Sep
16

On Watching Out for the Pork

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Here is an article from the blog at DiscoverChristianSchools.com. The author reminds us of the high priority of giving our children a Christian education. In the midst of many secular schooling options, Regents Academy stands alone as the sole K-12 Christian schooling option in the Nacogdoches area.

It is always good to stop and consider the high calling of Christian education.

You Have to Watch Out for the Pork on Thursdays: The Trouble with Being Sheltered from Reality, by Mark Kennedy (this article has been slightly edited for length)

My childhood friend Bill grew up to be a respected and successful bank executive – a man who occasionally helps financial institutions beyond our borders. A few years ago while consulting for a bank in Dublin he made his temporary GHQ in a small hotel that boasted a dining room for its guests. On a Thursday evening he ambled down to this quaint eatery for a taste of Celtic cuisine not suspecting the violent conflict that would arise later in his stomach.

“I was sick all last night after eating in your restaurant!” he told the manager the next morning. “Well, what did you have for dinner?” “Roast pork!” said Bill. “Ah yes,” replied the manager philosophically in a lilting Irish brogue. “You have to watch out for the pork on Thursdays.”

You can imagine the questions in my friend’s mind after his initial shock wore off. Perhaps foremost was “Why didn’t someone tell me?!?” Sheltering someone from reality can be dangerous. And sometimes the consequences can be much more serious than a minor case of food poisoning.

Consider the effects of an education that intentionally shelters students from the most essential realities about life and living – a secular education where the daily presence of the living God is ignored and the authority and guidance of scripture is dismissed – an education that edits out the creator and sustainer of the real world.

It’s not that a secular education necessarily speaks out against the God of the Bible or openly denies the authority of the Scriptures. It simply remains silent about them. And that’s the problem. If a student from a Christian family receives a consistently secular education, how surprising can it be if he concludes that God can’t be very important? “After all, they never talk about Him at school,” he might reasonably say to himself – and his logic would be pretty hard to refute. He got the message that silence implies.

Robert Louis Stephenson expressed it plainly: “The cruellest lies are often told in silence.” So when important, even vital truths are withheld from people who desperately need to hear and experience them, Stephenson says it is a cruel deception.

The silence in secular education has implications for the way children learn, believe, think and face life’s challenges. When students are sheltered from God’s reality, they are vulnerable to the deceptions Paul warns about in Col 2:8 “See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.” Philosophies produce actions, and actions produce consequences.

So it should be no surprise that sex education that ignores biblical standards produces ever growing rates of sexually transmitted diseases, abortions and accompanying psychological problems; that a purely mechanistic and evolutionary view of humanity convinces some students they are worthless genetic accidents so that suicide becomes a reasonable option; and that personal troubles for which secular minds have no real answers cause some students to turn to illicit drugs in a hopeless attempt to escape. The world of drug and alcohol abuse and promiscuous or perverse sexuality is so often a false refuge for people who have not been equipped to deal with the real world.

In Christian schooling we don’t shelter students from reality. We prepare students by telling them the whole truth about the real world and by honoring the presence of the source of all truth and by teaching future generations about his standards for living. As the Psalmist says, “We will not hide them from their children; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power and the wonders he has done.” Psalm 78:4

In the early 1990s after Russian Communism collapsed I found myself on a team of North Americans instructing hundreds of Russian educators about how to teach the Bible to Russian public school students. Evgenity Kurkin of the Russian Ministry of Education explained why we had been invited to do that, “Seventy years ago we closed Him [God] out of our country and it has caused so many problems in our society we cannot count them. . . . We must put God back into our country, and we must begin with our children.”

And what about the future cost for North American students, especially those from Christian homes, who have been sheltered from the realities that matter most for living now and for the life yet to come?

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