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Chalcedon Staff:

Rev. R. J. Rushdoony (1916-2001) was the founder of


Chalcedon and a leading theologian, church/state expert,
August 2003 Issue #454 and author of numerous works on the application of
Biblical Law to society.
Receiving the Chalcedon Report: The Report will be sent to those who request it. At least once a year we ask
that you return a response card if you wish to remain on the mailing list. Contributors are kept on our Rev. Mark R. Rushdoony is president of Chalcedon
mailing list. Suggested Donation: $30 per year will cover only printing and mailing costs ($35 Canada, $45 and Ross House Books. He is also editor and chief of the
foreign — U.S. funds only). Tax-deductible contributions may be made out to Chalcedon and mailed to Chalcedon Report and Chalcedon’s other publications.
P.O. Box 158, Vallecito, CA 95251 USA.
Susan Burns is Chalcedon’s executive assistant and
Chalcedon may want to contact its readers quickly by means of e-mail. If you have an e-mail address, managing editor of the Chalcedon Report and Chalcedon’s
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The Purpose of Learning ................................................. 2 Talent-Based Education: ................................................ 16


By R. J. Rushdoony A Christian Perspective
Reclaiming Education ........................................................ 3 By Ian Hodge
By Mark R. Rushdoony A Biblical Approach to Student ................................. 18
A Tribute To Dr. R. J. Rushdoony For ........................ 6 Evaluation and Grading
His Contributions To Christian By Ronald Kirk
Education “What does it mean to you?” History as ............. 21
By Bill Graves a Tool of Covenant Evangelism
The Obscure Courthouse Gladiator .......................... 7 By Roger Schultz, Ph.D.
By J. Shelby Sharpe What About College? ........................................................ 23
America’s Most Important .............................................. 9 By Doug Dahl and Caleb Dahl
Battleground: Christian vs.
Secular Education If You Only Had a Few Years… ................................... 25
By Tom Rose By Greg Uttinger
Government Schools: Producing .............................. 11 Rewards of Homeschooling ......................................... 27
By Sandra A. Lovelace
What We Pay For!
By John E. Stoos Patrick Henry: Homeschooled .................................. 28
Christian Patriot
The Christian One-Room Schoolhouse: .............. 13 By Richard G. “Rick” Williams, Jr.
A Christian Alternative to
Government Schools The Islamization of Europe ......................................... 30
By Bruce Shortt By Samuel L. Blumenfeld

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FOUNDER’S COLUMN

The Purpose of Learning By R. J. Rushdoony


(Reprinted from The Philosophy of the Christian Curriculum [Ross House Books: Vallecito, CA, 1981], pp. 149-158)

I t is a deadly error on
the part of the
Christian school to as-
the facts?,” we are presupposing what
the facts are that we seek. Thus the
facts of the physical universe differ
There is a growing willingness to
acknowledge that divine revelation
is dynamic rather than static and
sume that its task is widely for a humanist, a Christian, that science may be the source of
similar to that of the and a Hindu. For the humanists, all new revelations of divine purpose.3
“public” or government factuality is a product of chance evo- They have no Christian conception
schools with the Bible lution: all facts are thus ultimately of “divine revelation” in this state-
added to it. There are no common sets meaningless, and their only reality is ment. Their ideas come largely from
of facts that are shared by both Chris- a physical one, and an irrational one. Teilhard de Chardin’s The Phenom-
tians and non-Christians. If we sim- For the Christian, all factuality is God- enon of Man (1959). While they avoid
ply reproduce the same facts, we re- created and the product of His eter- commenting about the future of or-
produce the same religion of nal purpose; all facts are thus totally thodox Christianity, their general
humanism as that of the state schools. rational, because the mind of God is tenor makes clear that they see little
But, some might object, can we not behind them, and their reality is thus place for it in man’s future:
agree that Columbus “discovered” more than physical and natural. For
the traditional Hindu, all factuality is The more fundamental question
America in 1492? As a matter of fact,
really illusion, because nothingness is posed by the prospect of addi-
we must dissent with the whole inter-
ultimate; all things are burdened with tional scientific knowledge
pretation of that event. For us as
Karma, and their goal is release from about nature and about man is
Christians the facts are very different.
what its effect will be on the sa-
Humanistic historians give us an eco- the illusions of this world into final
liency of religion. If there is
nomic motive, but Columbus had a nothingness. What we call facts is de- truth to the general theme we
very different goal. He was out to ful- termined by our faith. have been pursuing, there is the
fill the prophecies of Isaiah; his escha-
What Is Learning? possibility that no one will care
tology was postmillennial. The gospel
whether God exists or not be-
had to be carried to the far corners of What constitutes learning for us is cause he will become irrelevant
the earth. He also believed that some
also determined by our faith. Leonard to everyday existence. If what
“lost” tribes of Jews might dwell in the
tells us: can be attributed to God’s will is
unknown lands, and he therefore took
Learning itself is life’s ultimate made narrower and narrower,
along an interpreter of Hebrew on his
and if man’s accountability for
first voyage.1 A Christian motive was purpose. This assumption has his own actions is found to be
present in virtually all the explorers, grave implications. If it is true, more and more circumscribed,
Pizarro being a notable exception. anyone who blocks learning, es- religion seems destined to lose
Louis B. Wright, in God, Glory, and the pecially in a small child, is guilty much of its power to inform and
Gospel (1970) gives needed attention of an enormous crime. The guide the human condition.4
to this Christian motive in explora- crimes against humanity, like
tion, but none have yet studied its the causes men are willing to By “religion” the authors obviously
theological foundations. This Chris- fight and die for, do not appear mean Christianity; they themselves write
tian scholarship must do. The near all at once, absolute and sharply as religious men, as devout humanists.
coincidence of exploration and the defined. Crimes and causes For such humanists, learning will
Reformation is not an accident: both emerge gradually out of the clay be either for man’s sake, or for
have a common theological source. of human experience.2 society’s sake. Leonard speaks of
Facts and learning do not exist in a As a humanist, Leonard sees the learning for learning’s sake, but his
vacuum. There is always a context, subject matter of learning in human- view of learning is humanistic and a
and what that context is will depend istic terms. smorgasbord of individualistic and
on our religious faith and presuppo- collectivist standards.
sitions. No fact exists in and of itself. Glock and Stark see the new source
When we ask the question, “What are of divine revelation as science: — Continued on page 5 —

2 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


FROM THE PRESIDENT’S DESK

Reclaiming Education
By Mark R. Rushdoony

Apostle Paul’s Roman citizenship did were declared to be subject to God’s


M y f a t h e r, R . J.
Rushdoony, fre-
quently noted that cul-
not prevent him from being impris-
oned without charges for two years
laws, not laws unto themselves.
The Enlightenment was an 18 th
ture was religion exter- and eventually beheaded as a nui- centur y philosophical movement
nalized; it was the sance to the state. that represented a conscious move
outworking of religious Christianity opposed Roman back to the ancient Greek humanism
faith. In terms of this claims, but not by disobedience. and its rationalism. The effects of the
we can also note that education is Christians simply acknowledged Reformation had spread so far that
training in terms of a culture’s reli- Christ’s Lordship over that of Caesar. this counter-movement had far to go.
gious faith. Education is not only in They even borrowed the term “gospel” The Enlighten-ment’s early success
terms of truth, but in terms of as- from Rome, which had used it to de- was in Europe. The French Revolu-
sumptions (a faith) about how truth scribe the messianic coming to power tion and European rationalism were
is known. Education is not, and never of the emperor. The gospel was thus its fruits. The United States held out
has been, about facts or data; it is not just good news; it was the good much longer.
about perspective, understanding, news of the legitimate Lord and Sav-
and an orientation toward interpret- ior come into His Kingdom. Early America’s Roots
ing data. Education is dictated by the Christians went to their deaths rather
religious faith of the educator. A The United States owes its origins
than receive clemency by merely stat- to extensive religious migrations
changing faith alters meaning and ing “Caesar is lord.”
produces a new educational dogma in which began a generation after the
the classroom. Christianity survived secular Rome Reformation and which continued for
and its total demands only to have a several generations. The dominant
Liberty and Education religious Rome claim to be the center religious force in the early years was
of life and education. Religious Rome English Puritanism, which produced,
Much of the education of the West represented, as my father described it, arguably, some of the best applica-
has centered on the “liberal arts” cur- a “new humanism,” geared to ascen- tions of Protestant thought to society.
riculum. The word “liberal” comes dancy and control. Its scholarship re- Puritan thought controlled New En-
from the same origin as the word “lib- flected a return to Greek thinking in gland and had a strong influence, via
erty.” The “liberal arts” are, thus, those terms of Aristotle, not Scripture.1 Presbyterianism, in many of the other
branches of learning dealing with lib- colonies. Much later, America’s first
erty. Such a curriculum requires not The Protestant Reformation of the great Western migration (to the Ohio
only the definition of the nature of lib- 16th century was a radical break with River Valley) came from the descen-
erty, but also the more fundamentally Rome, but on more than just the doc- dants of these Puritan fathers. Insu-
religious understanding of why lib- trine of justification or the author- lated from Europe, America developed
erty is a worthwhile goal. A liberal arts ity of the Roman Church. The a very Protestant, scripturally-ori-
education, then, requires a religious Reformation was a stand by coura- ented culture. America’s nature as a
world and life view. geous men in terms of God’s revela- pioneering society established a more
tion of His Word in Scripture. The Biblically-based Christian culture
Liberty was virtually unknown in assumption that God had revealed than any in Europe. The United States
the ancient world. To the Greeks (and Himself to men changed not just a was, in effect, the high-water mark of
the Romans who imitated them), few ideas in the West; it transformed the Protestant Reformation. The ef-
education’s purpose was not liberty, the cultures it influenced. Modern fects of Enlightenment thinking had
but the serving of the needs of the science owes its origins to the Prot- become evident early in 18th century
state. Individual rights and needs estant Reformation. Technology was America in those who were well read
were subordinated to those of the the result of a world and life view that and influenced by its humanism, but
state. The so-called “rights” of the “de- man was to strive for dominion. others recognized its antithesis to
mocracy” of Athens were, in reality, Freedom from religious tyranny was Christian thought and rejected it. The
the privileges of its oligarchs. Even the applied in the political sphere; kings mass of American culture was little

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 3


influenced in the Enlightenment ra- Few objections were heard from tured. If it has, it is in trouble. I hope,
tionalism that swept Europe. Christians, except for occasional tardy rather, that it is currently still in its
America’s insulation from Enlight- calls to “reform” the public schools. growing pains, and that its matura-
enment thinking was not complete, Many Christian churches had bought tion is still well ahead of us. It has
and its resistance began to erode, into the Enlightenment’s rationalism come a long way, based on the faith
though slowly at first. Not too surpris- in the form of modernism. Even con- and dedication of many pioneers. Its
ingly, the opening was provided by the servative Christianity’s retreat into hope for the future is in continued
religious decline which began in old pietism and antinomianism was fol- growth.
Puritanism’s center, New England. lowed by its virtual wholesale adop- Christian education must return
Apostasy, in the form of Unitarianism, tion of a pre-tribulation, rapture education to the Reformation per-
took root there. Pietism and other eschatology. All that was left of Chris- spective that Scripture speaks to sci-
“spiritualized” forms of (or rather, tian culture was its traditional trap- ence, law, government, and all else.
limitations on) Christianity caused pings, which fell with little resistance When it has done that it must take
the church’s self-conscious retreat in rapid succession as the 20th century such disciplines to the next level, de-
from concern with culture, a trend progressed. In expectation of immi- veloping them with a conscious desire
that was readily apparent by the end nent rapture from the decadence of to bring them under the dominion of
of the 19 th century. Christians re- the world, much of American Chris- Scripture and its Lord.
treated to a self-defined enclave, and tianity saw Christian resistance or
counter-measures as themselves acts Christian education must go beyond
humanistic ideologies of various sorts teaching the Bible; it must make God’s
rushed in to fill the vacuum. of apostasy. “Thank God for all this
evil,” many repeated, “It means Jesus Word the touchstone of every disci-
Many of the ideas which challenged is coming back soon.” A great mass of pline. Christian education must go be-
the Christian faith and its American American Christians, who considered yond good theology (the study of God)
social structures were at war with one themselves conservative and Bible- to being theocentric (God-centered). It
another. That is to be expected. Sin and believing, refused to enter the fight must, therefore, abandon its antinomi-
rebellion are always destructive. Nature against secular humanism. anism and recognize all of Scripture to
(and natural law) was presented as an be God’s eternal law-word.
alternative to God and His law. Darwin The forces of humanism thus rap-
idly filled the vacuum after American Christian education must renounce
gave a supposedly scientific explana-
Christianity’s cultural retreat. A “social studies” as a discipline of secu-
tion of this naturalism but, in the pro-
counter-measure in the 20th century lar humanistic social engineering and
cess, destroyed nature as a source of
Christian schools, first begun by teach history. In doing so it must not
law by making it wholly controlled by
Lutheran and Dutch Reformed de- glamorize every evil civilization just
randomness. Nature was arbitrary,
nominations, began exploding in because it built monuments to its
which meant it held no law; law be-
numbers in the 1960s, fighting oppo- greatness. History books are full of
came a pragmatic creation of man. Lib-
sition from the state as well as estab- such nonsense. History is a battle be-
erty was, of course, subject to new
lished churches, some of which tween the Kingdom of God and the
definition. Liberty became a freedom
treated Christian educators as them- Kingdom of Satan. The manifesta-
from moral absolutes. Some of the
selves enemies of the gospel. tions of the former are seen in Scrip-
most prominent writers of the 19th and
ture and in His people of today; the
20th centuries began calling Christian-
What Christians Must Do representatives of the latter are legion.
ity itself the real enemy of freedom.
We can learn of the great ethical battle
When schools and families were found The advance of Christian education between the two Kingdoms, and our
to be bastions of Christian thought, it since the 1960s has been noteworthy. own standing therein, in the Kingdom
was deemed necessary to society that Unfortunately, the forces of pietism parables of our Lord.
schools be brought under the “progres- and antinomianism have reared their
sive” leadership of experts. Without a heads in many successful schools, Christian education has much
strong and applied faith in Scripture, some of which are content to be aca- work to do in science. It is not enough
America put its trust in politicians and demically compromised spiritual to reject evolution; we must reject the
educators who increasingly took con- safe-havens. Homeschoolers have led whole philosophy of naturalism
trol of education, first in teachers’ col- the movement for more radical reform which controls psychology, sociology,
leges, and eventually in every aspect of of education. It is time for both types anthropology, geology, etc. We must
curriculum and administration. of Christian education to advance the return to the understanding that cre-
America’s public schools went down reconstruction of Christian education ated modern science, the belief that
the road that ended in their becoming and, thereby, Christian culture. Chris- God’s creation can be understood be-
state schools. tian education in the U.S. has not ma- cause He is a God of law.

