CHRISTIAN EDUCATION SERIES


Messages in the "CHRISTIAN EDUCATION" Series:



THE VALUE OF CHRISTIAN EDUCATION

I wonder if you have ever stopped to think about what Christian Education means to you. Have you thought about the wonderful blessings that have come your way each day in Christian Education? Do you pause each day with thankfulness to God for what He is teaching you? I hope so. Let us share with you some of the blessings:

1. Christian Education helps you fulfill the Bible principle

Do All for the Glory of God—Colossians 3:17 states: “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.” This means that your education must be accomplished for God’s glory. Christian education fulfills this requirement because Christ is the center of every subject. The Bible is the most important textbook, and biblical principles by which we are to live are taught each day in Christian Education.

2. Christian Education helps teach you self-discipline.

The rules, the regulations, the drills, and the homework are all designed with the purpose of teaching you to discipline yourself, to instill in you the right attitudes, actions, and deportment so that no matter where you are or with whom you are, these characteristics will be a natural part of your life.

3. Christian Education helps you to develop loyalty.

Loyalty to Christ. Loyalty to your church. Loyalty to the school. Christian Education will give you that bond that will draw your heart toward the Lord and His work.

4. Christian Education helps instill in you the virtues of leadership and character.

Christian Education will help and encourage you to become a leader, and to pursue the talents and abilities that God has given you. It will provide daily character teaching to help you throughout your years of schooling, and ultimately to take your place of leadership as an adult prepared to “Do All for the Glory of God.”

5. Christian Education has given you a basic academic knowledge.

Many people in America cannot read or write well enough to handle today’s more complex jobs that are given them. Christian Education will give you academic training that will better prepare you to serve God and to provide for the necessities of life.

6. Christian Education helps you develop lasting, Christian relationships.

What better place is there to find the right kind of friends than in a Christian school!

7.  Christian Education helps prepare you for a life’s service for God.

No matter what your occupational choice, your Christian education will give you the foundation of knowledge you need to serve the Lord every day in all of life’s relationships.

Yes, Christian Education will do all this and much more! Students should not take it for granted. Realize that God has given you the opportunity for a fine education in the proper school environment so that you might grow to become the kind of Christian He wants you to become.



But Continue Thou…

2 Timothy 3:14 says, “But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them.”

ILL.- Joe: “My college really turned out some great men.”
Bill: “When did you graduate?” Joe: “I didn’t graduate. I was turned out.”

Graduates, you’ve turned out alright…you’ve turned out great!  You’ve learned a lot from many teachers, including your parents God gave you…and your parents learned so much too…not the least of which is how to make Bud-“wiser” [send him to school!]

You’re older and wiser…
ILL.- Kyle walked up to his teacher’s desk, holding a report card with a big red F.  He said, "If I were you I would change this while you still can."
"Why is that?" asked the teacher.
"Because my dad told me that if I brought home one more failing report card, someone was going to get a beating."

You’ve become role models for many of the younger ones here who look up to you…you’ve become a teacher yourself!  You should recognize the power of your influence and step up to the place of leadership by always being a learner and continuing to look for wisdom.
ILL.- A school teacher injured his back in the summertime and had to wear a plaster cast around the upper part of his body for weeks. It fit under his shirt and was not noticeable at all. He transferred to a new inner-city school on top of that.  On the first day of school, still with the cast under his shirt, he found himself assigned to the toughest students in that rowdy school.
Walking confidently into the rowdy classroom, he opened the window as wide as possible and then busied himself with desk work. When a strong breeze made his tie flap, he took the desk stapler and stapled the tie to his chest. From that time on he had no trouble with discipline in his class.
You’ve earned some respect…you’ve sharpened your edge…but don’t “fly off the handle” in the pride”, rather, whet the edge and keep your edge in life!  Many adults lose their cutting edge by not remaining learners, growing complacent and ceasing to go forward.

You have been in school now for 2160 days.
You have spent 12,960 hours in classes.
That translates into 777,600 minutes.
So far you’ve lived approximately 18 years.
You’ve been around 216 months.
You have been breathing 936 weeks.
You’ve been going through the motions for 6,552 days
You’ve been here 157,248 hours.
You’ve been taking up space 9,434,880 minutes.
You’ve slept 52,500 hours.
You’ve watched T.V. 12,173 hours.
You’ve spent 7,488 hours eating. (Mostly pizza!)

The average life span of 70 years as the Bible says threescore and 10, You’ll…
SLEEP ............24 YEARS
WORK  ............14 YEARS
PLAY  ............ 8 YEARS
EAT   ............ 6 YEARS
DRIVE .............5 YEARS
TALK  .............4 YEARS
GO TO SCHOOL..3 YEARS
SICK  .............3 YEARS
STUDY & READ...3 YEARS

MOST OF YOU WERE BORN in the mid to late 80’s

YOU WERE WRINKLED, RED, BALD, TOOTHLESS, COULDN’T HARDLY SEE, CRYING, COMPLAINING, AND HAD NO CLOTHES ON.

