Homeschooling Is Surging, and Especially in Homes the Left May Find Troubling

By Brandon Morse (www.lewrockwell.com), July 28, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic brought with it a myriad of consequences to our society, but not every effect was negative. One such result was a dramatic increase in homeschooling, and especially in households that the left may not like.

According to the Associated Press, parents took their children’s education into their own hands and found that their children seemed to be performing much better under their own tutelage than under the public school system’s. The surge itself was confirmed by the U.S. Census Bureau that reported homeschooling more than doubled between March and September of 2020, going from 5.4 percent to 11 percent.

The biggest jump of all? The AP reported that black households skyrocketed from the single digits to the double. What’s more, some are motivated by religious reasoning:

Black households saw the largest jump; their homeschooling rate rose from 3.3% in the spring of 2020 to 16.1% in the fall.

The parents in one of those households, Arlena and Robert Brown of Austin, Texas, had three children in elementary school when the pandemic took hold. After experimenting with virtual learning, the couple opted to try homeschooling with a Catholic-oriented curriculum provided by Seton Home Study School, which serves about 16,000 students nationwide.

The Browns plan to continue homeschooling for the coming year, grateful that they can tailor the curriculum to fit their children’s distinctive needs. Jacoby, 11, has been diagnosed with narcolepsy and sometimes needs naps during the day; Riley, 10, has tested as academically gifted; Felicity, 9, has a learning disability.

“I didn’t want my kids to become a statistic and not meet their full potential,” said Robert Brown, a former teacher who now does consulting. “And we wanted them to have very solid understanding of their faith.”

Another parent in a black household, Angela Valentine, felt the need to keep homeschooling her child due to her son, Dorian, being the only black child at a school. The isolation he was experiencing was getting to him and so she now teaches him about black history and culture while homeschooling.

“I felt the burden of making the shift, making sure we’re making the right choices,” Valentine said. “But until we’re really comfortable with his learning environment, we’ll stay on this homeschool journey.”

Homeschooling also allows parents to conform the learning to their children’s needs instead of the children having to conform to the one-size-fits-all style of learning public schooling forces on children. AP reports one parent has a child with Down syndrome and noticed that her progress at home was better than her progress in virtual learning. They ended up doing the same for her son Noah, and the classes went so well that they decided to continue for the next few years.

“He told me he was learning so much more at home than he ever did in school,” Osgood told the AP. “He said, ‘School is just so chaotic — we don’t get very much done in any particular class. Here, I sit down, you tell me what to do, and minutes later I’m done.’”

Other families have weighed in, noting that their children excelled better at home, and learned far more than they did at public school.

While this is all well and good, parents should likely not get comfortable. Many are just getting into the homeschooling life but they should be aware that there is a war on homeschooling going on. Many on the left would rather see homeschooling made illegal, and Harvard professors are already making the case for this as mainstream media sources applaud and echo them.

(READ: Homeschooling Is One of the Left’s Worst Nightmares So Expect a Long Fight)

These professors are concerned that parents will make teaching children what the left wants them to learn impossible, and Elizabeth Bartholet, a Harvard Law School professor and director of its Child Advocacy Program, warned that kids are in danger of teaching their children “conservative Christian beliefs” specifically.

Right now, American parents are at war with many educational bureaucracies attempting to push left-leaning ideological extremism on their children through Critical Race Theory. As RedState has previously covered, the people leading the CRT charge have direct connections to top members of the Department of Education, and the movement is on to create radical leftist ideologues out of your children.

They can’t do that if they’re safe at home with you. Don’t expect them to take this laying down. They want your children and they will cook up reasons and attempt to craft laws in order to take their education out of your hands and into theirs.

Schools – Government or Public?

[by T. Robert Ingram, originally published 1959, St. Thomas Press, Houston, TX 77035]

“It is he that teacheth man knowledge.”

                                                           —Psalm 94.10

When people speak of the public school system in the United States today they mean schools that have two distinctive features:

     1. They are paid for by taxation imposed by the police power of the people.

     2. Attendance is compelled by that same police power and failure to attend brings a penalty under the law.

Now these two features do not in reality qualify anything to be properly called public. In fact, they disqualify it. Things that are public are things that belong openly to the people as differentiated from belonging to the king or the ruling power or what we call the government. Schools that are paid for out of taxation and where attendance is forced by threat of punishment are properly called government schools, and not public schools.

Public schools, by contrast, should be marked by the same quality that marks all really public institu­tions. The most public of all institutions is the Church of the living God; what makes it public is that support cannot be compelled, nor can failure to attend be punished. Public means “belonging to the people.” If anything belongs to a person, he can do with it, legally, what he will. “Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own?” asked the husbandman in the parable of the laborers in the vineyard. And if you are really free to do what you will, you are free to take a thing or to leave it alone. If a church really is public, or really belongs to the people, then the people may use it or not. They must be free not to attend, if they are really free to attend. Freedom to contract into any­thing implies freedom to contract out. If, then, the public really owns anything, it is free to give or withhold support and attendance at any time.

Perhaps the second most public institution is that which in England is simply called “the Pub”—the public place. The Pub is that place where men are free to gather (or not to gather) and to engage in some activities which they may discontinue at any moment they so decide. And I am altogether sure that “the Pub” is not kept open by taxation. Thus we have public dance halls in which attendance is not even limited by invitation; anybody can go in or out as he pleases as long as he does not commit an act of violence. Support is conditioned upon use, and not tax revenues. The public utilities are those services which are freely available to the people at large for a contractural price. They cease to be public when they are paid for by taxation and use is compelled by law.

Newspapers, markets, banks and restaurants are other so-called public institutions. They are places and services made available on a contractural basis to the people, and thus belonging to the people. On certain specified conditions set up by the owner or operator, anyone may make use of the place and its services or not as he chooses. The operator must be free to set up his conditions, and the user must be free to accept or reject those conditions.

When the police power of the people is brought into play to compel support and attendance, at that instant the people lose ownership and control, and a thing ceases to be public. When Queen Elizabeth I ruled that people who did not attend church on Sunday morning were subject to punishment she took the church away from the people and it became the government church. The moment the queen de­creed the people had to attend church, she had to declare what she meant by church. The church she specified immediately became the government church.

We all know how doggedly Englishmen fought to wrest control of Christ’s church away from the crown and to make it once more a public institution. One of the many victories of that struggle was the establishment of a new people and a new nation in the new world. These United States were settled and brought forth my men who risked their properties and their lives in an attempt to free their churches from the government and to make them once more public institutions which they controlled by virtue of being able to support and attend or not at will.

I suppose this is so deeply engrained in the American consciousness that the possibility of a government controlled church here is almost unthinkable. At least it is in the way that was tried in Europe both under Rome and under Henry and Elizabeth of England. And yet it is a curious thing that we, a people brought forth upon the foundation of free public institutions of religion and business, should have torn our most powerful religious institution from our free churches and made it a government institution. I am speaking of our schools.

Schools in the United States today, except for a few church schools, are under the complete control of the temporal governments and have long since been seized from the people. I know very well that so-called Federal control is not directly acknowl­edged at the moment. But I also know that it is inevitable because no smaller government institution in the United States can function without the ap­proval of Washington. The Civil War settled that. The police power that operates in our midst is what we mean by temporal government. It is the power to kill. Taxes levied by that power are paid to avoid the penalty the government can exact, which is ultimately death.

