Same Sex Marriage and the Christian School

Dr. Barrett Mosbacker

Our relatively comfortable Christian world in the US has changed.

One of the most disturbing images I've seen in a long time was one of the White House lit up in rainbow lights to celebrate the Supreme Court's decision legalizing same sex marriage. 

This picture saddened and angered me. How did we arrive at this place?

The day after Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, President Roosevelt addressed a joint session of Congress. His speech summoned a nation to war and became among the most iconic in American history.

Yesterday, December 7, 1941, a date which will live in infamy, the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.

June 26, 2015 is also a date which will live in infamy. On that date the Supreme Court of the United States legalized same sex marriage.

I am saddened but I am not surprised by the Supreme Court's decision. I am saddened because our country continues it relentless march to Sodom and Gomorrah. I suspect that everyone reading this article feels like Lot, whom Peter describes this way in his second epistle:

… Lot, greatly distressed by the sensual conduct of the wicked (for as that righteous man lived among them day after day, he was tormenting his righteous soul over their lawless deeds that he saw and heard) .2 Peter 2:4ff

I am not surprised because we long ago sowed the seeds that eventually bore the fruit we see in the Supreme Court's decision. Actually, it is not so much the seed that was sown as the seed that has not been sown.

Let me explain. 

Jesus taught that the student will be like his teacher: 

Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher. Luke 6:39-40

We have fallen into a deep moral pit.

For decades over many generations the majority of our nation's children have been educated in schools by non-Christian teachers and/or legally muzzled Christian teachers who are not free to teach God's word in any subject. 

God's word is absent for eight hours a day, five days a week, nine months a year for 13 years and that doesn't include four to eight years of college. Seventeen to twenty-one years of a secular education, not counting the influence of all forms of media, WILL produce secularized students and a secularized country.

Whether through overt falsehoods or the absence of the truth because Christian teachers are legally muzzled, students are secularized and molded into the culture's secular image. 

Students will be like their teachers. Echoing the words of Jesus, an anonymous proverb says that:

The philosophy of the schoolroom in one generation will be the philosophy of the government in the next.

I have always been amazed that C.S. Lewis used a small quote from an elementary textbook as the foundation for his profound book, The Abolition of Man. This short quote illustrates the fact that we have arrived at this point in our country in large measure because we have miseducated our young over many generations. 

I doubt whether we are sufficiently attentive to the importance of elementary text books. That is why I have chosen as the starting-point for these lectures a little book on English intended for boys and girls.

I do not think the authors of this book intended any harm. [The authors] quote the well-known story of [tourists] at the waterfall … [one tourist called the waterfall] sublime and the other [called it] pretty.

When the [tourist] said this is sublime, he appeared to be making a remark about the waterfall. Actually, he was not making a remark about the waterfall, but a remark about his own feelings. What he was saying was really I have feelings associated in my mind with the word Sublime, or ... I have sublime feelings. We appear to be saying something very important about [the waterfall] when actually we are only saying something about our own feelings ...

I am not concerned with what [the authors intended] but with the effect their book will certainly have on the schoolboy’s mind ... I do not mean, of course, that [the schoolboy] will make any conscious inference from what he reads to a general philosophical theory that all values are subjective ... It is not a theory they put into his mind, but an assumption, which ten years hence, its origin forgotten and its presence unconscious, will condition him to take one side in a controversy which he has never recognized as a controversy at all.

The point that Lewis is making is that the authors of this elementary textbook, although they meant no harm, did great harm by teaching young students that there is no objective truth; everything is essentially subjective and relative. 

Allan Bloom in his book, The Closing of the American Mind describes the result:

There is one thing a professor can be absolutely certain of: almost every student entering the university believes, or says he believes, that truth is relative ... The students’ backgrounds are as various as America can provide. Some are religious, some atheists; some are to the Left, some to the Right; some intend to be scientists, some humanists or professionals or businessmen; some are poor, some rich.

They are unified only in their relativism … The danger they have been taught to fear from absolutism is not error but intolerance. Relativism is necessary to openness; and this is the virtue, the only virtue, which all primary education for more than fifty years has dedicated itself to inculcating.

What Lewis predicted in 1944 when he wrote, “It is not a theory [that the authors of the elementary English book put in the young boys’ minds] but an assumption which ten years hence … will condition him to take one side in a controversy which he has never recognized as a controversy at all,” Allen Bloom experiences in 2008.

Lewis is looking ahead to what is coming and Bloom sees what has arrived. What Lewis expressed alarm over in 1944, Bloom laments in 2008. What Lewis predicted and Bloom lamented is precisely what we see reflected throughout our culture. Relativism--created and fostered in public schools, textbooks, and through the media--is the seed that sprang forth in full bloom in the Supreme Court's legalization of same sex marriage.

The fruit of public education, relativism, and an immoral onslaught through all forms of media is that we no longer have moral anchors. We are adrift upon the sea of relativism and it is shipwrecking our students, our families, our churches, and our country. 

As frogs in the boiling kettle of relativism, we are being morally boiled to death. 

Were they ashamed when they committed abomination?
No, they were not at all ashamed;
they did not know how to blush. Jeremiah 6:15

Our students are growing up in—and we are teaching in—a perverse culture that mirrors Isaiah's accusation against Israel: 

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil,
who put darkness for light and light for darkness,
who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Isaiah 5:20

In reviewing the research on the impact of a secular education on Christian young people, the authors of a recent World Magazine article write:

The more years a person spent in public school, the more likely he or she was later in life to lack Christian faith and behavior, to lack life satisfaction, and to disagree with parent’s beliefs. And these are people who were churched while growing up.

In light of the Supreme Court's ruling and the rapid decent of our culture into a post-Christian neopaganism, the Christian school has never been more important than it is today. The Christian school is an essential ally of the church and the Christian home.

Concerning the importance of Christian education, Robert Dabney (theologian and Southern Presbyterian pastor) wrote:

The education of children for God is the most important business done on earth.

It is the one business for which the earth exists. To it all politics, all war, all literature, all money-making, ought to be subordinated; and every parent especially ought to feel, every hour of the day, that, next to making his own calling and election sure, this is the end for which he is kept alive by God - this is his task on earth.

Teaching children to love, fear, and serve God in every academic subject--from the arts to zoology—is the essential business of Christian parents and the church and by extension, the Christian church and school. 

Sadly, for generations in our country Christian parents, teachers, and pastors have separated the sacred and the secular; they have relegated biblical truth to the spiritual life, divorcing it from formal education. The result is that our culture has been secularized.

The scriptures teach that biblical truth is to be constantly integrated into a child's life from morning to evening and in all activities in between:

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. Deut. 6:4fff

There should not be the absence of God's word from children's schooling for eight hours a day, nine months a year for 13 to 21 years. 

Researchers in a recent Cardus study regarding how the church and the Christian school are allies in advancing the Kingdom of Christ write:

We believe the church and the Christian school have the potential to be mutually reinforcing entities if greater support is given to schools ... we wonder if the church would be wise to better support Christian schools for the betterment of their families, children, and as we will show in discussion to come, their communities as a whole.

In short, never has the Christian school been more needed or more important for our children, for the Kingdom of Christ, and for our country. 

Until the Christian family, our seminaries, and the leaders of our churches embrace, support, and promote the Christian school (or homeschooling), we will continue our relentless and deadly descent to Sodom and Gomorrah. We will continue to reap what we fail to sow.