God’s Method for Education: Choosing Curriculum – Part 3

As I have been working on my series how to choose a curriculum, I’ve composed, but not posted a series of posts speaking about several different, popular methods of home education.  These may still be posted at some point in time, but as we thought and prayed we realized that it is much more important that we look at the method of education that is revealed to us in God’s Word.

We believe that whatever God commands in His Word in regard to  education (or anything else for that matter), Christians are obligated to obey.  What Christians are not obligated to do is to take our opinion or interpretation of God’s Word and adopt them as their own.

Does God tell us how to educate?

All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;  so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. ~ 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (emphasis mine)

If you believe that God requires people to be educated, then you must also believe that God’s Word equips and prepares us to educate.  The best method for educating children will not be found apart from God’s Word.

Who does God command to educate children?

And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. Eph.6:4

And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates. Deut.6:7-9

For I have chosen him, so that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice Gen. 18:19 (God’s inspired explanation for choosing Abram to be the Father of His chosen people.)

My son, hear the instruction of thy father, And forsake not the law of thy mother. Proverbs 1:8

My son, do not forget my teaching, But let your heart keep my commandments; Proverbs 3:1

Hear, my son, the instruction of a father, And attend to know understanding: For I give you good doctrine; Forsake ye not my law. Proverbs 4:1-2

Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes saw, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life; but make them known unto thy children and thy children’s children; I will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children. Deut. 4:9-10

My son, observe the commandment of your father And do not forsake the teaching of your mother; Proverbs 6:20

Give ear, O my people, to my law: incline your ears to the words of my mouth. I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old: Which we have heard and known, and our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done. For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make them known to their children: That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children: That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments: ~ Psalm 78:1-7

When it comes to children, God clearly commands parents to teach, instruct and train them.  God also gives responsibility for education to church leaders.  However, this teaching and instruction is almost** always within the context of the family or discipleship of adults.

**We can not think of any prescriptive teaching where this instruction comes outside of these contexts, but are always open to where we have missed important Biblical teaching.

What are parents to teach their children?

It doesn’t seem that there is much disagreement in Christian circles on what the Bible requires parents to teach their children.  It seems the disagreement comes on the who and the how, so we’ll hit this briefly.

I’ve posted before about the key themes in the Book of Proverbs and how it is a Christian’s manual for education.  It is a book inspired by God and dedicated to a father’s instruction to his son.  “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, fools despise wisdom and instruction.” ~Proverbs 1:7.   And a summary of what parents are required to teach their children in Deuteronomy 6 “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.”

How does God command parents to educate their children?

The Deuteronomy 6:7-9 passage is one that is most clearly prescriptive:

And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.

and we see this born out elsewhere in scripture:

That this may be a sign among you, that when your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean ye by these stones? Then ye shall answer them, That the waters of Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD; when it passed over Jordan, the waters of Jordan were cut off: and these stones shall be for a memorial unto the children of Israel for ever. ~Joshua 4:6-7

When your son asks you in time to come, saying, ‘What do the testimonies and the statutes and the judgments mean which the LORD our God commanded you?’ then you shall say to your son, ‘We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt, and the LORD brought us from Egypt with a mighty hand. ~Deut. 6:20-21

When your children shall ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean these stones? Then ye shall let your children know, saying, Israel came over this Jordan on dry land. Joshua 4:21

And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What mean ye by this service? that ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of Jehovah’s passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshiped. Ex. 12:26-27

The way that God commands parents to educate their children is to talk with them, to converse with them ALL THE TIME, to be available when their children have questions.  Parents should be instructing their children throughout the day, during their daily activities and in all the circumstances of life.

What about Jesus?

Some argue that we should look at how Jesus was educated as a pattern for how we should educate our children.  (I think that this idea may be born out of modern  ideas that education is the solution to bad behavior.  Jesus wasn’t prefect because He had a good education, He was perfect because He was God.)  Just as we wouldn’t use how others treated Jesus as a standard for how we should treat others, neither should we base our method of education on how Jesus was educated.  We should rather look at how Jesus educated others.

Not surprisingly, Jesus educated His disciples and those around Him in the pattern and method set forth in Deuteronomy 6 and other Old Testament passages.  Jesus taught and instructed as He walked by the way, as He ate, as He drank, as He lived.  He engaged people in discussion and conversation.  He was available to answer questions.  He developed relationships and used every opportunity, every circumstance to point people toward His Father, to challenge them and encourage them to more faithful, Godly living.

