How can you help your children or students understand and then apply the Bible to all of life? How can you teach them to think and operate according to a biblical worldview?
The purpose of Christian education is rooted in a conviction that children must understand and apply the Bible in every sphere of life. That’s why parents and churches combine their resources to expand the understanding and application of the Bible to all of the particulars within a field of study that the pastor has no time or expertise to address in the Sunday sermon. The purpose of Christian education is not only to provide spiritual and ethical reinforcement but also to provide biblical worldview training for understanding academic disciplines in a way that is consistent with biblical thinking.
Structuring Your Approach
Since expanding the understanding and application of the Bible to all of life is the primary motivation and task of the Christian educator, knowing how to do it well is vital. Choosing a curriculum that provides a solid foundation to build on is the first step. But that’s only a starting point, a guide. It offers help by providing suggestions to point you in the right direction. But the teacher is still key.
The teacher structures and develops the meat of the lesson. What mindset should guide you as you seek to help students understand and apply the Bible in a particular field of study? One helpful approach is to look at your subject matter through the lens of Creation, Fall, Redemption. Evaluate students’ understanding by asking them to explain the subject matter—how it ought to be done or viewed according to God’s creational norms/laws. Evaluate students’ critical thinking by asking them to analyze and evaluate fallen humanity’s twisting of that subject matter. Evaluate their application skills and creativity by challenging them to think through a biblical approach to the subject matter even within a fallen world awaiting God’s full restoration.
One Example: Cultural Geography
Secular textbooks are filled with the subtle assumptions or evangelistic zeal of multicultural pluralism—the idea that all cultures are equally good or neutral and thus equally acceptable. This is consistent with secularist goals and values such as “truth and values are relative” or “tolerance will solve the conflicts of humanity.” However, if cultural geography is taught from the biblical model of Creation, Fall, Redemption, students will learn that all cultures reflect the ideas and behaviors of people groups that are both created in God’s image and fallen. Thus, all cultures combine both creational goodness and human fallenness. Some cultures are more conformed to God’s law than others due to God’s common grace and the influence and contributions of the redeemed in that culture. Students must learn not only to appreciate cultures distinct from their own but also to critically evaluate all cultures, including their own, by the ultimate standard of God’s Word.
Using Creation, Fall, and Redemption in your thinking will help you shape a biblical worldview in the minds of your students. May God give you help to that end.
How do you help your students maintain a biblical worldview in their studies?