Faith for All of Life
Faith for All of Life
, Biblical education, beingfamily-centered and emphasizing the re-sponsibility of parents and children, wasproductive of
people. A per-son reared and schooled in the doctrinethat he has a responsibility to care forhis parents as need arises, provide for hischildren, and, to the best of his ability,leave an inheritance of moral disciplineand example as well as material wealth,is a person highly attuned to responsi-bility. In such an educational system,the state is not the responsible party butthe family is, and the man has a duty to be a competent and provident headof his household, and the wife a skilledhelpmeet to her husband. The abandon-ment of a family-oriented educationleads to the destruction of masculin-ity, and it renders women either uffy luxuries for men or aggressive competi-tors to men. Men and women havinglost their function gyrate unstably and without a legitimate sense of function.Modern education abstracts knowledge;the specialist prides himself on knowingnothing outside his eld and wears hisrefusal to relate his knowledge to otherareas as a badge of honor. If the scholarseeks social relativity, again it is with-out a transcendental principle, and theresult is an immersion in the social pro-cess without a value structure; all else ischarged off as meaninglessness save theprocess which at the moment becomesthe incarnate structure.In modern education, the state isthe educator, and the state is held to bethe responsible agency rather than man.Such a perspective works to destroy thepupil, whose basic lesson becomes a de-pendence on the state. The state, ratherthan the individual and the family, islooked to for moral decision and action,and the moral role of the individual isto assent to and bow down before thestate. Statist education is at the very least implicitly anti-Biblical, even whenand where it gives the Bible a place inthe curriculum.
, basic to the calling of every child is to be a member of a family. Vir-tually all children will some day becomehusbands and wives, fathers or mothers.The statist school is destructive of thiscalling. Its attempts to meet the need areessentially external and mechanical,
,home economics courses, sex education,and the like. But the essential trainingfor family life is family life and a fam-ily-oriented school and society. It meansBiblical education. It means discipline,training in godly responsibility.The statist school, moreover, basi-cally trains women to be men; it is notsurprising that so many are unhappy at being women.
Nor are men any happier, in that dominion in moderneducation is transferred from man to thestate, and man is progressively emas-culated. The major casualty of moderneducation is the male student. Sincedominion is by God’s creative purposea basic aspect of man, any education which diminishes man’s calling to exer-cise dominion also diminishes man tothe same degree.
, Biblical education emphasizedlearning, godly learning. Jewish proverbsemphasized this. We have already re-ferred to one, “Just as a man is required
to teach his son Torah, so is he requiredto teach him a trade.” Moreover, “He who teaches his neighbor’s son Torah,it is as if he had begotten him.” Butsupremely, “An ignorant man cannot besaintly.”
Since holiness is not a self-gen-erating act but requires a conformity toGod’s law and righteousness, an igno-rant man cannot be saintly. Moreover,since knowledge is not self-generating,and the meaning of factuality comesnot from facts but from the Creator,knowledge requires as its presuppositionin every area the knowledge of God, whose fear is the beginning of wisdomand knowledge.It needs more than ever to bestressed that the best and truest educa-tors are parents under God. The greatestschool is the family. In learning, no actof teaching in any school or university compares to the routine task of moth-ers in teaching a babe who speaks nolanguage the mother tongue in so shorta time. No other task in education isequal to this. The moral training of thechild, the discipline of good habits, is aninheritance from the parents to the child which surpasses all other. The family isthe rst and basic school of man.
1. Derek Kidner,
Proverbs, An Introductionand Commentary
(Chicago: Intervarsity Press, 1964), 51.2. See. R. J. Rushdoony,
The Messianic Character of American Education,
both available at www.chalcedonstore.com.3. A. R. S. Kennedy, “Education,” in JamesHastings,
A Dictionary of the Bible
, Vol. 1,647.4.
I, 646.5. Carle C. Zimmerman, Lucius F. Cer-vantes,
Marriage and the Family
(Chicago:Regenery, 1956), 310f.6. Julius B. Maller, “The Role of Educationin Jewish History,” in Louis Finklestein,
The Jews, Their History, Culture, and Religion,
Third edition (New York: Harper andBrothers, 1960), Vol. 2, 1240f.