It is interesting to note that nowhere in Scripture do we see Jesus, the most qualified Bible teacher of all time, take children out of the context of the family, even for a short period of time, to teach and instruct them.  We do see parents bringing their children with them as they (the parents) listened to and sat under Jesus’ teaching.

The importance of relationship.

We hesitate to even mention this because we are not aware of chapter and verse that commands it, rather we believe that it is taught and demonstrated throughout all Scripture.  So examine for yourself whether this is true and if we are wrong then please ignore this section and let us know so that we can edit to speak Biblically.

God’s normal choice for intense teaching and instruction is within relationships.  God has a personal relationship with His people, He sends His Spirit to dwell in us and teach us what we need to know.  Jesus selected 12 men to have a close and intense relationship with Him during the years of His ministry.  God desires children to be taught and instructed within the context of familial relationships.  God commands all Christians to ‘make disciples’  of the nations.  Biblically, Christianity is relational and  teaching is relational.

So what is God’s method for education?

God commands parents to teach their children all about Him, His Words, His works and His world.  They are commanded to do this throughout the day and in all situations and circumstances as they walk through life with their children.   Throughout His earthly ministry, Jesus set the example for us by following the pattern for education that is given in Deuteronomy 6 as He instructed and taught His disciples and those who came to learn from Him.

What does this mean for us?

As Christians saved by grace we are not our own, we are bought with a price and we should seek to submit our will, thoughts and ideas to God’s Word, in this area as in all others.  As we look at and evaluate the many curricula available, we must measure it by God’s standard and weigh it against the methods revealed in His Word.

On Thursday, I’m going to be posting our family’s curriculum choices and you will probably be able to point to many things and say, “That does not fit with God’s method for education”.  You will be right.  We are still learning and growing.  We are still trying to figure out how to apply God’s standard to all of life.  We are still fighting against a world, both secular and Christian, that holds up standards for us that are not based on God’s Word and often we are still trying to measure up to those standards.  We do not know it all, so take what you can use and ditch that which doesn’t fit with God’s prescription.  If you have Biblical wisdom that you are willing to share with us, we thank you for taking the time to invest in us and to help us to grow in Godliness.

If you haven’t already, please read “Disagreeing with Love”.  We welcome discussion and dissenting opinions that are based on God’s Word.  We pray that God will use others who have better understanding of His Word to sharpen our understanding and help us to become more like Him.

Other posts about choosing a curriculum:

My heart and homeschool curriculum
Method counts – how you use what you choose
Our curriculum choices for 2010

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28 Responses to God’s Method for Education: Choosing Curriculum – Part 3
  1. Celee
    May 11, 2010 | 9:50 am

    I haven’t thought about how Jesus educated His disciples as applying to homeschooling. It is an interesting thought. Jesus, of course, did not have children, so we can’t see that example. And those He was educating were already largely educated and already productive in a trade. He completed their education certainly by showing them who He was and is. The gospel is without a doubt the most important part of any person’s “education”. For without it, all else is worthless.

    I just finished studying the book of Acts this year. I don’t think it’s an accident that God used Paul in such a mighty way. Paul had received a “top notch” education and at Mars Hill and other places in the book of Acts we see his astute arguments from Scripture and apologetics- using nature or whatever point of common ground he could find with his audience. Paul had perhaps the most famous “teacher” of the time. We don’t know much about his parents, though we do see some nephews appear a couple of times in Acts.

    I presume that Luke had some type of medical training that made him a doctor. You see his methodical reasoning in his “orderly account” in Luke and Acts that we know “the certainty of those things” he tells us about.

    All this by way of saying I agree that education needs to be taking place in the home all the time. That is Biblical. However, it seems that it is also Biblical to receive “outside” education, as well. I’m not saying we need to hand our kids over to the state. We don’t want to do that, that’s why we homeschool. I just think we should be careful when using the Bible to justify our homeschool positions.

    I’m going to think some more about how Jesus taught his disciples. Thank you for this thought.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Thanks for taking the time to comment.

    This post is not attempting to apply Christ’s training of His disciples specifically to homeschooling, but rather to show the validity of and a perfect example of the method that God lays before us in Deuteronomy 6 which is specifically directed to parents and children.

    It is also in no way my intent to imply that our children should not have a “top notch” education. I believe that a top notch education and an education dictated and guided by the Scriptures are one and the same. Our children should have “astute arguments from Scripture and apologetics- using nature or whatever point of common ground (they) (can) find with (their) audience.”

