One of the main themes of the Bible is who God is. Our teens need to know what the Bible has to say about God–but, it’s a big book. A little systematic theology, which takes information from multiple places in Scripture to help us develop sound doctrine, is a good thing!
Basic Theology for Teens
Tim Challies is a pastor, speaker, blogger, and author, among other things. I was excited to learn of Visual Theology: Seeing and Understanding the Truth About God (Zondervan, 2016).
Josh Byers, a pastor, artist, and speaker–and an illustrator.
Visual Theology is intended for lay adults–which makes it well-suited for middle and high school students.
I read through Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology with my boys beginning when they were in 5th and 6th grade.
We’ve notebooked as we went, and they learned a lot (me too–I learn so much through teaching!).
Learning systematic theology was a long, important process for us and it lasted the rest of our homeschooling time. We read through books on various topics for a few minutes each morning with the kids, and every once in a while we read a theology overview of some kind just so we didn’t lose the big picture.
Visual Theology | Two Volumes
Visual Theology: Seeing and Understanding the Truth about God and A Visual Theology Guide to the Bible: Seeing and Knowing God’s Word are great additions to your morning reading time with your teens!
Visual Theology is a solid overview of the Christian life.
The 155-page book is divided into four sections with two or three chapters per section. Each chapter has several graphics (the “visual” part), and the subsections of the chapters often have little icons that coordinate with the graphics for the chapter. Overall, the book is primarily text, with some color, and interesting visuals.
- Section One: Grow Close to Christ
- Chapter One: Gospel
- Chapter Two: Identity
- Chapter Three: Relationship
- Section Two: Understand the Work of Christ
- Chapter Four: Drama
- Chapter Five: Doctrine
- Section Three: Become Like Christ
- Chapter Six: Putting Off
- Chapter Seven: Putting On
- Section Four: Live for Christ
- Chapter Eight: Vocation
- Chapter Nine: Relationships
- Chapter Ten: Stewardship
If your middle school and high school students have been raised in church, chapters one through four will likely all be something they’ve learned before, but it’s all good information to review frequently. You really can’t hear the gospel too frequently.
Chapters five through ten are wonderfully instructional information on how to live for Christ. I especially liked the chapter on doctrine which outlined the reasons sound doctrine is vital in the life of a health Christian and a healthy church. The chapters on Putting Off and Putting On deal with turning from sin and becoming virtuous in the place of our sin nature. These draw heavily on the work of John Owen, which I think is wonderful. Most adults will never read Owen, so to have his work simplified and explained to students is a gift. I also loved the chapter on stewardship, and I think the chapters on vocation and relationships will be really helpful for students.
I can’t wait to read Visual Theology to my boys. I hope it’s a blessing to your family as well.
Chapters for A Visual Theology Guide to the Bible: Seeing and Knowing God’s Word:
A Visual Theology Guide to the Bible was written to help your teens better understand their Bibles!
- Section One: Trusting the Bible
- Chapter One: What is the Bible?
- Chapter Two: How Was the Bible Written?
- Chapter Three: How Were the Books Collected?
- Chapter Four: What Makes the Bible Unique?
- Chapter Five: Can We Trust the Bible?
- Section Two: Studying the Bible
- Chapter Six: Why Should I Study the Bible?
- Chapter Seven: How Do I Study the Bible?
- Section Three: Seeing the Bible
- Chapter Eight: What is the Bible About?
- Chapter Nine: Creation, Fall, & the Flood: The Need for Jesus
- Chapter Ten: Abraham, Moses, & the Law: The Foundation for Jesus
- Chapter Eleven: Land, Judges, & Kings: Preparation for Jesus
- Chapter Twelve: Songs & Wisdom: The Longing for Jesus
- Chapter Thirteen: Prophets, Exile, & a New Covenant: Expectation of Jesus
- Chapter Fourteen: The Gospel & the Kingdom: The Coming of Jesus
- Chapter Fifteen: Pentecost & the Early Church: Continuation of Jesus
- Chapter Sixteen: The Apostles, Exiles, & the End: The Commands of Jesus & Consummation in Jesus
Purchase Visual Theology:
More Books by Tim Challies
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