Saturday, March 6, 2010
America's Christian Heritage Concerning Education
There are ways to show America was founded upon Christianity and not just the mere use of human reason and experience(As one atheist blogger claims).The original educational system of the puritans was one area to show that America was not intended to be a secular nation. Author Gary DeMar wrote, “ In our own nation one of the first acts performed in the new World was the establishment of schools. The Puritan system was a copy of Geneva. The purpose of these colonial schools was to further the gospel of Christ in all disciplines”(Whoever Controls the Schools Rules the World, Page 24)In 1559, Reformer John Calvin founded the Calvin’s Academy to suit the purpose of furthering the gospel and applying God’s word to every aspect of life. Historian Charles Borgead wrote “Calvin had achieved his task: he had secured the future of Geneva…making it at once a church, a school, and a fortress. It was the first stronghold of liberty in modern times.” But the effects of the Geneva school were far reaching, “ It was not only the future of Geneva but that of other regions as well that was affected by the rise of Geneva schools. The men who were to lead the advance of the Reformed Church in many lands were trained in Geneva classrooms, preached Geneva doctrine, and sang the Psalm to Geneva tunes.” The Puritan system of education was copied after Geneva. Here is a section of Harvard’s Rules and Precepts of 1642, “Let every student be plainly instructed, and earnestly pressed to consider well, the maine end of his life and studies is, to know God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life, John 17:3 and therefore to lay Christ in the bottome, as the only foundation of all sound knowledge and Learning. And seeing the Lord only giveth wisedome, Let every one seriously set himself by prayer in secret to seeke of him Prov.2,3.” And over at Yale University it stated “Every student shall consider the main end of his study to wit to know God in Jesus Christ and answerably to lead a Godly, sober life” At the time of the founding of this country lived a man by the name of John Witherspoon. He was the only Pastor to sign the Declaration of Independence and was on countless committees in the founding of this country. He was also President of New Jersey College(Now called Princeton University). He taught James Madison(Who authored the Constitution), nine cabinet officers, twenty-one U.S. Senators, and numerous delegates to the Constitutional convention. At Princeton, students were expected to know the scriptures from Genesis to Revelation and read the Bible in the original languages. Gary DeMar wrote “At Princeton, even those who did not enter the gospel ministry were expected to know their “Bible from cover to cover”. The curriculum of Harvard, for example, emphasized the study of Biblical languages, logic, divinity, and skills in communication. One product of a well rounded Christian education was Cotton Mather. Kirk House wrote that Mather graduated from “Harvard at age 18 and joined his father in his Boston pastorate… Widely regarded as the most brilliant man in New England, he wrote 450 books and was a Fellow of the Royal society.” This is what is needed in America’s schools today, a Biblical, well-rounded education. It sets a moral agenda for society. After America declared her autonomy from the Creator of the Universe, it sets her own standard of morality because it is not based upon the Word of God. Today America is one "who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter."(Isaiah 5:20)America has traded life for abortions, sexual abstinence for premarital sex, and God's Word for humanistic philosophies. Let us pray for this nation so that it might repent from its immorality and return to the values on which it was founded on.