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  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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Educating Or Indoctrinating?

indoctrinateAs a former educator, I remember – with great frustration – the many interruptions to instructional time which were legislated to support some social agenda which happened to be popular at the moment. Secular progressive bureaucrats have consistently desired for the public schools to be a tool for social change while at the same time bemoaning the decline in academic achievement. The quality of teaching has suffered as a result. Gary Bauer writes:

If you thought segregation in education was a thing of the past, think again. Barack Obama’s announced nominee for Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, who currently heads Chicago’s public school system, was promoting segregation in the schools as recently as October. But in this case, Duncan’s issue wasn’t race but sexual orientation. At an October press conference announcing 20 new schools, Duncan unveiled plans for Chicago’s first “gay, lesbian and transgender” high school. The so-called “School for Social Justice Pride Campus” would “seek to foster a violence-free atmosphere for students who are often targeted for their sexual identities.” Shouldn’t all schools have “violence-free atmospheres”?

According to the Chicago Tribune, Duncan hailed the “gay high school” concept, saying that he expected “half of its students would be gay while the other half would be straight students with an interest in the social justice focus school officials want to foster.” When I served as Under Secretary of Education in the Reagan Administration, we did our best to keep the focus on reading, writing and arithmetic. But today our kids leave high school knowing precious little about our nation’s founding principles, basic grammar, math and science, and way too much about “social justice” and radical environmentalism.

Education has given way to indoctrination. And the fact that the head of the Chicago Public School system would be championing the cause of “sexual identity segregation” in the public schools is a sad testimony to the radicalization of education in America today and the agenda of the incoming administration. If Duncan was pushing the creation of homosexual high schools in Chicago, what will his agenda be in Washington?

Is Your Church Competing With The Devil?

secularchurchHave you ever noticed how often people try to change God and His worship into what makes them feel good about themselves? Our duty to glorify God too easily becomes self-glorification.

Christians have always struggled in their understanding of God-centered worship. Idolatry, on the other hand, is much more appealing because of the pleasures of self-gratification. Our culture has greatly impacted the Christian church with the idolatry of self-worship. Our congregations can barely sit still unless they perceive the sermon to be all about them. Can a sinner understand his greatest needs without first hearing the whole counsel of the Scriptures?

Chasing after numbers has caused many churches to drift far from the Bible. The idol of popularity has replaced Biblical teaching. The call to fun and fellowship has replaced the call to sinners to repent and be saved.

God is not as interested in our growth of numbers in Sunday service as He is in the growth of the individual in personal Christian holiness. Entertainment does not change people’s lives but the Gospel does. If the crowd comes to your church for the wrong reasons, they will quickly depart when they discover that the entertainment is better somewhere else. They learn to falsely judge spiritual growth by their feelings rather than the Word of God. The modern church must learn that its purpose is not to compete with the devil over who can provide the most fun.

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)

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