4 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


Christian education must take lan- cation and to pioneer more such ef- humanism. The failure of the church
guage beyond the mechanics of sen- forts in every sphere of life and began our problem. God has promised
tences, and teach communication as thought. We need self-governed, cov- that the gates of hell shall not hold
a gift of the God who created us, re- enant-thinking, future-oriented ser- against the advance of Christ’s King-
vealed Himself to us, and describes vants of God who will exercise dom. All that is required is that God’s
Himself in terms of words. It is not dominion in their own lives, families, people remain faithful to His Lord-
enough to go back to the standards of vocations, and communities. ship, and reject man’s quest to “be as
the 1950s, or 1930s, the 1880s, or any gods.” Christian educators are the
other period. We must, ultimately, Christian education needs to raise up
Joshuas and Calebs before the Prom-
seek to surpass those eras. This pro- a generation that seeks freedom in God,
cess may take several generations. ised Land — ready to move forward
not from God, one that sees the necessity
in terms of God’s Word. We need not
Christian education must be to- of personal dependence on Him and the
wander in the wilderness any longer.
wards a purpose. Providing a “spiri- interdependence of men under His law.
It is time to move forward and see
tually safe” environment is a defensive Christian education is the begin- God’s victory. By God’s grace, that is
and defeatist strategy. Children will ning of an historic watershed, which what shall happen.
only be safe if they are trained to be seems primed to do great things. First, __________
active warriors for the Kingdom of however, the Christian church must 1
R. J. Rushdoony, A Christian Survey of
God and His Christ. We need young renounce the retreatism that opened World History (Ross House Books, P.O. Box
adults who are determined to carry on the floodgates of secular humanism 67, Vallecito, CA 95251), chp. 14, “The New
the pioneering work of Christian edu- and even opposes, yet, any counter to Humanism.”

— Continued from page 2 — pers say nothing about this and other The ungodly live and educate in terms
horrors in black Africa. 6 The Christian of the great illusion propagated by the
A Humanistic View must condemn evil wherever it exists, tempter, that man is his own god, able to
including himself, because his yardstick determine for himself, in terms of his
In any case, a humanistic view of own man-made laws, what constitutes
education creates a set of facts alien to is not man but God and His Word.
good and evil (Gen. 3:5). For us, there is
God’s world and in conformity to man’s Everything that the state school no such problem: God’s law-word is our
goals. To illustrate, before the partition teaches is governed by an overriding standard, and the Lord alone is God. We
of India, Jawaharlai Nehru, in his world premise, that man can be served, not educate in terms of this reality.
history, had no desire to offend Mos- God. Man can be interpreted collec-
lems. As a result, in writing about the tively or individually, but, in any case, Thus, we cannot allow any element
massacre of Armenians by Turks in it is humanism. of humanistic education to govern our
Christian schools. Humanistic schools
World War I and earlier, he actually said
The Christian View belong to the world of antichrist, and
that “the truth” about the matter was we to the world of Christ our Lord. We
that, probably, the Armenians massa- For us, however, in the words of the have different Saviors, and different
cred the Turks! This flagrant lie is a kind Westminster Shorter Catechism,“Man’s plans of salvation. We have also a very
common to modern historiography. chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy different kind of education.
Desmond Stewart, in Life’s book on Tur- Him forever.” This must also be the goal __________
key refers to the massacres as a power of our education. We are called in Christ 1
Simon Ursenthal, Salts of Hope
struggle “between Turks and Armenians to be a royal and priestly people (Rev. (Macmillian: New York, NY, 1973), 171ff.
of the possession of Anatolian lands.”5 1:6). This means exercising dominion in 2
George B. Leonard, Education and Ecstasy
For humanists, in other words, facts every area of life and thought under (Delacorte Press: New York, NY, 1968), 216.
3
are what their personal predilections God. As prophets in Christ, we declare Charles Y. Glock and Rodney Stark, Reli-
the meaning of God’s Word for all of life. gion and Society in Tension (Rand
require them to be. Buchanan has called
McNally: Chicago, IL, [1965] 1971), 290.
attention to this aspect of current re- As priests, we bring all things to the Lord 4
ibid., 306.
porting on Africa. A riot in South Africa and dedicate them to the service of His 5
See Desmond Stewart, Turkey (Time, Inc.:
is a front-page story about the horrors Kingdom. As kings, we exercise author- New York, NY, 1965), 29.
of South African racism. In Ethiopia, ity and dominion in every sphere of 6
Patrick J. Buchanan, “Hypocritical Cover-
students are killed en masse by dynamit- thought and activity in the name of age,” in the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner,
ing, or by throat cutting, and most pa- Christ our King. July 4, 1977, A-10.

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 5


A Tribute To Dr. R. J. Rushdoony
For His Contributions To Christian Education
By Bill Graves
from the Court in which the Judge ing questions that allowed Rush to get
W hen I first met Dr.
Rousas John Rush-
doony, I was in awe of
stated that he would not hear any tes-
timony involving our nation’s Chris-
in the testimony we wanted concern-
ing our country’s religious heritage.
his great wealth of tian foundations. I then called Rush When the door was opened, Rush
knowledge and wis- and told him what the Court had or- drove through like a Mack truck. The
dom, and the way he ar- dered. I was stunned once again when Judge listened intently. As the ques-
ticulated both in such a Rush replied: “I think I should come tions kept coming, and as Rush an-
non-condescending way. Despite his anyway.” I naively asked what he swered each one in such a magnificent
brilliance, he made it obvious that he could say to the Court in view of the way, Dick, sitting in back of me, was
was not a master, but a servant. I was Judge’s order. I don’t exactly remem- so elated that he began pounding my
so flattered when he insisted that I ad- ber Rush’s response, but the implica- back. I was having great difficulty
dress him not as “Doctor” or “Rever- tion seemed to be that it was keeping a straight face as the plan un-
end,” but simply as “Rush,” which is something that I perhaps ought to get folded and worked so well.
how I will refer to him now. to work on. I did. I believe this story shows how well
My first contact with Rush turned In the Courtroom Rush knew who was actually in control.
out to be in itself an education on the He obviously had faith that if we called
sovereignty of God. In the early 1980s, I prayed for a way to get Rush’s tes- upon God for His help, the Supreme
I was hired to represent an Oklahoma timony before the court without my Judge would in effect overrule the hu-
school district as its attorney in a Fed- being held in contempt of court. God man judge, which is essentially what
eral Court civil rights case. The school provided a plan. The plaintiffs’ ACLU happened. Due to adverse Supreme
had been sued by a group of parents attorney was and is a very able lawyer, Court precedent, we didn’t obtain the
because the school was allowing stu- but he was also a trifle overconfident victory we wanted, but the plaintiffs got
dents (who so desired) to have devo- at the time. Even though I had an ex- much less than they wanted — in great
tions prior to the start of school. An cellent co-counsel named Dick Hamp- part because of Rush.
American Civil Liberties Union attor- ton, I was handling the questioning of After this case, Rush became a
ney represented the objecting parents. all the witnesses. Dick and I concluded good friend and mentor to me. He was
Since the case involved religious that if Rush was asked some fairly always so cordial and helpful when I
freedom, I concluded that I would harmless questions concerning reli- would call about educational, theo-
need an expert witness to testify gion and state, the plaintiffs’ attorney logical, philosophical, or political
about America’s Christian founda- would, on cross-examination, open the matters. Rush’s great contributions to
tions. Rush’s name was recommended door for a flood of information from Christian education were not just to
to me. His name was familiar since I Rush by challenging him with some children, but also to adults like myself.
had read his book, This Independent broad questions. We also concluded As I read many of Rush’s books and
Republic. I called and told Rush my that the court would be less suspect of other writings, I began to realize that
need of his expertise. He quickly any attempt, albeit ethical, to circum- Christ is Lord of all and that His
agreed to come. I was surprised when vent its order if Dick questioned Rush teachings govern in every area of life.
he said there would be no expert wit- instead of me.
ness fee. The only thing he asked was Dick’s questions, which were few in Personal Impact
to have his travel expenses paid. number, were all within the param- As I read Rush’s book, The Messi-
Eventually, I was required to give eters of the court’s order. Plaintiff ’s anic Character of American Education,
the Court the name of my witnesses, attorney could have declined to cross- I began to understand that all educa-
as well as a summary of their testi- examine with absolutely no damage to tion is religious, that all schools are re-
mony. I stated what Rush’s testimony his case. Nevertheless, he took the bait ligious establishments and that
would be. Shortly thereafter, I was and cross-examined. In doing so, he
stunned when I received an order did exactly what we had hoped by ask- — Continued on page 8 —

6 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


The Obscure Courthouse
Gladiator
By J. Shelby Sharpe
that evening. Two days later, he walked
R ousas John Rush-
doony is widely
known as a writer and
from various parts of the state, the
Texas Education Agency, certain of its
officials, and the Attorney General of
into the courtroom to begin the third
day of testimony.
theologian, not as a Texas to determine whether or not a
gladiator. Yet a gladiator homeschool was a private school, and The Consummate Historian
he was, and his arena therefore exempt under the Texas
Compulsory Attendance Law. When The school districts and the state
was the courtroom in a
multitude of lawsuits in many states. the case went to trial in January of had no idea that the little man from
Some of his greatest accomplishments 1987, one of the four witnesses to tes- California entering the arena that
in furthering godly education came in tify on behalf of home education as morning would by noon that day de-
this arena with little or no notice. He being a private school was Rev. stroy whatever they thought they had
liked it that way. Rushdoony. He was scheduled to be gained in cross-examining the other
the very first witness to testify on the expert witnesses, or that he would lay
A review of court proceedings in first day of the trial, but God had a dif- the foundation for home education. In
American jurisprudence involving ferent schedule. Uncharacteristic of a very pedagogical manner under di-
Christian education discloses that he Rev. Rushdoony, he missed his flight rect examination, Rev. Rushdoony out-
was one of the most dynamic and ef- the day before he was scheduled to lined not only the history of home
fective expert witnesses on the sub- testify and was told to wait until a de- education from colonial America up to
ject, if not the best. A lawsuit that termination could be made on the time of trial, but also explained it
began in Fort Worth, Texas, in 1985 in terms of Texas history, beginning
whether he would be needed at all.
well illustrates his effectiveness.
On the first day of the trial, two of with the Republic of Texas. He took
In the 1980s, homeschooling parents note of the first compulsory attendance
in many states were being sued in crimi- the four expert witnesses testified
very well on the history of home edu- law in 1915, all of its amendments, and
nal proceedings for allegedly not being how they related to home education. He
in compliance with compulsory atten- cation, beginning in colonial America
and up to the time of trial. However, ably pointed out that an amendment in
dance laws. All of these laws had a pri- 1921 which eliminated the private tu-
vate school exemption. Educational when they were pressed as to their
knowledge of home education in tor as an exemption from public school
authorities took the position that a school attendance did not refer to children
at home was not such a private school. Texas, they were only able to testify
from a national perspective. None of being taught at home as the school dis-
In Texas, prosecutions began in the witnesses had any knowledge of tricts and states were contending. Rev.
1980 and increased at a steady rate. the history of the Texas Compulsory Rushdoony observed that according to
Homeschool parents were winning Education laws. Their lack of knowl- state records at the time of this amend-
about as many as they were losing. Yet, edge of Texas history was further ment, over eighty percent of the school-
none of these prosecutions resolved demonstrated on cross-examination age children in Texas were being taught
the issue of whether a home based by the districts and the state educa- at home. Many of them were being
school was indeed a private school. tional agency when they were unable taught by members of the very legisla-
to answer questions about the battle ture that passed that amendment and
Divine Providence of the Alamo. The sole purpose of this who continued to teach them at home
In 1985, several institutions in- line of questioning was to demon- after its passage. Additionally, and
volved in assisting parents who edu- strate how little these experts knew more importantly, he called to the
cated their children at home joined about Texas history. court’s attention that the private school
parents in filing a class-action lawsuit At the conclusion of the first day of exemption in the original 1915 com-
against all 1,073 Texas public school the trial, it became apparent that Rev. pulsory attendance law must refer to
districts. The defendants were repre- Rushdoony’s testimony was vitally children being educated at home be-
sented by three public school districts needed, and a call was placed to him cause there were no private academies

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 7


in Texas at that time. By the end of his court of appeals and the Supreme
testimony under direct examination, The cross-examination of Court of Texas, was grounded on Rev.
there was no doubt, based on histori- Rev. Rushdoony by the Rushdoony’s testimony. The victory in
cal records, that the private school ex- attorneys for the school Texas and the opinions reflecting it
emption in the compulsory attendance districts and the state turned not only stopped all criminal prosecu-
law included children taught at home. tions of homeschool parents in the
out to be one of the most state, but virtually brought almost all
The cross-examination of Rev. exciting parts of the entire of them to a halt throughout the other
Rushdoony by the attorneys for the trial. The assistant attorney states of our country. Even though the
school districts and the state turned general began his cross- Texas decision had no legally binding
out to be one of the most exciting effect in any other state, it was appar-
parts of the entire trial. The assistant examination by inquiring
into how Rev. Rushdoony ent that almost all prosecutors in
attorney general began his cross-ex- other states saw the wisdom of ceas-
amination by inquiring into how Rev. obtained his information.
ing their prosecutions.
Rushdoony obtained his information.
In rapid-fire succession, the attorney Those who were involved in the
It is unprecedented in a trial for a Texas homeschool case, regardless of
received a detailed explanation of the witness to intimidate a lawyer, but this
sources of Rev. Rushdoony’s informa- which side they were on, will never for-
is precisely what the gladiator from get the testimony of the little gladiator
tion, which were original historical California did during his cross-exami-
sources (many of them state records), from California and its impact on the
nation. He literally destroyed every at- final decision. He took great pleasure
that were beyond challenge. In re- tack that came against him. Anyone
sponse to the question on the battle in the outcome, but he never men-
observing the judge during the cross- tioned his participation in it. That was
of the Alamo that had given the other examination could not miss the smiles
expert witnesses trouble, Rev. the way he liked it. He wanted no credit.
that came across his face as Rev. All the credit belonged to the Lord.
Rushdoony gave a history lesson on Rushdoony figuratively took the op-
the battle which demonstrated that posing attorneys to the “woodshed.” __________
the assistant attorney general did not
know his Texas history by the man- The final judgment of the trial J. Shelby Sharpe is a practicing
ner in which he phrased the question. court, which was affirmed by the attorney in Fort Worth, Texas.

— Continued from page 6 — there is” and that God’s Word “governs ject. In May, 2003, we went with our son
and informs every subject.” Jonathan (our 5th CHA graduate) on his
American education has been severed senior class trip to New England to
Because of Rush, Christendom has view first hand the Christian founda-
from its Christian roots and trans- begun once again to grasp the impor-
formed into a man-centered, secular tions of our nation. We saw many great
tance of the Biblical cultural mandate. landmarks, but I was most impressed
humanistic base that teaches and per- Rush taught that it is not the purpose
petuates socialism — all in great part with the magnificent Forefathers’
of the Christian school to prepare a Monument in Plymouth, Massachu-
because of Darwinian evolution.
student for a retreat from the world, setts in which the Pilgrim fathers’
In The Philosophy of the Christian but to teach him that God wants His Christian beliefs are symbolized by
Curriculum, Rush taught me and people to have dominion over the integral components of true Christian-
countless others that the Christian earth and to establish a Christian cul- ity: a supreme and everlasting faith in
“liberal arts” curriculum significantly ture in order that the propagation of God and Christ which informs and
differs from the humanistic one. Lib- the gospel and freedom under Christ governs education, morality, law, and
eral arts, Rush said, is teaching “the may thrive and that men may “glorify liberty. It almost seemed as if Rush
art of being a free man.” The Chris- God and enjoy Him forever.” might have had something to do with
tian liberal arts curriculum teaches the monument’s design — it was so
that freedom is of Christ and that It was ultimately because of Rush
that my wife Connie and I began to parallel to his teachings as to the true
teaching is “inescapably a religious Christianity that once made America
task” while the humanistic one home educate our children and finally
so free and great.
teaches that freedom is of man. Chris- place them in Christian Heritage Acad- __________
tian education is that which teaches emy — an Oklahoma City private Bill Graves is an Oklahoma City
that “the Bible is not only the word of school which teaches that God’s Word lawyer and a member of the Oklahoma
God, but also the most exciting book should govern and inform every sub- House of Representatives.

