Philosophy of Education

Overall Goal

Christian education aims not at mere knowledge or vocational skill, but at wisdom, which arises from the word of God and leads to salvation through the faith that is in Christ Jesus (Psalm 19:7 and 2 Timothy 3:15).

 

Principles

  1. The Christian education of a child is the responsibility of his parents, especially his father (Ephesians 6:4).
  2. Ultimately, Christian education consists of training, which includes both development and correction (Proverbs 3:11-12, Heb. musar).
  3. Correction is usually reproof; the rod is reserved for rebellion (Proverbs 29:15).
  4. Parents should seek to work together in the education of their children, for God delights in love more than isolation (cf. Psalm 133; Hosea 6:6).
  5. Teachers can assist parents by offering both knowledge and a sample life of holiness (2 Timothy 3:14-15); however, teachers cannot replace parents, for education is more than academics (e.g. Deuteronomy 8:3-5).
  6. The church and her pastors should provide teachers to come alongside and to assist parents, for the ministry exists to equip the saints for service (cf. Ephesians 4:11-12 and 6:4).
  7. A child’s submissive attitude to authority, especially to God’s authority, is absolutely necessary for true education, for “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Proverbs 9:10).
  8. Each day of learning should begin with worship, both in prayer (for wisdom is from God, Proverbs 2:6) and in praise (for sacred music is instruction, training both the spirit and the understanding, Colossians 3:16 and 1 Corinthians 14:15).
  9. The child must be motivated to seek wisdom for himself or it will not be acquired (Proverbs 1-9, passim).
  10. The teacher should make instruction both delightful and true (Ecclesiastes 12:10).
  11. The core curriculum of Christian education is the Bible, which is inspired, inerrant, and relevant for all cultures and for all time (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
  12. Though the Bible holds ultimate authority as the foundation of all faith, Christian teachers both past and present should also be heard, for teachers are as much Christ’s gift to the church as are apostles and prophets (cf. Ephesians 2:20 and 4:11).
  13. The liberal arts of history (what has happened) and literature (what typically happens) provide a controlled laboratory of life for young believers to witness wisdom and folly in action.
  14. While the goal of education exceeds mere knowledge and skills, certain skills and knowledge are necessary to achieve wisdom (Proverbs 2:1-4).
  15. The study of language and communication facilitate the acquisition of wisdom (Proverbs 1:2-6).
  16. Commonplace books and memorization accompany wise learning (Proverbs 22:17-21).