    I do not see that Scripture teaches (in the passages I quoted or elsewhere) that the there is never a time nor place for education outside of the home (per your example of Paul and Luke). I mentioned in the post that church leaders are given responsibility of instructing and teaching the body of believers and Christ obviously taught His disciples in a setting “outside” of the home. Also, in 1 Chronicles 15:22 it says,

    Chenaniah, chief of the Levites, was in charge of the singing; he gave instruction in singing because he was skillful.

    Perhaps you are assuming that I mean to apply the commands, that God directs toward children and parents, to older children and adults. That is not my intent. In this post I’m speaking about the Bible’s prescriptive commands in regard to parents and children as they prepare them to go out into the world and possibly receive more specialized instruction elsewhere as older children or adults.

    In regard to Gamaliel and Paul, the passage is in no way prescriptive, but rather a testimony of God’s faithfulness. Acts 22. Gamaliel was an unbeliever and Paul came away from his teaching and began persecuting the followers of Christ.

    [Reply]

  2. Virginia Lee
    May 11, 2010 | 10:49 am

    This post is so timely for our family. We have been reading Upgrade by Kevin Swanson and listening to a few sermons by Voddie Baucham that all tie in with this.

    Thank you for posting your experiences and what God has placed on your hearts as your family has journeyed through this process.

    It is such a major decision, but in some ways so simple. Listen to the Lord, Embrace His teachings, Obey them, and Teach them to our children. We make it all more complicated than it needs to be. I know I have been so distracted by what the world sees and thinks about education. And we are in the very beginning. =)

    It’s not easy to do, not easy at all. But the Lord’s strength is made perfect in our weaknesses as parents. That’s what we’re counting on!

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Thanks Virginia. I’m also reading “Upgrade” by Kevin Swanson, “Bound for Glory” and “When You Rise Up” by Sproul Jr. and just finished (again) “Recovering the Lost Tools of Learning” by Doug Wilson. Yes, I have homeschooling on the brain. 😉

    [Reply]

  3. Kelly
    May 11, 2010 | 2:27 pm

    What is your curriculum set out as? I saw that you were purchasing material for next year, and I was curious. This was my 1st year homeschooling my son (pulled out 1/2 through the school year from traditional school) and I made do with what I had, but I am selecting curriculum for next year and I would love to see what you use (being as I agree with your teaching principles being biblically based). 🙂

    [Reply]

  4. Kimberly @ Raising Olives
    May 11, 2010 | 2:32 pm

    Thank you Kelly. I will be posting all of our specific curriculum choices for this year (which will begin on Monday) on Thursday. 🙂

    [Reply]

  5. Kathi
    May 11, 2010 | 2:45 pm

    When You Rise Up was one of the most influential Homeschooling books we read.

    I often feel like I’m the only Homeschooling mom who drowns in all things curriculum. I agree with the likes of Beechick and Sampson (HOW). Less is more…we could do it with God’s Word and a Family Following hard after him alone. I really do believe that. But I’m still a newbie at both Homeschooling and Christianity (the real kind), so what do I know?

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    I also tend to drown in all the curriculum and agree with you that it could be simpler. However, I really struggle with that homeschooling peer pressure! 🙂

    On Thursday when I post what curriculum we’ll be using, you may understand what I mean.

    [Reply]

  6. Gretchen
    May 11, 2010 | 3:08 pm

    So are you saying it is wrong to send your child to public or private school or it isn’t if you are still teaching them Biblical principles?

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    This post is not about what I’m saying, it is hopefully about what God is saying. If my commentary has gotten in the way, that was unintentional.

    I don’t have all the answers, but a few things seem clear (and I’m very open to hearing where I’ve misunderstood, misrepresented or misinterpreted God’s Word). God commands parents to educate their children. He tells parents what they are to teach their children. He tells parents how they are to teach their children.

    Christ is His perfect life here on earth lived for us an example of how the method taught in Deuteronomy 6 should look.

    There is certainly a line where parents are sinning by abdicating their God-given responsibilities and while it’s quite clear on the extreme ends of the spectrum, I think that it is less clear as you near the middle ground. I do not claim to know for certain exactly where the line lies.

    Ultimately each parent is responsible before God for the education of their own children.

    I have posted our thoughts about Christians and government schools.