8 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


America’s Most Important Battleground:
Christian vs. Secular Education
By Tom Rose
that exists between the humanistic
D uring the colonial
era of the 1700s,
the most important
tual and spiritual battle must be
fought anew for each generation. view of man your institution holds to
and the Biblical world-and-life view I
battleground in America Secular Education expounded today. And then you must
was in our churches. It be willing to pay the price when the
was from the pulpits of Some years ago I was invited to eventual confrontation comes to a
Christian churches that speak to the combined student body head and you are asked to change or
and faculty of a state university in to resign.”
faithful preachers of the gospel of
North Texas on their “Free Enterprise
Christ sought to ignite the glorious I don’t know what choice that well-
Day.” I chose “The Biblical Basis of the
flame of God-given freedom and self- intentioned Christian man made, but
Free Market” as my topic. And, believe
responsibility in the hearts and minds it is practically impossible for anyone
it or not, I received a very warm re-
of Americans. And they applied the ception from the students. Then I got who is part of a humanistically ori-
practice of this godly freedom and a surprise. The head of the Business ented institution — especially a tax-
self-responsibility to the home, to the Education Department asked me to supported one — to consistently
church, to business and society as a meet with him in private. present a Biblical view of man to stu-
whole, and to the state. Without this dents. To do so would strike at the
continual educational effort by Chris- “I liked what you had to say in your roots of the secular institution. This
tian preachers, which lasted for gen- talk,” he said. “How can I implement
is also why parents put their children
erations, there would have been no what you talked about here, at a state
teachers’ university?” in grave spiritual danger by allowing
American Revolution, no history of them to attend tax-supported schools
Christian-based education in our I replied that I didn’t think he could and universities.
country, nor would there have evolved do so on a consistent basis.
an America which came to be known John Dunphy, a “New Age” leader,
all over the world as “the home of the “Why not?” he asked. clearly laid out the spiritual battle that
free and the brave.” Indeed, the Brit- “What view of man does your state Christian young people will encoun-
ish crown so feared the power of university hold to?” I queried. ter by attending tax-supported
America’s preachers that they were schools:
“What do you mean?” he asked.
dubbed the “black brigade!”
“Doesn’t your school hold to the [T]he battle for humankind’s fu-
But the stentorian cry of freedom view that man is the result of organic ture must be waged and won in the
from most of America’s church pulpits evolution, instead of being created in public school classroom by teach-
has long been silenced. And the scene the image and likeness of God? As ers who correctly perceive their role
of our spiritual battlefield has now long as your institution holds to an as the proselytizers of a new faith:
shifted to the classroom — from pre- anti-Biblical view of man,” I ex- a religion of humanity....
kindergarten to college and even plained, “you will eventually run afoul
post-graduate. It is in the humble The classroom must and will be-
of the bureaucratic structure here if come an arena of conflict be-
classrooms of America’s struggling you attempt to consistently teach the
Christian schools — homeschools, tween the old and the new —
Biblical view of man that I spoke the rotting corpse of Christian-
elementary schools, high schools, and about today.”
colleges — versus the classrooms of ity, together with all its adjacent
richly endowed, secularly oriented “I see,” this fine Christian man re- evils and miseries, and the new
private and tax-supported educa- plied. “What you are saying is that I faith of Humanism, ... will fi-
tional institutions — that the contin- should quit my job.” nally be achieved.1
ued battle of freedom for the hearts “No, though that is always an op- Dunphy’s statement of the spiritual
and minds of American youth will be tion. What I’m saying is that you must warfare that exists in tax-supported
won or lost. And this ongoing intellec- recognize the basic conflict of views education not only warns parents

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 9


against the foolishness of entrusting ematics, physics, chemistry, The points listed above touch upon
their precious children to humanisti- electronics, and other sciences), just a few of the rich insights regard-
cally oriented educators, but it also ing education that can be garnered
3) the political sphere (that is, how from the Bible, which was the daily
should warn them about the textbooks civil rulers are to discover, dis-
that are used in tax-supported institu- handbook of the early Christians who
cern, and apply God’s laws of settled in colonial America. Alexis de
tions: True Christian education also re- governance in society: Ex. 19 Tocqueville, who visited America in
quires Biblically oriented textbooks! and 20; Dt. 17:14-20), and the 1830s, was amazed to see the
Christian Education 4) the economic sphere (man is to strong influence of Biblical Christian-
“work by the sweat of his brow” ity in our young republic, and he spe-
To develop a consistent approach to in a fallen world to care for his cifically wrote in his Democracy in
Christian education, we must first start family while honoring God; and America about finding the Bible in
with a Biblical view of man — that man ranks available choices on daily use on the far frontiers by
man is created in the very image and an internal scale of value and backwoodsmen and their families.
likeness of God (Gen. 1:26-28) and that then acts outwardly in mutually America was built on the Bible and the
man, therefore, has the right to be beneficial economic exchanges in Christian world-and-life view the
free2 ; but he also has the duty to stand his business and personal life). Bible produced. We have largely lost
before God as a self-responsible indi- this necessary and blessed influence
vidual (Ex. 8:1). In other words, free- With regard to the spiritual sphere in our modern society, but it can be
dom and self-responsibility to God go of life, we should recognize that it en- regained if Christian families become
hand in hand. Then, too, we must rec- compasses all of God’s creation. It en- more faithful to God by turning away
ognize that man is a fallen creature in velops both the economic and from the false promises of secular-
need of salvation by God’s grace alone political spheres. Accordingly, because based, tax-supported education to
and that he is condemned to live in a of man’s fallen nature, we must rec- true Christian education either by
world that has been adversely affected ognize that there is a constant tension homeschooling or by attending hon-
by Adam’s sin as man’s federal head between the political sphere and the est-to-goodness, real Christian
(Gen. 3). This presents a number of broad economic sphere (of family, schools and colleges.
problems and contradictions: First, church, work, and play in society). For
instance, we see through the study of The choice between government-
while it is God’s plan for man to be free imposed tyranny or self-responsible
and self-responsible, he can’t be history how civil rulers have always
shown a seemingly inescapable ten- freedom is always but one generation
trusted to wield power over others (Jer. away, depending upon whom we invite
17:9) because of his sin problem. Thus dency toward tyranny by attempting
to overrule God’s established laws.3 It or allow to inculcate our children, our
the need for a civil government with most precious heritage and responsi-
limited authority. In short, the civil au- is because of man’s fallen nature and
his tendency (even the Christian) to bility. J. Gresham Machen said it well:
thority is to be a negative force in soci-
ety (Rom. 13:3-4; 1 Tim. 2:1-2). sink into humanistic thinking, that all But while tyranny itself is noth-
teaching must be based on God’s ing new, ... the tyranny of the sci-
A starting point for our thinking Word. If we are to replace ungodly entific expert is the most
about how to teach Biblically is to foundations and institutions with crushing tyranny of all. That tyr-
understand how man thinks and acts godly ones, we must be guided by the anny is being exercised most ef-
to improve his feeling of well being. Apostle Paul’s admonition in 2 fectively in the field of education.
As indicated above, we must consider Corinthians 10:3-5: A monopolistic system of educa-
what man is (a fallen sinner), his ori- tion controlled by the State is far
gin (a God-created being), and his For though we walk in the flesh, more efficient in crushing our
destiny (to spend eternity either in we do not war after the flesh: liberty than the cruder weapons
heaven or hell). He is a self-respon- (For the weapons of our warfare of fire and sword. Against this
sible individual who is subject to are not carnal, but mighty monopoly of education by the
God’s universal law-structure that through God to the pulling down State the Christian school brings
reigns over the whole creation. of strongholds:) a salutary protest; it contends for
the right of parents to bring up
For analytical purposes we can di- Casting down imaginations, and their children in accordance with
vide God’s law-structure into: every high thing that exalteth the dictates of their conscience
itself against the knowledge of and not in the manner prescribed
1) the spiritual sphere (moral law),
God, and bringing into captivity by the State.4
2) the physical sphere (the laws of every thought to the obedience
so-called natural science: math- of Christ. — Continued on page 12 —

10 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


Government Schools:
Producing What We Pay For!
By John E. Stoos

T here is hardly a po-


litical discussion
these days that does not
failure of our modern schools. We are
all embarrassed by or make fun of the
fact that over 90% of the students pro-
hends all that series of instruc-
tion and discipline, which is in-
tended to enlighten the
in some way involve duced in today’s government schools understanding, correct the
education. Most sur- cannot find Iraq on a world map. Ev- temper, and form the manners
veys show that voters ery year there are calls for new stan- and habits of youth, and fit
are concerned about dards, new techniques, new tests, them for usefulness in their fu-
giving America’s children a good edu- better teachers and, of course, the loud- ture stations. To give children a
cation, and today’s educational-in- est cries are for more money to help good education in manners,
dustrial complex insists that money improve our schools. However, with all arts, and science, is important;
should be no object. Here in Califor- of this, there have been no significant to give them a religious educa-
nia, suffering under record budget academic improvements in the govern- tion is indispensable, and an
deficits, even the most “draconian” immense responsibility rests
ment schools in the past twenty years.
budget proposals leave education on parents and guardians who
Could it be that all of this “public out- neglect these duties.
spending at about $9,000 per student. rage” is just so much cover to appease
A qualified teacher would have sig- the poor taxpayers who pay for the gov- Christians have often been
nificant educational resources for ernment schools, allowing this system wrongly positioned in the important
thirty students if the $270,000 col- to produce just the type of students educational battles of the past few
lected from the taxpayers actually that it intends to produce (see Rom. decades. My lovely bride Linda and
made it into his classroom. 1:28-32)? Have we seriously pondered I began our homeschool adventures
that today’s secular humanists are just with our six children when I discov-
The Important Question as dedicated to molding the next secu- ered that my oldest daughter’s sixth
grade social studies textbook went so
Over the years, I have learned that lar generation as our Christian forefa-
far in promoting the modern human-
the most important question is not, thers were about passing along their ist worldview that it even taught that
“How much money is spent on edu- love of God? murder was relative in some situa-
cation?”, but rather, “What is the Perhaps we need to look no further tions. Certain textbooks selected for
goal of the education that is being than the shift in the definition of edu- schools have outraged some Chris-
funded?” cation over the years found in the mod- tian parents, and many Christian
ern Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary: parents have strongly opposed the
There was quite a shock in America concept of “values clarification.”
in 1983 when “A Nation at Risk,” a Education is that act or process Now to the extent that these educa-
special report on education, was re- of imparting or acquiring gen- tors are indoctrinating our young
leased. It concluded, “The educational eral knowledge and of develop- people with their secular humanist
foundations of our society are pres- ing the powers of reasoning and worldview, they need to be opposed,
ently being eroded by a rising tide of judgment. The act or process of but the question is what are we as
mediocrity that threatens our very Christians suggesting as an alterna-
imparting or acquiring particu-
future as a nation and a people.... If tive. In order to stop the wrong
an unfriendly foreign power had at- lar knowledge or skills, as for a
profession. worldview from being taught in the
tempted to impose on America the schools have we perhaps suggested
mediocre educational performance Compare this modern definition or even implied that no worldview
that exists today, we might well have with that found in Noah Webster’s should be taught in the schools?
viewed it as an act of war.” Dictionary of 1828: Have we implied or even advocated
There has been significant public Education is the bringing up, as at times that schools should “just
hand-wringing since this report, and a child; instruction; formation stick to the basics like reading, writ-
many others like it have exposed the of manners. Education compre- ing, and arithmetic”?

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 11


__________
Luther’s Contributions tells us in Proverbs that, “The fear of
the Lord is the beginning of knowl- John E. Stoos is a political consultant
Martin Luther gave all Christians a edge, but fools despise wisdom and living in Sacramento California with
strong warning in the 16th century as instruction”? A word search for his wife Linda. They have six children
the Reformers struggled to establish “knowledge” has it coming up in at and sixteen grandchildren.
the modern Christian culture that has least 38 verses in the Book of Prov-
benefited us. Luther said in 1537: erbs alone. I would commend these
I am much afraid that schools verses and others for study by par-
will prove to be the gates of hell ents who want to be serious about — Continued from page 10 —
unless they diligently labor in the education of their children.
explaining the Holy Scriptures, _________
engraving them in the hearts of Whose Responsibility?
youth. I advise no one to place Tom Rose is retired professor of
their child where the Scriptures Ultimately it is not the govern- economics, Grove City College, Pennsyl-
do not reign paramount. Every ment school teachers, the principals, vania. He is author of nine books and
institution in which men are or all those educational experts we hundreds of articles dealing with
not increasingly occupied with have today (let alone the politicians!) economic and political issues, including
the Word of God must become who are responsible for the type of economic textbooks for use by Christian
corrupt. education that a young person re- colleges, high schools and home
ceives. That responsibility falls fully educators. Rose’s latest books are: Free
This proper understanding of edu- and squarely on the shoulders of the Enterprise Economics in America and
cation endured into the early years of parents with whom God has en- God, Gold, and Civil Government,
our nation. Here is how Dr. Benjamin trusted that child and the overseers published by American Enterprise
Rush, one of the signers of our Decla- in the church where God has placed Publications, 177 N. Spring Road,
ration of Independence put it: that family (see Dt. 6:7). Parents Mercer, PA 16137. Phone: 724-748-3726;
In contemplating the political must take this stewardship very se- Website: www.biblicaleconomics.com.
institutions of the United States, riously, asking whether the children __________
I lament that we waste so much God has entrusted to them are being 1
properly instructed in the ways of John Dunphy, “A Religion for a New Age,”
time and money in punishing The Humanist Magazine (Jan./Feb., 1983).
crimes, and take so little pains God or are being cheated “through 2
Man’s right to be free follows logically from
to prevent them. We profess to philosophy and empty deceit, ac- the creation account: God shared His free
be republicans [believers in a re- cording to the tradition of men.” The nature with man. Would God gift man
public] and yet we neglect the warning that Christ gave His dis- with an attribute He did not expect man
only means of establishing and ciples about children soberly re- to enjoy and use? Biblically, man’s free-
minds us just how seriously God dom cannot be separated from his respon-
perpetuating our republican sibility to God. Readers who are interested
forms of government; that is, the takes the care of our children:
in a more-in-depth treatment of this topic
universal education of our youth Then Jesus called a little child can refer to: Tom Rose, Economics, Prin-
in the principles of Christianity to Him, set him in the midst of ciples and Policy and God, Gold, and Civil
by means of the Bible. them, and said, “Assuredly, I say Government (Mercer, PA: American Enter-
to you, unless you are converted prise Publications).
Once again Christians must seri- 3
See: Tom Rose, Economics: Principles and
ously consider what Dr. Rush is say- and become as little children,
Policy, Chapter 4, “The Relationship Be-
ing even though at first blush he might you will by no means enter the tween Economics and Political Science”
sound like a modern day liberal who kingdom of heaven. Therefore (Mercer, PA: American Enterprise Publica-
wants more money spent on educa- whoever humbles himself as tions, 1996), 61-88.
tion than prisons and would have the this little child is the greatest in 4
J. Gresham Machen, “The Necessity of the
educational establishment “brain- the kingdom of heaven. Who- Christian School,” chap. in Education,
washing” young people with his ever receives one little child like Christianity, and the State, ed. by John W.
this in My name receives Me. Robbins (Jefferson, MD: The Trinity Foun-
worldview. dation, 1987), 67-68.
But whoever causes one of
The truth is that Dr. Rush and these little ones who believe in
Martin Luther could not be more on Me to sin, it would be better for Visit
point for our modern situation. How him if a millstone were hung
can our government schools be a around his neck, and he were www.chalcedon.edu
neutral place where our children only drowned in the depth of the Today!
learn the basics when God clearly sea.” (Mt. 18:2-6)

