Biblical Justification for Homeschooling

What is your Biblical justification for homeschooling?

For 24 years I’ve been ask why I homeshool. I can give you a running list of all the reason. The answer I give will depend on the year, which child or children I am currently teaching, and where I am in my own personal growth. But, this is the first time I have ever been asked to back it up Biblically.
Justification love godParenting

Before talking about reasons to homeschool, what is the goal of parenting?

“Which commandment is the most important of all?”  Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’  The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Matthew 5:28-31

If this is the greatest commandment to live by, then it logically follows that the greatest goal of a parent is to teach their children to follow it.

Education

If the goal is to teach my children to love God, and to love others, then our educations choice becomes a question of: What educational method will best enable me to teach my children to love God and love others?

Here’s why I believe homeschooling is the best method of Biblically teaching my kids:

Justification 51) God chose parents to be the primary teachers of their children

Gen 18:19 (Lord speaking of Abraham) For I have chosen[f] him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice, so that the Lord may bring to Abraham what he has promised him.”

Deut 4:1 & 9 And now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and the rules[a] that I am teaching you . . . Make them known to your children and your children’s children

Isaiah 38;19the father makes known to the children your faithfulness.

Prov 1:8, Hear, my son, your father’s instruction, and forsake not your mother’s teaching,

Prov. 4:1Hear, O sons, a father’s instruction,and be attentive, that you may gain insight

One of the most common statements I hear from Christians –both homeschoolers, and non-homeschooler alike – is, “You must be called to homeschool.”

I actually believe the opposite to be true. I believe we are all called to teach our children, and we must be “called” to send them into the world.

For example: Moses’ mother “sent” him out – to protect him from death.

Hannah promised Samuel to the Lord’s service before He was even born, then keep her promise to the Lord when she took him to the temple. Bible scholars believe Samuel was approximately 5, or school age, when he arrived to help the priest.

I believe God has mandated the parents are to be the primary teachers, unless God “calls” us to do otherwise.

justification hands2) Homeschooling allows for more time to teach

It takes time to teach a child to love the Lord and others.

Deuteronomy 6:4-9

 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

The verse says to teach them diligently. Marrian-Webster says diligently means in a manner involving great or constant activity. Constant activity and great involvement takes time.

Teaching them when you talk, sit, walk, lie down, and rise takes time.Justification Love Others

The second greatest commandment “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

Homeschooling allows me time to love others in front of my children, to love others with my children and to watch my children love others.

We often stop “academics” to minister to others.

3) Christian homeschooling allows me to teach a singular verses a dualistic Christian worldview.

When I homeschool EVERYTHING I do and every subject I teach has God at its core.

1 Corinthians 15:27  For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him.

justification 3Reading

Matthew 4:4 – But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Romans 15:4 – For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

We read because we want to know God and His Word.

Writing

1 John 2:14 I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.

We write so others may know God.

MathJustification

Colossians 1:16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible

God created the principles that prevail throughout creation, including math. Math is a way of expressing what God has created.  Every time you use math, you are experiencing God sustaining the universe.

Justification ScienceScience

Psalm 111:2 Great are the works of the Lord, studied by all who delight in them.

Romans 1:20  For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.

Science is defined as “the intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment.” Therefore science is the study of God’s creation.

Historymap

Psalm 78:3-4

Things that we have heard and known, that our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children, but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might, and the wonders that he has done.

Daniel 4:17 to the end that the living may know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will and sets over it the lowliest of men.

History is taught so our children will see the amazing things God has done, and understand His sovereignty.

I teach my children at home because I want them to know God is the Subject of every subject. I do not want them to become dualistic in their thinking.

Dr. Christian Overman points out, “the outcome of a steady dose of secularism from Kindergarten through 12th grade may not be what you think. My biggest concern about young Christians being indoctrinated into secularism via education is not that they will become atheists. My biggest concern is that they will become dualists. … after a thirteen year dose of secularism (even via the best Christian teachers who would never speak badly of the Bible), a young Christian is most likely to come out the other end as a dyed-in-the-wool dualist, thinking the Bible is relevant to Church life and personal life, but not relevant to business, law, politics, medicine, or driving a bus, because it wasn’t relevant to language arts, history, social studies or sports.” http://darrowmillerandfriends.com/2013/03/11/dualism-hidden-effect-secular-education-christian-children/

jusitification 2

4) Homeschooling allows me to teach my child to think and confront the world where it is at.