    [Reply]

  7. Celee
    May 11, 2010 | 11:30 pm

    Thank you for your response, Kimberly. I absolutely agree that a top education is not mutually exclusive to one based on Scripture. That is our goal in our homeschool- Scripture saturation! I certainly didn’t mean to imply that in any way. I’m in absolute agreement with you there! And thank you for your clarification that you weren’t referring to Christ’s example with His discples as prescriptive in terms of homeschooling per se. Not that I think that would be wrong, it’s just a new thought for me and I wasn’t sure how it fit. I just struggle with the practical ramifications of applying Deut 6 and the relational teaching to ALL of homeschool. For instance, would that make it wrong to ever use a textbook, even if you believe it is an accurate book? I know there are those who would argue using a textbook is not Biblical. (Especially if the book wasn’t written by a believer.) I see Deut 6 and Jesus’ example as primarily how we pass on moral truths. I never thought of it before in terms of ALL of what we teach. That’s the part I’m going to have to think about for a little bit. Thank you for challenging me to think differently about this.

    [Reply]

  8. Jenn
    May 12, 2010 | 7:50 am

    Still listening. And still so grateful to you for doing this. And praying for you, that God will guide your words.

    I have a question – do you have a post on how your family schools year round? I did a search and didn’t find what I was looking for. In the middle of all the sweeping changes I am trying to make, it occurs to me that part of my too-high stress level has to do with the yearly calendar and the ever-looming end-date by which everything is supposed to be finished.

    [Reply]

  9. Jenn
    May 12, 2010 | 7:51 am

    Forgot to check the “followup comments” box 🙂

    [Reply]

  10. Jenn
    May 12, 2010 | 8:05 am

    I want to leave one more comment, and then I *will* stop commenting! 🙂

    To me it seems that one of the main things you are saying is that deep and vital relationship with each of our children is absolutely necessary for true biblical education to take place in our homes. This thought clarifies things for me immensely. I have longed for things to be different in our homeschool, and have looked at so many different curriculum catalogs and read so many people’s opinions on the “best” education. I have thought, perhaps I need to read more to the children, or our school day needs to be shorter, or longer, or more fun, or whatever. But relationship is what I have been looking for. I have felt for a long time that the curriculum we have used for years gets in the way of developing relationships, but I didn’t realize that was what I was struggling with. I have told my husband multiple times that it just doesn’t work for us anymore but I haven’t been able to put my finger on why. That is it. That is what my heart is crying out for — room in the day to really live with my kids, to walk through life with them, to love them — each of them. Room to talk about the things that God is doing and has done. Room to talk! What a thought.

    I loved the quote from your pastor about geometry and Proverbs. Mulling that one over.

    Thanks again.

    [Reply]

  11. Angela
    May 12, 2010 | 11:57 pm

    I had partially drafted a response that might challenge a couple of your points, but I decided that perhaps the best thing to do is to ask for clarifications before I jump into that, perhaps unnecessarily.

    First, would you mind directing me to your blog entry where you’ve addressed the issue of Christian schools? The one you linked above seemed to only address public schools. Did I miss something??

    Also, I find it interesting that you so quickly dismissed the idea of using Jesus’ education as a model for educating our own children. How would you characterize/describe His educational experience?

    Thanks!

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Hi Angela,

    I haven’t posted specifically about Christian schools and the reason for that is found in my response to Gretchen above,

    There is certainly a line where parents are sinning by abdicating their God-given responsibilities and while it’s quite clear on the extreme ends of the spectrum, I think that it is less clear as you near the middle ground. I do not claim to know for certain exactly where the line lies.

    In our opinion Christians schools fall somewhere in that middle ground.

    I quickly dismissed the idea of using Jesus’ education as a model for educating our own children because the method of Jesus’ education is not recorded for us in Scripture. Anything that we do to figure out how Christ was educated requires us to go outside of the inspired and infallible Word of God.

    [Reply]

  12. Angela
    May 13, 2010 | 11:25 am

    Thank you for your response.

    In the interest of full disclosure, I should tell you that I attended a Christian school from K-12. I believe I had an extraordinary education and a peer group that was a total God-send (though I’m not under the assumption that you cannot have those things with a homeschool education — it’s just a commentary on my experience). What a blessing those years were, and my relationships with those other followers of Christ are still treasured and nurtured today, though I graduated 12 yrs ago. My husband’s education consisted of a little of everything: public school, then homeschool, then Christian school (with a one-semester International School in London, when his family moved there briefly). We are the parents of 4 children (so far). The two oldest (twins who’ll be 5 on Monday) will be starting Kindergarten in the fall at the Christian school where my husband and I attended. However, homeschool has been discussed as an option for our family, so it is beneficial for me to read blogs like yours and consider the opinions of yourself and your readers.

