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The case for Applied Theology

Oliver Barclay has always been a wise and insightful contributor to important issues in evangelical thinking and so I read with interest his article ‘Where is Academic Theology heading?’ (EN, December 2006).

John Horder

He queries how helpful academic theology is for preparing men and women for any kind of ministry, even if it does provide the churches with excellent resources. However, the academic theology he talks about in his article is not the only type of theology studied in Bible colleges and universities. Increasingly, in recent years, there has been a growing interest in the discipline of Applied Theology. Dr. Barclay ends his article with a question: ‘What sort of theological study is most useful to the ordinary student, who has no aspirations to become an academic or to do serious research, but wants useful knowledge and skills?’ To me, the answer is Applied Theology. This article attempts to set out the case for it.