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