Statistics in theology


#1

Hello. This may seem a rather odd question to ask, but I’ve been wondering if there is an element of statistics, or report-writing in a theology degree? I apologise if I’ve posted this in the wrong area.


#2

If you mean as a required course, I had to take a statistic class for my undergraduate degree. And, yes, there is plenty of writing!


#3

Thanks for your reply. I just don’t see how statistics could be relevant in a religious degree, unless you’re counting the number of times a particular word is used in sacred scripture…the class I’m starting in May has Critical Thinking and Writing Skills as a sort of “prep unit”, but there’s no specific mention of “Statistics”, per se.

Would you mind giving an example of how statistics are used in theology, please?


#4

Depends on your definition of theology. If by theology you mean to say the 4-5 years in the major seminary, then you might utilize a concordance of a certain text you are examining (e.g. the Bible, writings of a certain theologian, etc.).

Among the many things a concordance provides might be the number of usages of a word, which one could use to show such things as the background of the author (e.g. και (“and”) commonly overused at the beginning of sentences in the Gospel writings represents a “Hebrew-ification”, or the usage of Hebrew constructions in a different language (in this case, Greek), suggesting that the author was primarily of a Hebrew cultural background.), or perhaps the importance of a word in one’s line of thought (think of the usage of words in Sein und Ziet by Martin Heidegger, especially his usage (and spelling) of “Dasein”).

If you’re talking a more strict interpretation of theology to mean “thought about God” or “the study of God”, then you may have to be a little more creative, but I suppose even the above runs into that as well, as it’s fairly hard to do theology without consulting Public Revelation (i.e. the Biblical texts).


#5

I’m not studying theology through a major seminary, I’m studying through a private college. Can you tell me where a concordance may be obtained (sounds like a pretty useful tool)?


#6

Strong’s Greek Concordance:
smile.amazon.com/Strongs-Expanded-Exhaustive-Concordance-Bible/dp/1418541680

The Englishman’s Greek Concordance of the New Testament:
amazon.com/Englishmans-Greek-Concordance-New-Testament/dp/1565632079

For a cheaper (i.e. free) way, BibleHub is pretty good.
e.g. ψηφίζω can be studied at biblehub.com/greek/5585.htm

Even at a private college they could be useful, although more likely at the Graduate level.


#7

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