Key Bible and Theological Reference Tools: Theologies

This post is a re-blog of my post at Rolfing Unshelved.

This post is part of a series entitled Key Bible and Theological Reference Tools. This series seeks to provide one with an introduction to some key Biblical and theological reference tools. In this series one will find basic explanations, significant examples, and other information about these reference tools.

Basic Description of Theologies

Generally speaking, one can divide theological reference tools into three broad categories.

Systematic Theologies – Seek to present theological material systematically according to specific categories that frame the discussion, e.g., the nature of God, the work of the Spirit, the essence of sin, etc.

Biblical Theologies – Seek to present theological material according to categories more directly related to those of the Biblical authors, books, and corpuses; seek to give special attention to the progressive unfolding of this theological material across Biblical history and the Biblical canon.

Historical Theologies – Seek to present developmnent of Christian theology throughout church history and spanning various theological traditions. Some are organized according to historical period while others are organized topically.

Tongues | A Historical Theology of Tongues-Speaking

The following belongs to a series on the continuation or cessation of the miraculous phenomena of tongues-speaking. Read the previous post here.


“Reinventing the wheel” has never been an efficient venture. Contemporary theology owes much to the theological progress made before it. Although it certainly does not have the final word in the matter, what historical theology can contribute to this study on tongues must be considered, as demanded by wisdom and caution.

If continuationism is true, one would expect to find evidences of tongues in those centuries closest to the apostolic era. However, as D.A. Carson notes, from the beginning of the 2nd century until the Montanists emerged, claims of tongues-speaking were tremendously rare.1 Eusebius of Caesaria (AD 263-339) gave report of this 2nd century sect (the Montanists) which practiced babbling speech. His report reveals that this group was divisive, declared heretical, and expelled from the Church.2

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