Article 12 | Education
Christianity is the faith of enlightenment & intelligence. In Jesus Christ abide all the treasures of wisdom & knowledge. All sound learning is, therefore, a part of our Christian heritage. The new birth opens all human faculties and creates a thirst for knowledge. Moreover, the cause of education in the Kingdom of Christ is co-ordinate with the causes of missions and general benevolence, and should receive along with these the liberal support of the churches. An adequate system of Christian education is necessary to a complete spiritual program for Christ’s people.
In Christian education there should be a proper balance between academic freedom and academic responsibility. Freedom in any orderly relationship of human life is always limited and never absolute. The freedom of a teacher in a Christian school, college, or seminary is limited by the pre-eminence of Jesus Christ, by the authoritative nature of the Scriptures, and by the distinct purpose for which the school exists.
- Deuteronomy 4:1,5,9,14 >> God calls His people to listen, pay attention, & not forget His statutes as He has gone to great lengths to engage their minds with His truth.
- Deuteronomy 6:1-10; 31:12-13 >> It is not just the adults that need to be engaged with God’s truth, but the children as well.
- Nehemiah 8:1-8 >> The proclamation of God’s truth so that the people could understand it is the landmark of true worship.
- Job 28:28 >> Wisdom begins with the fear of the Lord & understanding is seen by walking in righteousness.
- Psalm 19:7 >> The supernatural benefits of God’s Word for the human heart & mind cannot be found manufactured anywhere else.
- Psalm 119:11 >> An embrace of God’s truth transforms our lifestyles.
- Proverbs 3:13; 4:1-10 >> By God’s design, knowledge & wisdom are invaluable resources.
- Proverbs 8:1-7,11 >> Wisdom is something human beings need & that which God has given for our instruction.
- Proverbs 15:14 >> Seeking more knowledge is evidence that someone has a heart that longs for understanding, as opposed to fools, who delight in foolishness.
- Ecclesiastes 7:19 >> Wisdom gives strength for those who heed it.
- Matthew 5:2 >> The ministry of Jesus was marked by teaching & preaching.
- Matthew 7:24 >> Hearing & heeding the Word of God provides great stability for the Christian life.
- Matthew 28:19-20 >> The call to teach is implicit in the Great Commission.
- Luke 2:40 >> Part of the life of Christ was the necessary growth in wisdom & in knowledge & in stature that is inherent in the life of all human beings.
- 1 Corinthians 1:18-31 >> Because of sin, the wisdom of God looks like foolishness to the natural man & the wisdom of man is also foolishness to God.
- Ephesians 4:11-16 >> Because growth in knowledge & truth is so vital, God gave a number of offices to the church for the purposes of teaching & equipping. As truth is spoken in love & embraced by those who hear it, the body of Christ grows together & matures to fulfill the calling God has placed upon it.
- Philippians 4:8 >> Some things in this world have no spiritual profit. Therefore, we should guard our hearts by devoting ourselves to things that aid our spiritual growth & reflect the character of God.
- Colossians 2:3,8-9; 1 Timothy 1:3-7 >> A relationship with Jesus is the starting point of effective knowledge, wisdom & truth. Additionally, deceptive philosophies of false teachers will lead to futility.
- 2 Timothy 2:15 >> A right handling of God’s Word is the duty of every teacher.
- 2 Timothy 3:14-17 >> Discipleship is the process of being taught the truth of God’s perfect Word & continuing in it — being taught, reproved, corrected & equipped for spiritual growth & purpose.
- Hebrews 5:12-6:3 >> Christians should pursue growth by embracing God’s truth. This process has been designed by God & is His will for all His children.
- James 1:5 >> Since God is the source of all wisdom, Christians should seek it & find it in Him.
- James 3:17 >> Wisdom is self-evidencing due to its fruits of purity, peace, gentleness, reason, mercy, impartiality, & sincerity.
Article 18 | The Family
God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. It is composed of persons related to one another by marriage, blood, or adoption.
Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. It is God’s unique gift to reveal the union between Christ and His church and to provide for the man and the woman in marriage the framework for intimate companionship, the channel of sexual expression according to biblical standards, and the means for procreation of the human race.