When I was a young homeschooler, I heard a veteran homeschool mom speak. She said that her kids would bring their college books home to her so she could go through them and point out what was Biblically inaccurate in them. My first thought was, “You have failed at homeschooling.” I determined then, that when my kids left home they would be able to discern for themselves what was Biblical and what wasn’t.

I want to my children to have a superior grasp of Biblical Theology (after first having a growing passionate relationship with the Lord). I also want them to have an understanding of cultural norms and prevalent philosophy. I then want them to be able to articulate the Biblical truths to the people who live in our current culture.

Ephesians 6:19 Pray also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, (Prayer for my kids)

Two Biblical examples of this are:

Daniel – was a young teen when taken from his Biblical family and land and placed in a secular culture, yet he was able to stand for the truth of God’s word and had a huge impact on the culture in which he was placed.

Paul – In his Mars Hill Sermon, he uses references to the prevalent religions, cultural reference, and logic to prove the existence and need for God.

5) Homeschooling allows me to impact the next generation for Christ.

Judges 2:10 “And there arose another generation after them who did not know the LORD or the work that he had done . . .”

I may offend some here … My generation of Christian parents are failing.

A personal example: Our son just went to a major university in the Bible belt. At college orientation the students broke into small groups of twenty. They talked about diversity. They were ask to identify with a specific religion or belief system to show diversity. THREE students out of twenty said they were Christians. And this is the Bible belt!

Statistical evidence:

  1. 97% students graduating high school are Biblically illiterate
  2. 88% of Christian teenagers are leaving the church by their second year in college
  3. 80% of teens who claim to be “born-again” do not believe in the existence of absolute truth
  4. 63% don’t believe Jesus is the Son of the one true God
  5. 58% believe all faiths teach equally valid truths.
  6. 51% don’t believe Jesus rose from the dead.
  7. 65% don’t believe Satan is a real entity.
  8. 68% don’t believe the Holy Spirit is a real entity
  9. The number one goal of Christian parents for their children is that their children would get a good education. Only half as many parents considered their children’s having a relationship with Jesus Christ as important as their child’s education.

http://electexiles.wordpress.com/2008/07/11/whats-wrong-with-youth-ministry-some-stats-and-a-proposal/)

I homeschool because I want my child to be in the minority. I want my children to be Biblically literate, to go to church, to believe God’s Word is absolute truth, to believe in Jesus as the only Savior and only way to God and heaven.

I homeschool because my number one goal for my kids is that they love God and when that conflicts with academics – God comes first. I remember being incredibly nervous when I dropped my oldest son off at his SAT test. I thought of all the ways I had failed and all the things I should have taught him. I worried he wouldn’t get into college and it would be my fault. Then God spoke to me – one of the few times I have heard Him audibly. God said, “It doesn’t matter if he is CEO of a company or a cashier at McDonalds – He loves me and others.”

schoolThere’s my Biblical justification for homeschooling, but in reality there is NO biblical mandate to homeschool. ALL of these points can be accomplished by purposeful Christian parenting in any educational setting. It’s just easier to accomplish when I have more time with my child, and my child is not exposed to as many unbiblical teaching at an early age. ALL parents are called to disciple their kids to God, and we should encourage one another to do so – no matter what school choice we make.

Now, If only I was ask to back up EVERY major decision and life choice I make Biblically, maybe I would always make wise choices.

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Psalm 2

“Most Christians salute the sovereignty of God but believe in the sovereignty of man.”

― R.C. Sproul (and God laughs – Joyce Pinero)

Read Psalm 2

Pss 2.1What’s it say?
List everything you learn about God:

What’s it say about me?List everything it say about who we are as God’s followers. What we should do.

What’s it mean?

There are two verses in this Psalm  I’d like to look closer at: Psalm 2:4 and Psalm 2:12

He who sits in the heavens laughs;
the Lord holds them in derision. (2:4)

I love the concept that God sits in heaven and laughs. But what is He laughing at?

God is laughing at what happened in verses 1 – 3. God is laughing, mocking (thus the word derision) the fact that people think they are in charge. God is in control. We are nothing but His creation. He holds the world in His hands and sustains it. He gives each person the ability to breath and live each day. The concept of earthy man being in control and being able to break bonds which God has created is laughable, thus God laughs at man’s stupidity.

Kiss the Son,
lest he be angry, and you perish in the way,
for his wrath is quickly kindled.
Blessed are all who take refuge in him. (2:12)

Since this was the verse that popped out at me first, I originally studied it first. I looked up ancient Hebrew cultural practices of kissing. Basically, there are two reasons for kisses – intimacy and to pay homage to one in authority.

