Last weekend I was at a festival where loudspeakers were playing a local Christian radio station’s broadcast. During a broadcast break a host promoted a Christian medical cost sharing company, saying one benefit of joining such a cost sharing pool (outside traditional insurance pooling and outside civil government programs) was that one did not need to pay for something he or she did not believe in; the primary example of course being abortion. Here I apply this point to education.
With civil government schools virtually everybody pays for things he or she does not believe in or agree with: if the teacher is a humanist Christians lose; if the teacher is a Christian humanists lose (plus the teacher gets reprimanded). The immediate point to be made is that en masse education causes more and more people to pay for ideas they do not agree with. And while private schools of course have teachers espousing particular worldviews, the students are there voluntarily, or at least their parents have made the informed decision to pay for tuition, having presumably vetted the school and the teachers. Private schools are funded through voluntariness; civil government schools are funded no matter what. Thus, no matter what is espoused in civil government schools some people are going to disagree with those worldviews; but everybody still pays. This is unbiblical and it violates what should be a healthy disdain for centralized institutions, especially civil governments operated by sinners. Civil government schools exist without the proper checks and balances. There are mechanisms that prevent civil government schools from becoming Christian but those same mechanisms do not also prevent them from becoming humanistic. Yes, if civil government schools get too humanistic (if that is anymore possible) then parents can withdraw their child; but they cannot withdraw their money.
In a modern and even post-modern world civil government schools still focus on the individual relative to society. R.J. Rushdoony, in his The Messianic Character of American Education, identifies past and (still) contemporary humanistic education doctrines: recapitulation theory, geneticism, psychoanalysis, parental delinquency, macroevolution, and child-centeredness all for the sake of statism, nationalism, democracy, and collectivism. To whatever degree individualism is still allowed in civil government schools it is justified under preparing the child for a technological world and how he interfaces it, lest he be excluded from the whole; the omnipresent theme then of civil government schools is the mandate that a child’s eventual nine to five shall fulfill him, for there is nothing else but good citizenry expressed by paying taxes. Many Christians concede that.
It is convincing that we should avoid paying for things we do not agree with, so as to prevent the perspectives we do not agree with from coming to fruition. Along with that we should publicly articulate that we should avoid paying for things we do not agree with and we should publicly articulate that the civil government has no right to force us to pay for things we do not agree with. (Excepting enforcing Christian justice of course, which is biblically acceptable.)
Now, if you are new to this organization I pause to define what I mean by delegation and what I mean by jurisdiction. Delegation connotes a duty owed. (Remember that delegation and duty owed begin with the same letter.) For example, if you contract with your neighbor to cut his grass in exchange for twenty dollars your duty owed is to cut his grass and his duty owed is to thereafter pay you twenty dollars. Generally a duty owed can be designated to someone else, which is what delegation means. If a duty owed is designated to someone else that means the duty owed is delegated to another. In the education context parents (specifically fathers) via Deuteronomy 6 and Ephesians 6 owe to God the duty to raise children in the Lord’s nurture and admonition. In some cases this duty can be delegated.
There is also jurisdiction. Jurisdiction means to speak (diction) law (juris). In the context of a covenant it connotes what entity or covenantal structure has the right to apply sanctions for breaching a duty owed. A bit more generally, still within the covenantal context, jurisdiction tells us over what area a covenantal structure has authority. So now speaking about education it is said that the civil government has no jurisdiction over discipleship, as that authority belongs to the family government (and church government). (This information is presented in other blogs.)
Delegation and jurisdiction are related but not synonymous. Delegation is about whether to delegate your child’s discipleship, possibly to the civil government; jurisdiction is about whether the civil government has the right to disciple children. Once Christians understand civil government’s limited jurisdiction, which precludes discipleship, then we will move towards eliminating those schools. That is what I call abolition.
Abolition gets us closer to fully restoring parental rights. Biblical parental rights exist because God commands fathers to raise children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. (He commands parents to do other things too.) From the Christian perspective, biblical parental rights mean:
- No compulsory education laws;
- No compulsory attendance laws;
- No interference from a civil government social services agency, unless a parent commits a crime against a child; and
- No taxation for someone else’s perspectives.