The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God’s image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to His people. A husband is to love his wife as Christ loved the church. He has the God-given responsibility to provide for, to protect, and to lead his family. A wife is to submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ. She, being in the image of God as is her husband and thus equal to him, has the God-given responsibility to respect her husband and to serve as his helper in managing the household and nurturing the next generation.
Children, from the moment of conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord. Parents are to demonstrate to their children God’s pattern for marriage. Parents are to teach their children spiritual and moral values and to lead them, through consistent lifestyle example and loving discipline, to make choices based on biblical truth. Children are to honor and obey their parents.
- Genesis 1:26-28 >> Males & females are equal in the eyes of God, both being made in His image. Gender is a gift from God.
- Genesis 2:15-25; Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; 1 Peter 3:1-7 >> Covenant marriage is a gift from God in which man & woman are made complete through complementary roles they fulfill in one another’s lives. No one can meet a husband’s needs like his wife. No one can meet a wife’s needs like her husband. This unity & equality are illustrated in the fact that God man the woman from the man’s rib.
- Genesis 3:1-20 >> Adam’s passivity & failure to lead his wife, Eve, resulted in the fall of mankind. Sin has corrupted the unity & harmony of marriage & the family to the very core.
- Exodus 20:12 >> It is God’s will for fathers & mothers to be respected by their children. This relationship is a training ground for how children respond to every other authority in their lives.
- Deuteronomy 6:4-9 >> Parents are meant to be the primary disciplers of their children. This is God’s design for the family, that parents & children would talk about the Lord & His Word in all aspects of life.
- Joshua 24:15 >> Fathers & mothers must make the decision to lead their families in serving the Lord.
- 1 Samuel 1:26-28; Psalm 127; Matthew 18:2-5 >> Children are a gift from God & this stewardship should be taken very seriously. The only way to be a parent by God’s design is to recognize your children are the Lord’s first.
- Psalm 78:1-8; 2 Timothy 1:3-5; Titus 2:3-5 >> The message of God’s faithfulness is meant to be proclaimed from one generation to the next. Each generation has the opportunity to choose obedience or rebellion.
- Psalm 128 >> Families are called to fear the Lord & with that reverence comes the blessing of God.
- Psalm 139:13-16 >> Each child is the product of the Lord’s divine work within the mother, created for a specific purpose & for a specific period of time.
- Proverbs 1:8; 6:20-22 >> Children are called by God to listen to their parents instruction & heed the wisdom that comes from them.
- Proverbs 5:15-20; Malachi 2:14-16; Hebrews 13:4 >> Adultery is an abomination to the Lord & the destroyer of individuals.
- Proverbs 12:4 >> Husbands & wives are so intimately connected that the character of the one intensely affects the other.
- Proverbs 13:24; 22:15; 23:13-14; 29:15, 17 >> It is a parents duty to love their children enough to correct them through the means of discipline.
- Proverbs 14:1 >> Women, like men, are called to intentionally & strategically build their families up under the Lord’s guidance.
- Proverbs 18:22; 31:10-31; Ecclesiastes 9:9 >> Marriage to a godly spouse is a blessing from God.
- Proverbs 22:6 >> When parents raise up their children according to God’s design for them, they will always come back to it.
- Proverbs 24:3 >> God has specific wisdom for families to follow so that the individuals within can be built up for the glory of the Lord.
- Matthew 5:31-32; 19:3-9; Mark 10:6-12; 1 Corinthians 7:1-16 >> God allows divorce only under certain circumstances, such as marital unfaithfulness. Remarriage should be strongly discerned as well.
- Romans 1:18-32 >> Sin distorts human sexuality, relationships, & the family.
- Ephesians 5:21-33 >> In their mutual submission & sacrificial love, husbands & wives illustrate the love of Jesus Christ for His church.
- Ephesians 6:1-4; Colossians 3:18-21 >> Children & parents have unique responsibilities towards one another.
- 1 Timothy 5:8 >> Every family relationship comes with a certain set of responsibilities, such as care & provision.