As an undergrad, I often pondered how my studies contributed to my existence as a disciple of Christ. Then I read this excerpt from N.T. Wright and it straightened a lot of things out!
I regard the continuing historical quest for Jesus as a necessary part of ongoing Christian discipleship. I doubt very much if in the present age we shall ever get to the point where we know all there is to know and understand all there is to understand about Jesus, who he was, what he said and what he did, and what he meant by it all. But since orthodox Christianity has always held firm to the basic belief that it is by looking at Jesus himself that we discover who God is, it seems to me indisputable that we should expect always to be continuing in the quest for Jesus precisely as part of, indeed perhaps as the sharp edge of, our exploration into God himself.
The Challenge of Jesus: Rediscovering Who Jesus Was and Is (Downer's Grove, Ill: IVP, 1999); 15.