Yet our schools a hundred years ago were not only public—that is both supported and used by the free choice of the people at large—but they were commonly recognized as being one of the fore­most activities of the Church, our most public in­stitution, which can never kill. Teaching is a work of God, and a creative work. Any teaching of any kind not only derives from God but has to teach something about God. It is by its nature a religious work, or a work of the Spirit. In the words of the Psalmist, “It is he (God) that teacheth man knowl­edge.”

No person is qualified to teach anything except what he learns from Christ Jesus: he is not fit to teach in his own name. (I might point out that men today do not even presume often to go so far as to teach in their own names. They now teach in the name of the government. That is, they teach nothing but what the government doth allow—and pre­sumably the government tells all that it alloweth.) We Christians are wholly and unreservedly com­mitted to the Lord Jesus. We teach in His Name and His only. For it is he that teacheth man knowledge.

It has been a long, hard won struggle for the forces of evil to wrest control of the schools from the public and the churches and to make them gov­ernment schools. The struggle began in earnest under Horace Mann some 150 years ago. Mann got the idea from Prussia, and he followed the same inevitable steps that the Prussian rulers had fol­lowed. He first removed the financial support from the public by means of a tax. That was fairly easy to do because it appealed to the tendency in every sinner to fall for a confidence game: and it gave financial support to the government.

It was easy to convince the people that it would be a benefit to give up responsibility for supporting the schools either by voluntary contributions or by contractural payment for services or both. In the name of justice it certainly seems fair to spread the load and to compel all the people to pay for what serves to the glory and good of the people as a whole. Certainly schools are good for the whole people. Besides the taxes started out low—almost insignificant. Why, with all those people paying, the cost to each family for limited services seemed ridiculously small.

But Prussia found almost at once that it was one thing to lead a horse to water—another to make him drink. It was one thing to convince the public it need no longer carry the burden of continuously and repeatedly choosing what they would and would not support; but it was something else again to make them send their children. The people, still accus­tomed to having public schools which they controlled by attending or not as they willed, went right on choosing the schools they wanted for no good reason other than that they, the owners, wanted them.

And so Prussia had to take the next step which the people could not now really effectively object to. He passed laws compelling attendance. He justified his action on the grounds that the king knew what was good for the people: but in the same breath he declared that it was obvious the people did not know what was good for themselves. The trouble was not that people were not making the effort to establish and support good schools. Never in history has a people trained more brilliant minds or greater numbers of popular thinkers than Europe then and now. Our own nation prospered on the fruit of the European schools, and our own leaders and our own popular thinking reached dizzy heights because of this heritage. No, the trouble was that the people, who under their own control had developed this amazing popular system, did not like the govern­ment schools. They paid their taxes: but they sent their children to the old public church schools.

So Prussia had to pass some more laws. The people who normally didn’t go to school—those who, because they couldn’t read had to learn to think—were now compelled to attend, or be punished. The Prince of this World once again reached out for power and set up his kingdom. Horace Mann saw the kingdoms of this world and the glory of them, and, unlike his Lord, was im­pressed. He unleashed the spirit of the anti-Christ in a new, undefended area. He took the people of the U. S. by surprise. The forces went to work in earnest. Mann had to defend himself again and again against the people of his day who recognized his cause was basically aimed at Christ. But he approved Bible reading. And he defended himself by attacking his enemies: those who wanted the people to control the schools and not the govern­ment were, he charged, opposed to giving innocent children the right to go to school.

Moreover, he labelled schools controlled by a representative gov­ernment as schools which thereby indirectly be­longed to the people. He became an advocate of government schools under the banner of public schools. Like all confidence men, he took away from the people what they already had by promising to give them some things they neither had nor needed. His movement was slow, indeed. It gained little ground except in Massachusetts where, under the leadership of the Unitarians and Harvard Uni­versity, the state replaced the church in all matters anyway, and religion became no longer a public affair but a private one.

After the Civil War the people had to adjust to a new shocker. The government no longer belonged to the people and to the states—the people and the states belonged to the government. It was much easier after that to let the schools slip gradually away from public control into the hands of various government agencies. As with Prussia the steps were the same. First, support by taxation. Control by voluntary contractural support or withholding of support was quietly removed. Now you had to pay, whether you liked the school in question or not. If you didn’t you could be punished by the same man who could hang you if you committed murder, thievery or adultery.

To refuse to like government schools put you in the same class as a murderer. It is a crime against the might and majesty of our supreme military pro­tector. He is now in the school business, and if you don’t like his schools, neither do you like his army and police force. You were told you could exercise some manner of control over the schools by electing an advisory body called a school board. But that was merely an attempt to commit us all the more to support of whatever kind of school this elected official might be able to establish. For better or worse, that was it and the public could not object by withdrawing voluntary financial support.

But clearly this was not more effective than in Prussia for getting people to send to school those who were learning to think in other ways and about other things. So there began to appear the laws that compelled those free Christians whose fathers left England in search of freedom to send their children to schools approved by the government. That it is God who teacheth man knowledge was not openly denied, even though the Congress was expressly for­bidden to pass any law establishing any religion. But temporal government replaced the church as teacher.

Even so it was not until after World War I, when the people of these United States gave up control of their saloons, that they also gave up real control of their schools. In the twenties, when the government took control of whiskey in the name of prohibition, it also took control of the schools in the name of public education. Thirteen of our states adopted their first compulsory attendance laws, and most of the rest of the states tightened up the ones they had. Many of us went through schools at a time when compulsory attendance was still brand new and schooling still thrived under the warm sun­light of public control. But today it is different. You and I have no control. We may be able to elect our school board members and they are doing a heroic job in trying to stave off the debacle. But public control is long gone.

You and I have no choice. We are taxed, not a pittance for a few more classrooms and teachers: we have a mammoth and absurd cost heaped upon us to maintain one of the most elaborate collections of temples to a false goddess that our people have ever known. The heirarchy of this state system is mammoth, and billions of dollars are taken from the people year after year by the power to kill. The schools will be here whether you like them or not: there is no possibility that they could collapse under the usual sequence of public disfavor resulting in the withdrawal of public support.

Moreover, if you don’t think you will go to jail if you refuse to send your children to a school which is controlled by this machine, then consider what happened to some Mennonites in Ohio last year. You and I cannot even decide which school we will send our children to. I know there are some private schools. And I know there is our own school at St. Thomas’. But I also know that by and large these are so insignificant as to be tolerated rather than let the issue burst into flame by stirring it up.

St. Thomas’ is one of very few schools in Texas, and maybe in the nation, that really claims to be under the control of the people under Christ rather than of the ultimate pleasure of the state. And we have horrified many people. We are tampering with the awful majesty and power of the government— although it is not the government that teachest man knowledge, but God. State accreditation is now the thing. Sure, you can have a school which is not paid for out of taxes and which people do not have to attend under penalty of the law. But it has to be a school which does what the state tells it to do. Of course idiocincracies are tolerated. If you are of a mind to try to make a special extra effort in your own behalf, go ahead. It won’t hurt anything. The government will see to that. Because any school that you can use is already stamped with state accredita­tion, or discredited.

And now we wonder why our children, whom we agreed we wouldn’t trouble with knowledge from God, are now without knowledge of any kind. And I do hope nobody will again trouble me by telling me how smart the quiz kids are today on the tele­vision. Thank Mr. Van Doren for laying that ghost. Our kids are not smart. They may some of them have done pretty well in spite of us, but the ignor­ance of our people as a whole is so serious as to be recognized even by the government in Washing­ton as a threat to the national safety.

