approach provides an open mind to understand every term of the scripture to learn better about Christ and his dedication to improving humankind. Generally, writers and readers who follow an inductive approach have an authorial-intent mind to convey and interpret what’s given in a particular passage. Usually, believers who follow this approach listen and understand the scriptures before bringing their own inputs to a conclusion.
Descriptive approach to biblical theologies
A biblical theologian generally starts with a descriptive approach. This means they will try to relate all the events mentioned in the book by respecting the terminologies used by the biblical writer.
Hence, people who follow the biblical theologies to interpret in their life generally explore all the teaching of major these of the scripture in three different approaches and gain the best perspective from the scripture.
Ideas of biblical theology
The three primary ideas are followed:
- It is practiced only by theologians who believe in gaining knowledge from the writers of the scriptures.
- It does not deal with encompassing the ‘story of the bible’ but emphasizes the teachings of the Lord or Jesus Christ.
- Since most concepts are purely theoretical and descriptive, it provides insights into what people believed in the early ages and centuries.
- It is about creating a redemptive or a salvation history to create a big story in the readers’ minds. Hence it is considered a World Building exercise.
- It generally throws light on how the new biblical writers use the new testament to interpret knowledge from the old testament.
- Biblical theologies do not stress the historical events that took place. Instead, it focuses on the messages it interprets to the people.
- Biblical theology also focuses on the different historical events that generally make up most of the verses and the texts.
- It generally traces themes that are interpreted in the entire scripture, which is revealed progressively through time.
Authorities of Conservative Women in Christianity
Christianity offered submissive roles to women in most terms but significant roles in marriage and other ministry options in the dominant patriarchal world. Although in ancient times, many roles were prohibited for women in churches, in recent times, a majority of roles have been introduced to hold alignment for both men and women equally. For example, in the Roman and Catholic churches, while the men serve as priests and hold senior positions, women can serve as abbesses and consecrated virgins. In addition, despite the strict rules mentioned in Christianity, many newfound Charismatic and Pentecostal churches allow women to preach in churches.
Among many names, the names of Mary the Mother of Jesus, Mary of Bethany, and Mary Magdalene have become some of the most prominent names in Christianity. According to Harvard Professor Karn L King, the authority of women and the history they have created in Christianity have been completely revised in the last 20 years. Along with the mentioned names, many other women have also been added to the list who has contributed enough to Christian society. The new biblical text highlights these concepts, which were highly neglected in the previous centuries and ages.
Many people in the 4th century believed that Mary Magdalene was the wife of Jesus, an adulterous, and also a repentant prostitute. This historical error became a general view for the Christians. The pope also mistakenly identified her as the anonymous sinner and confused her with Mary of Bethany. The New Testament and other insights about Christianity have proved that the disreputable portrait of Mary Magdalene was inaccurate. She was a disciple and a significant leader in the early Christian movement; she was also the very first apostle of Jesus who promoted contemporary leadership of women in Christianity.
Authority and inerrancy
In general, there were many gender debates based on the authority of the Bible, mainly formed due to the difference in interpretation of specific Biblical passages. However, some authorities and complementarians have also accused people of opting for positions that denied women a charge in the Bible.
Role of gender and the image of God
Most complementarians believe that Christian ministers ought to be men due to the need to represent Jesus Christ as the ‘son’ of God and preach his teachings to the entire world. God created a relatable position for women, and the woman shares her divine image through a man because she was made out of hum.
Many Christian egalitarians have responded to this point and argued for ages that God has no gender discrimination. Therefore, women and women should hold equal rights and positions without any differences. They also say Christ was a male, not because it was a theological necessity, but because the dominant patriarchal society did not welcome a female Messiah.
A Brief Overview of Christian Communism
Christian Communism follows a theological view with the teachings of Jesus Christ, which mainly supports religious communism and other social systems. According to many communistic ideas and evidence from the Bible, many Christians established their own communist societies following the resurrection of Jesus.
