Of Blow Torches and Theological Education

All of that changed this past year when I discovered the wonder of the propane blow torch. These little devices are easy to come by, you can pick one up for $20 from your local ACE Hardware store, and they make the work of building a fire exponentially easier. Now, I just put my kindling together, start up my blow torch, ignite everything in the fireplace and I’ve got a raging fire within minutes. It is AWESOME!!!

So, what does this have to do with theological education? I’ve been out of seminary for almost seven years and looking back what I’ve come to realize is that my education has given me the equivalent of a theological blow torch.

It’s certainly possible to prepare sermons, do counseling, administration, etc. without a seminary degree. The thing is that having gone through the rigor of formal training, you’re able to do these kinds of tasks much faster and with a much higher degree of precision than you would otherwise.

I realize that not everyone is able to go to seminary, which is one reason why those of us who have had the privilege of formal theological education should be all the more thankful for the tools that God has given us as we light the world on fire with the gospel.