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Friday, January 11, 2013

Thirteen Year Dose

If we think American schools are religiously neutral, we must think again. Of course, if the public schools were overtly indoctrinating children in Buddhism, or Native American Animism, many parents would hit the ceiling. (Maybe.) But when it comes to the indoctrination of children in Dewey's "Common Faith," Christian parents are curiously passive. 

Apparently enough Christians think secularism is "neutral," and if kids can learn to read and write well enough to enter a university, they'll give secularized education a pass. Apparently enough feel that if teachers don't stand up in front of a class and say, "The Bible is a fairy tale," things are tolerable. Yet when teachers don't connect the Word of God seriously to a single academic subject over a period of thirteen to seventeen years, are those teachers really being "neutral?" [Consider last week's post.]

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.  

A Christian dualist is one who reads the Bible, prays, goes to Church on Sunday, maybe teaches Sunday School, and yet doesn't make any substantive connections between God's Word and what goes on in the workplace for 40-60 hours Monday through Friday at Boeing, because he or she thinks "faith" is a personal matter, and the workplace is "public," and therefore "secular." The Christian dualist doesn't mix the Word with Boeing because he or she never mixed the Word with math, science or economics over thirteen to seventeen years in school, so why mix it now with Boeing? Building airplanes is a "secular" endeavor, isn't it?

Really? Where exactly is this "secular" world, anyway? [See Where Is The "Secular" World?]

In short: 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.

Many Christian parents who attended secularized schools themselves don't see a problem with their children attending them, because they "turned out OK." But my question is: Did they?

Did we?

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