Christian Communism follows the koinonia concept, which directly translates to a typical or shared life, with voluntary sharing of goods and services. The non-Abrahamic predecessors, or the Church Fathers, earlier maintained the human society, preaching Christianity to follow social order in the community. The early Acts of Apostles were also considered to establish the early form of communism, later supported by late historians.
In the 16th century, due to the influence of writers like Thomas More, society started basing their property ownership in Utopia, which was mainly administered by applying reason.
The basis of Christian Communism was on the biblical tests in the 2nd and 4th Acts, marking the beginning of the first communist society. The understanding was based on Luke 12:33, where Jesus demanded all his disciples to sell their possessions and alms to the poor, ultimately helping them in their livelihood to lead a better life.
However, Christian communism does not merely depend on the principles put forth by the early Apostles. Many early Christians also claim that most Christian communities are deeply rooted in the anti-capitalist ideas in their faith. Although the concept of modern capitalism was not introduced during those times, the Christian faith was solely against the love of money and greed and also pointed to helping the poor and needy.
Communism and Marxism
Many ideologies of Christian communism do not entirely agree with various aspects of Marxism, like dealing with the social and the communist society and its doctrines. However, many Christian communities share some political goals and characteristics of Marxism. For instance, replacing the ideas of capitalism with socialism is one of the main points that the later communists also followed in society.
Many young Christians like Louis Althusser and Denys Turner were some of the Christian philosophers. They merged the coherence of Marxism and Christianity and encouraged people to adopt Marxism in their belief system.
The Marxist community also aims at unifying all groups of people together, preaching that humankind is one and there is only one God who does not discriminate against people based on various factors. This concept directly relates to the Christian Universalists.
6 Things to Know About the Biblical Theology
Biblical theology mainly focuses on the teaching in the Bible, written by individual authors. These teachings are published in scriptures as a part of the historical developments. Since scholars worldwide have used these theologies differently, they have been challenging to define in brief terms. This article has jotted down the ten things every Christian needs to understand about Biblical theology.
It is different from social and systematic theologies.
Biblical theology does not fall into the faithful practices of the teachings in the Bible. Although the primary aim of the theory is to impart the truths of the Bible to the people, the disciple is slightly different from other theological methods that people follow. For instance, the goal of systematic theology is to study the teaching of the Bible, God, and Salvation. Still, when we speak of historical theology, we aim to understand how Christians perceived the Bible in previous centuries. Hence, the teachings and the approach of biblical theology differ from the others.
It emphasizes God’s progressive revelation.
Instead of blindly preaching about everything the Bible says about a particular topic or concept, Biblical theology talks about tracing the revelation of God and how He plans to save the world.
It traces Bible’s storyline.
Biblical theology talks about tracing the origin and birth of the scripture. Most of the people who follow the Bible believe God who created entire universe and others as well. For example, Genesis 3 points forward to the coming of the Savior. In the New Testament, it is written that he is coming again to create a brand new world. According to biblical theology, we can trace this path, which can be summed up in five words – creation, fall, redemption, and new creation.
It uses the categories of scriptures.
Instead of using modern thoughts and philosophies, it focuses on the categories and ideologies that the book writers already used. Since each writer had their theological inputs and emphasis, it focused on delivering the same to people who follow the biblical theologies. This means it also provides us with a method to study each author of the scriptures.
It values the unity of the Bible.
Biblical theology is the best way to understand the author’s ideologies of each scripture, which also throws insights into the unity of the Christian community amidst all the authors of the other authors of different centuries. When read as separate parts, Bible can be a little confusing. But with the help of authors that write on the biblical theologies, it can help people unite and understand the scripture better.
It teaches us to read Bible with Christ in mind.
According to Biblical theology, since the scripture talks about one God, we must put Christ in the center of all our prayers. One of the primary goals of the Bible is to impart knowledge and read them with Jesus being the center of the book.
What are a Bishop’s Responsibilities?
Who is a Bishop?