12 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


The Christian
One-Room Schoolhouse:
A Christian Alternative to Government Schools
By Bruce Shortt
“The education of children for God is the most important business done on earth. It is the one business for which the earth
exists. To it all politics, all war, all literature, all money-making, ought to be subordinated; and every parent especially ought
to feel every hour of the day, that, next to making his own calling and election sure, this is the end for which he is kept alive
by God — this is his task on earth.” Robert Louis Dabney
but don’t. Similarly, many churches power from the very fact that we are
F rom the establish-
ment of the first
American colonies un-
would like to offer an alternative to gov-
ernment schools, but don’t. Why?
unconscious of them. With respect to
education, one of the most pernicious
til well into the 19 th unnoticed assumptions is the in-
The “Box” grained belief that the education of
century, education in
America was over- Despite their misgivings, many children takes place primarily in a
whelmingly Christian Christian parents leave their children school and that a proper school looks
and primarily provided through a in government schools because the and operates like a government
collaboration between parents and school. Consequently, when Chris-
available Christian schools are pro-
churches. In 1831, Alexis de tians set out to create a Christian
hibitively costly or because there is no school, they reflexively believe that
Tocqueville observed that education Christian school in their area. Others
in America was almost everywhere they need to create an institution that
do not homeschool because they lack has traditional classes, a faculty, ad-
in the hands of Protestant clergy. confidence in their ability to ministrators, counselors, special fa-
Today, our government school homeschool, because both parents cilities, and a host of other things that
habit is the single greatest threat to work, or because there is only one par- are features of government schools as
the future of Christianity in America. ent in the family. they exist today.
Between 80% and 90% of the chil- Churches, on the other hand, and
dren in Christian families attend These assumptions about schools
particularly small to medium sized and education are the primary rea-
government schools, and of those churches, are reluctant to provide
children roughly 70% will no longer son most churches do not provide
educational alternatives to govern- schools. Why? Because this concep-
attend church within two years after
ment schools because of the capital tion of schooling and education car-
graduation from high school. More-
over, children who attend govern- commitments, operating expenses, ries with it heavy fixed costs, a
ment schools are far more likely to and marketing and management ef- burdensome administrative appara-
embrace moral relativism and adopt fort required. Against this back- tus, and a requirement for significant
a non-Christian worldview. Chris- ground, the reluctance of most scale to spread fixed costs. These
tians need to understand that, what- churches to provide schools for their characteristics of our assumed
ever else they may be, government members’ children and children in the model of education and schools
schools are evangelistic institutions community is not only understand- make launching a school a very risky
for secularism and various forms of able, it is entirely rational. But what if undertaking for a church, particu-
New Age theologies. education and the dominant model of larly in light of the fact that every
schooling are not inextricably linked? private school must make its way in
Christian parents and churches are the face of competition from govern-
becoming increasingly aware of the Climbing out of the “Box” ment schools that are tuition free.
harm inflicted on children by govern-
ment schooling. Paradoxically, many Unnoticed assumptions tend to The Christian One Room School-
Christian parents would like to remove govern our behavior in exceptionally house is an alternative schooling
their children from government schools, powerful ways; they derive their method that provides churches and

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 13


parents a way to climb out of the “box” Christian school in several ways. First, five to thirty students. Because a
by enabling any church to create a the Christian One Room Schoolhouse Christian One Room Schoolhouse’s
spiritually, morally, and academically relies on the homeschooling educa- costs are primarily variable costs (ex-
superior alternative to government tional model — a self-paced tutorial penses that vary with the number of
schools. At the same time, the Chris- form of instruction in which parents students), it can function quite well
tian One Room Schoolhouse is inex- and students share the responsibility with only a few students.
pensive for parents, addresses the need for the students’ education. Second,
of some parents for supervision of attending a Christian One Room How to Create a Christian One
their children during weekdays, and Schoolhouse will be significantly less Room Schoolhouse
does not impose on churches the heavy expensive than a conventional Chris- Parents and a sponsoring church
fixed costs and other burdens that nor- tian school, perhaps costing as little create a Christian One Room School-
mally accompany creating and operat- as the homeschool curriculum. Fi- house. The sponsoring church pro-
ing a conventional Christian school. nally, a Christian One Room School- vides the space for the Christian One
house, like a traditional one room Room Schoolhouse (typically in its
What Is the Christian One Room schoolhouse, will provide a more in- Sunday school facilities), at least one
Schoolhouse? timate learning environment in which television and VCR, at least one
The Christian One Room School- children interact in small groups and Pentium type computer, a computer
house is a hybrid that combines char- are not strictly segregated by age. printer, a dial-up Internet connection,
acteristics of homeschooling, From the perspective of a typical and one or more coaches. The items
homeschool cooperatives, and conven- church, sponsoring a Christian One of hardware do not need to be either
tional Christian schools. Moreover, the Room Schoolhouse has several advan- new or the latest models. Often mem-
Christian One Room Schoolhouse tages over attempting to create and bers of congregations have items like
model can be used to turn virtually any maintain a conventional Christian these that can be donated, so under
church into a school. Perhaps the best school. Conventional Christian almost any scenario the cost of the
way to describe the Christian One schools follow the institutional hardware items should be less than
Room Schoolhouse is to say that it schooling model. Consequently, there $1,000. Additional non-capital costs
combines the flexibility and power of is a substantial investment in bricks would include supplemental insur-
homeschooling with the institutional and mortar, students are segregated ance, modestly increased utility ex-
sponsorship of a church. In a Christian by age in classes, a teaching faculty penses, and additional dial-up
One Room Schoolhouse the students must be hired and maintained, certain Internet connection expenses. Given
are homeschoolers and use a levels of enrollment must be main- the small size of a Christian One
homeschool curriculum selected by tained to spread fixed costs, and a sig- Room Schoolhouse, these expenses
the sponsoring church. During week- nificant administrative apparatus is should not be large.
days the Christian One Room School- required to manage the plant, employ- The Christian One Room School-
house students meet at their ees, finances, and student recruiting house coach or coaches can be drawn
sponsoring church under the supervi- efforts of the school. For a church, this from members of the church and their
sion of one or more coaches provided represents substantial time and en- participation would be a ministry, not
through the church. While at church, ergy, high level of fixed cost, and both a job. Parents would be responsible for
older children spend most of their time financial and institutional risk. Most the cost of the homeschool curricu-
working on assignments and projects churches in the United States are rela- lum, transportation to and from the
from their lesson plans. Younger chil- tively small and either do not have the Christian One Room Schoolhouse,
dren spend most of their time in struc- resources to establish and maintain a nutritious sack lunches, and school
tured play or being read to. Once a child traditional Christian school or are supplies. In addition, each parent
has completed his schoolwork, he is unwilling to assume the risk of such would be expected to provide some
free to play, read, pursue musical inter- a project. agreed upon service to the Christian
ests, or any other constructive activity Unlike a traditional Christian One Room Schoolhouse (e.g., coach-
agreed upon by their parents and the school, a Christian One Room School- ing in an area of special expertise,
sponsoring church. In the evenings and house has few fixed costs. There is no maintenance work, etc.) and form or
on weekends parents work with their faculty, no additional bricks and mor- join a homeschool support group re-
children to provide them with indi- tar, and very few administrative costs. lated to the Christian One Room
vidualized instruction, review their The lack of burdensome fixed costs Schoolhouse.
progress, and set learning goals. permits a Christian One Room Whether a church fully absorbs the
From the standpoint of parents and Schoolhouse to be small. In fact, each small capital costs and additional op-
students, a Christian One Room Christian One Room Schoolhouse erating expenses incurred by spon-
Schoolhouse differs from a traditional should probably not exceed twenty- soring a Christian One Room

14 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


Schoolhouse, whether financial assis- commodates many levels of ability, Despite their benign image, gov-
tance is provided to very low income and (e) draws parents, students, and ernment schools are destroying our
students, and other details of the the church closer together through a children spiritually, morally, and aca-
structure and functioning of any par- common educational enterprise. Un- demically. This is happening precisely
ticular Christian One Room School- like other alternatives to government because we have been neglecting our
house are questions for the schools, the Christian One Room duty as Christians to ensure that our
sponsoring church and parents. Schoolhouse is not limited by geog- children receive a Christian educa-
raphy or by considerations of the eco- tion. Although the Christian One
What Is the Role of a Coach? nomics of scale. By being a low cost Room Schoolhouse is far from the
Coaches in a Christian One Room alternative, more parents will find a only alternative to government
Schoolhouse primarily do two things. Christian One Room Schoolhouse schooling, it can be an important op-
First, they assist with keeping the stu- economically within their means than tion for rescuing children from the
dents safe and on task. With respect a conventional Christian school. To spiritual, moral, and academic waste-
to the youngest students, a coach pri- the extent that families cannot afford lands of government schools. Allow-
marily engages in structured play the full cost of a Christian One Room ing our children to be educated in
with the children, reads aloud to them, Schoolhouse, the low cost of a Chris- government schools is gross sin. A
and organizes and supervises other tian One Room Schoolhouse makes it fresh obedience to God is required; we
learning activities. With respect to far easier for sponsoring churches and must begin turning our hearts toward
older students, a coach monitors other organizations to provide mean- our children.
group activities and, if able, fields ing ful scholarship aid. Because a
Christian One Room Schoolhouse is __________
some questions relating to subject
matter. It is not expected, however, independent of the government and
that a coach functions as a teacher in does not require special facilities, a Bruce Shortt is a homeschooling
a conventional sense with respect to Christian One Room Schoolhouse can father of three sons who practices law
older students, except in instances become operational in very little time. in Houston, Texas.
where a parent or a member of a
homeschool support group with a — PAID ADVERTISEMENT —
special expertise serves as an aca-
demic coach (e.g., as when a parent
who is fluent in Spanish provides in-
struction and conversational practice
in Spanish).
John Milton Society
What about Extracurricular
To advance the
Activities? Cause of Christ by poetry.
Like homeschool students gener-
ally, Christian One Room Schoolhouse
students are able to participate in A quarterly Muse Letter publishing
homeschool choirs, orchestras, sports
leagues, debate teams, and other ac- modern Puritan poetry.
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school support groups, churches, and
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trusting to prove worthy of your patronage.
The Superior Alternative to
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perior academic education, (d) ac-

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 15


Talent-Based Education: A
Christian Perspective
By Ian Hodge
The first of these is the category of
P eter Drucker, in his
1989 book, The New
Realities, highlighted
The loss of the farming sector did
not spell the end of the American
economy. Nor will the loss of manu-
curriculum content. In this regard,
education seems to have an answer,
what he saw to be the facturing spell the decline of except that it cannot bring the glue
major cultural shifts in America’s economy. Just as so many that sticks all the pieces of the cur-
the 20 th century. The mechanical gains displaced farm riculum together. There is no lack of
farming sector, once the workers, so too are mechanical and curricula available for schooling to-
largest sector of every economy, had technological gains replacing manu- day, but something is missing. At the
shrunk to a mere few percent of the facturing workers. Robots replace as- end of the day, value, ethics, and mor-
population, yet the general wealth of sembly-line workers in so many als are the necessary things that allow
the farming sector had not deterio- instances, reducing the number of information to be used in meaning-
rated. Together with the broad popu- manufacturing workers required. ful ways. An education without pur-
lation, farmers were better off. pose and meaning can hardly be
Just as the decline of farming did called education, just as education in
What replaced the farming sector, not occur without something to re- wrong facts would not be considered
argues Drucker, was manufacturing. place it, so too the decline in manu- education.
This was the economic revolution that facturing has not occurred in a
turned the world upside down in the vacuum. But the changes in the so- But ethics is the Achilles heel of
20th century. America’s economic su- cial fabric require a new kind of modern — that is secular — educa-
premacy was built on manufacturing, worker, a knowledge worker who tion. The commitment to the private
but now it too is in jeopardy. brings a specialist skill to the market- interpretation of what makes good
morals creates the world of the indi-
place that can be utilized again and vidual, an anarchistic conglomerate of
The Future of Jobs again in company after company. No millions of competing ideas of what
Recent news publications have car- longer is this specialist required on a makes right and wrong. No society
ried scores of articles on the decline permanent basis, but his skills must has ever functioned on this basis and
of manufacturing and its resultant be transferable from company to com- none ever will, for the anarchism is
unemployment for many Americans. pany, and in some instances, from in- the fuel for the politicized society that
By 2015, it has been predicted, up to dustry to industry. In fact, it is the sees the political order providing the
three million jobs will be lost, mainly broad-based knowledge worker who glue that keeps social order intact.
in the manufacturing sector. The can successfully apply his skills across
manufacturing sector will shrink just the business sector who is less likely The second category of education
as the farming sector has done. to be unemployed in the marketplace relates the application of the curricu-
of tomorrow. lum to the individual. In Christian
The remarkable feature of the de- theology, the idea of calling, not just
cline in the manufacturing sector has Knowledge: the Job of the Future in general, but with some specificity,
been the accuracy of predictions like is identified. Individuals, it is argued,
that of Peter Drucker. With insight, Now, if knowledge and the applica- are given unique gifts. Some are called
Drucker correctly foresaw the decline tion of knowledge is the requirement to be pastors, lawyers, accountants,
of American manufacturing. With of the immediate future — leaving musicians, engineers, or secretaries.
equal foresight, he has seen the re- aside the necessity to make long- Others are called to be salespersons.
placement of manufacturing and range forecasts for the moment — The challenge is to determine not only
blue-collar workers with the informa- then it is clear that education must which calling an individual has, but
tion age and white-collar, educated change fundamentally in order to when such a calling occurs. If it oc-
workers who apply their skills in very keep the “knowledge society” on its curs at an early age, then there is a
narrow and specialist fields within the toes. These educational requirements case for restructuring education so
economy. fall into two broad categories. that the child’s gifts are developed