Even if you choose (wisely) to not delegate your child’s discipleship to the civil government that does not undo how the civil government has trampled your parental rights. Delegating a child’s discipleship, or even just a part of it, to even someone outside the civil government does not get us back to a biblical model. At best it is just enduring Pharaoh’s system; it is not abolishing Pharaoh’s system. It is not enough. Debating delegation is not enough, for we are still paying for someone else’s perspectives; we are still paying for humanism to be advanced.
Tangentially, oftentimes fear is cited as the reason to not delegate a child’s discipleship to the civil government. I know of no such person who clings to fear as his rationale for not delegating to the civil government. Instead, as my years around education and home schooling inform me, the prevailing rationale – even amongst those who think Jesus is returning soon – is they are merely living out their worldview. It is not over-protectionism but rather obedience to Jesus as Lord. Fear, based on the people with whom I have personal experience, does not figure into the equation for making an informed decision about whether to delegate a child’s discipleship to the civil government. Choosing not to delegate a child’s education to the civil government has nothing to do with fear; it has to do with externalizing the Christian worldview and obeying Jesus as Lord. It is not chosen because it is safe and overprotective; it is chosen because it is externalizing Christianity; it is chosen because otherwise it is conceding individual morality, societal norms, and civil law to humanists and saying Christians are just along for the ride. It is chosen because it is asserting that all of life belongs to God; if the humanists want to join us they may.
Putting the delegation and jurisdiction concepts together, we should come up with the fact that while delegation is of course an issue it is not the issue. For we can discuss delegation ad nauseam, but the question still remains to whom can we delegate. If there were no civil government schools it would not be possible to delegate to the civil government. If Christians understood the Bible does not justify civil government discipleship, and based on that lack of jurisdiction they abolished that discipleship, there would be no civil government schools to delegate to. Moreover, combining that proposition with the above about funding things you do not believe in, if there were no civil government schools generally people would not be funding ideas they do not believe in. Which brings me to my final point, which is that even if all Christians withdrew their children from civil government schools those civil government schools would still have our money and therefore would still be funding their humanism with it. And all that is to say that dealing with delegation is not enough, for it fails to address funding ideas we do not believe in.
This blog’s topic is delegation minus jurisdiction equals a waste of time; delegation – jurisdiction = a waste of time. What does that mean? It means that if we are dealing with the delegation issue but not the jurisdiction issue we are wasting our time. In a somewhat private email I was once chastised for asking certain well-known leaders to resign, in light of how they barely deal with delegation but also utterly fail to address jurisdiction. They absolutely will never ask the question – to themselves or their congregations or their donors – whether the Bible justifies civil government schools. I called certain leaders out on the matter. In response, I was told this:
Furthermore brothers, [redacted name] and [redacted name] are working tirelessly in specific areas they labor in. If you are called to have broken-hearted love and save all the children out of the public schools, then God bless you in it brothers. I am so excited to see how God gifts people in the Body of Christ for different tasks– particularly ones I can’t do. But, [redacted name] is working on getting to the public school children in the way God has called him, through reestablishing a national consciousness over the truthfulness of God’s Word, particularly through seeing Him as our Creator; bless him for it–don’t bless him out for it. Others have worked tirelessly to reach reach [sic] the unborn–I didn’t hear much concern for them in this email chain–are you therefore against it? I’m sure you do care about them. It just must not be your issue. But if this issue of public schools is your issue, Great! Do it in love but love those who are in another part of the body and give them honor in it (in fact, if Creation ministry is less honorable than your ministry, then you must give him all the more honor for it). Also, before you blast some pastors who are not clued in to your issue the way you are, that doesn’t make them all wolves. You may have no idea what battles they have to deal with in their ministry. If we don’t show grace and love to one another, there is no wonder the world doesn’t know we are really Jesus’ disciples.
The above author does not know what is happening and why education is priority one. The Orthodox Presbyterian Church did the same thing when I prompted them about jurisdiction – they assumed I was talking about delegation, and they labeled my issue a matter of “Christian liberty.” So too did a Virginia General Assembly member, to whom I wrote about withdrawing Virginia from the Southern Regional Education Board (which would complete one layer of abolition). He labeled the jurisdiction issue “school choice”, just as the OPC labeled it “educational choice”.