    The reason I asked for clarification about Christian schools is because it does, to me, seem to be an area in which grace should be applied. I think that’s what you’re expressing above, though briefly. Is that right? I was speaking to my husband about this post last night, and his take on your post was that the references you used to justify it as (almost) the only option for Christian parents (almost) leave out the message of grace that IS the good news of Jesus Christ. His ministry was saturated with the message that the *heart* is where our submission to Christ takes place. No doubt, our actions will follow, but there is room for grace in certain areas. There are some things which just aren’t prescribed in Scripture. And if I’m being honest, I’d respectfully say that I disagree with the way you’ve applied those Scriptures above as a mandate (almost) for homeschooling. I agree that the Deut. 6:7-9 passage comes closest to implying that, but the other passages are simply saying that when your children ask you things, be prepared to give them an answer. That’s not the same as saying your children should *only* have access to you to ask those questions. Even with the Deut. 6 passage, you’re interpreting it in such a way as to imply that kids who are educated outside the home cannot *also* be educated inside the home, and that seems to be an unfair characterization of non-homeschooling parents. My husband and I have often discussed the importance of being very active in our children’s education by enhancing it during non-school hours (when they are at home with us). Remember, too, that just because we may send our children to a Christian school during the day (I’m assuming that here because public school is not an option for my husband and me), that does not mean that those times of questioning will not occur with our children. In other words, those Scriptural examples of interaction with our children can and will still take place. So, here is where I think grace should apply: if we (and other parents who choose Christian school education) choose to entrust our children to people whom we truly believe will guide them in the Truth and answer their questions with a Biblical perspective, is that not permissible? I am willing to admit that there are drawbacks to having my children out of my physical presence for several hours each day, but I would submit that there are going to be weaknesses in any educational method that we choose because we are all simply fallen humans who make mistakes and have weaknesses. I’m suggesting that making this decision may not be one that is black and white Scripturally, but an issue of personal conviction by the Holy Spirit in the lives of parents. So that, those of us who do not homeschool should lovingly support and encourage the homeschoolers we know, and those who’ve been convicted that homeschooling is right for their families should allow grace for their fellow believers who’ve not been convicted in that way. Does that make sense?

    And in regards to Jesus’ education, I have not found specific information about that in Scripture either. However, I’ve heard some say that simply the fact that He was regularly called “Rabbi” implies there was a formal education, aside from the education He surely obtained from living with His parents (though, I admittedly don’t know much about the Jewish educational system and what that would have looked like practically speaking). So, it sounds like we agree that we simply don’t know exactly how He was educated. I suppose my purpose in asking is just to point out that it really wouldn’t have mattered what style of education He received. He’s an omniscient, omnipotent God who would have been the same God no matter what. So, if that’s the case — and if you believe that homeschooling is (almost) *the* only pattern clearly laid out in Scripture for us all to follow, then why not just have Jesus very obviously homeschooled by Mary and Joseph to make it all clear to us that that’s the way we must go?

    Please know, Kimberly, that I’m hesitating somewhat before I post this reply because I do *not* intend to discourage or belittle you, nor do I hope to communicate disrespect to you. I can tell you that, during the short time I’ve been reading your blog (a few months, probably), I’ve greatly enjoyed your writings, and I will continue to do so. I also know that it is sometimes difficult to communicate in writing since we don’t have the advantage of tone of voice and non-verbal communication to assist in relaying emotion. I hope it is understood that this is just a loving challenge to administer a bit more grace toward your brothers and sisters in Christ who may be convicted differently than yourself and your husband.

    By the way, yes, we do believe in absolute truth for things that are undeniably clear in Scripture. And then there are, as you mentioned above, those gray areas. The difficulty between Christians often arises when we disagree about which areas are gray, huh? (So sorry this is the longest comment ever)

    In love,
    Angela

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Thank you Angela for your kind response. My previous response was indeed meant to convey grace. We are responsible to obey God to the best of our ability and understanding as we educate our children and you are responsible to obey God as you educate yours. I agree with you that Christians should choose and be actively involved in a Christian education for their children.

    As far your statement, “then why not just have Jesus very obviously homeschooled by Mary and Joseph to make it all clear to us that that’s the way we must go?”