Well, you’ve come a long way, baby!  You’ve reached a milestone.  But this is not the end…it’s really just the beginning!  You’ve come to the end of a big episode, but just before the credits roll, across the screen flashes the words:  “To be continued!”

ILL.- John Adams said, “There are two types of education: One should teach us how to make a living, and the other how to live.”



THERE ARE TWO KINDS OF COURSES IN LIFE

I.      REQUIRED COURSES.

1. LIFE - YOU GOT NO CHOICE - WHERE - WHEN - WHO PARENTS

2. DEATH - “IN ADAM ALL DIE” (I Cor.15:22)

          •   “MUST ALL WALK THROUGH THE VALLEY OF SHADOW”

          •   “IT IS APPOINTED UNTO MEN ONCE TO DIE” (Hebrews)

3. JUDGMENT - “AFTER THIS THE JUDGMENT.”
     
          A.  JUDGMENT SEAT OF CHRIST. (II Cor.5:17)
          B. GREAT WHITE THRONE. (Rev. 20:14,15)

II.    ELECTIVE COURSES.

1. TO BE SAVED OR TO BE LOST.

“Nature forms us. Sin deforms us. School informs us, but only Christ transforms us.”

2. TO BE SPIRITUAL OR CARNAL.

3. TO BE SCRIPTUAL OR LOGICAL.  (HUMANISM)

4. TO BE SAFE IN GOD’S WILL OR YOUR OWN WILL.

But continue thou in the things thou hast learned!  Go the distance…stay the course, fight a good fight, and finish the course!



GREAT EXPECTATIONS

Text: Rom. 8:19

Introduction: Graduation is always a mixed bag of excitement over what has been accomplished in your life and the excitement, fear and wonderment at what lies ahead.    None could doubt the “expectation” that the future holds.

“Expectations” are those things that we can have of ourselves, others can have them about us, and God has expectations of us too!

• SELF-EXPECTATIONS

“Expectations” OFOurselves / Family, Teachers / God

•  OTHERS EXPECTATIONS

“Expectations” TOBe / Do / Succeed

• GOD’S EXPECTATIONS

“Expectations” FORWhat God has for the future

Too many times we miss so much because we live on the low level of the natural, the ordinary, and the explainable.  We leave no room for God to do the exceeding abundant thing above all that we can ask or think.
  -- Vance Havner

“Climb every Mountain, forge every stream,
Follow every rainbow, until you find your dream.”
One Wednesday after our children's club meeting, a family stopped at Dairy Queen. It was a special evening because this 4-year-old daughter had just asked Jesus into her heart.  The Dad, wondering how much she actually understood, asked her, "So you want to go to heaven to see Jesus?"  "Yes," she replied. "But can I finish my Dilly Bar first?"

“When we run out of goals, what ought to be a milestone has become a millstone.”
  -- Vance Havner

John 16:13  Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

Expect great things from God. Attempt great things for God.
--William Carey




The Philosophy of Christian Education

The word “philosophy” comes from two Greek words that mean “love of wisdom”. This word also carries with it the idea of “study of truth”, “logical concept”, “theory of knowledge”, “outlook and perspective”, or “way of thinking”. In living and searching for truth, each man develops a system of values and beliefs that guides his actions. This system is his “philosophy” of life. The study of Christian education cannot overlook the Why? And How? of this great concept. Every man needs the right philosophy of Christian education. Every man has a philosophy of Christian education, whether he realizes it or not. Your philosophy is how and why you think what you do about something. We all have our ways of thinking about life and even Christian education. The problem is that we often do not have the right philosophy, “way of thinking” about Christian education.

We must have a guide to the right philosophy of Christian education. The guide for the Christian in this area and in all other areas is the Bible. The Word of God must be our supreme guide. It not only contains God’s truth and will, it IS God’s truth and it IS His revealed will. The Bible makes it clear that Christian education is important and necessary. Note the following Scriptures:

Deu 6:4 -7 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

Prov 22:6  Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Rom 8:28, 29  And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

Eph 4:11 - 16 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

2 Tim 3:14 - 17  But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

It is, therefore, the purpose of Christian education to help train and equip young people to grow and mature physically, spiritually, etc. to be more and more conformed to the image of the Lord Jesus Christ. This is the “way of thinking” we need about Christian education. This should be our philosophy. We should want to “train up a child in the way he should go.” We should know, believe, and trust that the Holy Scriptures “are able make one wise unto salvation.” We must think this way about the subject or else we do not line up with the Word of God.

Our philosophy must go another step. We must think right about who this responsibility of educating children falls to. Deut. 6:1 - 12 makes it abundantly clear that the responsibility belongs to the parent. God’s command in these verses is that parents teach “them”, their children, the things God has taught in His Word. Christian education begins in the home. However, it does not end there. Parents are required to teach their children and are held responsible by God for the education they receive. Parents should use every scriptural tool at their disposal for this purpose.