Even if we were to remove all of our Christian children from civil government schools we would still be funding all the ideas that the leaders above (whose names I redacted) are tirelessly working against. I do not question whether they are working tirelessly; I question why they are not working at all on telling everybody that there should not be civil government schools and no person should be forced to fund those ideas with which he disagrees. That is what I question.
Here it is put another way: God bless you for dealing with abortion or Creation. God bless you; praise Jesus and I am thankful. But the main reason you have to deal with abortion or Creation is because you refuse to address publicly how our tax dollars are taken from us to perpetuate pro-abortion and anti-Creation ideas; thus your failure to address the existence of civil government schools, which were bound to become ever more humanistic in light of how they are not God-ordained, is the very thing causing you to work tirelessly. I do not claim that abortion would go away if there were no civil government schools; but certainly it would decrease. More certainly we would have our money back to prevent abortions and adopt unwanted children. But to say that people who merely deal with abortion and Creation are just a different part of the body is to misunderstand what is being said. That is why I have to reiterate these ideas, because preconceptions prevent the reader from understanding more deeply what Scripture says on discipleship being outside force and coercion covenants. The above person proves, in his response to me, that he does not even understand that I am not in the business of rescuing children from civil government schools (delegation), but rather I am in the business of teaching people that the Bible does not justify civil government schools (jurisdiction). The author himself remains ignorant. Hundreds of billions of dollars (of our money) goes to buttressing abortion; the way to lower abortions is to quit funding its acceptance.
Besides all that, the (redacted) leaders cited above DO deal with education and NOT merely abortion and Creation. But in dealing with education they do the same thing most Christians do: (barely) talk about delegation and ignore jurisdiction. So the cultural nosedive continues. While preachers are busy reacting to subjective reality via transgenderism, they continue to fail to deal with how millions of Americans came to believe they define reality.
It is an error to look at education as a plank within a platform. Education is discipleship and within that discipleship every subject is taught. That is the way to prevent pro-abortion and anti-Creation ideas. But even if some were to make headway in getting Creation into civil government schools – as suggested above – it would still be the case that our money is funding humanistic origin theories. Besides, getting Creation into civil government schools is wrong, not because of the Supreme Court’s Establishment Clause interpretation, but because Creation should not be taught via force and coercion. The physical sword is double-edged: humanists, even in denial of the Creator, have no God-given right to use our taxes to fund humanistic origin theories; likewise, Christians have no God-given right to use the humanist’s taxes to fund Creationism.
Solving cultural problems via “reforming” civil government schools (as most major evangelical leaders propose) is like promoting homosexual adoption to solve fatherlessness; it was sin that caused fatherlessness, and promoting homosexual adoptions to solve fatherlessness is feeding the beast and therefore compounding the problem: it is ratifying the underlying premise. (Fatherlessness via death too is a function of sin.) Even private education via proper delegation falls short in that our Christian tax dollars still fund over fifty million children to NOT be exposed to the Christian worldview one hundred eighty days a year for thirteen years! That paradigm cannot produce a Christian culture.
Delegation minus jurisdiction equals a waste of time is to get you thinking about how if you disagree with the development of individual morality, societal norms, and civil law in our Nation, it is not because we do not have enough non-profits dealing with abortion and Creation. It is because those non-profits that are in existence refuse to touch jurisdiction, and so our tax dollars continue to feed the animal that bites us every single day.
According to the federal Department of Education, “In fall 2015, about 50.1 million students [attended] public elementary and secondary schools.” Over fifty million. So, even if a million Christians withdrew, which already has happened two to three times over, we are still paying for almost fifty million children to not learn the exclusivity of Jesus. How can that cause a Christian society? Specifically, how can almost fifty million children not learning that abortion is wrong and not learning that Creation is absolute truth sustain a Christian society? That is why I assert that every Christian, at least passively, must be involved with abolition. Because to not be is the very thing causing abortion and Creation ministries to be necessary. At best in civil government schools the Christian perspective on abortion and origins are presented as just another opinion; that still accomplishes the humanist’s goal, which is exalting man as the final arbiter of truth. Anyone trying to use the civil government schools as their “reform” platform is part of the problem.
