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Building up believers and the New Testament church

Education of Children

The Influence of the World

Probably the greatest arguments against using the public school system to educate our children are its worldly philosophies and low morals. Coupled closely with this is what is called "peer pressure" from other children. Are these valid reasons to never use the public school system?

In answer to this question, I would like to ask one key question: How much influence do parents have with their children? My answer is "as much as they want to have." The main reason some parents are not able to contradict the philosophies and standards of the world is that they themselves do not have standards which are based in God; thus they are not able to communicate those same standards to their children. God said that He knew Abraham, and that he was able to "command his children."

Can we command our children? Have we built such a relationship with them that they trust us and our judgment whether they understand or not? Will they do our will, desiring to please us above all else? The ability to do this does not depend on the amount of time we are with them, but rather on our relationship with them. Do our lives command their respect? No matter what educational system we choose, parents still hold the deciding factor. If the parents do not control, it is because they have chosen not to control, not because of other influences in their children's lives. If we are alive to God, the example of our lives and the life of God flowing through us will dominate.

The philosophies of this world that our children face will be only a "laugh," if the children have seen God in us. The problem many times is that our children have not seen the power of God in us. They have only heard religious philosophies regarding what they should believe. They have seen a form of godliness which denies the power of God. Are we showing them a living God in our lives, or a dead theology about God? Do they see prayer answered? Do they see lives that match our words? If they do, our lives will dominate even if we see them for only a few hours a week. Have we taught them at an early age to obey even when we are not around? If we have, they will obey when they face their school friends.

I am not saying that we will not experience conflict, because we will. But we do not need to fear the devil (he is defeated) and we do not need to fear the world (we need to be wise). We do need to fear God, and if we do, then we will obey. Many Christians pay tuition money to send their children to "Christian schools" to escape the world, and then allow the world into their homes through the television, which in the form of entertainment brings far more detriment into their lives than the public school ever could. As parents, we do control the environment of the home, and the home sets the course of the life.

The question of morality is very similar. If we have done our job in training at home, our children will have our moral standards. They will not attract the sinners of this world, and every new situation they face will be brought to us for direction. We cannot do this without a close relationship, however, and that is built at home under the direction of God. There are some places in the world where children are forcibly taken away from the home at the age of seven. Could the power and wisdom of God stand, to keep our children there? Most of us do not face anything close to this, yet we have available to us the power that raised Christ from the dead. Are we channels of God, no matter what the educational structure?