Why must theology be so difficult?

Trueman’s work on John Owen is rather stratospheric when it comes to theology–and that kind of theologian I am not. That coupled with another sally into the fourth century trinitarian controversy on Saturday–how bewildering that can be to the uninitiated–prompted the question. Why must theology be so difficult?

At least two reasons spring to mind:

1 That we are talking about divinity, and there is no reason for that subject to be easy. Why should God and his ways be easy for any mind? True, there are ways of coming at it, basics which we can readily master, but it would be foolish to think the subject doesn’t go deep beyond the basics. Further up and further in, he says, and we are meant to follow.

2 That theology must deal in truth, and one error is enough to disturb it. A simple error in logic is enough to undermine a doctrine, which is odd to think about, but nevertheless true. God will have all of us and requires the most careful thinking; God possesses all things, therefore there is nothing that he does not find useful to his purposes. Every consideration is necessary. How shall the consideration of him who is holy not require of us an entirety of attention? Everything possible must be considered; and the slightest mistake will be a telling mistake.


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