By: A. A. Baker
1. Are My Children Going to be Sheltered in a Christian School? Nothing could be farther from the truth!
First of all, in this day and age, it is next to impossible to shelter a child from the world. The indecency in dress and lifestyle as shown on billboards, in magazines, at the shopping center, or at the beach is much the same as that which men paid money to see at the burlesque house years ago. If it was sin then, it is sin today! The sin hasn’t changed. Unfortunately, we as Christians have become more tolerant to sin.
Secondly, if the Christian school is sheltering your child, then I say, praise the Lord! The Bible teaches that if we are going to rear good children and to train them right, then we should teach them to hate sin and we should shelter them from the world. You don’t have to allow your children to play with rattlesnakes or black widow spiders to find out that they are poisonous. By the same token, you don’t have to allow them to be exposed to all kinds of sin and worldliness in order for them to find out that it is wrong. The Bible tells them all that they need to know about sin and worldliness.
2. How Can I Afford to Send My Child to a Christian School? This reason many times appears to be a valid one. I had a friend who made this statement to me some years ago. He said, “Mr. Baker, we have family devotions at hour. We go to a good church. And I don’t believe public schools are doing that bad of a job with my children. After all, I can’t afford to send my child.” A few weeks later, this same man stopped me at church and said, “I used to say I couldn’t afford to send my child to a Christian school. Well, a few days ago, my third-grade son came home from school and said, ‘Dad, I don’t see anything wrong with evolution. As a matter of fact, I think I kind of believe it.”‘ His father said, “I realized right then and there that I couldn’t afford NOT to send my
child to a Christian school.”
In this day and age, we can afford almost anything that we want to afford. Many parents say that they cannot afford the tuition to send their child to a Christian school, but they can afford a new stereo. They can afford a new car; they can afford a new house; they can afford a new camper. What they need to do is to get their priorities straightened out! They need to be making an investment in the only things that they can take to heaven with them–their children, All those other things will go up in smoke one day, but you can spend eternity in heaven with your children.
Now, I realize that some folks do have to sacrifice in order to send their children to a Christian school. I also believe that it is well worth whatever sacrifice is necessary. A preacher in New York state once said this to is congregation in my presence, “What the Lord orders, He pays for. If you cannot afford to send your children, you get down on your knees and cry out to the Lord, and allow the Lord to supply your needs.” You can’t afford NOT to have your child in a Christian school!
3. Will My Child Have the Benefits of Public School Facilities and Programs? This reason appears to have the best interests of the child at heart. “I don’t want to send my child to the Christian school because they don’t have a marching band, they don’t have a gymnasium, they don’t have football, and they don’t have a lot of the other extras that the public schools have. I don’t want my child to be cheated in his education.”
Do you know what else we don’t have in the Christian school? We don’t have sex education. We don’t have drugs. We don’t have God-denying teachers. We don’t have textbooks that teach a humanistic, socialistic, communistic philosophy, How about some of those things that we don’t have in the Christian school?
Yes, it would be nice to have a band, to have a gym, and some of those other things, but they are extras. We concentrate on what is best. The Christian school can give our child a superior Christian education and out-produce the public schools hands-down any day of the week, You as parents had better place the emphasis on your child’s spiritual and academic training. The extras can come later.
4. My Child Doesn’t Want to go There, This question gives the child the responsibility for deciding whether or not to attend the Christian school. “Well, Johnny doesn’t want to go there, so I’m not going to make him,” We have raised a generation of Christian parents on this philosophy of allowing the children to call the tune, and it’s dead wrong! Where is the common sense? The Lord put parents in the home to “train up a child in the way he should go.” Our children are not miniature adults. They are children and they need to be taught. They don’t know what is best for them, and we as parents should determine what is best. We make the decisions–not the children.
