Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem

In the Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, B. Demarest defines systematic theology as, "The attempt to reduce religious truth to a coherent and relevant whole for the church."[1] This definition is okay, but I think Grudem boils it down to a practical explanation when he repeats the definition of his former professor, John Frame, writing, "Systematic theology is any study that answers the question, 'What does the whole Bible teach us today?' about any given topic."[2]  And then Grudem, a seminary professor at Phoenix Seminary,  sets out to cover a wide breath of topics in his book, Systematic Theology.

There are many books on systematic theology, some even with the same title, but few are as popular today as Grudem's.  In simple writing that is easy to understand and laid out in a logical format, Grudem explores the issues of biblical doctrine.  Taking them on one-by-one, a student of the Bible can gain a good grasp of the larger doctrines and teaching of the Bible.

Systematic theology generally asks, "What does the entire Bible say about this?"  In addition to his own scholarship, Grudem offers plenty of Scripture in his attempt to answer many questions about doctrine.  In my systematic theology courses, I was not required to purchase Grudem's book, but I often found it offered insight that the other texts didn't seem to shed light upon.  It also serves as a great starting point when diving into the study of a particular doctrine, issue, or question, but if I am going to be fair, I don't think it should be the only theology book on your shelf.  (I do however, believe it will be the one most used.)   

Not too long ago, I stumbled across a podcast from Scottsdale Bible Church in Arizona, where Dr. Grudem taught doctrine to a Sunday school class.  In 118 one-hour sessions, Grudem teaches classes that follow the table of contents of his book.  Together with the book, I don't think there is a better free education on systematic theology available today.  I highly recommend it.   

To subscribe to or download Wayne Grudem's 118 audio lectures he uses to walk through his book, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine, click here

1. Walter Elwell, Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (Baker reference library. Grand Rapids, Mich: Baker Academic, 2001), 1162.  

2. Wayne A. Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (Leicester, England: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994), 21.

*I have no material connection to this book or the Scottsdale Bible Church Podcast.