There is no course of study in religion that can be designed to overcome the religious teaching in­herent in the state controlled school system itself. God teaches that there is no such thing as secular learning. He says there is no field of knowledge which is not subject to the judgment of Jesus Christ and teaching is supremely a religious function through which the sovereignty of God is recognized among the people. Yet, the first lesson we teach every child today is that there is a place where God does not count. That place is in what we call the school room of so-called secular learning. Day after day we tell our children, by sending them to the state schools, that people do not and should not decide for themselves whether a particular school or any school at all is good for us.

We deny the whole principal of public control by deceiving our children with the idea public con­trol means being committed in advance to the de­crees of the government. The religion we are teach­ing them is to glorify Caesar and to magnify his holy name as the universal arbiter of knowledge. Once you teach children that—it doesn’t much matter what else you teach them. As long as you don’t let them get the idea that it is really God and not Caesar that teacheth man knowledge. And as long as you don’t let them know that no man is free who cannot himself as an individual give or with­hold his consent—even to sending his children to school. And as long as you never let him suspect that real public control means complete dependence upon freely given or freely withheld public support and use.

Now somebody will ask me how Christ invades the study of biology. But that one is so obvious, I will raise a more difficult subject.

How does Christ invade the study of arithmetic? Well, I’ll tell you what has happened to arithmetic as taught under the philosophy that Christ is not important. The reason for teaching arithmetic used to be the same as for all things done in the name of Christ: to glorify him by developing the full native powers of every individual to the utmost. Christ came to make men perfect for heaven. All learning then is important in so far as it develops each soul and perfects that soul to the fullest extent of its given nature in Christ. Arithmetic is a discipline which is good insofar as it develops the mental skill of people to think logically. Men who can solve problems, remember long strings of operations and keep an orderly progress of reasoning are the kind of men Christ wants. Men who can think straight usually seek Christ.

But our American educators have long since abandoned the study of arithmetic for the purpose of sharpening little minds. It is now studied as something useful, or practical. If you need to use it to buy groceries, or to be an accountant, or to be an engineer, then arithmetic is good. This is not my own opinion. This is a statement of a fact with which you are all too well acquainted. As a result, our government is clamoring for young men who have been taught how to think—engineers, mathe­maticians, call them what you will. But we don’t have them. Why? The state school theory doesn’t find them important. All we need are men who know how to solve the particular problems we think they may run up against. An adding machine will do. Some schools are even beginning to teach adding machine use in the second grade. Whether you think it has to be that way or not is beside the point. That is what has happened. There is no doubt about it.

It is only in Christ that there is any real reason for teaching children simply for the purpose of developing their own human qualities to the fullest extent we know how. It is only in Christ because it is only Christ who has opened the way for us to come at last, one by one, into his own glorious presence and there to live with him forever.

It is only in Christ that it is important to be learned, not for the contribution you can make, but simply to present to God the best personality you can manage out of the stuff he has given you. If nobody else profits by the mathematical genius, it is worth while for that genius to have developed his genius to the full extent of his powers, to the glory of God who made him and Christ who redeemed him.

The very process of learning is geared to the desire of the learner. If a child does not will to learn, not even a firing squad can compel him. In fact, the firing squad will probably make him all the more stubborn. One of the things God teaches all of us is that man is created in the image of God, and to make that image bright is to glorify its maker. It is not up to the state to give a man the will and the desire to do what is best for him. In fact, when the state does, it attacks God himself, by assuming his image is not up to doing what the power of government knows is best.

If a man is a man, he is due the respect of all other men and especially Christian men, of choosing his own destiny. If God gives us that freedom, the freedom to go to hell, then the least we can do is to allow the same freedom about school.

Compulsory school attendance is a daily insult to the natural God-given desire in every man to improve himself and his family and to strive for heaven, and thereby an insult to the God who made him. It teaches that God didn’t really make us the crown of creation and that we don’t really have that desire, or will, to excel.

This is to give God the lie, and is teaching con-trary to the Christian faith. It rests on the proposi­tion that some men don’t know and won’t do what is best for them—and the state must compel them. That is the foundation of all socialism or stateism.

The whole system would collapse in a whisper if compulsory attendance laws were repealed. If you did not empower the policemen to arrest anyone who does not send his children to a particular school, how long do you think the wretched schools we must put up with would last?

I assure you the public would very soon restore good schools by supporting the good ones freely and withdrawing freely from the bad ones.

That is the nature of public institutions and be­lieve me, the voice of the people is a loud one.

If we are truly a Christian people, we will take again the control of our schools and reassert our conviction that it is God that teacheth man knowl­edge—not Caesar.

7 Habits of Highly Frugal People

(Great for Teenagers)

Gary North – July 15, 2021

Habit One: Be Proactive

The first habit of highly effective people is to take responsibility for their own lives; if they fail, they have no one to blame but themselves. Regardless of how you were raised or how you were treated at school you are able to choose your behavior now. Being proactive means understanding that you are in control of the direction your life takes and in control of your day to day interactions. Whereas a reactive person is often affected by their environment and will find external sources to blame for their behavior, for example if the weather is good they are in a good mood but if the weather is bad it affects their attitude and so the weather is to blame for their bad mood.

Here are 6 Action Steps to Take When You Feel Financially Vulnerable

However what most people forget is that between the stimulus and your response is your freedom to choose your response, and one of the most important things you choose are your words. The language you use is an effective indication of how you see yourself and if you use proactive language such as ‘I can’ or ‘I will’ you are starting with a more positive attitude than a reactive person who uses language like ‘I can’t’ or ‘I have to’ or ‘if only…’

Habit Two: Begin with the End in Mind

Those who are effective in achieving their goals are able to envisage their end result despite the obstacles. Highly effective people adhere to this habit based on the principle that all things are created twice, there is the first mental creation and then the second physical creation, and the physical creation follows the mental creation in the same way as the building follows its blueprints.

Habit Three: Put First Things First

Knowing why you are doing something is an effective motivator in helping you take the mental creation and transform that into an actual physical creation of your goal. Therefore ask yourself which are the things you find most valuable and worthy to you. When you put these things first you will be organizing and managing your time around your personal priorities to make them a reality.

Habit Four: Think Win-Win

Growing up most of us are taught to base our self-worth on comparisons to others and competition against our peers. We think we can only succeed if someone else has failed and if you win then that must mean I lose, and that there is only so much pie to go around and if you get a big piece then I’m going to be missing out. When you think like this you are always going to feel like you’re missing out on something and that’s not fair is it? As a result many of us retaliate and take the pie before someone else can take it from us.

Habit Five: Communication

Communication is often the desire to be heard and understood and most people will listen with the intention to reply to what you’re saying rather than to understand what you have said. However to effectively communicate you need to first understand and then be understood because if you communicate with the sole intention of being understood you can find that you ignore what others are saying and miss their meaning entirely.

Habit Six: Teamwork

Interactions and teamwork are some of the most important ways you can learn new skills and more effective behaviors. To synergize is the habit of creative cooperation where you work as a team to find new solutions to existing problems. Synergy is not something which just happens but is a process where you need to bring all of your personal experiences and expertise to the table to enable more effective results than you would have been able to achieve individually – the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Habit Seven: Sharpen the Saw

You are the greatest asset you have on your journey to achieving the lifestyle you want and so you need to look after yourself physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. When you take time to renew yourself in all four areas of your life you are creating growth and change which allow you to continue with the previous six habits you have mastered, which still need to be maintained to achieve success.

Don’t Set Your Kids at the Feet of Fools

By Kevin Swanson

Proverbs 3:13-15 says, Happy is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding; for her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, and her gain than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies, and all the things you may desire cannot compare with her.