Although a case can be made that we should have an intimate relationship with The Son, looking at the verse in context the meaning is to pay homage to.

The entire Psalm focuses on the Kingship and authority of God. He is in control; man is not.

In verse 2 God laughs at those who think they are in control, in verse 12 God goes even further to say that those who do not pay homage to, recognize, bow down and worship Him will perish from His anger and wrath.

What’s it got to do with me?

Do you believe God is in control?

Are you acting on the belief that God is in control, or are you trying to control things yourself?

Are you bowing down and “kissing the Son” in homage to His Lordship?

Is God the Lord of your life, and not just someone who created the world and then sits back and watches from afar?

What specific issues in your life do you need to turn over to God and give Him control?

Children’s Lesson

Print a picture of someone kissing (I used Cinderella and Prince Charming)

Read Psalm 2.

ps 2Who do you kiss? (parents, siblings, grandparents, etc.)

Why do we kiss? (We love someone)

The Bible says to “kiss the son” – we do that because we love Him, but we do it for another reason too.

If you lived in olden times, when there were kings and queens, you would have bowed down and kissed the hand or ring of the king to show the king that you would do whatever he wanted. He in turn would protect you.

Let’s pretend to be Kings or Queens and subjects. You be the Queen first. Bow down and kiss your daughters hand. Now switch roles.

In this verse – we are told to kiss the Son because God is the King. He is in control. We kiss Him to tell Him we know He’s in control. And He will protect us.

Psalm 1

“Man must have some delight, some supreme pleasure. His heart was never meant to be a vacuum. If not filled with the best things, it will be filled with the unworthy and disappointing.” (Spurgeon)

Read Psalm 1.

Psalm 1.1

What’s it say?

* Read it without interpreting it. I really like to make lists for this.

Make a list of everything it says about God, what He does and who He is.

  1. Blesses
  2. Has a law
  3. KNOWs ways of righteous
  4. Punishes way of wicked

Make a list of everything it says about man (me/us). In this passage, make a list of the man who delights in the Lord, because that is the central character of this passage.

  1. Blessed
  2. Does not walk in counsel of wicked
  3. Does not stand in way of sinners
  4. Does not sit in seat of scoffers
  5. Delights in law of Lord
  6. Meditates on law of Lord day and night
  7. Like a tree planted by water
  8. Yields fruit
  9. Does not wither
  10. Everything he does prospers
  11. Won’t have to stand with sinners at day of judgement
  12. Righteous
  13. God knows his ways

What’s it mean? This is where you interpret, maybe cross reference, or read commentary.

As an English teacher and writing coach what sticks out to me is that this is a comparison paper.

The comparison is made between –

  1. The wicked and the righteous
  2. What the man who delights in the Lord’s laws should and should not do
  3. The results of delighting and righteousness

This is really just a summary of the lists, so no further explanation is needed.  What I really want to take a look at and study closer is the central theme of delighting in the law of the Lord.

Most Bible scholars and commentaries say “the law of the Lord” is all of God’s Word, not just the rules and regulations. I’ll go with that, simply because it sounds better to my American libertarian self. It also makes sense in context of the message of grace throughout the Bible, and that James 2:10 states, “For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.” No one completely delights and keeps God’s laws, so this passage would apply to no one if not for the grace of God.

I love the word “delight.” It’s almost an onomatopoeia (there’s the English teacher in me again). It was similar in the original Hebrew word. The word originally was an Arabic verb which meant to “be mindful of, attentive to, to keep and protect.”

Heinrich Friedrich Wilhelm Gesenius, a Biblical scholar and linguist in the early 1800s, states that the original meaning of the Hebrew word “delight” meant “to bend, incline toward.”

In other passages of scripture the word is used to describe a great desire, intense feelings toward, such as a man delighting sexually in his wife.

Interestingly, and probably the most important aspect of the word is that the verb “delight” always points the reader toward what is being delighted in. The emphasis is not on the verb itself but the object that is being desired. For example, if I were to say “red ball” – the ball is what is highlighted, not the color red. In Hebrew the word delight was more often used as an adjective than a verb – “delightful stones” Mal. 3:12.

So what’s that got to do with this particular passage? The Word of God is what is highlighted. The word of God is delightful. It is to be delighted in. It is to be mindful of, attentive to, kept and protected. We are to bend towards, and incline out life towards it. We are to have a great love and desire for God’s Word.

What’s it got to do with me?