16 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


early. This has been called talent- vide special mechanics’ schools, person, but fits with the Biblical pat-
based education.1 tradesmen’s schools, and so forth. tern of family. In the Bible, the family
owned property, not the individual,
It is often argued that the young do Not only does talent based educa- and families, rather than individuals,
not know what they want to do in later tion recognize the unique gifts of the had callings which were to be fulfilled
life, and therefore education needs to individual, but educators are also be- through multiple generations.
be general so that the child can exer- ginning to realize that children bring
cise a choice at the appropriate time. their own learning styles to the class- If this is the case, then it is easier
But this can easily be confused with a room at home or at school. The tra- to determine talent-based education,
particular job, rather than a particu- ditional classroom style teaching and children would follow in their
lar calling. For example, consider works well for those who like a father’s or mother’s footsteps. This
those who manufactured horse bug- teacher standing up front talking to does not mean they would be buggy
gies in the early 20th century when the them. Some of us, however, would makers if the father was a buggy
automobile was on the horizon. Was rather learn on our own through maker, but it might mean they were
their calling to be a horse buggy books and other media. We are con- in some kind of manufacturing ven-
manufacturer, or was their calling to tent to stay out of the classroom and ture. Just as it might not mean that if
be an automobile manufacturer? That find our own way through the maze the father was a violinist, the children
is, was their calling and gifts of such of learning opportunities that exist might be musicians applying them-
a nature that they could be applied to in the world today. selves to the organ, or piano, or even
changing circumstances? conducting. But music would be a
Five learning styles have been iden- family activity and therefore govern
tified. These have been called the per- the children’s education.
A Refined Understanding of forming disposition, the producing
Calling disposition, the inventing disposition, To some degree, education along
When we understand a calling in this the inspiring disposition and the cre- these lines is evident today. Good
ating disposition.2 Just as personality musicians are often the sons or
way, it is easy to see that callings might daughters of musicians, just as some
be more general, but are application spe- profiling is an important aspect of
business in building lasting relation- of the famous composers were in their
cific. One can be a musician, for ex- day. R.J. Rushdoony was the son of a
ample, but can apply that to an ships among staff by recognizing an
individual’s unique personality, 3 so pastor, and could speak of multiple
instrument such as piano, violin, or generations of the family devoted to
voice, or, as some do, take his training too learning styles are an important
recognition of the uniqueness of the a pastoral calling; some church pas-
as a musician in one area and apply it to tors or, in the case of Rush, a pastor
conducting. For another example, some individual when it comes to learning.
and Biblical scholar.
are gifted teachers who can apply that That education faces great chal-
skill across different disciplines, but lenges today is recognized almost It seems the “knowledge society”
their calling is to be a teacher. universally. Taking a fundamental ap- is going to need knowledge special-
proach to education that recognizes ists, those imbued with a calling in
Used in this sense, it is easy to see calling and the uniqueness of the particular areas. The reconstruc-
how a calling can be applied to a chang- individual’s calling before God offers tion of education allowing talent-
ing economy. We do not have to remain a fresh approach that should improve based education, where those with
in the horse and buggy era to exercise education. After all, we would now a gift for math can specialize in
our talents. We can be a part of the fu- educate to the individual’s strengths math, or those with a calling in mu-
ture, using our gifts and knowledge rather than to his weaknesses. And sic can become the best musicians
without tying ourselves to the present. this, says Drucker, is the only way to because their whole life is dedicated
Talent based education is not a new educate for high performance.4 to this art, is long overdue. The gen-
concept, but one that is having re- eral school is for those whose call-
Unfortunately, there are no fool- ing is to be a generalist. For the rest
newal in recent years. Sporting prodi- proof tests to apply to determine the
gies are today most likely to be taken of us, specialist music schools, spe-
talents of a child. But if the Bible is a
out of school to be given special edu- guide to life, we see, especially in the cialist sporting schools, or whatever,
cation in their chosen sport. In the Old Testament, families delegated with can become a place where talent is
past, this was certainly an aspect of responsibilities within the Israelite harnessed, trained and directed to
training for many musicians who community. There was no “free choice” God’s glory and the betterment of
made it to the top, and there is no rea- of occupation for many. They were our fellow-man.
son not to give the concept a wider ap- called to fulfil particular functions __________
plication. The specialized music (Num. 3, 4). Such a picture flies in the
schools could be an example to pro- face of our view about the individual — Continued on page 24 —

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 17


A Biblical Approach to Student
Evaluation and Grading
By Ronald Kirk
The next important reason to evalu- ity and the consequences of life is an
I n a society with a
now largely effaced
Christian heritage, vir-
ate and grade students is communica-
tion. In homeschool, where the parent
important aspect of accepting God’s
Providence.
tually every area of hu- and teacher are one, less such commu- Upon God’s law revealing our sin,
man activity requires nication may be necessary. Nonethe- Jesus justifies the sinner by His grace.
rethinking to establish less, if Mom teaches, Dad ought to In opposition to God’s law, self-justi-
a sound Biblical view. know how Bobby is doing. Biblically fication — self-deceit — produces
Student evaluation and grading is speaking, Dad bears the essential edu-
only legalism leading to death. God’s
not the least element of education cational responsibility. The home prop-
justice and His grace are not opposites
requiring a theological treatment. erly offers good documentation of the
child’s true accomplishment. or in any way antagonistic one to the
Testing and grades in our higher other. Life out of death and strength
education and vocational careers is Lastly, the student should know his out of weakness characterize God’s
so important that this subject should own progress. Knowing that “I have ac- gospel work in men’s lives. Man ac-
prompt a general interest. For home complished something well” is encour- cepts his own weakness, and God
and professional teachers, the sub- aging. Jesus said, “Well done good and lends His strength. Apart from hon-
ject is even vital. Consider this faithful servant.” If I am not doing well, est evaluation and confession of sin,
educator’s attempt to redefine stu- I need to know that I have work yet re- grace cannot prevail. Applied to grad-
dent evaluation on Biblical grounds. maining (Gen. 4:7). Here is an oppor- ing, applied justice and honesty give
tunity to encourage faith, trusting God grace in the educational process.
Why Test and Evaluate? to persevere and make the best effort.
The teacher can encourage the learner Both teacher and students should
In the present educational climate, be encouraged. Though a student may
we cannot take for granted the ques- with the truth that when one trusts
God and works by faith, God will bring momentarily fail, hope should always
tion of whether we ought to test and rule. Ultimately, Providence deter-
evaluate students. First, the teacher’s the increase in due season.
mines accomplishment in the faithful
job is to teach. Education essentially through native ability, circumstances,
consists in feeding content to a stu- Justice and Grace in Grading
and most importantly, through dili-
dent, then drawing out its expression. The Apostle Paul says Christians gence and faith. The modestly gifted
That expression proves learning, fix- will judge angels. God will certainly person must be thankful for what he
ing it in the faculties of the learner. enable righteous judgment of our may accomplish by faith. The gifted
This corresponds to the proven char- children’s school efforts. Student and accomplished individual must
acter of Scripture (Rom. 5:1-5). grading is an ethical and spiritual not rest on past accomplishments, “for
Therefore, testing is fundamental to concern, one that requires character to whom much is given much is also
the educational process. Second, the and faith in the student and grader required.” Pride, despair, and laziness
teacher must know the student’s alike. Righteousness, justice, sets the defy the grace of God. Accomplish-
present knowledge and skill with a essential Biblical standard. A false ment is the fruit of diligence and faith.
subject and what yet remains to be ac- measure is an abomination to the God brings that fruit in due season,
complished. Tested expression reveals Lord (Dt. 25:15-16). Justice rests on a after all the possible tending of the
gaps and limits in learning. Testing just law, which is God’s Word alone. field or orchard for a given season is
informs the teacher as to the effective- Teachers must be diligent to uphold a finished. Though we now stumble,
ness of his teaching method as well. righteous standard in grading. Here God typically grants another oppor-
Sound evaluation provides the homeschool mothers face a decided tunity to succeed. Even a poor high
teacher with efficient clues for deter- moral challenge. Faithful mothers school record need not determine a
mining the next needed lesson. A must resist compensating for a strug- young person’s future, if he will only
ready child may shoot ahead. One gling child, but rather trust Christ’s repent and begin to work diligently by
struggling in a given area may need most gracious effect in the child by faith. A poor record may serve to goad
remedial work. faith. Accepting personal responsibil- a lazy or rebellious student into ac-

18 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


tion. The learner and the grader both their statistics for the game only. Con- diments defined by the teacher. The
must trust God. In the end, honest stant critical evaluation discourages teacher with careful curriculum de-
evaluation represents the best means the learner, because it exacts perfor- sign can ensure the success of all but
toward ultimate educational success. mance or at least its appearance. In the most damaged, rebellious, or or-
We must not inflate the importance of learning anything new, the learner ganically challenged student. For the
grading, increasing our temptation to will likely be awkward and unsure. At special learner, discerning appropri-
cheat for our students. Neither should this moment, he needs encourage- ate levels of success is crucial. We
we inflate accomplishment, thereby ment, not judgmental scrutiny. Justice should understand that, even here and
destroying the meaning of grades and and grace require patience in evalua- with few exceptions, anyone can grow
retarding real growth. tion, to allow God time to work in the incrementally in accomplishment.
student’s life. Lower grades may re- Rigorous practice with minimal con-
What Grading Accomplishes flect nothing more than a momentary tent, such as rote memorization,
lack of maturity or inadequate devel- serves to provide a safety net to en-
Grades communicate the student’s sure minimal success. Students of
accomplishment manifested through opment. Effort leading to progress
marks a just measure for evaluation. higher ability require a higher mini-
various trials of his ability and effort mal standard: “To whom much is
over time. Due to the vagaries of the Therefore, grades, during the course
of a student’s career are of value pri- given, much is required” (Lk. 12:48).
human mind in a fallen world, grades
may not accurately reflect real accom- marily as milestones. Just evaluation Working upward, the B or superior
plishment at any particular moment. considers characteristic patterns of grade marks a more diligent effort. It
Everyone will have a bad day some- conduct. also ordinarily represents, due to
times. To make more of grades than that manifestly harder work, the fulfilling
of progress and accomplishment at a Grading Standards of a higher degree of accomplishment
given moment corrupts their true value. Justice is the key. Honesty is than the basic rudimentary level. It
justice’s necessary consort. However, marks tangible progress toward excel-
For example, to use grades as a
standard for reward or punishment purely objective evaluation is an im- lence. The B grade allows for a more
places a wrong materialistic empha- possible myth. Grading will never be personal, that is, subjective evaluation
sis. With a materialistic emphasis, we purely scientific or objective. True of achievement beyond a narrowly
encourage the desire for selfish gain Biblical education — discipleship — defined minimal success. The more
or avoidance of discomfort, which reproduces the teacher’s mind, heart, subjective evaluation considers effort,
may easily result in cheating or other and ability in the student. Teaching is circumstances, and existing abilities.
compensation. Stressing a materialis- a matter of relationship. Discipleship The A grade represents a standard
tic reward undermines the purer joy depends upon the educated individu- generally acknowledged as a measure
of faithful learning and accomplish- ality of the teacher. Jesus said, “It is of excellence within certain limits. The
ment. A system of reward and punish- enough to become like your teacher.” limits include the scope of the course,
ment encourages children to cheat or Therefore, there is no pretense of pure and the foundational limits of the stu-
compensate, rather than to learn by objectivity in the historical, Christian dent, including such factors as matu-
faith. The use of grades to manipulate tradition of education. The teacher rity of understanding, maturity of
a child produces slavish conformance properly evaluates his student. motor movement, and former accom-
in contradiction to Romans 12:2: In a Biblical approach to evalua- plishment. In the most general sense,
“And be not conformed to this world: tion, the teacher (or, for the sake of God’s workmanship defines excellence,
but be ye transformed by the renew- consistency, his school) defines a set which men may only approximate.
ing of your mind, that ye may prove of standards or principles of evalua- However, excellence, at whatever level
what is that good, and acceptable, and tion. The particular standards we now our human limitations will allow,
perfect, will of God.” Sometimes describe reflect an approach to grad- ought to be our standard. Let the ex-
shaming a child with a grade is appro- ing I implemented in my schools over cellence of Christ in us become the per-
priate. Jesus used public shame to twenty years ago. To represent a range sonal standard in all our lives.
reach the hard-hearted. However, of accomplishments, our standards The D grade represents a lack of
shame makes a poor general educa-
defined a spectrum of accomplish- sufficient accomplishment to earn a C
tional instrument.
ment. We began with a definition for and to move on to the next topic. A D
Justice requires that grades indi- minimal success. This first successful grade usually results from a poor pre-
cate a consistent level of accomplish- grade — a C — implies, not an aver- vious educational experience, one that
ment over time. Athletes practice, age degree of accomplishment within has failed to lay proper foundations
practice, practice in preparation for a given group, but individual success for achievement. Thus, the D grade
the game. The scorekeepers record with respect to certain minimum ru- may apply to the student who at-

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 19


tempts diligent effort, but because of student. Rather, it should cause prayer eas of responsibility, grading on Bibli-
formerly developed bad habits or lack and re-doubled diligence to help the cal principle represents a challenge to
of training, he is not yet capable of the student overcome his poor character. our character to walk the narrow path
foundational skills and habits to sup- Parents should not protect their chil- with God in faith. Nonetheless, this
port success. It represents a remedial dren from momentary failure. grading program is eminently doable,
condition. The D grade does not con- and not as difficult as one might ex-
demn, but rather indicates that im- Special Consideration pect. After tremendous trepidations
provement is needed for minimal over my early grading ability, I found
accomplishment. The student none- Some special considerations in as- that establishing a spectrum of accom-
theless works by faith toward the bet- signing evaluations are worthy of plishment standards was actually not
ter accomplishment. For the D grade, note. More capable students should difficult and that my intuition usually
we expect the good fruit of the effort be graded according to their indi- proved out. Moreover, as with any skill,
in due season and by God’s grace. vidual abilities, as determined by the the more you practice, the better you
Such requires that the student learn teacher. To whom much is given, much get! Carefully defining course goals
to be transparent, accept God’s grace, is required. At the opposite end of the and keeping the developmental level of
and walk by faith. spectrum, where a student may be the student in mind will aid in estab-
slower of learning, the converse is not lishing grading standards for a par-
An F implies a complete lack of ef- necessarily true. The B grade serves ticular course. The teacher continually
fort. It, then, represents failure due to to indicate the slower student’s greater asks himself,“What level of knowledge,
the absence of effort. It also corre- diligence. But the A grade is reserved skill, or reasoning ability represents
sponds in a minor way to the Apostle for those where excellence is the real- success, the lack of success, or excel-
Paul’s turning the sinner over to Sa- ity. Otherwise, the value of the A grade
tan and the destruction of his flesh, lence?”
is inflated and becomes worthless as
for the saving of his soul. It is a bit of a standard of excellence. This ap- _________
a comeuppance. If a student has proach represents the virtual opposite
earned an F over his rebellion, he Ronald Kirk, long-time, pioneering
of grading on a curve, where a bright educator, has applied Biblical character,
should receive it. To deny an earned F student may slip by without effort be- skill and wisdom training to liberal arts
grade eliminates the benefit of the cause of the accomplishment of the education. Emphasizing Christian
possible remedial effect. crowd surrounding him. The normal influence through enterprise (Christian
The youngest students ordinarily curve is not just. dominion) and relational government
do not yet possess a sufficient force of This approach to grading is neither (Christian love and liberty), Ron’s
will to fail self-consciously. In other simple nor easy. It requires wisdom, approach puts feet on Van Tilian
words, except where parents have sys- grace, and faith. As with many other ar- presuppositional apologetics.
tematically failed to exert proper au-
thority, awe of parents should be — PAID ADVERTISEMENT —
sufficient to save a child from failure.
Therefore, I have never used F for
grades kindergarten through second. The Universal Dominion of Christ
This cut-off is admittedly somewhat by H. Rondel Rumburg

arbitrary, but, as is often the case, An exposition of Psalm 2


some cutoff point is necessary and Rev. Carl Russell in the Foreword said, “in a day of
this one is useful. eschatological ambiguity, utter confusion, and often a feigned hu-
mility because of sheer ignorance of the Biblical teaching of the
Since character determines the F crown rights of King Jesus, it is most refreshing to read such a
grade, we cling to hope for recovery treatment of this Second Psalm that does not hesitate or hedge or
hide from its plain teaching.” This volume also includes three other
and growth. Character can change! studies: The Messiah’s Dominion which was delivered in 1841 by
The teacher must intervene into the Rev. Andrew Broaddus; Christ’s Universal Dominion which was
student’s habits, thus correcting the delivered in 1877 by Rev. B. M. Palmer; and A Glimpse of Zion’s
heart of the student with the com- Glory which was delivered in 1641 by Dr. Thomas Goodwin. This
hard cover with 159 pages sells to Chalcedon readers for $15 plus
mand of God. The teacher structures $2.50 postage. checks made payable to H. rondel Rumburg.
the student’s conduct toward work.
Work is appropriate thanks for God’s Order from
provision. Initial fruit encourages the
student to trust God to make the ef- Society for Biblical and Southern Studies
fort. An F grade is no reason for de- PO Box 472 • Spout Spring, VA 24593
spair, especially with the younger