Obviously as Christian parents we desire for our children to grow up to be wise, godly adults. But with all the books, movies, and music out there whispering their worldviews in our children’s ears, helping our kids distinguish God’s wisdom from man’s wisdom can be a huge challenge!

In fact, we can even be tempted as parents to think that if our kids are going to grow up to be informed, “well-rounded” adults, they should be reading books and absorbing media by the “great” thinkers and writers of our day. But let me remind you of another verse in Proverbs:

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

Plato, Nietzsche, Twain, Steinbeck — all “great” thinkers and writers by the world’s standards. But these men scoffed at God…and the Bible calls them fools. So how should we as parents respond?

I would suggest that if you want to assist your kids in growing in God’s wisdom, that you follow this process:

Teach your children God’s word FIRST: The Bible is the greatest book of wisdom in existence. And it tells us how to do the smartest thing a human being could ever do: repent, receive the cleansing blood of Christ, and inherit eternal life.

Next, set your children at the feet of the great Christian thinkers of history. Bunyan, A’Kempis, Calvin, Brother Andrew, those who feared God. Give your children the stories of those who made themselves “fools” for Christ’s sake, but who God calls the wisest of all.
Once your children have a firm grasp of God’s Word and the great Christian thinkers, introduce the great non-Christian thinkers. But now they will be equipped to discern truth from lies and not get sucked into deadly ideas.

This is the process we follow in our Christian literature curriculum:

Grades 1-5 give children a firm handle on God’s Big Story as revealed in Scripture.
Grades 6-12 give students stories and classic works written by some of the greatest Christian thinkers of the last 2,000 years.
Then as students are wrapping up in 10th-12th grade, they begin to engage in the battle of ideas with the great non-Christian writers and thinkers.

Finding books that will both give your children a solid education AND build up their faith in Christ can be a lot of work. So we created Christian literature resources to do most of the legwork for you.

AND THROUGH MIDNIGHT TONIGHT, you can get 20% off all our Literature & Reading titles, PLUS…you can knock off another 20% (40% total) when you order one of our Christian Literature collections:

God’s Big Story Collection
(Grades 1-5)
This collection includes our whole God’s Big Story series levels 1-5 (textbooks only).


Children’s Read-Alouds Collection
(Suggested Grades 1-5)
This collection includes:

Mary Jones and Her Bible

The Giant Killer

The Princess Bellaheld

Sunshine Country

The Dragon and the Raven


Timeless Christian Classics Collection
(Suggested Grades 6-9)
This collection includes:

Pilgrim’s Progress (Young Adult Edition)

Heidi (Original Unabridged edition)

The Swiss Family Robinson (Original Unabridged edition)

Titus: Comrade of the Cross

The Life of Henry Martyn Robinson Crusoe

The Holy War


Young Adults Literature Collection
(Grades 7-12)
This collection includes:

Augustine’s Confessions

Patrick’s Confessions

Knox’s History of the Reformation in Scotland

Bunyan’s Grace Abounding John G. Paton’s missionary autobiography

Athanasius’ On the Incarnation

A’Kempis’ The Imitation of Christ

Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion (abridged)

Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress

Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History (Books 1-8),

Bede’s Ecclesiastical History of the English People (Books 1-2),

Philip Schaff’s History of the Christian Church (selections from Pre-Reformation and Reformation Periods)


Order Literature Curriculum

There’s no reason why you can’t give your children an excellent Christian education and build them up in the faith with books and resources that will grow them in the wisdom of God. Take this opportunity to fill your bookshelves before our 20-40% off Christian literature sale closes tonight at 11:59 PM PDT. For Christ and His kingdom,
Kevin Swanson
Director
Generations
mail@generations.org
www.generations.org

Why Is Home Schooling Growing in Australia?

By Stuart Chapman BEng; BA, Grad Dip Ed, May 2020

The numbers of students being educated at home in Australia has been steadily increasing with an annual growth rate of 9.4%, over the last eight years. The reasons for this growth are:

1. Legal Acceptance:

In every state and territory, home education is now recognised as a legal alternative to attending school.

2. Australia has a history of Government Distance Education

Australia has a history of Distance Education with Schools of the Air since 1951 and correspondence schools for over 100 years. These government-approved schools have helped Australians accept that learning away from a classroom is possible and even a little romantic.

3. Greater Media And Community Acceptance

In general, home schooling has been getting an increasing number of positive news stories in the media. Home education is now accepted as an alternative form of education in the community.

4. Numbers Bring Numbers

As more people commence home schooling, more hear about it and in a positive way. It is now likely that most people know at least one family that has home educated or are home schooling. Knowing others personally reduces the fear factor considerably.

5. The Socialisation Question Is Now A Non-Issue

With the increase in numbers and activities, especially in the major cities, there are now more social activities for home-schooled children than is possible to attend. While some families still feel isolated, due to finances and or a rural location, social opportunities are much better than they were 20 years ago.

6. Rise Of Homeschooling

Support Organisations Every state now has at least one home education support group. These support groups have been active in lobbying government for better laws and regulation for home educators. They are also a great point of first contact for families enquiring or starting out. Some groups provide additional services such as teacher support, organised activities, and assistance with government registration.

7. The Internet

The Internet has made it much easier to find information about home education and support groups. It is also much easier to find books, resources and videos, which make the decision to commence home education easier.

8. Parents want a different philosophical method for their child’s learning This is one of the top three reasons parents give for choosing to home educate their child. Many parents want to choose a different method of learning such as unschooling or use an alternative curriculum such as Classical Conversations neither of which is used in the school system in Australia.

9. Schools are not able to provide adequate one on one instruction

Parents are concerned that on average a child will only receive four minutes of one on one instruction during a school day. Many students will not grasp complex concepts within this time frame. These students fall behind and lose confidence. At home, a student can ask questions and check their understanding with a loving adult who is not distracted by 29 other students. In such an environment, learning and progress occur steadily.

10. Public Schools are perceived to ignore God

Public schools are not able to state that God is the designer and maker of all things. They ignore the existence of God, and their subtle message is that God is irrelevant. People of faith often choose home education, as they believe that public schools are teaching a differing worldview.

11. Parents are concerned about the recent cultural shift in schools

Some parents who were previously happy with the school system are concerned by the introduction programs which teach a different worldview such as the Safe Schools program.

12. Parents are concerned with peer pressure at school

Some parents are concerned what kind of danger peer pressure could have on their child, especially if their child is naïve and easily led. Parents see the home as a safe environment. Social activities with other home schooling families are safe, diverse and well supervised.

13. Expense of Private Day School Education

While many would like to send their child to a local private school, fees have increased significantly and for some have become prohibitive. Education at home is now an attractive option financially.

14. Easier Access into Tertiary Institutions

Over time tertiary institutions are making entrance easier for home-educated students. It is much easier to enter university now as a home schooled student than it was 20 years ago.

15. Bullying

Bullying is now one of the most common reasons given to start education at home. A typical conversation that this author has heard hundreds of times is when a mother calls and says, “I have a daughter in Year 9 and I just can’t get her to go to school. She says to me, ‘Mum, they are horrible, I just can’t go back.'” Other parents say, “It breaks my heart that my ten year old cries all the way to school each day.” Parents say, “I am up at the school every week and each time I am told, “We are dealing with it, but the bullying just goes on and on. I am over it. It is not something that we ever really thought about, but right now home school is the only option for us. “

16. Children with Special Needs

Home schooling because a child has special needs is one of the top four reasons parents choose to home educate. Many of these children do not qualify for a teacher’s aide and start to fall behind emotionally and academically.

