By Andrew McColl, 22/9/2022
The Biblical doctrine of education commences at Creation. Adam and Eve were created as
the pinnacle of God’s creation in the world, to be responsible to oversee and care for it, and
Eve was Adam’s first disciple. This soon went awfully pear-shaped, but there was hope for
the future; God promised that.
In Abraham’s day, God considered it essential that his children would learn to “…keep the
way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice,” if the promises of God to Abraham
would be fulfilled in his children.
This emphasizes the absolute obligation of Christian parents to teach and train their children;
to disciple them. It means there are personal, moral, ethical, social, legislative and ultimately
eternal functions entailed in education. It doesn’t preclude study or academic growth or
ability, yet these don’t get a mention. Isn’t that odd to our modern minds?
This theme of parental spiritual obligations and responsibilities, commencing with the father,
is picked up in the New Testament, which teaches us in Ephesians 6:4,
Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline of the
And Johnny’s Maths and Spelling, still hasn’t got a mention! The scripture doesn’t make any reference to children at school.
Why is this?
Education took place at home, within each family. The idea that children would be daily sent away from their parents and family, for 12 years, is absolutely antithetical to the Bible. If you aren’t sure about this fact, read Deuteronomy, chapters 6 & 11.
Actually, the Book of Proverbs emphasizes the closeness of the Biblical family’s bonds, so
that father addresses his son, this way:
Hear, my son, your father’s teaching and do not forsake your mother’s teaching; indeed
they are a graceful wreath to your head and ornaments about your neck (Prov.1:8, 9).
So, the first thing about education is that it must be founded upon Biblical character training,
and secondly, parents are responsible for this. It simply means children being discipled.
But Public Education is really an indoctrination in practical humanism. Wherever it’s been
utilized, it’s inevitably led to the subversion, undermining and reversal of Christian
discipleship. This began slowly, but has been taking pace for over a century, and it won’t be
changed, while ever parents continue to enrol their children in public schools. The leading
humanistic proponents have openly admitted this, all this time.
In 1930, Charles F. Potter, a signatory of the first Humanist Manifesto, indicated that
Education is thus a most powerful ally of humanism, and every public school is a school
of humanism. What can the theistic Sunday School, meeting for an hour once a week, and
teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of
humanistic teachings? 1
Nowhere does the Bible indicate that children need to have experiences with, or “learn” from
evildoers. The opposite is the case. Proverbs 13:20, says,
He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.
Over in the New Testament, I Cor.15:33 teaches us,
Do not be deceived: Bad company corrupts good morals.
Implied in this, is that parents are to play a discerning and protective role in who might be
influencing their children. In a school, this influence occurs with teachers, curriculum, and
the child’s peer-group: the Playground, and the Classroom.
Even in the church, we all need to exercise discernment about the peer-group our children are
mixing with. Not everyone sees things the same way, or has the same priorities.
Despite the notion that “Public Education is free,” it’s not free at all. It’s costing the taxpayer
around $20,000 per child per year-a massive drain on the taxpayer. It’s not free, it doesn’t
come cheap, and the costs are in much more than money. It becomes a demonic form of
That’s what Lot discovered in Genesis 19, because he’d clearly taken a different route than
Abraham did, and the outcome was a painful one.
Australian Archbishop Vaughan, in a series of pastorals and speeches in 1880, claimed that
There is one greater curse in the world than ignorance and that is instruction apart from
moral and religious teaching. To instruct the masses in reading writing and arithmetic
and to leave out religion and morality is to arm them with instruments for committing
He predicted that government education would be “lawless education” and “plots of
immorality, infidelity and lawlessness, being calculated to debase the standard of human
excellence, and to corrupt the political, social and individual life of future citizens.” 2
What’s the solution? Do what Abraham did with Isaac: home school them. Ask the Lord to show you how best to accomplish this. You can get hold of a godly curriculum, learn how it’s used, and one parent be largely responsible (usually the Mother), but the other parent stay involved and responsible, too. She needs to familiarise herself with Prov.31.
Why? Children need the influence and example of both their parents. Jesus
…went up on the mountain and summoned those whom He Himself wanted, and they
came to Him. And He appointed twelve, so that they would be with Him, and that He
could send them out to preach… (Mark 3:13, 14).
This is what Paul explained to the Philippians:
The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these
things, and the God of peace will be with you (Phil.4:9).
Don’t bother trying to reform the Public System. The system doesn’t want to be reformed.
You can paint lipstick on a pig if you want to, but that pig is then simply an animal with red
lips, that wants to go back and wallow in the mud.
You get out, you stay out. The compromise, the staff, the bullying, the peer-group, curriculum shortcomings and the abuse of every godly idea, will not be changing.
It’s abusive by nature. The System refuses to even accept there is a problem. And even if its
glaringly evident, so what? It doesn’t care and it won’t change.
Christian parents need to be prepared to invest their time with their children’s discipleship
and education. This shouldn’t cost much money, but parents are responsible for this vital
task. We’ll give an account to the Lord for the choices we make, but there are rewards:
1 Charles Potter, 1930. Quoted in Bruce Shortt, “The Harsh Truth About Government School,” 2004, p.54.
2 Alan Roberts, “Australia’s First 100 Years-the Era of Christian Schools,” 1984, p.16.
She opens her mouth in wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. She looks
well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children
rise up and bless her; her husband also, and he praises her, saying: “Many daughters
have done nobly, but you excel them all.” Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but a
woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised (Prov.31:26-30).