20 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


“What does it mean to you?”
History as a Tool of Covenant Evangelism
By Roger Schultz, Ph.D.
his children and his household ... to keep ish man from the north suburbs of
R ousas and Dorothy
Rushdoony shared a
Sunday dinner at our
the way of the Lord by doing righteous-
ness and justice” (Gen. 18:19). Indeed,
Chicago. He was a fascinating man
with stories of his migration from
home in the fall of 1994. Abraham’s obligation to teach his chil- Russia, his Orthodox grandfather, and
Some other families dren was tied to the gospel promise that his service against Hitler’s forces in
joined us, and there were all nations would be blessed through him World War II. He was amazed that I
many children present. in Christ (Gen. 18:1; Gal. 3:8). Fathers who was studying Hebrew in a Christian
Offering thanks for the meal, fail to train their children, furthermore, seminary, and he taught me little He-
Rushdoony prayed for the children in a are prohibited from holding office in the brew prayers. He grieved that his own
way that I will never forget: “May these church of Christ (1 Tim. 3:4-5; Titus 1:6). children hadn’t learned the language
children and their children’s children be In addition, fathers are required to and cared little for their Jewish heri-
Christians until the end of time!”1 transmit to their progeny a sense of God’s tage. Yet my new friend didn’t really
working in history. God performed the believe anything and even described
Rushdoony’s was a good Biblical himself as a “non-theistic” Jew. His
prayer, since Scripture consistently em- miracles of the Exodus so that “you may
tell in the hearing of your son, and of your children, it seemed, were merely liv-
phasizes the intergenerational aspect of ing out the faithlessness of the father.
God’s covenant mercies. God estab- grandson, how I made a mockery of the
lished an everlasting covenant with Egyptians, and how I performed My Christians need to take their own
Abraham, for instance, in Genesis 17:7, signs among them; that you may know history seriously. We need to learn les-
“to be God to you and to your descen- that I am the LORD” (Ex. 10:2). Note this sons from the past, celebrate the godly
dents after you.” That intergenerational well: God did miracles, so that we would dimensions of our heritage, eschew
covenant was reaffirmed at Pentecost, in have awesome Bible stories to tell our examples of unfaithfulness, and share
Acts 2:39, as Peter proclaims “the prom- kids of God’s power. (Sunday school with the next generations what re-
ise is for you and your children....” The teachers in my home church labored over demptive history means to us. Hebrews
Westminster Larger Catechism (Q183) the flannelgraph board to demonstrate 11 is a good, brief example of Chris-
instructs us to pray for coming genera- God’s work in history. I am sure, humanly tian history-telling, which moves us
tions, and gives scriptural proofs for this speaking, that my confidence in God’s with illustrations of faith. We must use
practice (2 Sam. 7:29; Jn. 17:20). The Word and God’s power rests in part on history to train future generations in
prayer for Rebekah’s seed in Genesis their faithful Exodus 10 style service.) the Faith. Indeed, it is our prayer that
24:60 emphasizes both the number of our descendents will be followers of
The recitation of Biblical history was, Christ from generation to generation.
her children and their success: “May furthermore, to be personally meaningful.
you, our sister, become thousands of ten “What does this rite mean to you?” (Ex.
thousands, and may your seed possess Your Children’s Inheritance
12:26) This was the question Hebrew chil-
the gate of those who hate them.” (Com- dren were to ask of their fathers at the time That calling is especially important
pare the language of “possessing the of the Passover celebration. It gave fathers since the prevailing secular culture offers
gates” of their enemies with God’s a ready opportunity to explain God’s re- little encouragement for training children
promise to Abraham in Genesis 22:17 demptive work in the Exodus. But it had in Christ. I have heard of a bumper sticker,
and with Christ’s prophecy concerning to be personal —it couldn’t be a stale, per- attached to an expensive motor home,
the church in Matthew 16:18.) functory performance. After all, the child reading, “We are spending our children’s
asks, “What does it mean to you?” Simi- inheritance.” It suggests a shockingly he-
God’s Mandate to Fathers larly, Christ is our Pascal Lamb (1 Cor. 5:7) donistic disregard for the next generation.
Scripture commands fathers to train and the sacrament of the Old Testament is The genuine Christian says, instead, with
the next generation. There is a clear com- analogous to that of the New. The Lord’s Proverbs 13:22, “A righteous man leaves
mand to teach the law of God, the fear of Supper is an excellent opportunity to re- an inheritance to his children’s children.”
the Lord, and Christian principles in both mind children of what Christ’s sacrifice The inheritance we leave to the next gen-
the Old Testament (Dt. 6:4-9) and the means to us. eration is spiritual as well as financial.
New (Eph. 6:1-4). Scripture says that God In 1982, I shared a hospital room How do we leave a spiritual inherit-
chose Abraham“that he might command for a number of days with an old Jew- ance? Psalm 145:4 says that, “One gen-

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 21


eration shall praise Thy works to another, Fifth, Christians can give examples of and rebellious generation, A genera-
And shall declare Thy mighty acts.” What God’s providences in their lives. Scrip- tion that did not prepare its heart, And
follows are suggestions for fulfilling that ture is filled with examples of God’s whose spirit was not faithful to God.”)
psalm and using history as a tool of guidance. There is an element of provi- Christians should have great confi-
intergenerational covenant evangelism. dence in marriage, for example, for God dence in the task of covenantal evange-
is the one who “joins together.” We have lism. God has promised to bless our
How To Do It wonderful opportunities of sharing with children. Psalm 102, a psalm rich with
First, Christians must teach chil- children God’s special providence in our messianic imagery, describes the afflic-
dren the law of God. They must come families, or our callings, or our particu- tions of the man of God. Yet it concludes
to know their Bible, the command- lar trials. Christians must not act as if with a precious promise: “The children
ments, and the law-word of the Sov- they were “practical atheists”; rather,
of Thy servants will continue, And their
ereign Lord. (Our own children they should point to the sovereign God
descendants will be established before
profited greatly, I believe, from our who directs their paths.
Thee.”2 May it be so with us, and with
last reading of Deuteronomy. They Psalm 78:5-8 has a good example of our children, and children’s children,
liked to ask about the provisions of how Christians should use history. generation after generation, until the
the law, how it might apply today, and First, there is a reminder of God’s law. coming of the Lord.
what were the principles to live by.) I (“For He established a testimony in _________
wonder how many evangelical homes Jacob, And appointed a law in Israel, Dr. Schultz is Chairman of the History
have regular family devotions where Which He commanded our fathers.”) Department at Liberty University in
the Scriptures are read and applied. Second, there is a command to teach Lynchburg, Virginia.
Second, Christians must teach chil- the Word to future generations. (“That __________
1
they should teach them to their chil- It was a moving prayer, especially consid-
dren the history of God’s redemptive ering Rushdoony’s roots. His family has a
workings. This is something that our dren, That the generation to come
long Christian heritage in Armenia,
children have naturally enjoyed. Scrip- might know, even the children yet to be stretching back to the 4 th century.
ture has stories of real people: war sto- born.”) Third, there is an emphasis on Rushdoony is the eighth in a direct line of
ries, romance stories, stories full of covenantal evangelism: transmitting ministers. Some in the family, including
genuine faith in God to children and Rushdoony’s maternal grandfather, were
pathos and sin, stories filled with faith martyred during the brutal Turkish geno-
and courage. For capturing the interest grandchildren. (“That they may arise
cide of Armenian Christians in the early
of boys, you cannot improve on David and tell them to their children, That 20 th centur y. An interview I did with
and Goliath, or Ehud and Eglon. On they should put their confidence in Rushdoony is available online at http://
Lord’s Day afternoons, for example, we God, And not forget the works of God, www.visi.com/~contra_m/cm/inter-
But keep His commandments.”) And views/cm13_ interview.html.
have read Foxes Book of Martyrs, Fair 2
The photograph of my family in my office
Sunshine, and missionary stories. It is a finally, Scripture uses a negative ex-
has affixed to it the words of Psalm 102:28.
reminder that these are our heroes, ample, urging listeners to avoid the re- It is a reminder of our Christian convic-
these are the stories of the faithful, and belliousness of generations past. (“And tions, and of God’s covenant faithfulness
these are the ones we follow after. not be like their fathers, A stubborn from generation to generation.

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22 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


What About College?
By Doug Dahl and Caleb Dahl
Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the
fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Gen. 1:28)

A s Christians in an
increasingly com-
plex world, we recog-
dangers of the traditional college route,
the accelerated learning methods stu-
dents use to increase their study profi-
distance degree, such as self-motiva-
tion, an appreciation of lifelong learn-
ing, and a continuing desire for
nize the crucial role ciency, and the process students would self-improvement. The book also con-
that higher education use to earn credit and enroll in a dis- tains a helpful chapter that describes
plays in preparing us tance-learning school. Voeller also de- the benefits of internships and lists
for our calling in God’s scribes his personal experience of how helpful resources for finding them.
plan of dominion. For most people, he leveraged his previous informal The book explains how to pull to-
higher education necessarily means at training and ministry experience into gether the disparate elements of a dis-
least a four-year degree from an ac- a four-year degree in six months. The tance-learning program into a
credited college. principal methods he used to earn col- collection that reflects a standard col-
lege credits were: lege-level educational path. Voeller de-
For two generations, parents have
assumed that their children would • Credit by examination — Using tails how to earn credit, enroll in
continue their education after high the College Level Examination classes, complete the requirements,
school by enrolling in a four-year resi- Program (CLEP) to earn credit take tests, and record the results. In
dency college. Recently, however, for study done at home. chapter 15, “Scholarships and Grants,”
many Christian parents have begun to • Portfolio assessment — Receiv- he addresses the issue of paying for
question that path because of its ex- ing credit for learning acquired what students learn, which will gener-
pense, its perilous social environ- through life experience. ally be a pleasant surprise to parents
ment, and the institutional enmity of who blanch at the $20-30,000 annual
• Correspondence courses — bills they might be facing at an upscale
so many traditional colleges toward
Completing college-level traditional university. The chapter also
the Christian faith. In addition, when coursework from home. provides a helpful chart for calculating
parents enroll their children in a col-
lege, they surrender much of their • Independent studies — Work- the total cost of a degree.
God-given authority over those chil- ing one-on-one with a college The book contains a helpful appen-
dren to the institution. Their ability professor. dix section which lists several degrees
to direct their children’s education, or Voeller lists several resources for that can be earned through distance
even to know how it’s progressing, is applying the Internet as a tool to aid learning, as well as Internet resources,
severely diminished. students in their degree plan. In the and provides degree planning work
book, he describes how to get con- sheets, and more.
Christian parents, particularly
those who have home-educated their nected to Web-based educational
sources, develop on-line relationships College in a Box
children into high school, are seek-
ing alternatives to the standard in- with teachers and other distance In addition to providing the book on
stitutional campus. One effective learners, communicate via e-mail, ADL, Global Learning Strategies offers
alternative is accelerated distance and otherwise receive a college edu- several valuable resources on distance
learning (ADL). cation in cyberspace. The book intro- learning and the skills that will help
duces distance learners to the vast distance learners be successful. GLS
Accelerated Distance Learning repository of knowledge and course- products include programs on inde-
work materials on the Internet. pendent study methods, speed-read-
In his book, Accelerated Distance
Learning: The New Way to Earn Your He also describes how to overcome ing, advanced memorization and
College Degree in the 21st Century, Brad an employer’s prejudices against dis- information retention, college-level
Voeller, founder and president of Glo- tance learning by emphasizing quali- writing, and test-taking skills. GLS has
bal Learning Strategies, describes the ties demonstrated by earning a packaged several of its resources to-

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 23


gether in a program called “College in other year to their on-campus matricu- improve, and just plain get faster, ADL
a Box,” which is an invaluable resource lation. For the ADL student, a change will become all the more viable for a
for anyone considering the ADL option. in major emphasis may mean a couple larger number of degree-seeking stu-
of months of additional study, rather dents, not only at the undergraduate
ADL is not simply a defensive edu-
than an entire year. This is possible level, but at the post-graduate level as
cational strategy, designed to over-
because students using this method well. Global Learning Strategies, with
come the shortcomings of residency
can apply the memory, speed-reading, its College in a Box, is on the cutting
colleges. ADL offers many advantages
and writing skills to earn the newly edge of a powerful trend that Christian
to degree seekers, including the op-
required credits faster. And if students parents should investigate carefully as
portunity to combine education and
decide they want to be an archeologist they prepare to send their children off
work more easily, leverage resources
and a zoologist, the path to the double to college.
and experience you already have into
major is much quicker.
course credit, begin credit earning If ADL intrigues you, you can learn
while still in high school, and speed Accelerated Distance Learning is more on the GLS Web site: www.global
up the process by as much as three not going to replace residency cam- learningstrategies.org. Note: That’s
years. That last benefit, the “acceler- puses any time in the near future. How- org, not com.
ated” part of ADL, is the one that’s ever, for a growing number of people _________
likely to drive ADL into the forefront who want higher education but cannot, Doug Dahl is a homeschooling father
of future educational programs. or prefer not, to go the residency cam- of six. His son, Caleb, is pursuing his
pus route, ADL is an attractive option. college degree via Advanced Distance
One of the realities of the standard
As the Internet continues to expand, Learning.
residency college path is that the ma-
jority of students take more than four
years to complete their four-year de- — Continued from page 17 — — Continued from page 26 —
gree. Students who are convinced at the _________
age of 18 that they want to be arche- Ian Hodge, AmusA, Ph.D, is Director 1
James Clavell, The Children’s Story (New
ologists frequently decide by age 20 of International Business Consulting York: Delacorte Press/Eleanor Friede,
that they would prefer to be zoologists. for the Business Reform Foundation 1981).
Generally that means they have to flush (www.businessreform.com), a ministry 2
ibid.
3
several credits down the drain in a that teaches how to apply the Bible to What follows assumes that parents are
change of majors, and plan to add an- business and provides consulting making Biblical use of the “rod of correc-
tion” (Pr. 22:15).
services based on Biblical principles. 4
Catechism questions and answers probably
He writes a weekly Christian commen- belong here as well. The words of the older
tary on current events in business for catechisms, as precious as they are, usu-
For Information BiznetDaily (www.biznetdaily.com). ally require more explanation that the doc-
trines they teach.
Regarding When he is not business consulting,
Ian enjoys exercising a ministry in music
5
Bible storybooks, good ones, can be supple-
mentary reading.
Advertising Rates with his family (www.musicreform.com). 6
For help along these lines, see S. G. De Graaf ’s
4 volume Promise and Deliverance (St.
__________ Catherine’s, Ontario: Paideia Press, 1977) —
Contact Susan 1
Mariaemma Willis & Victoria Kindle that is, if you can actually find a set.
7
Hodson, Discover Your Child’s Learning What a child finds difficult may be surpris-
Burns At Style (Roseville, CA: Prima Publishing, ing. One of our greatest challenges was
explaining “died” as in “Jesus died for us.”
1999).
276-963-3696 2
ibid., ch.5, “Dispositions: The Way the We had to begin from squashed spiders; it
was the only experience our children had
World Sees Us.”
of death.
or 3
See David W Merrill & Roger H. Reid, Per-
sonal Styles and Effective Performance
8
My favorite question so far has been,
(Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 1999 [1991]); “Daddy, why does everyone try to kill prin-
chalcedon@ Robert Bolton & Dorothy Grover Bolton, cesses?” It was sparked in part by the
Social Style / Management Style: Develop- Disney princess movies, but it led to a
netscope.net ing Productive Work Relationships (New twenty-minute discussion of the kingship
of believers, the true nature of nobility and
York: Amacom, 1984).
4
Peter F. Drucker, The New Realities (Lon- virtue, and the antithesis between the Ser-
don: Mandarin, 1989), 229. pent and the Woman.

