Is a PhD a waste of time? No, not if you do it in a Matthew 22 sense.
How should those who are interested in getting a PhD approach this question? First, no one has to do a PhD nor do you need to be an academic. A PhD is not an easy journey for most people — no one has to do a PhD. We don’t want to fall prey to over-credentialization. Secondly, there is tremendous value in doing a PhD. It trains you in habits of discipline; it helps you to become focused. Don’t do a PhD for the end goal. Do a PhD for the experience and for the sharpening. Do it for the intellectual joy and because it is beneficial after and unto God for several years of time. Ready yourself for other fields to enter because a PhD does not guarantee a teaching position at a college or seminary. The most significant theologians are pastors, not academics. A PhD can help toward that end though it is not necessary. Is a PhD a waste of time? No, not if you do it in a Matthew 22 sense — loving God with your mind.