The Biblical Theory of Christian Education

So Christian Education demands instruction — in religion [which teaches about the Creator (and Redeemer)]; in philosophy [which teaches about creation as a whole]; in mathematics (to teach us how to count God’s creatures); in natural sciences like physics and biology (to teach us to understand the properties of the things God has made).   Christians are also to be instructed in history and geography; in language(s) including also reading and writing; in art; and in morality, etc. [each of which teach about one or more aspects of creation].   In short, very broad and comprehensive instruction should be given in every aspect of learning — instruction in all of the main special sciences as lesser goals, in order to accomplish the great goal of subjecting all of God’s world to His glory.

Yet, as a result of the fall, man’s mind has now become darkened by sin(17). Accordingly, it is now incapable of understanding God’s world correctly — without the aid of God’s Word.  So it is now necessary to hearken closely to the written Word of God.   This is what Paul advised, in his advanced education of Timothy, where he told him:  “You must continue in the things you have learned and have been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them….  From a child, you have known the Holy Scriptures which are able to make you wise unto salvation through faith is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed — and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction (i.e. for indoctrination and induction and “inducation” and education) in

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righteousness…so that the man of God may become perfected, thoroughly equipped unto all good works.”(18)

We are thus, thoroughly,  to become equipped not merely unto some good works — not just unto the wonderful work of saving souls, but “unto all good works.”   Having become equipped thoroughly unto the good work of saving the soul, we must then thoroughly become equipped   from the Holy Scriptures to save the body; and also to save the whole world with all its fullness and everything God put in it.

In one word, we must be educated to dominate God’s world to His glory.   For that is what God created man to do originally, before the fall.

Scripture, therefore, has been breathed into by God — so that the fallen yet redeemed man of God may be perfected.   Scripture is given so that the man of God may be equipped thoroughly unto all good works, even as the man and woman of God were equipped thoroughly unto all good works in the state of rectitude.   For they were equipped for their lofty and comprehensive goal of subjecting the whole Earth and the whole Sea and the whole Sky, “thoroughly equipped unto all good works” to the glory of God.

Therefore the goal of all Christian Education can only be to do all of these things according to our individual special gifts — to be always abounding in the work of the Lord.  Yes, even in our daily, ordinary, so-called secular work for the Lord.   For our ordinary work that we do each day in our office or in our kitchen, is still work in the Lord’s world.   It should therefore be done to His glory, “for as much as you know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”(19)

3.   Now that we know what the goal of education is — what we are trying to achieve with Christian Education — we must next inquire who should be educated.   Who then are the subjects of Christian Education?

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