24 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


If You Only Had a Few Years…
By Greg Uttinger
children’s parents can do, for in
T he war is over, and
they have won. This
is the background for
Clavell’s imaginary tale the children
are casualties of war. America is a con-
God; many lepers were. In spite of all
this, the little girl said to her mistress,
“Would God my lord were with the
James Clavell’s short quered land. prophet that is in Samaria! for he
masterpiece, The Of course, Clavell’s primary inter- would recover him of his leprosy.”
Children’s Story. The est is not what war does to children. What a blessed child! She harbored
story is set in a second He is concerned with forms emptied no bitterness, no hatred. She wished
grade classroom somewhere in of meaning, precious words parroted
America. It begins at two minutes to Naaman well. She wished for his heal-
but never defined, and why it is “so ing. Furthermore, she was certain that
nine as the children discover they easy to divert thoughts and implant
have a new teacher. She is one of them, Elisha the prophet could heal him, even
others.” 2 He is talking about issues though no prophet had ever healed a
yet the children find her pretty, en- that affect us all most of the time. And
gaging, and understanding… not at leper before. She was certain that Elisha
yet the specifics of his imaginary sce- would heal him, even though Naaman
all the horrible monster they had ex- nario are not that fantastic. Godly par-
pected. And she talks with them, not was a Gentile and one of the enemy. She
ents have before now lost their believed this even though “many lep-
just at them. She asks them ques- children to godless bureaucrats, and
tions. She wants to know about their ers were in Israel in the time of Elisha
those children have had to endure a the prophet, and none of them was
routine and what it all means: “What pagan captivity with only the founda-
does pledge mean?” “What does al- cleansed” (Lk. 4:27). This little girl’s
tions their parents managed to lay in faith was exceptional. So was her un-
legiance mean?” their children’s earliest years. derstanding. Have you ever wondered
The children, typical American seven Scripture, in fact, tells us of several how God prepared her for all of this?
year olds, cannot answer her. No one has young people who were torn away
ever explained these words. The chil- from their families and translated into The Child Moses
dren have simply been required to pagan cultures. Joseph was seventeen
memorize grown-up talk without un- The same question confronts us in
when he became a slave in pagan the history of Moses. After the episode
derstanding. Carefully, deftly, the young Egypt. Daniel and his companions
teacher walks the children through a with the ark in the Nile, Moses’ mother
were perhaps a bit younger when they received him back for a few short
series of clever questions and sugges- entered Babylon’s leadership training
tions that lead the children to cut up the years. She was his nurse until he was
program. But teenagers are young weaned. Then she had to surrender
flag, abandon their prayers, and gener- adults, and we might reasonably hope
ally embrace the new socialist order. The him up to Pharaoh’s daughter so he
that their faith and values could sur- could begin his formal training beside
story ends at 9:23. Twenty-five minutes vive such a violent transplanting.
have passed. the other Egyptian princelings. Egyp-
What about younger children? Re- tian culture and education were
Clavell came up with the story after member that Clavell’s imaginary chil- drenched in superstition and magic.
his own daughter — “almost six” — dren are only seven. Moses’ mother — her name was
proudly rattled off the Pledge of Alle- Jochebed — had perhaps three years
giance, which she had just memorized, The Little Maid alone with her son (2 Macc. 7:27; cf. 2
but which she could not explain. Clavell One of the most remarkable saints Chron. 31:16). What did she do to pre-
writes, “It was then that I realized how in the Old Testament narratives is a pare her child for his stint in the pa-
completely vulnerable my child’s mind little girl, “a little maid,” who appears gan schools of Egypt? The Bible does
was — anyone’s mind for that matter in 2 Kings 5:2-3. She had lived in not say. But she obviously did a great
— under controlled circumstances.”1 northern Israel, but the Syrians had deal more than the parents of the chil-
invaded and carried her away. Now dren in Clavell’s story.
It Has Happened Before she worked in the household of
The re-education program Clavell Naaman, a Syrian general, one of The Covenantal Context
describes is even more insidious and them. Naaman was a leper. The little A warning is in order here. Educa-
effective than that of America’s state girl might easily have thought that he tion, even Christian education, is not
schools. And there is nothing the was under the direct judgment of

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 25


salvific. God alone saves sinners. Our stor y, for instance. Choose the faith.7 This will take time.
hope must be in His promises, in His songs that celebrate all of Explain redemption and salva-
grace and Spirit. But God uses means God’s attributes. Sing about tion and resurrection. Explain
to save His elect. We and our children His great acts in both Testa- faith and repentance. Then see
are bound up in a bundle of life with ments. Sing songs that take if your child understands the
the Lord, a bundle called covenant. If God seriously. Avoid overly explanation. Review the defini-
we are to see our children trust in
sentimental hymns and praise tions until they stick.
Christ and remain faithful to that cov-
enant, we cannot safely ignore any of choruses and anything that’s 6) Answer your child’s questions
its provisions. silly. We are preparing our chil- seriously and at length.8 “Daddy,
dren for an adult faith. if we’re going to live again, will
And so we pray. We pray for our
children and with our children. We 3) Read the Bible with your child. we have to die again?” “Mommy,
pray for ourselves, for wisdom, love, Read the actual text of Scripture.5 why does God give people differ-
and consistency; and we confess our Begin in Genesis. Read as much ent colors of skin?” Children’s
own failures and sins, both to God or as little as your child can take questions can be penetrating
and, when necessary, to our children. in at a sitting. Explain, comment, and thought provoking. Never
We present our children for bap- and question as you go along. brush them off. A question is a
tism. We place them under the preach- Don’t shy away from the details teaching opportunity.
ing of the Word. We teach them how of Passover or the Levitical sac- 7) Everything can be a teaching op-
to worship with God’s people. We rifices or the Nazarite vow. Ex- portunity — a thunderstorm, a
make sure that they have an active pect your child to remember death in the family, a news report,
part in the life of Christ’s church — what you’ve read in the past. Re- or a walk through a garden.“Look
that is, of our own congregation. We view key persons and events over at this beautiful rose that God put
live out lives of faith before them and and over again. But be careful not
with them. And, of course, we teach here for us to enjoy.” The goal
to reduce the Biblical histories to here is not to contrive openings,
them God’s Word for all of life.3 a collection of adventure stories but rather to be honest and open
or moral tales, a sort of inspired about the grace of God in our
Some Teaching Strategies Arabian Nights or Aesop’s Fables. lives. God did put the rose there,
Here, then, are some practical sug- Relate every passage to Jesus and He did put it there, at least in
gestions for teaching a Biblical Christ (Rev. 19:10d).6 It is the part, for us to enjoy. This kind of
worldview to very small children (2 to gospel that implants faith (1 Pet. conversation is exactly what Deu-
4 years old): 1:23-25), and it is faith that en- teronomy 6:4-9 has in mind.
dures the darkness of Egypt and
1) Teach your child the forms of the Babylon.
faith as soon as possible. Don’t Conclusion
wait on their understanding. 4) Have your child memorize We are at war. We don’t know how
Understanding can catch up to Scripture. Choose some verses long we have to prepare our children
memory. Have your child learn that describe the Biblical doc- for their part in the conflict. But even
the Apostles’ Creed, the Ten trines of creation, sin, and re- if we were sure that we would have
Commandments, and the Lord’s demption. Choose others that years and years, why would we want to
Prayer. 4 The danger is not in will speak to his present needs, waste any of them? Teaching our chil-
learning the forms, but in never verses about trusting God, obey- dren the faith is a great responsibility;
learning what they mean. ing parents, being cheerful, it is also an incredible privilege.
_________
working hard, and so on. Scrip-
2) Sing psalms and psalm-like ture must be in the memory be- Greg Uttinger teaches theology,
hymns in family worship and fore it can be in the heart. history, and literature at Cornerstone
around the house (Col. 3:16). Explain each verse as your child Christian School in Roseville, Califor-
This can include the better learns it. Come back a few weeks nia. He lives nearby in Sacramento
Christmas carols and praise County with his wife, Kate, and their
later and explain it again.
songs that are taken directly three children. He may be contacted at
from Scripture. Sing children’s 5) Explain the difficult words and paul_ryland@hotmail.com.
songs only where they serve phrases that appear in the
some purpose — reinforcing a creeds, catechisms, and songs of — Continued on page 24 —

26 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


Rewards of Homeschooling
By Sandra A. Lovelace
(Excerpted from her soon to be released book: Home Schooling Step by Step, a Chalcedon publication)
understand our world through the formation or fun or motivation. They
I t’s not unusual to look
for positive feedback
when we’re involved in
truth of God’s Word without interfer-
ence. Then, as we seek ways to respond
also create memories and warm fam-
ily bonds. When our daughters were
a consuming commit- in accordance with Scripture, we can younger, we had a regular spring rou-
ment. Rewards along share with them a life of obedience. tine. On the first windy day we would
the way can confirm go to a local park and fly kites. We still
We can focus on God’s standards reminisce about all the laughing and
that we are headed in and guidelines above all others. When
the right direction. They can also raise running we did and Dad’s bat kite that
children spend time in other educa- dove into the ocean.
our level of involvement. Although a tional settings, they are not only out-
final reward may not be the reason for side the influence of their parents, they Family traditions are another type
our labors, it would certainly help to are also under the influence of others. of activity that foster close family rela-
add excitement to our efforts. So in This influence may be in direct oppo- tionships. When our oldest daughter
the interest of encouragement, let’s sition to the family’s values and goals. was born, we thought a lot about how
consider the rewards of being a Chris- we wanted to celebrate Christmas. We
tian home educating family. This is not to say that children decided that we wanted the advent sea-
should never be away from their par- son to be a special time of reviewing
Atmosphere ents. There is a difference between be- the whole breadth of the Bible and not
ing exposed to other ways of thinking just Luke 2. So I put together an advent
One of the great rewards of home and being dredged in them. Taking an
education is the ability to orchestrate calendar that has felt symbols in the 25
art class or playing on an athletic team pockets. The verses that accompany
the family atmosphere. Parents can is considerably different from spend-
determine the tone, quality, and char- each item begin with Genesis 1:1 and
ing six to eight hours a day, five days a end with John 3:16. We now include our
acter they want in their home envi- week in a government classroom. Each
ronment. Then they can oversee the grandchildren as we read our way
family needs to decide what the bal- across God’s Word each December.
process of developing their family vi- ance is regarding this issue.
sion. Time, just plain time, is one of These episodes of special family
the main resources for this task. We have found experiences in other times can be compared to the stars in
settings, when limited and appropri- a constellation. As each one is added to
Time spent together allows family ate to maturity levels, to be valuable
members to get to know each other. the collection, the image becomes more
training exercises. They can provide recognizable as the object it represents.
Time working together provides op- excellent opportunities to reinforce
portunities to smooth out rough Biblical values. We’ve had some of our The full constellation may not be
patches in relationships. Although best conversations with our daughters perfect, but it will resemble the image
there is no guarantee of perfection, as a result of outside experiences. In it’s meant to portray. The more Bibli-
the hours home educating families this way, distractions are restrained cal, family-oriented activities, memo-
spend together do give parents more from causing strife and turned into ries and traditions we include as we
of an opportunity to accomplish fam- occasions for promoting the truth of work our way along the path toward
ily harmony. There are numerous oc- Christianity. our vision, the more our families will
casions throughout each day to work resemble that vision. The two hours
toward that goal. Our family and Activities we spent each year flying kites are sev-
many other home educating families eral bright stars in our constellation.
are experiencing the rewards of close In addition to being able to create During that time we were rejoicing in
family relationships. an atmosphere that is conducive to the the family God made and enjoying the
transmission of faith and a Biblical
Home educating families have the precious time we had together.
worldview, home educating parents
freedom to respond to God and His are also able to incorporate activities Sometimes the star may be only a
Word. We can submit every situation that contribute to the family vision. pinprick of light. For example, in the
and event, whether it occurs inside or
outside the family, to Scripture. We can The activities we choose to include
demonstrate for our children how to in our family life add more than in- — Continued on page 29 —

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 27


Patrick Henry: Homeschooled
Christian Patriot
By Richard G. “Rick” Williams, Jr.

