‘Theology Matters’ is a blog series on the Asian American Christian Fellowship at UCLA’s book study of “Dug Down Deep” by Joshua Harris. In this series I will be posting updates, reminders, thoughts, and study questions all about the book.
Praise God for all the encouraging feedback from the book study so far! I think God has really illumined my heart and mind to the true issue of theology and the purpose for it. For all those who attended large group on Wednesday night, I’m really glad that Chris Gee started us off on the right note—he showed us that theology is not merely for the purpose of knowing facts, but it’s end goal is to draw us closer to Him, to actually know Him. As we continue in our book study, I pray that we all refocus ourselves on knowing and loving God more and more.
Chapter 3: For some odd reason, this is the only chapter in my copy of the book that I didn’t mark up and take notes in. It’s weird, I know. Don’t fret though, this chapter is about God (and I was probably too captivated by our God to stop and take notes). In this chapter I was reminded of the holiness and “set apart”-ness of God. I echoed the question Harris presented when he asked “How can God—a holy and righteous God—pass over the sins of man? Why doesn’t he wipe us out?” (p. 47). This chapter will surely give you a more clear picture of who God really is and it should elevate your view of Him.
Chapter 4: Ah yes, the doctrine of Scripture, sufficiency, and necessity. I think this chapter hits on the essentials of the Christian faith. Ironically, these are the exact issues that are slowly fading into the background of contemporary churches; views on the role and purpose of Scripture can divide true Christians from worldly ones and are often determine the priorities of the church. What I like most about Harris’ chapter on Scripture is that he tells it like it is: “The Bible is both doctrine and narrative” (p. 58). On page 59, you’ll find a wonderful description of what the Bible is and how we should view it. Overall, this is a great chapter (so read it!).
Study Questions (Chapters 3&4):
1. What are some truths mentioned in Chapter 3 that are crucial for our understanding of who God is? How is God personal and near yet “qualitatively different” from us?
2. How does having a right and high view of God shape your faith and affect the way you live? How can a wrong view of God affect you? When has a right view given you encouragement?
3. What were some attitudes you had about reading the Bible before reading chapter 4, and has it changed as you have understood more? Why is studying scripture necessary and how is it different from just following a set of rules?
Next Week: Chapter 5 – “God With a Belly Button”
Click here for the next page in this series.