    Even if God’s Word told us that Mary and Joseph homeschooled Jesus, that would not make it clear that Christians should homeschool. It would merely be an example of an educational choice that was made by Mary and Joseph, sinners saved by grace. In order to know what God requires of us in regard to our children’s education, we must turn to the commands of Scripture. While Biblically recorded historic passages can give us insight and example, we should look to the prescriptive passages of Scripture to interpret them.

    The purpose of this post is to encourage Christians to consider what the Bible says about the education of children. For that reason, although you seem to think otherwise, I purposefully did not interpret or make applications of the passages quoted. Interestingly several of the points that you claim that I’m making, I’m not. (i.e.”children should *only* have access to you (parents) to ask those questions” and “Even with the Deut. 6 passage, you’re interpreting it in such a way as to imply that kids who are educated outside the home cannot *also* be educated inside the home” . I did not say these things and not only that, they are statements with which I would absolutely disagree. 🙂 ) Perhaps you are assigning to me something that you are getting from the Scripture quoted? If I have in any way misrepresented, misquoted or omitted Scripture that is prescriptive to the education of children, I would ask that you point that out so that I can change my post to more accurately reflect the commands of God.

    Now, let’s go back to the Scriptural commands for education in Deuteronomy 6:7-9

    Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

    and Eph. 6:4

    And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

    I encourage you to read these passages again (along with the many passages in Proverbs) and ask yourself what God is saying to us. Wouldn’t you agree that the primary application of these passages is that parents/fathers should educate their children in the times, places and manner described and that parents choosing to partially delegate some of this responsibility to others would be a derived or secondary application? When parents are honestly seeking to apply these passages we should always exhibit Christ’s love and grace to them and that is our intent.

    I appreciate your kindness and concern about discouraging me. I read your comment in the way that I believe it was written, as another mom who loves God, loves her children and wants to obey God and to provide the best possible education for her children. I hope that you will take my response in the same vein because that is how it is meant.

    [Reply]

  13. […] My heart and homeschool curriculum Method counts – how you use what you choose God’s method for education […]

  14. […] For more information on the biblical model of education and how it relates to the decisions we make, I encourage you to check out this excellent article at Raising Olives. […]

  15. Renee
    May 18, 2010 | 8:07 am

    Love love love this post! I been trying to put in word what you have just wrote in this post!!!!

    Would I be able to link this post to my blog please????

    Praise God for your willingness to teach from His word 🙂

    Have a blessed day

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Thank you Renee! I’d love for you to post a link to this on your blog, thank you for asking.

    [Reply]

  16. […] God’s Method for Choosing Education : Choosing Curriculum – Raising Olives What does the Bible say about educating our children and how can we apply that to our curriculum choices? […]

  17. […] God’s Method for Education […]

  18. Lucas
    August 4, 2010 | 9:34 pm

    I am curious about your thoughts regarding the following question based uipon the scriptures you mention. Do you intrepet Scripture to say no one but a parent should teach a child? For example in Sunday School? I know a few folks who believe (quoting pretty much the same Sciptures) that to allow a child to sit under anyone’s teaching but a parent (primmarily the father) is unacceptable. This is the veiw as I understand it of the family integrated church movement. I appreciate the work you do for others here.

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Lucas,

    We do not interpret Scripture to say that no one but a parent should teach a child. I’m uncomfortable with getting more specific than that. We believe Scripture is our ultimate authority and that the specifics are the responsibility of parents.

    We personally don’t send our children to Sunday School and are part of a family-integrated church. I can tell you, that at least in our experience, those in family-integrated churches believe that people outside the parents are permitted to teach children. Many of our members have their children in Christian schools.

    [Reply]

  19. Mary
    May 25, 2011 | 11:39 am

    I love this post 🙂

    [Reply]

  20. Magi
    January 24, 2013 | 12:23 pm

    Thank you for this! I came to this page through a link from your post about teaching children with different learning abilities. My first child took well to “mainstream” education methods and was able to sound out words and read easy books at age four. My second child is now four and a half and still doesn’t know her alphabet. Not even the song. (she IS good at math, though, and totally understands subtext,and puns so I know she’s very smart) I’ve worried and worried over her reading, and searched the internet for the method that will work for her. I hesitate to send her off to public school next year, where she will be given a label and looped into the special ed system. After reading this I’ve realized I need to ease up on the structured lessons and just work on our relationship, and let her learn to read when she’s good and ready. After all four isn’t really so old. I love the image of Jesus walking and talking and teaching through interaction.

    [Reply]

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