17. Advanced Children

Some parents indicate that their children are well above average academically and are frustrated and bored in the classroom. When home educated, these students are allowed to advance faster than their peers.

18. Not happy with culture of local schools

Some parents are concerned about noisy, disruptive classrooms or with the level of swearing in the playground. Some children say that it is hard to find other students who try to follow the teacher’s instructions and complete homework correctly.

19. School Waiting List Some parents desire to place a child in a particular school but are on a waiting list. Rather than swap schools halfway through a year, some parents choose to home educate for 6 to 12 months.

20. Parents are concerned that their child is underperforming in school

Some parents realise their child has a lazy streak and are concerned that their child is just drifting through school and underperforming. At school, students can often get away at working at 50% of their capacity. Many students are not performing anywhere near their best. Their motivation is low, and their friends may be distracting them. At home, a parent can see exactly what a child has done each day and whether he is underperforming. There is no hiding in a class of 1 or 2 students. Parents can sit with a child and encourage him or her for a whole hour if they are struggling. Parents believe the ultra-small class sizes at home can make a huge difference to their child’s academic performance.

21. Students are Immature

Some children will ask to be home schooled because they find that their peers immature.

22. Unhelpful Relationship

Sometimes a parent will remove a child from school to remove the temptation to continue a relationship with another student that has become too intimate or destructive.

23. Some children just don’t like school

Some children just don’t like the school environment. When asked why, they often can’t verbalise what is the problem. They have not been bullied, yet they will get stomach cramps in the morning and complain about not feeling well. When a parent notices a child is missing school one or two days a week, home school becomes a real option. These reluctant students often (but not always) make a complete transformation when they commence home education and become enthusiastic about their learning again.

24. Not Happy with a Teacher

Some parents state they had been very happy with their local school until this year when their child has a teacher, in whom they have little confidence. Whether it be a first-year graduate who is still learning the ropes or an older cynical teacher who has lost their passion, one year of a struggling or jaded teacher is just not acceptable. Home education becomes a viable alternative in these situations.

25. Failure to teach Phonics.

Some parents are dissatisfied when their child is still not reading after five years of formal education. The effective teaching of phonics will result in a rapid growth in reading ability. It is common for a child’s reading level to jump 2-3 years in a semester when a good phonics program is used. The one-to-one interaction time with parents that is possible with home education using a phonics based program will greatly assist a child to improve their reading ability.

26. Travelling A number of families home educate while traveling around Australia by car or caravan;

27. Elite Sports

This author has worked with students who were training at an elite level including golfers, surfers, swimmers, Olympic squad members and ballet dancers. Home education can help these children achieve both their academic and sporting goals.

28. Parents on Student Visas Another group of recent additions to the home schooling movement are parents who are studying in Australia on student visas and who would have to pay $14,000 a year to send their children to their local school and therefore find home schooling a very attractive option financially.

29. Health Reasons

Some parents choose to home school because their child suffers health issues such as depression, chronic fatigue, a suppressed immune system, or cancer. There are also teenagers who are pregnant or have a young baby. There are also children who are extremely anxious and have panic attacks and become physically ill if you force them to go to school or are self-harming and who have attempted suicide. For all these children, education at home provides a safe environment while they are unwell. Sadly there are also parents who have a terminal illness who want to spend as much time as possible with their children while they can.

30. Parents who want to be more involved

There are parents who have no problems with their local school but just want to be more involved in their children’s education, and not outsource it to strangers. They see the benefits of home schooling and do it for family bonding and overall flexibility.

31. Too Young

Now that the compulsory age of schooling has been lowered, some parents are concerned that their child is simply not ready for school. Some children are not entirely out of nappies. Some still require their midday sleep. In schools, teachers are encouraged not to touch a child or let them sit in their lap, so 4 and 5- year-olds are now starved of physical contact for six hours a day.

32. Vaccinations

Some parents do not want to their child to receive vaccinations and believe that educating at home will reduce the pressure to do so.

33. Not for everyone

It is recognised that home schooling is not for everyone and many parents have said it is one of the hardest things they have ever done. When it is clear that it is not working, parents sometimes try a different methodology to see if that may work better with their child. Others feel they need a break and choose to put their child back in school for a time leaving the option to try home education again if necessary.

Covid-19 Update

As a result of the Corona virus lockdown many millions of parents have now experienced distance learning. All home education registration authorities are reporting a significant increase in enquiries and registrations in 2020. It is yet to be seen whether this will lead to a long-term increase in home education numbers.

Stuart Chapman is an international speaker who has spoken at home schooling conferences on five different continents. He has been a board member of the Global Home Education Conference and the International Certificate of Christian Education and is a current member of the International Home Educators Leaders Group.

He was the founder and director of the largest home school academic support group in Western Australia. He was elected as a committee member of the Home Education Association in 2019. He and his wife Dianne home educated their five children for 18 years.

Email: stuartchapman105@gmail.co

Homeschooling Skyrocketed In 2020, As Much As 700 Percent In Some States

Since public schools are spectacularly successful leftist recruitment centers, weakening public attachment to them through lockdowns was a dangerous move for Democrats.

Joy Pullmann

By Joy PullmannJUNE 1, 2021

Between May and October 2020, homeschooling more than doubled among U.S. households with school-age children, from 5.4 percent that spring to 11.1 percent that fall, according to new Census Bureau data.

Black and Hispanic Americans were the most likely to switch to homeschooling, while white and Asian Americans were the least likely. This could be due to the fact that African-American children are the most likely to be financially locked into poor-quality school districts, or that black Americans have been the most likely to exhibit COVID caution, or some combination.

All demographics reported large increases in homeschooling between spring and fall 2020, but black Americans increased homeschooling the most, quintupling from 3.3. percent to 16.1 percent.

The data show wide differences among states in the 2020 homeschooling surge. Families in Alaska showed the largest homeschooling increase, from 9.6 percent to 27. 5 percent, a 17-point jump. Florida went from 5 percent to 18 percent homeschoolers, and Vermont went from 4 percent to 17 percent homeschoolers, in the second- and third-largest homeschooling jumps by states in 2020, respectively.

Other states that saw 10 percent or more increases in homeschooling were: Massachusetts (from 1.5 to 12.1 percent), Mississippi (from 3 to 14 percent), Montana (from 8 to 18 percent), Nevada (from 2.5 to 13.1 percent), Oklahoma (from 7.7 to 20 percent), Vermont (from 4 to 17 percent), and West Virginia (from 5.4 to 16.6 percent). Homeschooling in New York increased seven-fold, from 1.2 to 10.1 percent, quadrupled in Kansas, tripled in Connecticut and North Dakota, and more than doubled in Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, South Carolina, and Wisconsin.

It seems pretty clear that their experiences governors and local governments constantly changing the rules and expectations in spring 2020, plenty of parents decided they were not going through that insanity again in the fall. Even when schools did open in person, would you send your child to a place that looks like this photo from a February 2021 Wall Street Journal story about Chicago schools? It looks like some kind of a dystopian novel. Or a prison.

Researcher Nicholas Zill points out that, while homeschooling has been gradually increasing over time in the United States, the 2020 jump is “unprecedented.” Here’s his chart.

Since lockdowns and the great school unsettling began, however, Congress has been showering deficit-funded billions on public schools that were largely closed to in-person instruction and hemorrhaging students. “Congress has included more than $192 billion for K-12 schools — roughly six times the amount of the fiscal year 2021 base federal funding — in the three big Covid relief bills passed since last March,” notes a recent CNN story. “Each piece of legislation sent more money to K-12 schools than the last.”