In Christianity, A Bishop is an ordained minister responsible for overseeing a diocese, which is an area including several congregations. In Christianity, especially among Roman Catholics, and Orthodox, Bishops are considered the successors of the Apostles of Jesus Christ. A Bishop is responsible for holding the sacrament of holy order and teaching the authentic doctrine to the people in his jurisdiction. Popes, Cardinals, and Archbishops are of different degrees or levels of Bishops. Bishops have the responsibility to overlook that the rules and regulations of the Christian diocese are carried out. Bishops are also responsible for arranging clergy appointments and providing religious teachings to individual churches. These teachings help in setting the direction of the church according to changing times and re-establishing its purpose through missionaries across the world.
Selecting qualified Bishops is not an easy job. The diocese has a list of suitable and qualified priests to be appointed as bishops. This list is renewed every three years based on the activities and reputation of the priests. When an Archbishop is selected, the list is composed of currently serving bishops. Usually, congregation members discuss the list of candidates and choose one with the help of votes. Nominations of certain individuals are expected, but they are rarely considered for the position. Suitable candidates must have strong faith and good moral standing and should be at least 35 years old. The respective conference determines the minimum number of votes required to select Bishops. However, it is recommended that a candidate should win at least 60% of the votes to be qualified. After the voting, the currently serving Pope might decide to accept the candidate or enquire further about another candidate. The elected Bishops serve for four years before a new election. However, it is common that elected Bishops may serve a jurisdiction for as long as ten years.
Bishops are responsible for maintaining the spiritual well-being of the church members under their jurisdiction. He is also responsible for providing religious members counseling and advice during tough times. Bishops must ensure regular ward meetings are conducted. They are also responsible for interviewing and selecting appropriate members for sending them for missionary duties. One might think that Bishops only carry out spiritual teachings for their church members. However, this is not true. Bishops have a temporal responsibility towards the members of the particular jurisdiction they serve. He has to administer welfare programs and fast offerings in the area. They are responsible for accurately documenting and administering these offerings. Bishops are also responsible for maintaining and overseeing the Church business and the buildings that come under the diocese. These buildings include schools, hospitals, and other services. Bishops are responsible for conducting and overseeing tithing and use the contributions to support missionary activities and charity organizations.
How Prominent Women Built and Sustained the Religious Right
The need for gender equality has forced women worldwide to fight for their rights in all aspects. For instance, in China, many women of the Muslim Uighur community are detained in the so-called “re-educated” camps and are forced sterilization. In Egypt, the school of marriage and divorce restrictions is not limited just to lower-class women but extended to all women of society. Numerous studies reveal that women are generally viewed as inferior to men, and the abolishment of the same is protested worldwide.
Although the urgent need for gender equality has provoked many sections of society to fight for their right, it has remained an untouched subject in many other sectors, where women are still mistreated and abstained from basic leisures of life.
Conservative activism of women
The First activist moment for gender equality and women’s rights began in the 1970s when women were at the forefront of every protest. These moments were essential to mark and embrace ‘family values, which included topics like feminism, same-sex marriage, abortions, etc.
Among many famous faces of protests were Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, who were the face of political Christianity in 1979. In the 1970s, women like Phyllis Schlafly were also prominent in fighting for the Equal Rights Amendment on all levels. Pop singer Anita Bryant was also a part of many such movements, including discrimination against gay residents.
The debate on abortion
Abortion was not only a social issue but was also against religion since time immemorial. However, this was a core women’s issue for activists on the right wing. While some women protested for the right to abortion and said it was a fundamental right of a woman, others protested against forceful abortion.
The convention of the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women was a treaty formed in 1979 to remove all sorts of discrimination against women and demanded the state take responsibility for women’s protection. By the end of 2015, 189 states had signed the treaty, which implied the willingness of these states to take necessary steps to eradicate gender inequality and other forms of discrimination against women. In addition to these, the treaty will also ensure the following:
- Women’s equal rights to economic resources
- Access to the right ownership of lands and properties
- Right to the equal inheritance of properties in accordance with legislation.