H e was a normal boy,


who liked work as
little as a colt likes the
stood as a worthy example for his son
as he also served as a vestryman of the
Episcopalian St. Paul’s parish. John
John Henr y made sure his son’s
home-based education was compre-
hensive, such that he even enlisted
cart. Unaware of his Henry’s brother, the Reverend Patrick other family members. Patrick’s
own latent powers, he Henry, was for forty years rector of the uncle, the Reverend Patrick Henry,
did as other boys in church. was also involved in training the boy,
Hanover were doing — and the good Reverend made the
went barefoot in summer, fished, A Father’s Contribution younger Patrick memorize several
swam, sang, fought, did “chores,” and maxims of Christian conduct:
As were many boys in Henr y’s
in fall and winter roamed the forests time, Patrick was first tutored in an To be true and just in all my
with his flintlock.1 English common school with other dealings, to bear no malice nor
Young Patrick Henry’s powers may boys of Hanover. Here he learned the hatred in my heart, to keep my
have been “latent,” but they would be basics of writing, reading, and arith- hands from picking and steal-
nurtured and encouraged by a father metic. But when Patrick turned ten, ing. Not to covet other men’s
who was intimately involved in his his father began schooling him at goods; but to learn and labor
son’s education. Patrick Henry would home. John Henry also tutored other truly to get my own living, and
grow up to become the “trumpet of young men in the area for a fee, but to do my duty in that state of
the American Revolution” and his in- his primary energies were directed life unto which it shall please
fluence on the American republic is toward his son. Patrick Henry’s fa- God to call me. 4
felt to this day. Henry’s ardent anti- ther had benefited from a classical
federalist positions, when it came to education in England, and he labored Samuel Davies
what he considered to be deficiencies in passing on his knowledge as he For as concerned as Patrick’s father
in the United States Constitution, instructed Patrick in modern and was over his son’s mastery of intellec-
were prophetic. As we’ve seen power ancient history, Greek, Latin, and tual and physical skills, he was just as
seized from the states and centrally mathematics. As one historian has concerned that his boy receive ad-
concentrated in Washington, we now noted, “Patrick also acquired a equate spiritual instruction. Patrick
realize the Founders would have done knowledge of Greek and Latin and of would do much better than “ad-
well to heed the Virginian’s warnings. the classics, as well as the Bible equate.” When Patrick was just twelve
To study Patrick Henry’s life and his through his father’s diligent ef- years old, he had the opportunity to
accomplishments, one might think he forts.” 3 While Patrick’s father made begin sitting under the preaching of
was the beneficiary of a formal edu- sure he laid a strong intellectual a man who Martin Lloyd-Jones once
cation, perhaps attending one of the foundation for his son, he also al- called, “the greatest preacher America
best schools in colonial Virginia, such lowed the young boy to develop the ever produced.” That preacher was
as William and Mary, that prepared physical manly qualities that, unfor- Samuel Davies. Henry would later
many of America’s early jurists for tunately, seem to be missing in many state that Davies was “the greatest ora-
service. But such was not the case. It young boys today. Patrick loved the tor” he ever heard. No doubt Henry’s
was actually his father, John Henry, outdoors and spent hours hunting, flair for fiery oratory and moving dis-
who directed young Patrick’s early fishing, and canoeing in Virginia’s course was enhanced through the in-
learning regimen. And after leaving beautiful woods and streams. Later, fluence of Davies. Davies’ sound
home, Patrick Henry was primarily a after “reading law” and being admit- theological teaching further bolstered
self-educated man. ted to the Virginia bar, he was known Henry’s deftness in political logic and
to come into court, fresh from a hunt, debate. Davies was known to be “a fol-
John Henry was a respected mem- his buckskin breeches still stained
ber of the Hanover County, Virginia lower of John Knox” and a “strong ad-
with the blood of a recent kill. Mind, vocate of civil rights and liberties.”
community serving as the county sur- body, and soul — it takes a complete
veyor, magistrate, and as a colonel in education to make a complete man While Patrick Henry’s father was
the state militia. 2 The elder Henry that God can use to his full potential. active in the Episcopalian church, it

28 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


was Henry’s mother who joined the dear family. The religion of Christ can — Continued from page 27 —
church where Davies preached. give them one which will make them
Patrick’s mother would require her rich indeed.” midst of ongoing sibling rivalry the
son to pay close attention to Davies’ aggressor gives in to the passive child
messages and “repeat the sermon The richness of his Christian faith and hands over a toy unbidden. At
text and summarize Rev. Davies’ ser- was accomplished through the Provi- bedtime a child prays for someone
mon on the way home from church dence of God working in Henry’s par- and you realize the poignancy of his
meetings.” 5 It was through this ents’ desire to teach their son. God request. There are fleeting conversa-
providence of being involved in two further used Patrick Henry’s faith to tions and events that reflect what we
different Christian denominations bring about true religious liberty in really believe God wants our families
that Henr y likely developed his America — a freedom we still enjoy to be. These moments, large and
catholic attitude towards those de- today. This inheritance that Patrick small, are being joined together in the
nominations outside the “estab- Henry wrote of in his will, the religion constellation of our family vision.
lished” church. He would later defend of Christ, is the legacy of Patrick
Quakers, Baptists, and others against Henry and his parents. And it should Future Rewards
persecution as fervently as if they be the same legacy desired by every There are rewards in the future that
were members of his own church. homeschooling parent today. Fathers we, and our nation, will receive as a
One writer called Patrick Henry a (and mothers) should accept this result of our home education efforts.
“faithful ally of the Baptists during quest for a godly legacy and commit, From our full-time commitment to
their struggle for religious liberty.”6 as Patrick Henry did, to “do my duty raise our children in the nurture and
Henry’s work in the colonial courts in that state of life unto which it shall admonition of the Lord will come
of Virginia set many of the prece- please God to call me.” God-seeking descendants and a bet-
dents that today allow Americans to ter America. We learn in Exodus that
enjoy the freedom to worship with- __________ God’s blessings are generational. They
out fear of persecution from a state Rick Williams is a businessman, are for our children, our grandchil-
established church. publisher, (VirginiaGentleman.com) and dren, our whole family line.
freelance writer. He writes a regular You shall not bow down to them
The Fruit of Parental Labor
column for Business Reform magazine [idols] or worship them; for I,
Patrick Henry loved freedom. He (BusinessReform.com) and also contrib- the Lord your God, am a jealous
loved the church. And he loved utes to Homeschooling Today magazine God, punishing the children for
Christ. The education that his father (HomeSchoolingToday.com). He is the the sin of the fathers to the third
and mother provided him at home author of The Maxims of Robert E. Lee for and fourth generation of those
laid a firm foundation and one that Young Gentlemen. (© 2002, Xulon Press, who hate me, but showing love
Henry would endeavor to pass on to ISBN – 1-591604-57-5) Rick and his wife, to a thousand generations of
others. As he lay dying, surrounded Diane, live in Virginia’s Shenandoah those who love me and keep my
by those close to him, he called his commandments(Ex. 20:5-6).
Valley and have been homeschooling
devoted friend and physician to
their children for 10 years. The expression of God’s love can-
come close. Dr. Cabell, while inti- not be fully marked or measured. His
mate with Henry, was not convinced __________
Word says that children are in line to
of the Christian religion. Cabell 1 receive His blessings through the obe-
David J. Vaughn, Give Me Liberty — The
rushed to his dying friend’s side dience of their parents. Therefore,
Uncompromising Statesmanship of Patrick
knowing he could do nothing to de- Christian parents who decide to pur-
lay Henr y’s death. Patrick Henr y Henry (Cumberland House Publishing,
Nashville, 1997), 30. sue a home education program out of
looked into Cabell’s face and “asked 2 obedience to God’s call are opening
the doctor to observe how great a Vaughn, 27.
3
John Eidsmoe, Christianity and the Con-
the door for special benefits to come
reality and benefit that religion was to their children.
to a man about to die.” 7 Thus, with stitution (Baker Book House, Grand Rap-
_________
his dy ing words, Patrick Henr y ids, Michigan, 1987), 298.
spoke of his faith in hopes of lead- 4
Vaughn, 32. Sandra is an award winning author
ing his dear friend to the Savior. 5
Eidsmoe, 308. who has contributed to a number of
6
Lewis Peyton Little, Imprisoned Preachers Christian publications. She and Curt,
Henry’s last will and testament also and Religious Liberty in Virginia (J.P. Bell her husband of 34 years, raised and
testified of his faith in Christ: “This is Co., Inc., Lynchburg, VA, 1938), xx. homeschooled two daughters and dote
all the inheritance I can give to my 7
Vaughn, 268. on their grandchildren.

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 29


The Islamization of Europe
By Samuel L. Blumenfeld
Italians have the lowest birthrate in that calls for such diabolical behavior.
O riana Fallaci, the
intrepid Italian
journalist, known for
Europe, and they don’t want the me-
nial jobs. But the hope has always
And there is nothing in Biblical reli-
gion that calls for the total degrada-
her no-holds-barred been that immigrants would be ab- tion of women.
interviews of world sorbed into Italian culture, so that the The burkah is probably the most
leaders and celebrities, generation born in Italy would adopt degrading form of dress ever con-
has written a book that Italian or Western ways and attitudes. ceived by any culture for women. It
the Moslems in Europe have tried to But Fallaci writes: puts them in a mobile prison, reduc-
ban. Titled The Rage and the Pride, it Because our cultural identity ing them to a form of chattel, a mov-
was written as a response to the at- has been well defined for thou- able piece of personal property. They
tack on New York and Washington on sands of years we cannot bear a have no rights, no freedoms, and are
September 11, 2001, in which 3,000 migratory wave of people who forced to remain ignorant, illiterate,
human beings perished in the World have nothing to do with us ... and enslaved by their husbands. In
Trade Center Towers, in four hijacked who are not ready to become like Afghanistan, women have been given
airliners, and in the Pentagon, killed us, to be absorbed by us.... the right not to wear the burkah,
by Islamic fundamentalists. The book [w]ho, on the contrary, aim to which was required under the Taliban.
is a powerful alarm to wake up the absorb us. To change our prin- Yet, there are many women in Af-
West to the Reverse Crusade launched ciples, our values, our identity, ghanistan who still wear the burkah
by this Islamic Pearl Harbor. our way of life. And who in the because of custom and fear of their
meantime molest us with their husbands.
The Reverse Crusade retrograde ignorance, their ret- What is amazing is how passively
Fallaci is the only writer I know of rograde bigotry, their retrograde the Europeans have allowed this inva-
who has connected what happened on religion. I am saying that in our sion to take place. It’s as if the Islam-
9/11 with what has been going on in culture there is no room for the ization of Europe were taking place in
Europe for the last fifteen years: a muezzins, for the minarets, for a cultural vacuum. But it is not so
massive invasion by Moslem immi- the phony abstemious, for the much a cultural vacuum as it is a
grants. She characterizes this inva- humiliating chador, for the de- spiritual one. Western Europe has long
sion as the Reverse Crusade, by which grading burkah. fallen away from its Christian roots
the Moslems hope to dominate Chris- mainly through the prevalence of its
Islam and Women
tian Europe from which they were ex- atheist leftists in positions of power
pelled in the 15th century. She writes: Fallaci is infuriated by the way Is- in politics and academe. Christianity
lamic fundamentalists treat women. has been replaced by communism and
People are afraid to speak She quotes the two testaments that
against the Islamic world. socialism, the two utopian philoso-
Muhammed Attah, the leader of the 9/ phies of the 20 th century for which
Afraid to offend, and to be pun- 11 attack, left for his parents:
ished for offending, the sons of millions of human beings were sacri-
Allah. You can insult the Chris- At my funeral I do not want im- ficed. And so, why resist the Islamic
tians, the Buddhists, the Hindus, pure things. Meaning, animals invasion that is being aided and abet-
the Jews. You can slander the and women.... Not even around ted by the Left?
Catholics, you can spit on the my grave do I want impure be-
Madonna and Jesus Christ. But, ings. Especially the most im- The French
woe betide the citizen who pro- pure: pregnant women.
But the rise of Le Pen in France,
nounces a word against the Is- But of course, there was no funeral and so-called right-wingers elsewhere
lamic religion. for Attah who was burnt to ashes with in Europe, are the rumblings of a
What particularly disturbs Fallaci the rest of his fellow hijackers and the growing opposition to Islamization.
is the extent to which Italy has been passengers on the plane. It requires a Brigitte Bardot, the famous French
impacted by the Moslem invasion. diabolical mind to believe that this is film star, has written her own pas-
And the reason why Italy permits something God called for. There is sionate book, A Scream in the Silence,
these immigrants to stay is because nothing in Judaism or Christianity in which she proclaims: “I am against

30 Chalcedon Report – August 2003


the Islamization of France…. For cen- be guaranteed. Some European Jews was an Imam.... And I declare
turies our forefathers, the ancients, are emigrating to Israel. that many Imams (too many)
our grandfathers, our fathers gave are spiritual guides to terrorism.
their lives to chase all successive in- But Israel is not exactly a safe ha-
vaders from France.” ven. The Jerusalem Report of June 2, What do the Imams in the mosques
2003 reported: of America preach? Is a non-Moslem
But when will the French fight American permitted to enter a
back? There are now six million Mus- Ran Baron, 23, Yanai Weiss, 46,
and French immigrant Domin- mosque and find out? Over the years
lims in France who want the right to I have attended Jewish synagogues,
send their daughters to secular pub- ique Caroline Hass, 29, were
killed and about 60 wounded Protestant churches, Catholic
lic schools wearing the chador. They churches, Mormon churches, and
when a suicide bomber identi-
want to impose their culture on fied as Assif Hanif, 21, of Brit- never did I hear a sermon that
France, and they are a power to be ain blew himself up outside preached hatred of someone or any-
reckoned with. Mike’s Place, a beachfront pub in one. But Islam is a religion of hatred
Tel Aviv on April 30. An accom- that has no place in a tolerant Chris-
It was Charles de Gaulle who be- tian civilization. We wonder if some
trayed the Christian West, in 1962, plice of Hanif ’s, Omar Sharif, 27,
also of Britain, escaped after his young American Moslems are being
when he surrendered French Algeria prepared to become the suicide
to the Arabs, forcing the flight of over suicide bomb failed to detonate.
bombers of the future. We hope the
a million Europeans and Jews from Over 700 Israelis have been killed Homeland Security Department
North Africa. It was the presence of by suicide bombers since the begin- knows the answer.
France in North Africa that kept the ning of this latest Intifada. And it is
Arabs in check and permitted the cre- _________
interesting that suicide bombers are
ation of a productive civilization in now being recruited among European Samuel L. Blumenfeld is the author
that part of the world. But de Gaulle’s Moslems in this worldwide religious of eight books on education, including
retreat from North Africa made the war. Fallaci writes: NEA: Trojan Horse in American
Reverse Crusade inevitable. Education, How to Tutor, Alpha-Phonics:
All the so-called Revolutions of
France had invaded Algeria in 1830 Islam began in the mosques. A Primer for Beginning Readers, and
to put a stop to Moslem depredations Not in the Universities, as the Homeschooling: A Parents Guide to
along the Mediterranean coast. The [liberals] want us to believe. Teaching Children. All of these book
French stayed, and Europeans settled Behind every Islamic terrorist are available on Amazon.com or by
there, building farms, vineyards, facto- there is an Imam, and Khomeini calling 208-322-4440.
ries, and a European way of life. Alge-
ria became a prosperous French colony — PAID ADVERTISEMENT —
in which the Arabs enjoyed a high de-
gree of safety and freedom. Today, with
the French gone, Islamic radicals are
free to slit the throats of children sleep- SEASLIVER:
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Algerians have gone to France, with a MLM-Health-Wealth-Freedom. Liquid Nutrition. The
large contingent of anti-Semitic radi- Sealogica in Seasilver contains every vitamin, macro-
cals among them. And they have mineral, trace mineral, amino acid, enzyme, and sea
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vegetable pyto-nutrients in nature’s perfect balance.
Anti-Semitism www.obadiah.seavitamin.com
With the Islamization of Europe Obadiah97@yahoo.com
has come a resurgence of anti-
Semitism sparked by the hatred of Is-
rael. The Arab-European League, a
or 1/800-549-9071
militant Arab nationalist party, is one
of the Islamic groups responsible for
inciting hatred of Jews. In pro-Pales-
tinian marches in Antwerp, Belgium,
police warned Jews not to go to their
temples because their safety could not

August 2003 – Chalcedon Report 31


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32 Chalcedon Report – August 2003