PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION
In the Bible, God enjoins parents:
And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart; you shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6:6-9 (NKJV)
- We believe that the Bible clearly instructs and enjoins the family to “bring children up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Therefore, the bible is the primary text, the home is the preeminent shcool, and educational decisions must come under the jurisdiction of the family.
- We believe that all education is religious by nature. It is our Christian faith, filled with hope for the future, which gives us cause to pass knowledge and understanding on to the next generation, that they might be better equipped stewards of our Lord Jesus Christ. Education is not the responsibility of the State, nor the Church. Local congregations do have thresponsibility of assisting the family in the process of education.
- We believe that the presuppositional framework of the educator will be either Christian or pagan (non-Christian) and will thus tend to produce Christians or pagans. Education is more than just the transfer of knowledge from one person to another. The elements of knowledge, facts, are neither bare nor neutral. All facts take their significance and relevance from the framework of a belief system (or worldview). Knowledge will always be transferred in light of the teacher’s prejudices and presuppositions. The Reverend R.L.Dabney, educator, theologian and senior staff officer under General “Stonewall” Jackson, wrote in the late 1800’s:
The instructor has to teach history, cosmogony [theory of the origin of the universe], psychology, ethics, and the laws of nations. How can he do it without saying anything favorable or unfavorable about the beliefs of evangelical Christians, Catholics, Socinians, Deists, pantheists, materialists, or fetish worshippers, who all claim equal rights under American institutions?
- We believe that God’s character is revealed not only in His Word, but also in every facet of the creation. Therefore all knowledge is interrelated and can instruct us about God himself.
- We believe that God wants us to love Him with our minds, as well as with our hearts, souls, and strength (Matthew 22:37) and that each child is uniquely created by God. Therefore, we recognize that children need to be individually challenged at all levels.
- We believe that our every concept and practice must be taken in light of the truth of the Scripture. The Bible is clear in presenting man as a fallen and sinful creature, thus no thought nor activity begins in a neutral moral vacuum. Therefore education must be positive in its presentation of divine truth, and remedial, corrective, and disciplinary in its work on fallen human nature. The professed neutrality of public secular education has been consistently challenged by discerning Christians. In 1887, Professor A.A.Hodge of Princeton Theological Seminary wrote:
I am as sure as I am of Christ’s reign that a comprehensive and centralized system of national education, separated from religion, as is commonly proposed, will prove to be the most appalling engine for the propagation of anti-Christian and atheistic unbelief…which this sin rent world has ever seen.
The tendency is to hold that the system must be altogether secular…that the education provided by the common government should be entirely emptied of all religious character…
It is capable of exact demonstration that if every party in the State has the right of excluding from the public schools whatever he does not believe to be true, then he that believes most must give way to him that believes least, and then he that believes least must give way to him who believes absolutely nothing, no matter in how small a minority the atheists or the agnostics may be.
It is self evident that on this scheme, if it is consistently and persistently carried out in all parts of the country, the United States’ system of national popular education will be the most efficient and wide instrument for the propagation of atheism which the world has ever seen.
- True education must be Christian and must consistently teach and present all subjects in a Biblical framework. True education must interpret all facts in the light of God’s purposes in creation, as revealed in the Scriptures, to the end that all things will find their ultimate purpose, significance, and relationship to the whole, in the eternal, infinite, immutable, and transcendent, triune God of the Scriptures.
SINE CHRISTO, TOTA DOCTRINA INANIS EST
Without Christ, all knowledge is worthless.