While Congress sends more money to support institutions that have horribly mismanaged their response to the COVID outbreak, public support has grown for instead giving parents more control and flexibility over education spending instead of relegating families to one-size-fits-nobody institutions. One April poll found among its highest support ever for school choice via parental control of education tax dollars, at 71 percent of respondents. A different poll that has measured public opinion on schooling monthly since the beginning of the lockdowns shows similarly high support for parent-directed education in its latest results.

The latter poll, from the organization EdChoice, also found 64 percent of respondents saying their opinion of homeschooling has become more positive “as a result of the coronavirus,” with just 21 percent saying COVID has made them less positive about homeschooling.

A question ripe for speculation is whether the dramatic increase in homeschooling will continue or fade with the pandemic. It’s impossible to foretell, of course, but important to note that dissatisfaction with public schooling has grown along with homeschooling over the past several decades, and current conditions suggest that dissatisfaction will only grow. For example, the critical race curriculum battles are reaching even into conservative communities.

Zill also points out that many of the underlying reasons parents traditionally homeschool are only increasing: lack of moral instruction and presence of a negative peer environment in public schools, as well as the availability of one parent at home. A Gallup poll this February found that 20 percent of parents had either quit a job or reduced their hours to help their kids with online schooling, and mothers who quit or were laid off during COVID lockdowns are still largely not back in the workforce.

In addition, there is evidence that once parents switch from government to private education, they typically like it much better. Parents who privately direct their children’s education, either in a private school or through homeschooling, report massively higher satisfaction with that education than do public-school parents. Here are two examples of that from the latest EdChoice poll, and it’s a consistent finding across surveys:

Realities like this are why the anti-scientific school shutdowns Democrats pushed at the behest of their union donors may come back to bite their behinds. Since public schools are spectacularly successful leftist recruitment centers, weakening public attachment to them through lockdowns was a dangerous move for Democrats. In short, their hubris has raised a nemesis.

As I wrote last summer, when two-thirds of Americans supported sending kids back to school in person yet most were denied that opportunity thanks to Democrats’ stranglehold on schools:

Once this exodus starts, it will be hard to stop. Parents have for years told pollsters that private education is their top choice, not public education. They haven’t left yet because it hasn’t gotten bad enough. Long-term coronavirus schooling is easily a tipping point towards ‘bad enough to finally leave.’ It will likely create a cascade effect of long-term parental divestment from public schooling.

Sure, some parents who homeschooled over COVID will return to public schools. But the fact that one in ten American parents — three times as many as before — now have a largely positive experience with homeschooling will have network effects.

The past two years of politically disrupted education make public schooling less default. It is no longer the automatic conveyor belt leftists need it to be. And they’re doing even more offensive and extremist things that will further sabotage their mind control factories.

In addition, the higher education bubble has quietly burst amid the lockdown abuse of college-age Americans, as well. Millions of young people put off college over lockdowns, and millions who stayed were treated like inmates while paying dearly for the abuse. Nearly half of parents now want alternative pathways into adult life that aren’t a four-year degree. That’s a significant shift away from the hardened previous preference for “everyone going to college.”

These are cracks in a big dam. But they are significant cracks. And it doesn’t take many to open the way for a flood.Joy Pullmann is executive editor of The Federalist, a happy wife, and the mother of six children. Her newest ebook is a design-your-own summer camp kit, and her bestselling ebook is “Classic Books for Young Children.” Sign up here to get early access to her next full-length book, “How To Control The Internet So It Doesn’t Control You.” A Hillsdale College honors graduate, @JoyPullmann is also the author of “The Education Invasion: How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids,” from Encounter Books.

Rebuilding the Godly Foundations (5)

Therefore thus says the Lord God, “Behold I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, a costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed” (Isa.28:16).

There has always been a close correlation between the beliefs of a society and those of its political leaders. Political leaders are always listening for community attitudes, to ensure they are staying connected. That way they can make bold statements, confident they’ll have community support.

If the community is indifferent about a matter, you can bet that political leaders will be too. It takes a statesman to think differently, and they have been in short supply lately, around the world.

Statesmen are good, but there is something far better: a godly community. Unfortunately, because the Christian community has been seriously compromised now for generations, it has lost the ability to significantly influence the community. The notions of being salt and light in the community have been lost, and what Jesus clearly warned us about, has now come about:

You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men (Mat.5:13).

Christians must work hard in future to regain authority in the community, and there are no short-cuts to this. It begins with the law of God, along with Biblical responsibility and integrity in the individual, the family and the church.

None of this happens overnight. It requires individual, family and church change over generations, perhaps 50-100 years, and that’s what we have to be considering and working towards.

As long as the governments can kick the can, they will do so. As long as the voters accept the fact that the government is not dealing with the problems, but simply kicking the can, there’s no reason for the elected representatives to change their ways. The public accepts this; the elected politicians do it. It is the simpler way out in the short run. All that matters politically is the short run. The long run will take place on somebody else’s watch. Some other politician will have to deal with the problem. This is the thinking of incumbent politicians. They get re-elected on the basis of this worldview.[1]

The most foolish think we can do is think like incumbent politicians. We are the ones who must begin to think about the long-term future, planning and acting accordingly. If we don’t, our enemies will. They have been thinking and planning, while we have been negligent and asleep. Our negligence and sloth is now, returning on our heads. It has been now, for generations.

The people of God are supposed to have the answers, for the law of the Lord is supposed to come out of Zion (Isa.2:1-4). It cannot come from any other place, because every other place despises it.

I don’t expect the current lot of Christian leaders to have any part in this. They have been a part of the problem. They won’t be a part of the solution. Most probably, they will oppose every step towards Christian reconstruction and reform. The people who led us into trouble, will have no role in getting us out of it.

The Reformers, 400-500 years ago, had no help from the religious status quo. The status quo fiercely resisted them. Why would it be any different today? Thus the reforming leaders of the future will have to be prepared to be pioneers, apparently going against the tide.

This will require a lot of foundation building, much of which will be without much obvious support or encouragement. But this is the thing: it will have to be done by someone.

Is that what you want to be part of?

 

 

[1] Gary North (www.garynorth.com), “European Investors Ignore the IMF,” 17/7/2015.

Rebuilding the Godly Foundations (4)

The Lord also will be a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble; and those who know Your name will put their trust in You, for You, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You (Ps.9:9-10)

I had coffee recently with a Christian man whose life experience in recent years remarkably paralleled mine. Married and homeschooling with 3 children, he and his family had been attending what he thought was a conservative Baptist church in northern Brisbane, which took the step of nominating a woman for the position of elder, who was soon ordained. This is despite the fact that the notion of women holding positions of leadership or authority in the church is expressly prohibited by Paul (see I Tim.2:11-15).

When my friend challenged their pastor about what was happening, his response was significant. He said that Paul’s apostolic comments have to be considered from the perspective of Jesus. Jesus (he said), liberated women, so now there was equality of the sexes. Women elders? No problem.
A couple of weeks earlier, we’d been briefly attending another Baptist Church in Eatons Hill, where we live. At a Saturday Working Bee, I asked one of the pastors if the church had elders. Yes, it did, he said, and he rattled off the names of the 7 elders. Three of those names were females. Oh well. That was the end of that.

We’d seen something similar happen in 2013, in another big, supposedly conservative church in northern Brisbane. The Senior Pastor indicated from the pulpit that the church wanted to nominate some new elders for the congregation to consider, but that we wouldn’t be reading the relevant Biblical text this morning.

