“For his God doth instruct him to discretion, and doth teach him” (Isaiah 28:26).
My family recently received some flower bulbs to plant. The package told us to plant them in early spring. Of course, our children wanted to plant the bulbs right away and asked why we needed to wait.
“Because the package says to wait or the flowers will die in the ground.”
“How does [the package] know when to plant?”
I really didn’t have a good answer for my daughter. Actually, I myself don’t know how farmers figured out when to plant different bulbs. But the Lord knows. In Isaiah 28, He asks the people of Israel a rhetorical question. To paraphrase the question, God asks the people of Israel if farmers prepare the earth by plowing and then plant different seeds in their appointed places (Isaiah 28:24–25). The answer is, of course, yes. That’s what good famers do.
If you asked those farmers who taught them to carefully prepare for harvest, they would probably say, “My father and his father before him.” But God declares that He is the one who instructs the farmers how to plant their crops (Isaiah 28:26).
Careful Attention to Creation
So how exactly did farmers learn how to effectively grow crops? The Lord didn’t reveal these methods in the Bible. In the beginning, God created the world to function in certain ways. Even after the Fall, God’s world works in predictable ways. When farmers pay careful attention to creation, they learn to use it to serve their needs. So every farmer who discovered an effective way to produce crops learned from God’s good creation. Or in the words of Isaiah 28:29, every one of these advances “cometh forth from the Lord of hosts, which is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working.” Yes, the farmers learned from their fathers, but that knowledge ultimately came from God.
God Teaches in Education
The instructions for planting and caring for my family’s new bulbs come from skilled horticulturalists, who have learned from God by studying His world. If we follow their instructions in the spring, we’ll enjoy beautiful flowers.
And the same principle applies to other knowledge. When we open a science book or math worktext, we’re beginning to learn about how God has ordered creation. Have you learned about gravity and long division? Have you mastered an algebraic formula or dissected a fish? When we do, we’re learning from God.
When Christians, including children, study with faith in the Creator, they’re worshiping Him. For it is God that teaches.