Systematic Theology I, by Dr. Bruce Ware | Free Online Biblical Library

Systematic Theology I, by Dr. Bruce Ware


1. Prolegomena. An introduction to theology, answering the questions of what is EST (Evangelical Systematic Theology), why study EST, and how it relates to other theological disciplines.

2. Method of Evangelical Theology. Introductory issues of how to do EST and the criteria for assessing theological formulations.

3. Cultural Contextualization; Theological Systems. Issues of cultural Christianity, and the evangelical position of "contextualized normativity."

Theological Systems

4. Calvinism and Arminianism. Begins with a discussion of the background to the discussion (Pelagius, Augustine, Council of Carthage, and semi-Pelagianism), and then a discussion of Luther, Calvin, Arminius, the Synod of Dort and the Five Points of Calvinism.

5. Covenant Theology and Dispensationalism. Their views of Israel and the church

6. Liberalism, Neo-orthodoxy, Evangelicalism. A discussion of these three positions and the key figures in each (Schleiermacher, Ritschl, von Harnack; Barth, Brunner, Niebuhr; Carnell, Henry, Graham)


7. Doctrine of Scripture. The beginning discussion of revelation and the specifics of General Revelation

8. Special Revelation; Inspiration. A continuation of the discussion of revelation with an emphasis on Special Revelation, moving into the topic of Inspiration (definition and key passages).

9. Inerrancy. A survey of the recent debate, defining inerrancy (including the relationship of hermeneutics and inerrancy), and its relationship to authority.

10. Illumination; Canonicity. The definition of illumination, why it is necessary, and how we come to know truth. The critceria for canonicity is then discussed and why the canon is now closed (i.e., why no more books would be accepted into the Bible).

Doctrine of God

11. Theism; Proof of God's Existence. Why there is a need to know God, and "theism" (arguments as to whether there is a God or not).

12. Knowledge of God; the Trinity. Can God be known? The Doctrine of the Trinity (Scriptural basis; historical background; Monarchian heresies)

13. The Trinity. Continuation of the discussion of the Trinity and the church's rejection of Monarchianism

14. Attributes of God (part 1). Beginning of the discussion of the attributes of God's character, and how the discussion is organized.

15. Attributes of God (part 2). Love, self-sufficiency. The related doctrines of God's self-sufficiency and his love

16. Attributes of God: Incommunicable (part 1). God's incommunicable attributes are those that he does not share with us: self-existence; self-sufficiency; infinity; omnipresence; eternity

17. Attributes of God: Incommunicable (part 2). Completes the discussion of God's incommunicable attributes by discussing immutability, the doctrine that God does not change.

18. Attributes of God: Communicable (part 1). Discussion of those attributes of God's character that he shares (to some degee) with his creation, beginning with his intellectual attributes (omniscience).

19. Attributes of God: Communicable (part 2). A continuing discussion of God communicable attributes, both intellectual (Omnisapience; truth) and moral (goodness; love).

20. Attributes of God: Communicable (part 3). Continuation of the discussion of God's communicable moral attributes (love, grace, mercy; holiness, righteousness, justice) and the attributes of God's rulership (freedom; omnipotence).

21. Sovereignty of God (part 1). The Scriptural teaching and issues related to this central question

22. Sovereignty of God (part 2). Hyper-Calvinism, Process Theology, Arminianism, and Calvinism

23. Sovereignty of God (part 3). Concluding discussion on Calvinism

24. Angels. We do not have a recording of this lecture, but Dr. Ware gave us a detailed discussion of the lectures  that you can download as a pdf document.

Doctrine of Humanity

25. Introduction and Human Origins. An introduction to the doctrine of humanity and the doctrine of humanity's origin (Adam and Eve)

26. Human Nature and the Soul. Theories on the structure of the human soul (Monism, Dichotomy, Trichotomy) and the transmission of the soul (Creationism, Traducianism).

Doctrine of Sin

27. Doctrine of Sin. Sin is one of the most foundational and significant topics in Scripture. The doctrines of salvation and sanctification are meaningless without an accurate understanding of sin. The Old Testament teaches both the personal and corporate aspects of sin. New Testament teachings include the essence of sin and total depravity.

28. Original Sin. The facets of the Fall, theories of Original Sin, and God's triumph over sin