5. I Don’t Like the Rules. The fifth question involves standards. “I am not going to send my child to the Christian school because they have unreasonable requirements there. Johnny is going to have to get his hair cut, and Susie will have to wear modest dresses. Besides that, they have homework every night.” My response to that argument is, praise the Lord for the standards. These very standards will help Johnny to be a man and Susie to be a Christian young lady. These Christian standards will be the making of our children.
I have found that many times Johnny and Susie are not the problem. The problem is Mom and Dad. Perhaps Dad needs to get a haircut, and Mom needs to dress more modestly. If they would get the problems straightened out in their own lives, there would be no problem with the children.
How about homework? Is there a place for that in this enlightened age? Yes indeed! A school is not a place to go for entertainment. Any red-blooded American boy would rather be out hunting or fishing than going to school. The purpose of the school is to make a child learn, to provide him with the discipline and educational tools to face life. Homework, among other things, helps us to prepare the child.
6. My Child Has a Christian Teacher in the Public School. Question number six goes like this: “I’m not going to send my child to a Christian school because, after all, he does have a Christian teacher in his public school.” Yes, there are some Christian teachers in the public schools. There are some godly teachers in the public schools, But can they give your child a Christian education? Absolutely not! The reason quite frankly, is because it is against the law! The Bible? You can’t teach that in the public school, Prayer? Can’t have that in the public school. God? Very difficult to talk about him in the public school. A Christian teacher you may have, but a Christian education you will not receive. The public schools can offer only one brand of education, and that is their own godless, humanistic approach to life.
7, Public School was Good Enough for Me–Won’t It be Good Enough for my Child? Question number seven involves this type of reasoning: “I went to a public school, and I turned out okay. If it was good enough for me, it is good enough for my child.” The answer to this objection is that the public schools have changed. Most parents or grandparents have not been in one in a long time, and they do not know what is really going on. What is more, the kids won’t tell them, because they don’t know they’ve changed.
I was speaking in a small town in Pennsylvania a few years ago. When I finished, a rather long-haired young man in the front row stood up, turned to the audience, and made this unsolicited comment: “I would like to cast my vote for a Christian school in this church. You folks don’t realize what is going on in our schools. Right here in our local high school sex, drugs, violence, you name it and it’s available if you have the price, and you can purchase it right in the hallways.”
I repeated this illustration in a small town in the South. When I finished, the pastor stood and addressed thirty or so teenagers who were sitting over on one side of the church auditorium. “If what Mr. Baker said is true about what is going on in our public schools, I would like for you to stand.” Without hesitation, all thirty of those young people stood. There were many parents who were quite surprised! Yes, at one time the public schools were good. Unfortunately, that is no longer true. They have changed, and we can no longer trust them to train our children.
8. We as Christians Shouldn’t Abandon the Public Schools. Question number eight is a rather pious one, and I hear it quite often. “I don’t want to abandon the public schools. As a matter of fact, Mr. Baker, if we take our Christian young people out of the public schools, we will have no missionaries in the public schools. After all, are we not ‘the salt of the earth’?”
My response: I owe nothing to public education. I pay taxes to support public education, yet I cannot trust them with my children. The Bible tells me as a parent to train up my children in the way they ought to go. The public school is not helping me to train up my children. Actually, they are tearing down almost everything that I am trying to build up in my home and in my church.
Secondly, I don’t buy this idea of having our children in the public schools as missionaries. You don’t take a child in third or fourth grade and send him to a mission field in Africa or South America. You must first train that child even as you would train a missionary. How can you become an effective missionary when you are being trained in a worldly atmosphere, in the world’s philosophy, using the world’s textbooks, taught by the world’s teachers?
Fortunately there are many parents who are sending their children to our Christian school, All of you have sacrificed and done without, in order to give your children a Christian education. You have been a great encouragement, for you have chosen the best part. You have made an investment in the lives of your boys and girls for eternity, an investment that will pay dividends throughout eternity. Christian education for your children is the best investment you will ever make.
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