The following is an analogy to consider for those who have their kids in government or secular schools. This analogy is intended for those who might raise the objection that if they can teach their kids what things to avoid (e.g. Evolution) then there is no real danger for their children in the public/government/secular schools. I hope that this analogy helps illustrate the flaw in that argument.
Imagine that you have a pitcher full of lemon-infused water with lemons floating around in the water (my wife tells me that this is called “spa water”). I rather enjoy such spa water, but for the sake of analogy let us imagine that the Lemon is a type of lethal poison. When your child goes to take a drink of this spa water you might tell him “Don’t partake of the Lemon, because the Lemon is poison.” With spa water it is actually rather easy to avoid partaking of the lemon itself. Why? Because the lemon is floating around at the top and usually never gets close to the spout. But if the Lemon were poison, as in this analogy, how many of us would feel comfortable with our children drinking the spa water with lemons floating around on the top even if the Lemon itself is avoided. I feel rather confident that most of us would not allow our children to be exposed to such Lemon-infused water, even if they were able to avoid the Lemon itself. Why? Because the Lemon has been so worked into the water, that though the flavor might be slight, it permeates the entirety of the pitcher of water, therefore the water itself has become poison.
In the same way imagine your child’s education as water which they drink. In many ways education is much like water, and considering the 30–40 hours per week that they drink of this water, I might dare to say that it has become almost as essential to their shaping and formation as actual water itself. But can’t we avoid the pitfalls of modernist, secular, anti-religion, evolutionary, “tolerant”, self-determined-identity, politically correct education simply by telling our children not to believe in a few false theories that their teacher might be required to teach them? Isn’t math simply math (“2+2=5, right?” If you do not know to what I refer, you need to pick up George Orwell’s 1984). Isn’t grammar just grammar? Isn’t truth just truth?
The problem is that Christians by and large have come to believe the only real problem with modern education is simply a few teachings (e.g. Evolution in a biology class) or the removal of prayer from the classroom. Therefore these short-comings can be counterbalanced simply by counter-teaching at home. The problem though is that the Lemon has been infused throughout the whole pitcher. The well itself has been poisoned, to use a common phrase. The very foundation of truth itself has been undermined by a secular worldview which from the ground level is seeking to show that God, whether he exists or not, is simply unnecessary.
Is this the kind of view that we want our children to adopt? Of course not. No Christian would want their child to believe God to be a superfluous, unnecessary being. But consider this: if our children are raised on a daily diet of Lemon-infused water, what kind of appetite will they develop? What effect would partaking of Lemon-infused water have on their minds and hearts? How would Lemon-infused water shape their souls?
So what is the solution to this? Is it to try to treat your children with a Lemon-antidote on a daily basis? If necessary, then its perhaps the only option you have. But wouldn’t it make more sense simply to change their diet—to replace the Lemon-infused water with Pure water?
I hope this has caused you to consider the question of Christian education in a new light.
Please, leave your comments and questions below.