The Christian school is to be a ministry of the local church that helps parents meet this great responsibility. While Christian education begins at home, it continues at the church through the Christian school. Consider:

Matthew 28:18 -20, “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (emphasis mine)

This command of our Lord is to the church. We are to teach those who are saved “all things” He has commanded. The only way this can be consistently done is through Christian education. The Latin phrase “in loco parentis” adequately describes the role of the church and Christian school. This phrase “in loco parentis” means “in the place of the parents”. That is what a Christian school ought to be. The Christian education system exists to help the parent with what God commanded them to do. It also exists to help the church do the same. This is the right way to think, the right philosophy of Christian education.

Christian education begins in the home, continues in the church, but does not stop there. Actually, it does not end until the individual leaves this earth to be in the presence of the Lord. Life itself is a part of education. Experience, trials, victories, etc. all go together to give an education to the Christian.

Let’s look at another important part. There is a difference between the public school idea (philosophy) of education, sometimes called progressive education and the Christian idea of education, sometimes called traditional education.

Traditional Education

A.A. Baker says, “The very mention of the phrase ‘traditional education’ causes some to immediately conjure up a vision of a one-room schoolhouse, long wooden benches, a wood burning stove, eight grades, one teacher, and an outdoor toilet.” By “traditional education” it is meant that education is given in the traditional way. It is presented in a traditional fashion. No modern gadgets, no fancy machines, no federal aid, no state aid, no elaborate facilities, etc. existed in the early classrooms of this nation. However, the education of that era was superior to the so called “progressive education” of today. What made the difference?

The key to the education of the traditional method was the teacher - a teacher who had an old-fashioned, authoritarian, traditional view of education. While she was teaching the first graders, she knew what was going on in all the other grades as well; and you had better be down to business and doing your work or she would know the reason why!

Most simply think that this method was old-fashioned or “traditional”. It was. But it worked! The new methods of today do not produce the same effect on young people. It may seem old fashioned and not up to today’s standards, but, in reality, it is always up to date. Truth and morality are never outdated. What worked then will work now if applied correctly.


The Spiritual Thrust of Christian Education

I. The Need for Spiritual Thrust
A. Students
B. Parents
C. Teachers

II. The Characteristics of Spiritual Thrust
A. Calling
B. Cleanliness
C. Control
D. Consciousness

III. The Purpose of Spiritual Thrust
A. To Teach Surrender
B. To Encourage Growth
C. To Develop Christian Character

IV. The Steps Toward Spiritual Thrust
A. Be the authority FIRST
B. Be a Friend
C. Share Scriptural Principles
D. Apply Truth to yourself and to students
E. Expose Students to godly influences


The Biblical Mandate

Education has been defined many ways. Some classify education only in terms of what it does for a child, while others are concerned with what it means to a child. What is education? Webster defined education in his dictionary in 1828, First Edition, “the bringing up; instruction; formation of manners; intended to enlighten the understanding, correct the temper, and form the manners and habits of youth, and fit them for usefulness in their future stations”. Others have defined education as “learning”, “preparation for life”, “training”, “assimilation of facts”, “transfer of knowledge”, “learning how to live”. From the perspective of the Christian, all of these definitions mean a great deal. Consider the following:

Education is the transmission of communication skills and the accumulated knowledge of society - along with principles (especially moral) to individuals. This is more effectively done by teachers having authority who present the material to students trying to motivate them to endure the pain of learning in order to reap the fruits of intellectual attainment. Character is developed by decisions made as principles are presented. Honest presentation will cause there to be decisions made with the full knowledge of consequences either way. The end result should be a person who can communicate on his own and having become whatever he has become by his own choice.
-Dr. Wayne Van Gelderen

Pleasurable learning is a reward that follows the willingness to endure hardness. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding” - Proverbs 9:10

Based on this understanding of the definition of education, it is evident that education is a religious task, and is undeniably related to the religion of our society.

The Bible states in Judges 2:10 that “there arose another generation after them, which knew not the Lord...”. What a terrible commentary on that society. But are we any better? An honest examination of our current society, religion, and leadership reveals that every man still does that which is right in his own eyes (Judges 17:6). Humanism rears its ugly head to challenge the Word of God over and over again.

Christians are quick to condemn society and public education; but, in reality, statistics from our own homes and ministries are often not very impressive. We see positive results in many cases. We also see negative results far too often. This problem has caused some to abandon the idea of Christian education while others have suggested that we do a better job of training young people and then send them back to public school as “salt and light.” What are we to do? Christian schools and Christian education systems are not perfect. They are terrible flawed because they are operated by flawed human beings. Should we abandon the Christian education scene for this reason? Certainly not! The mind that embraces such and idea must also embrace the abandonment of the church with its failures and shortcomings. No, what we need is to understand the Biblical imperative relating to Christian education and to more effectively seek to accomplish the task of Christian education.

Why should we believe in Christian education? Why should we battle for rights relating to the religious education of our children? Why should we keep trying to produce young people from Christian schools who will walk in the ways of the Lord? Why must Christian education be a firm conviction with pastors, parents, and educators? The same reason you should do everything else. God said so! It is a Biblical mandate! The Bible commands, dictates, instructs, and orders us to religiously educate our children.



From the Pastor's Desk
These messages are compiled from study notes and outlines of my own and from many others.
I hope they are a help to you.