The whole of Christian doctrine, 140 characters at a time

Why tweet theology?

Why would anyone want to tweet a systematic theology?

I have at least three reasons for trying this:

  1. I have for some years asked students to reduce doctrines or historical texts to tweets, something I do to make them think about what is really crucial in the doctrine or argument. This project is a natural extension of that teaching practice, trying myself to boil down each doctrine to its core essence.
  2. Twitter, and the discussions around it, are full of claims that the form of the tweet trivialises everything, or makes serious discourse impossible; I understand this argument and feel enough of its force. There is no doubt that Twitter can be used to offer reflections of power and beauty – Gerard Kelly’s @twitturgies feed is a series of compelling examples of that. Can Twitter be used to construct a serious intellectual argument? Twystematics is an experiment for me, at least, to try to find an answer.
  3. This is, at least potentially, a chance to test and rough out some plans for a bigger project later.
  4. And a fourth: this feels like it might be interesting, and even occasionally diverting.

It might not work; after fifty tweets perhaps no-one will be following and/or I will be struggling to write things. But I’m going to give it a go…