Method Of Theology


The requisites to the successful study of theology have already in part been indicated in speaking of its limitations. In spite of some repetition, however, we mention the following:

(a) A disciplined mind . Only such a mind can patiently collect the facts, hold in its grasp may facts at once, educe by continuous reflection their connecting principles, suspend final judgment until its conclusions are verified by Scripture and experience.

Robert Browning, Ring and Book, 175 (Pope, 228) ? ?Truth nowhere lies, yet everywhere, in these; Not absolutely in a portion, yet Evolveable from the whole: evolved at last Painfully; held tenaciously by me.? Teachers and students may be divided into two classes:

(1) those who know enough already;

(2) those wish to learn more than they now know. Motto of Winchester School in England: ?Disce, aut discede.? Butcher, Greek Genius., 213, 230 ? ?The Sophists fancied that they were imparting education, when they were only imparting results. Aristotle illustrates their method by the example of a shoemaker who, professing to teach the art of making painless shoes, puts into the apprentice?s hand a large assortment of shoes ready made. A witty Frenchman classes together those who would make science popular, metaphysics intelligible, and vice respectable. The word sco>lh which first meant ?leisure,? then ?philosophical discussion,? and finally ?school? shows the pure love of learning among the Greeks.? Robert G. Ingersoll said that the average provincial clergyman is alike the land of the upper Potomas spoken of by Tom Randolph, as almost worthless in its original state, and rendered wholly so by cultivation. Lotze, Metaphysics, 1:16 ? ?the constant whetting of the knife is tedious, if it is not proposed to cut anything with it.? ?To do their duty is their only holiday,? is the description of Athenian character given by Thucydides. Chitty asked a father inquiring as to his son?s qualifications for the law: ?Can your son eat sawdust without any butter?? on opportunities for

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