Along with CEDAW, many studies have been performed to study and fight for building and sustaining the religious rights of women across the entire world. However, it is found that society drastically influences the perception of women and women women’s rights. Therefore, religion and culture (social) can be considered two equal sides of the same coin. Thanks to religious leaders, who are generally supportive of all women’s rights and abolish the patriarchal, cultural society.
How Are Bishops, Priests, And Deacons Different?
The Bishops, priests, and deacons are part of the Catholic Church’s hierarchy. Hierarchy strictly stands for “ordering”; in this sense, it means holy ordering of the Catholic Church. In layman’s terms
- Bishops are the chiefs of authority
- Priests and deacons serve as their assistance, right-hand men, co-workers, or helpers
As of reports, on December 31, 2020, the Catholic Church comprised 2,903 jurisdictions, each overseen by a bishop and consisting of a minimum of one priest and deacons. All of these cultural and religious authorities are responsible for performing the following:
- Preaching and teaching the holy bible
- Witnessing marriages
- Conducting funerals; etc
A group of bishops is generally called a ‘College of Bishops’, and they’re the Apostles’ successors. They possess the authority due to their fullness of the diaconate and priesthood.
The primary role of a Bishop in a catholic church is to provide pastoral governance. The bishops who perform this duty diligently are called diocesan ordinaries. Due to their power in the catholic churches, people of the Eastern Catholic churches also respect them. Other bishops, like the auxiliary bishops and coadjutor bishops, carry out a broader service to the church.
All the bishops of a region or a province generally form a conference called an episcopal conference, which is mainly meant to discuss affairs and current events periodically. If at least two-thirds of the members agree to the decisions of the Holy See, then a particular decision is finalized. Even after retirement, the bishop remains in his position since the effect of Holy Orders is permanent. Bishops are also responsible for caring for and concerning the churches’ missions and their union of authority with the Pope, who is considered the head of a college of Bishops. The Pope is also considered the successor of St.Peter.
Priests are like co-workers in a church who are united with the bishops and depend on them to exercise certain pastoral functions and duties. They are also termed as ‘Bishops’ prudent co-workers.‘ The bishop and the priests form a pastoral community for a dedicated parish. Each priest is appointed specific responsibilities by the bishop, which include:
- administration of church events
- Following the Holy Orders
- Anointing of the sick
- Holy Communion
Deacon is translated from the Greek word, which means ‘servant.’ The deacon has a different attachment to the bishop regarding tasks and services offered. The deacon is generally expected to serve the episcopacy and the presbyterate by ordination.
They also receive the Sacrament of all Holy Orders from the bishop through the ministry of service. Some of the responsibilities of the Deacons in the church include:
- Proclaiming the Gospel
- Preaching the sermon
- Helping the bishop and the priest in Eucharist
- Helping with performing marriage ceremonies
- Presiding at the funeral
Traitor Theresa Signing Global Migration Pact Is Moral Blackmail And National Suicide
Theresa May will be known in history as a Prime Minister who continually promised voters conservative policies, but implemented the exact opposite. She promised to take the United Kingdom out of the European Union, the Single Market, and the Customs Union, but has done a volte-face, and is now trying to shackle the country into a backstop that will leave us permanently tied to all three.
In another U-turn which is just as damaging to the country, she has decided to sign the UK to the United Nations Global Compact on Migration. Most people have never heard of this, but it is important as representatives of the 192 members of the United Nations are going on a jolly to Marrakesh on the 10th and 11th of December to sign it. Perhaps coincidentally, this coincides with Theresa May’s attempt to put a permanent end to the UK’s sovereignty in the House of Commons.
This is typical of her modus operandi. She has hailed her terrible Withdrawal Agreement as delivering an end to the free movement of people from the EU but has agreed to sign the UK into the Global Migration Compact which regularises mass migration from the whole world. The mainstream media has hardly mentioned the coming Global Migration Compact, so unless you are watching carefully you will miss her brazen duplicity.
The Compact is being hailed as the first-ever agreement to cover all aspects of international migration and is being propagandized by videos of smiley, happy, hyper-diverse communities so beloved by liberal globalists, but as usual, the devil is in the detail.