A hallmark of Western Christianity is Systematic Theology. The whole idea was stolen from the Pharisees, who were Westernized when they embraced Hellenistic rationalism, and departed utterly from their ancient Hebrew intellectual roots. Anyone with a bit of classical education can tell the difference between the epistemology of the two, and modern Judaism is by no means Hebrew religion. Hebrew religion was Near Eastern Mysticism by definition. In other words, Systematic Theology is essentially foreign to the Bible.
Most Western Christian scholars recognize the difference between Biblical Theology versus Systematic Theology. They consider the latter more essential, if anything. They can’t imagine a Christian faith without it. What they refuse to recognize is how Paul, the other Apostles, even Jesus Himself, did not support Systematic Theology. That’s because in their day, only Pharisees used it.
The theology which derives directly from the Scripture narrative is all there was when John published his last message, Revelation, at the end of the First Century. Only much later did any Christians fall victim to the rationalist approach, the sense of utter necessity for things to be organized and structured according to the epistemology of Aristotle and Plato.
That fancy word “epistemology” is simply an intellectual assumption, an approach to deciding how we can say something is real, can be known and understood. If you can’t prove it by Aristotle’s rules of analysis — which is utterly materialistic — then it can’t be called knowledge or truth. Aristotle devised a logical structure of organizing ideas, and it’s founded entirely on man as the measure of all things. If something does not yield to human intellect, it’s not real. Thus, knowledge by revelation simply does not exist. Aristotle rejected it out of hand. Why the whole of Western Christendom now defends his epistemology as necessary to understanding that ancient religion from the Hebrews is beyond me.
Thinking they can somehow use Aristotle and yet embrace revelation is simply the excuse for demanding a formal analysis of revelation, in essence dumbing it down. It’s merely a simplistic organization under the categories of Aristotle, who himself rejected revelation. It doesn’t work too well. So we have all these mutually exclusive theological systems, each so logically certain the rest are nonsense. What none of them will ever accept is that their own system is nonsense. When a man can fully grasp it with his mind, it’s not revelation. Does that fancy theological term “ineffable” mean anything? It means real truth can’t be told, can’t be understood on the level of human intellect.
So Systematic Theology is pretty much a human construct, not divine. It’s not truth; it’s a human reduction of truth down into soundbites. It’s really not that important in the grand scheme of faith and redemption in history. An awful lot of people are going to stand before God on that Final Judgment Day, and be embarrassed at their silly house of cards they were so sure was absolutely necessary, that men were evaluated on a fallible human construct.