What Happens when You Teach the Bible to Children

Children are born into an already existing hierarchy (Eph.5:21-6:4): a hierarchy created and established as a functioning team to subdue and take dominion over the creation (Gen.1:26-28; 9:1-17)…The family is an educational institution. It is a training institution for leadership in fulfilling the Creator’s mandates. For example, one basic requirement for holding the office of elder or deacon in the church is for married men to rule over their households effectively (I Tim.3:2, 12). Implicit here is the concept that leadership in the church is first established in the family and then transmitted to the other institutions of society.[1]

Most of our families will be aware that my day job is working as a Distance Education teacher with Jubilee Christian College. In my spare time I look after Hebron Homeschoolers!

Early this month at a Jubilee Activity Day at Ormeau (just north of the Gold Coast), I had a group of six children (aged from 6-10) for a Creative Writing session. I gave them an introductory part of a sentence, and asked them to continue the story. They could really write whatever they liked. My introduction was:

                          After the rain had stopped…

One 7 year old girl named Danielle (the oldest of 5) wrote this:

 After the rain had stopped Noah sent a raven to find land. The raven came back so Noah sent dove to find land the dove came back it had olive branch in its mouth. Noah said we found land! Than ran out the door and thanked God.

I didn’t know much about this family when we started this class. But when I sat down to mark the children’s work next day, I was stunned. It had never occurred to me that someone would pick up the Biblical narrative from Noah’s flood, and then begin to tell the rest of the story.

I was stunned, but I shouldn’t have been. These are Christian parents who are serious about giving their children a good education. And they know that inevitably, the Bible will be central.

Why would that be? As Noah Webster commented some two hundred years ago,

                         Education without the Bible is useless.

I don’t know if Danielle learned what she wrote from home, or from Sunday School, or where. But what I do know is this: her parents by some means have begun the serious process of committing to their children the truth of God’s Word. They are not only serious educators; they’ve got a plan!

If there are two things Christian educators should want to teach their children, it is these: God is alive, and the Bible is truth. Danielle has learnt these.

Thirty years from now, I can easily foresee what kind of woman Danielle will be, and to me that is exciting. If she is still alive, there is in my view a 90% probability she will be married with children, and those children will be getting a godly education.

Let me encourage you all as Christian parents: what you are doing every day with your children will have consequences. Before you open a book, you are educating your children by how you speak to them and others, what you laugh at, what you give your time to, and what you will pay money for. Your life is a walking, talking example to them, which is what God intended in His Word.

How do we know that?

Paul said that his purpose with the Thessalonians was to “…offer ourselves as a model for you, so that you would follow our example” (II Thess.3:9). He also wrote that “you are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men” (II Cor.3:2).

Parental teaching of the Bible to children will have huge consequences. Paul wrote to Timothy,

For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you, which first dwelt in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it is in you as well (II Tim.1:5).

We really do communicate our faith by our example. That is what God intended for our children.

Conclusion:                        

All parents are teaching their children something. And as believers, God wants your influence on your children can be faithful, powerful and fruitful. Accept it as your calling under God.

 Education is the moral responsibility of parents. They are the ones who must determine whether or not their children are being taught the truth. They are responsible before God for the rearing of their children. They are held responsible even for the content of their children’s education. This is why it is a great responsibility to bring children into the world.[2]

[1] John Whitehead, “The New Tyranny,” 1982, p.20-21. Quoted in Gary DeMar, “God and Government,” Vol.3, 2011, p.121.

[2] Gary North, quoted in Gary DeMar, “God and Government,” Vol.1, 2001, p.30.