More consideration is required here. How is it that Creation ministry through civil government schools helps us develop a Christian society? If Kevin is promoting abolition based on the premises that civil government schools have no right to disciple children and that they deny the exclusivity of Jesus, and on the other hand Joe is promoting Creation ministry through civil government schools, those two approaches conflict; they do not work together. But there is no contention on my part that Creation ministry should be abandoned; rather, the contention is that Creation ministry – and any other – should be done to the civil government’s exclusion. Here then would be the typical Creation ministry’s positions, relative to their topic:
- We teach a literal (young Earth) interpretation of Genesis 1; and
- We do so with the premise that the Bible does not justify civil government schools – that is, we recognize that civil government schools cannot be reformed because they should not exist in the first place.
The latter plank is missing from every major evangelical ministry’s approach. That is why America is failing to exalt Jesus. It is not that we do not have enough Creation ministries. It is that those in existence, which are missing the second plank, are helping to perpetuate the very ideas they are against. It is not the case that I think anyone who does not promote abolition is a wolf in sheep’s clothing; wolves understand how all of this is playing out. The typical Christian response I get is the email above – the one where the author never takes the time to even explore issues such as parental rights, jurisdiction, delegation, or abolition.
The missing plank above, and therefore how it negatively affects society, is of course made more understandable by illustration. Let us suppose that my organization (which holds that the Bible does not justify civil government discipleship) became even more successful, as the abolition message was disseminated to more and more Christians (who did the opposite of the person above and actually took the time to explore the Scriptures on this issue). Let us suppose also that (unfortunately) the Creation ministries in existence went away, for some reason. (For the record I would not be happy about that, for I want them in existence but I want them to add the second plank above.) Would that – on a large scale – move American society closer to God? Consider that scenario with just the opposite: let us suppose this organization crumbled and the Creation ministries became more successful. Would that move American society closer to God?
So, under Scenario 1 DtC increases and Creation ministries decrease. Under Scenario 2 DtC decreases and Creation ministries increase. In Scenario 1 you have people withdrawing from civil government schools, and therefore not being exposed to the various humanistic ideologies (subjectivism, relativism, and so on) – which is a victory in and of itself. Then, you have those children being taught every subject through the Christian lens, making Creation ministries less irrelevant. Moreover those parents would then be engaged in dismantling their local civil government schools by narrowing compulsory education windows, lowering property taxes, and so on. That would return disciple jurisdiction to families and churches; we would no longer be funding pro-abortion thinking and anti-Creation thinking on the front end so there would be less work on the back end.
In Scenario 2, on the other hand, DtC decreases and Creation ministries increase. This is not a hypothetical by the way: before DtC came into existence just four years ago Creation ministries were increasing. Nevertheless, society was and is still moving away from God, indicating, prima facie, that approach cannot work. That is because even if – for argument’s sake – Creation ministries were successful in their own endeavor of getting Creation into civil government schools, it would still be merely juxtaposed as opinion with every other origins perspective, which we pay for, and also every other subject would still be humanistic. So the civil government’s disciples may respect Creation, and may even have intellectual knowledge of it, but the relativism or subjectivism they have been taught has negated the Creation ministry’s efforts; and those civil government disciples still come away with humanistic thoughts on every other subject matter.
Put politically, we have Bob Dole, John McCain, Mitt Romney, and Donald Trump as our “conservative” candidates. So, anyone who would iterate the above author’s thoughts on what it is I am saying, is guilty of the following:
- Not taking the time to understand abolition; and
- Therefore assisting the opposition in producing societal leaders that think like humanists; and
- Then trying to undo the societal leaders’ humanistic thinking by establishing ministries that fail to deal with why those societal leaders think like humanists.
As long as we are operating under Scenario 2 we are behind the curve and on defense. Christian ministries have no idea how, while they are currently dealing with transgenderism, the shipped has already sailed on something further to the left of transgenderism.