We’ve seen the rewards of delighting in God’s Word, and the punishment for those who do not. We’ve seen what we should and shouldn’t do if we delight in God’s Word. So now I ask you:

  1. Does the Word of God make you happy?
  2. Does it get you excited?
  3. Do you feel obligated to read His word – or can you not get enough?
  4. Do you hunger for more of His Word?

Pray that God would allow you to “delight” in His Word.

“Man must have some delight, some supreme pleasure. His heart was never meant to be a vacuum. If not filled with the best things, it will be filled with the unworthy and disappointing.” (Spurgeon)


 

Children’s Study

Psalm 1Print off a picture of a tree to color. Write on the paper: “

Read Psalm 1 aloud to your child.

What’s it mean to delight? Love, cherish, be extremely happy with.

God wants us to love to read His Word and “delight” in it. (You can sing the B I B L E)

Can you stand tall like a tree? God tells that when we LOVE God’s Word, we will grow strong like a tree, with lots of sweet fruit, we will always be strong.

2013: The Year God Became Personal

“And His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Is. 9:6)
2013 will be a year I will never forget. It has been the hardest year of my life. It has brought the most pain. And in the midst of that pain, God has drawn near to me as never before.
I call Him, Wonderful.
I call Him,  Counselor. When my world fell apart and I was so depressed I didn’t want to get out of bed – He listened to me and His voice and Word spoke wisdom to me. I had the opportunity to spend a whole day with Him – fasting and basking in His presence. I had ample time to cry and mourn the death of my son-in-law and mother-in-law, and the loss of dreams for my daughter and the presence of my grandson. I cried out in the wilderness and God heard my cries.  I could almost feel the warmth of His arms around me as I sobbed. He directed me to passages of scripture which helped me face a new day. And He put a song in my heart and gave me back the joy of my salvation.

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Herman van Swanevelt – Saint Jerome in the Wilderness
I call Him, Mighty God. He is Sovereign. What other’s planned as harm for our family – God turned to His glory. I have prayed for my husband’s for 25+ years. In April, He made the decision to be “All in for God!” Satan has thrown everything at him and tried to destroy his passion for serving Him. Everything others might view as trials, God has used to draw Nelson closer to Himself. Despite everything, I see him growing spiritually every day. God, in His sovereignty has used the trials of our life to answer my prayers and to grow Nelson into a Mighty Warrior for Himself. He also answered another 25 year old prayer and gave me assurance of my mother-in-law’s salvation before she went to be with him.
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William Blake – The Vision of God 

I call Him, Everlasting Father. A father I call “Abba” “Daddy.” He has not been a Santa Clause in the air who sees me when I’m good and bad, or who I just sit on his lap and ask for his “gifts” for my life.  He has been the Daddy who sees my needs before I could even ask, and has done “immeasurably more than all I ask or imagine.” (Eph.3:20). He put a song in my heart and gave me back the joy of my salvation when I was depressed and despondent. He gave me a new relationship as well as a new admiration for the man I love. He gave me a beautiful new grand-daughter. He has given me family and friends who have stood by my side instead of turning away when they saw the ugly truth about me. He confronted me with my own sins, and He and I both wept over them. Then he took them away as far as the east is from the west, and he looks at me a sees me as righteous.

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Circle of Pierre Mignard I – God the Father
I call Him, Prince of Peace. When my heart was heavy with grief, I was haunted my memories. Memories of my last day with my mother-in-law. Sitting by her bedside as she faced death. The happy memories of 30 years faded into the background as I obsessed with this picture in my head. The picture popped into my mind each time I would shut my eyes to sleep, and sleep became only a dream. Then, at the end of my “day with God” I was singing and worshiping Him and I saw a vision (my first one ever). I was sitting at Mami’s bedside. Then I saw an angel descend, pick Mami up, and ascend with her into heaven. It was beautiful, and the Peace of God washed over me. I slept for the first time in 6 months that night. And although tears still flood my eyes as I think of Kenny and Mami, because I will forever miss them – I have peace that passes all understanding. Peace to live on another day and peace that I will see them again in eternity.
Portrait - Illustration - Sleep -  (3)
God is not just THE Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace – He is My Wonderful, My Counselor, My Mighty God, My Everlasting Father, My Prince of Peace. God became personal to me this year, in a way He never has before.

Forever Loved & Missed

Kenny –
I am so happy you were a part of my family.

Mami – I am only beginning to imagine
my life without you. You were my friend,
mentor, teacher, my Mami,
You loved your family well &
God more.