That was interesting. The relevant text (I Tim.3:1-7) indicates that overseers (or elders) are to be the “…husband of one wife…” (v.2). Then, we found that one of the people nominated for the position of elder, was a woman.

There were other issues. I’d had a major disagreement with the earlier Senior Pastor, back in 2002. He’d been repeatedly making reference that year, to the notion of God’s “unconditional love.” He made this statement to a congregation of 1,000: “God loves you-unconditionally.”
That triggered a yellow flag in my mind, so I went searching and reading: probably 50 hours. I concluded that the idea of God’s “unconditional love” is nonsense. If He loves all people unconditionally, how did He “hate Esau?” (Mal.1:3), or repeatedly harden Pharoah’s heart, before drowning him in the Red Sea?

More accurately, His love is an aspect of His covenant relationship with His own people, not all people. Even then, don’t go counting your chickens. The Bible says that

Saul died for his trespass which he committed against the Lord… and did not enquire of the Lord. Therefore He killed him and turned the kingdom to David the son of Jesse (I Chron.10:13-14).

Two relevant theological statements are:
1. Election is with a view to function.
2. Disobedience leads to dispossession.

I’ve concluded one thing. The leadership of the modern church is walking away from the Bible, in droves. The authority of scripture is not merely being questioned; it’s been discarded, years ago. Naturally this is disappointing, but after so many years of observing it now, I’ve stopped being upset about what is now, a fact of life.
An American wrote this recently:

I went with a friend recently to her local Episcopal Church. I could not recognize it (from when we were kids). Her church is led almost exclusively by women. The rector, bishop, almost every post, is filled with a woman. No worries there, but still very different from when we went to our childhood church long ago. The current rector, the past rector, the future rector, all are women…

Women seem to fill almost every leadership role…The emphasis in my friend’s California Episcopal church is focussed on gay rights. During the two services I went to, there were prayers of joy about the Supreme Court decision… I guess I expected to see “some” women, but not close to 100% women in all leadership roles.

When the leaders of the flock of God are wolves in sheep’s clothing, the flock of God has to either choose new leaders, or get out. There is no other legitimate option.
Now, the church is being severely challenged by the issue of homosexuality. And those church leaders that have already caved in on other fundamental issues relating to the authority of scripture will probably do the same on this one. Why wouldn’t they? People are generally consistent. If they fled the field of battle on one basic issue, they’ll do it again on the next one.
When King Saul proved to be a disaster, God didn’t wait long. He said to His prophet Samuel,

How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and go; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have selected a king for Myself among his sons (I Sam.16:1).

Conclusion: I’m not interested in trying to prop up corrupt, dying institutions. It proves to be an utter waste of time. Jesus said, “Let the dead bury the dead.” I’d much rather go looking for where the faithful saints are. I know they’ll probably be in some ignored, out of the way place, looking after sheep like David was, or in the cave of Adullam with a motley crew (I Sam.22:1-2), but that’s OK. That’s pretty normal. That’s where reformation generally starts.
What about you?

It is better to be humble in spirit with the lowly then to divide the spoil with the proud (Prov.16:19).

Rebuilding the Godly Foundations (3)

                   Conviction vs. Preference

…Let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up (Dan.3:18).

But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).

The men who uttered these statements, held Biblical convictions about how they ought to behave. Holding Biblical convictions and acting on them got them into trouble. They knew it would get them into trouble, but they acted on those convictions, anyway.

This is what men and women in the Bible did. When Abram heard that his nephew Lot had been kidnapped, he acted on his convictions. He took his life in his hands, and went and fought, and rescued Lot (Gen.14:12-16).

But there was a lot more to Abram’s convictions, than just being willing to put his life on the line for a relative. That was physical courage, but God requires of us much more than that. When the king of Sodom said to him, “Give the people to me and take the goods for yourself” (Gen.14:21), Abram responded with a statement that the modern church steadfastly ignored:

I have sworn to the Lord God Most High, possessor of heaven and earth, that I will not take a thread or a sandal thong or anything that is yours, for fear you would say, ‘I have made Abram rich’ (Gen.14:22-23).

Refusing money or property that shouldn’t be taken requires convictions, and a clear sense of priorities. Moses did similarly. When Moses saw one of his brethren being beaten by an Egyptian, he killed the Egyptian (Ex.2:11-12). But once again, this was more than a case of physical courage. The Bible tells us of Moses, that he

refused to be called the son of Pharoah’s daughter, choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward (Heb.11:24-26).

When shepherds came to drive away the daughters of the priest of Midian when they were preparing to water their flock, Moses “stood up and helped them [the daughters]” (Ex.2:15-21).  When Jesus witnessed the corruption of the temple of His era,

He made a scourge of cords, and drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen; and He poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables (Jn.2:15).

I’ve walked out of jobs three times, the first time being 1986. I was working in a really good Christian school in the Blue Mountains of NSW, where I’d been since 1981. But through the course of the year, I formed the conviction that my days there were coming to an end, that something else was coming up and I needed to leave. The school closed at the end of 1987.

In 1987, 900 hundred kilometres to the west, in Mildura, Victoria, I walked out of a service station job, when the boss wanted his staff to sell cigarette lighters with a naked girl on them. I left, and God provided another job immediately.

In 2005, I walked out of a well-paid educational position in Brisbane, because I’d formed the attitude that the management had become disingenuous with clients, compromising Biblical ethics in their pursuit of the vast sums of government money available.

Did those decisions cost me? Sometimes they cost me a lot. Am I sorry about any of those decisions, now? No.

Political leaders have sought to control the church, at least from Abram’s day. Little has really changed much. Political leaders want to extend and secure their power, and they don’t appreciate community rivals, whoever they may be.

When confronted by Moses and Aaron, Pharoah declared,

Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I do not know the Lord, and besides, I will not let Israel go (Ex.5:2).

But the modern church is a confused church. It’s been that way for well over a hundred years. It’s confused, firstly because of its dreadful theology, leading to all manner of false doctrine, ideological aberration and practical shallowness. These four things have led directly to one significant, deadly outcome: the church has been easy game for political manipulators. It’s forgotten it’s supposed to hold Biblical convictions, and act on them.

Like most successful twentieth century political leaders, Hitler was a master political manipulator. He knew how to get around the church of Germany. In fact, the church made it easy for him, because the Lutheran and Catholic churches (which were predominant in Germany), were State churches, funded from taxes. They didn’t understand that conviction and preference are two, vastly different things; thus they were compliant. They only knew this:

He who takes the king’s shilling, does the king’s bidding.

Hitler despised them, but he was politically shrewd and wanted their support. Of the German Protestants, Hitler said to one of his aides,

You can do anything you want with them. They will submit…they are insignificant little people, submissive as dogs, and they sweat with embarrassment when you talk to them.[1]

Anyone who thinks that this was merely an aberration of Nazism is making a mistake. Hitler in his manipulation of the German church merely followed on from Bismarck, 50 years earlier. It’s normal now, all over the West.

The fact is, the church wants money, and it wants its people to get money. Where it comes from is rarely the point. So, if governments hold out wads of cash for Christian families in the form of some kind of Social Security payment or educational grants for “Christian” schools, what could be wrong with that? This short-sighted attitude leads directly to the political manipulation that Hitler utilised.

Money is not evil, but where it comes from is the critical factor. Modern governments want to control the electorate with money in the form of electoral bribes, and everyone’s used to it. It’s the new normal, but it’s manipulative and evil.

