Understanding Theology

We all have a theology, a set of beliefs, but many are not able to articulate it or really understand it. This class will walk you through a basic evangelical understanding of God and his Word.

About this Class

We all have a theology, a set of beliefs, but many are not able to articulate it or really understand it. This class will walk you through a basic evangelical understanding of God and his Word.

There is a similar class in Seminars by Dr. Gerry Breshears.

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  • Length:
    10 hours
  • Skill Level:
    Intermediate
  • Price:
    FREE
  • Institution:
    The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
  • Subject:
    Biblical Theology
  • Language:
    English

Lectures

1

This is the first of ten lectures on Systematic Theology, a survey of the whole corpus of theology, and each lecture will be one hour long and each covering a separate doctrine or series of doctrines together. In this lesson Dr. Ware introduces the what and why of theology and discusses the foundational doctrines of Revelation and Scripture.

2

In this lesson, Dr. Ware discusses the Doctrine of God proper: why we need to know God, his incommunicable attributes, and those attributes that in some sense are communicable to humans.

3

Dr. Ware discusses the biblical basis for monotheism and trinitarianism. He also gives a brief overview of the history of the doctrine and the heresies that arose concerning the Trinity.

4

This lesson is an overview of the doctrines of humanity and sin, including a discussion of the origin of humanity, what it means to be created in the image of God, the nature and effects of sin, and original sin.

5

In this lesson, Dr. Ware discusses the doctrine of the Person of Christ, which includes his pre-incarnate existence, his incarnation, his deity and his humanity. He also discusses the important Christological passage of Philippians 2:6-8 and what does it mean that Christ “emptied” himself. Dr. Ware concludes this lesson with a discussion of the Council of Chalcedon.

6

Dr. Ware discusses the past (Atoning Savior), present (Mediator and Lord) and future (Coming Judge and Reigning King) work of Christ.

7

In this lesson, Dr. Ware discusses the person of the Holy Spirit, both his personhood and his deity. He also covers the work of the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament, in the life of Jesus, and in the church.

8

This lesson is an overview of the doctrine and process of salvation, beginning with election and then discussing calling, regeneration, conversion, justification, adoption, sanctification, perseverance, and, finally, the glorification of the believer.

9

Dr. Ware talks about the church universal and the local church. He discusses the offices of the local church, including the roles of elders and deacons. Dr. Ware also looks at how the church be organized and what ordinances should be celebrated by a local body of believers.

10

In this final lesson, Dr. Ware gives a rationale for studying eschatology or last things. He discusses what happens to people just after they die and before the return of Christ. He also gives an overview of the various beliefs about the timing and events of the last days. He completes the lesson with a discussion of final judgment, heaven, and hell.

Resources

Understanding Theology - Student's Guide

by Bruce Ware

Are you ready to go deeper? Get the student guide for this course. This guide will deepen your understanding of theology and help you apply the teachings to your life. Perfect for individual or small group study.

Meet the Professors

Professor of Christian Theology

Frequently Asked Questions

Who are the programs intended for?

The Foundations program is intended for everyone, regardless of biblical knowledge. The Academy program is intended for those who would like more advanced studies. And the Institute program is intended for those who want to study seminary-level classes.

Do I need to take the classes in a specific order?

In the Foundations and Academy programs, we recommend taking the classes in the order presented, as each subsequent class will build on material from previous classes. In the Institute program, the first 11 classes are foundational. Beginning with Psalms, the classes are on specific books of the Bible or various topics.

Do you offer transfer credit for completing a certificate program?

At this time, we offer certificates only for the classes on the Certificates page. While we do not offer transfer credit for completing a certificate program, you will be better equipped to study the Bible and apply its teachings to your life.