In the mid-1940s, the Labor Party in Britain decided to create a system of State-financed national health care. They knew that they would not readily gain cooperation from the private physicians of Britain. So the Labor Party created a plan. First, they made it illegal for non-participating physicians to sell their practices upon retirement, thereby extracting a major capital tax from the physicians. Second, they offered relatively high salaries (for the post-war years) to all participating physicians. Third, they offered high positions in the new, compulsory system to the leaders of the British Medical Association. Nye Bevan, the Labor Party’s master political strategist, who served as Minister of Health, promised Party leaders that the Party would gain the support of the medical profession’s leadership. “How?” he was asked. His answer shall ring down through the ages: “We shall stuff their mouths with gold.” So the Labor Party did, and the medical leadership capitulated, just as Bevan had predicted.1

Whenever the church becomes ambivalent about money, it has exposed itself to compromise and corruption, and this has always been deadly. A compromised church is a silent church, and a silent church is always ripe for judgment. Can you imagine Moses accepting a golden payoff from Pharoah, Elijah being paid by Ahab, or John the Baptist being silenced by Herod with gold?

Political leaders think, “This is how you do it. Throw money in front of them. That’ll fix ‘em.” But as The Animals sang, fifty years ago,

We gotta get outa this place, if it’s the last thing we ever do. We gotta get outa this place, girl there’s a better life for me and you.

The answer is not (generally) to leave the country. It is to understand that a game of cat and mouse is being played, and we’d best stay out of it. We have to do what godly people have been doing for thousands of years, when political leaders seem to hold all the political and legal aces: we hold to our Biblical convictions, and follow our own plan.

We must be careful to adopt the long-term strategy of the early church. They did not rise up against the Roman legions. They did not become guerillas. The Jews did, and they were scattered, becoming an identifiable minority to be persecuted throughout the Roman Empire. The Christians adopted a different strategy, although suffering intermittent persecutions-a strategy of avoiding a frontal assault on Rome. By 313 A. D., the Christians triumphed; a non-pagan Emperor came to power. [2]

Conclusion:

Money in the hands of evil people is sometimes a lure dangled before believers. It’s especially challenging when those evil people are political leaders. But Abram didn’t fall for it, neither did Moses, and neither did Jesus.

One of the ways the godly foundations of the church must be re-laid, will be by the church asserting its independence again, turning away from all forms of illegitimate taxpayer funding. And when we renounce his thirty pieces of silver, Caesar won’t be able to control, manipulate and silence us.

Perhaps then by God’s grace, light will begin to shine on our path, again.

One generation shall praise Your works to another, and shall declare Your mighty acts (Ps.145:4).

[1] Quoted in William Shirer, “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich,” 1968, p.329.

[1] Gary North, (Ed.,) “Tactics of Christian Resistance,” 1983, p.146-147.

[2]  Gary North, (Ed.,) “Theology of Christian Resistance,” 1983, p.xvi.

Rebuilding the Godly Foundations (2)

Your Name, O Lord, is everlasting, Your remembrance, O Lord, throughout all generations (Ps. 135:13).

We make a big mistake as believers, if we centre the purpose of God in our lifetime. Our lifetime is certainly important to us, but God has a far greater time-frame in mind than the few years on the planet that we’ll have.

This means that we have to think about those years when we certainly won’t be here. We won’t be around, but our children and our grandchildren will. We can’t live their lives for them, nor should we try. But what we can do is help prepare the next generations of God’s people for faithful service of Him.

For this, homeschooling presents us with a great opportunity, and more. We can fulfil our obligation to the Lord to use our time productively, with the next generations in mind.

But when the first digit on your age changes as many times as mine has, you realise that statistically, there can’t be a lot more of these. We simply run out of time, run out of life.

On my office wall, I have a photo taken of the property where I grew up, near Cowra in the central west of NSW. In the foreground is a mob of sheep, and five hundred metres back is my home till I was 18. Another five hundred metres back, is the home my grandfather built around 1910, where my father (the youngest, born in 1918) and his siblings grew up. The last of my father’s generation died in 2000. Now, the property is owned by my cousins and their sons. Life moves on, to the next generations.

Abraham was the first of his family to be called of God. He sojourned in the promised land, knowing that God had promised it to him, but not just yet. For God said,

I will give it to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojourning, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God (Gen.17:8).

Abraham and Isaac both lived in tents, dug wells, and built altars to the Lord. Some family traditions are futile, but not these ones. When you have lots of livestock (Gen.13:2) and dependent families (and Abraham must have had over 1,000 people-see Gen.14:14), a good supply of water is critical. But Isaac’s well-digging was fiercely contested by the Philistines (see Gen.26:12-25), because they were envious of him.

Moses was called by God to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, but it was Joshua who led them into the land. And what was the centrepiece of God’s encouragement to Joshua? Faithfulness to the law of God.

This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success (Joshua 1:8).

David had it in his heart to build a temple for God, and that was good. But it wasn’t his task- it was Solomon’s. All David was supposed to do was prepare for it, by assembling the raw materials for its building.

David was a great man, but Solomon, who seemed initially to show great promise, ended up in compromise and idolatry (I Kings 11:1-13). Though God had appeared to him twice, he frittered away his great inheritance, influenced by hundreds of foreign, pagan wives: “…the foreign women caused even him to sin” (Neh.13:26). In this, he did what his father had actually initiated: he married lots of wives; something God’s law (Deut.17:14-17) specifically forbade Israel’s kings to do.

This much is clear: the next generation of God’s people either builds on the past successes, or abandons them.

Everyone has to pass the baton, sometime. But what we must do as well as we can, is make those preparations for others who come after us, even while they are children.

This requires some things. It requires that we have faith in God, that He will lead and keep our successors just as faithfully as He has led and kept us. If we leave something of worth behind, they will have something to build on.

The first thing to leave for our children is a godly example. This aspect of leadership is a prominent theme in scripture.

It is a show of false modesty for a parent to say, “Well, my role is not a very important.” You are important, because you will spend a significant portion of your adult years modelling a lifestyle to your children, and then perhaps your grandchildren. Saying, “I don’t model anything,” is not facing the facts; you may not deliberately do so, but it will just happen in the day to day affairs of home and family, as others observe your speech, attitudes, behaviour and decisions.

Godly Gideon said to his three hundred men, “Look at me and do likewise. And behold, when I come to the outskirts of the camp, do as I do” (Judges 7:17).

Even evil leaders understand the importance of leadership. Abimelech said to his followers, “What you have seen me do, hurry and do likewise. All the people also cut down each one his branch and followed Abimelech … (Judges 9:48-49).

Leadership by example is God’s way. The Bible says that “…God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Ro.5:8). Jesus commanded us to “take My yoke upon you and learn from Me…” (Mat.11:29), and He also said that “when he [the good shepherd] puts forth all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice” (Jn.10:4).

When Paul explained to Timothy the requirements of an overseer (see I Tim.3:1-7), implicit in his description is that the overseer is to be an example to those he leads, while Peter plainly says that the elders are to be “examples to the flock” (I Pet.5:3).  Paul said, “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.4:6). He also said, “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ” (I Cor.11:1).

Conclusion:                                                                                                                             Everyone godly person leads with the hope and prayer that those who come after them will follow the Lord, and build on the useful foundations laid before them. We cannot ensure this will happen. But this we know: God wants to lead successive generations.

…Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he crouched down on the earth and put his face between his knees. He said to his servant, “Go up now, look toward the sea.” So he went up and looked and said, “There is nothing.” And he said, “Go back,” seven times. It came about at the seventh time, that he said, “Behold, a cloud as small as a man’s hand is coming up from the sea” (I Kings 18:42-44).