"Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of truth." — (Psalm 60:4)
"Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them." — (Isaiah 13:2)
Devoted To The Defense Of The Church Against All Errors And Innovations
Vol.XI No.III Pg.5-6
March 1949

The Education Of Christians

Wallace W. Thompson

Primarily, to educate a child is to "bring him up." Another meaning is "to develop morally and mentally." Inherent education, that belonging to nature, is not sufficient. One is not completely educated who has a major and minor in science and art. To be morally and mentally trained is good, but it is not enough. A person must be spiritually instructed in God's word. The pupil spends about twelve years in the public schools. Our government recognizes the importance of this training. Every year millions are spent in this field. There are thousands of colleges fully accredited, and universities in which advanced education of the sciences and arts are taught. Naturally, there are things in the textbooks which are not proved. There are theories that smack of infidelity and strike out God. There are teachers vicious enough to lash out at the Bible and the church of the New Testament. It would be a sad conclusion to reach that due to these unfavorable teachings and teachers all education ought to be abolished. The more one's mind is filled with worldly wisdom, the more the Bible is crowded out. While the child is growing into maturity, a failure to fill his mind with the truth of God is really disastrous. This is done in the homes of Christians, and in the church. This early training prepares him for the period of temptation ahead. A child rooted and grounded in the faith generally cannot be shoved from his anchored vessel. Even a false religious school would not turn him from the faith. Godly parents are indeed a glorious blessing who give a son or a daughter a running start. The Lord realized we needed instruction in the church. As a result he set teachers in it. (See Eph. 4:11; I Cor. 12:28). They were "in the church", not some human institution! They engaged in the development of the "newborn babes." At first the direction of these teachers came miraculously from the Holy Spirit. But when the perfect law of liberty was complete, every teacher was guided by it. The Bible is God's only book to develop the Christian. Elders are teachers in the church; preachers are teachers, and they are to teach only the things taught by the Holy Spirit and the apostles. Members teach each other in singing. Teaching carries with it a solemn and weighty responsibility. Remember, the Lord has not required that the members of the church be received and rejected according to their "credits" or "degrees" in secular subjects. Some of the elite and learned (?) seem to demand certain qualifications in this field for preachers and possibly others. It cannot be!

Dangers Of Your Alma Mater (?)

Alma Mater literally means: "fostering mother." It is used to designate an institution where one is educated. If a person becomes more loyal to the school than the church, this presents an alarming danger. Signs that indicate this generally begin with a "hatred of anyone that criticizes the college." If you show no sign of disturbance when the church is attacked, that is a sign of a lack of love for it. If you can loudly and boisterously defend the college, but meekly and weakly close your mouth when the church is assailed, it is most evident what you think more of! It is dangerous as well as absurd to think that the church ought to pay the way of the college! One is divine, the other is a human enterprise. Another danger that comes from religious schools is that some teachers employed are not faithful. You never know where to place some fellows, the reason is that they never take a stand against denominationalism, millennialism, and other false teachings. But they are ever poised to spring upon some faithful gospel preacher to assail him if he stands defiantly against all encroachments of error. A sign of weakness and sinfulness is that these same teachers have avowed premillennialists in their graces, invite them to speak on a radio program and invite them to preach in the church! "Birds of a feather flock together"! Another danger quite frequently imposed on students is to make them conscious of their great debt to the school that educates them and high-pressure the folks back home for a contribution. Another thing, if any preacher criticizes the college the college becomes his enemy and uses influence to see that he does not preach where they can "pull the reigns". False doctrine can enter a college easier than it can the church. Elders are not over the college, generally speaking, and if so they are over too much! If they take care of the church of God properly it will be a full time task. It is a great danger when young people are taught by doubted men, for if these unscrupulous teachers can deposit enough materialism and doubt along the course of four college years, they have affected the church underhandedly greater than if they had come out in the open with their teaching. Every member of the church ought to shudder at the thought of such men with question marks after their names. If they really loved the truth and church such doubt about them should never exist. They may be strong intellectually, which is doubted, but indeed they are without strength spiritually. If they are sound in Word, let them tell it where all can hear, and let them show their love by actions. Truly, "By their fruits ye shall know them."

The Appeal Of Popularity

Some had rather please than to be right. These are generally conscious only of "public praise." The Pharisees were this kind. Some men in the church love worldly acclaim more than God's smiles of approval. Says one, "If I can just impress this rich man, my victory is assured." The greatest name ever given is least sought by the many. Some brethren relish the title "Dr." or "Prof." rather than desire to wear the name "brother" or "Christian." I imagine that these big doctors in the sight of God are just as small, if not smaller than the ordinary fellow. God does not recognize human degrees of wisdom, they are simply inferior to the name Christian. And if you belong to the same human order, remember you step down from the church to get into it! The church is hoisted above every lodge and order on earth. It is not doubted but that Judaism in Paul's day was more popular than Christianity. Paganism was popular but was not right. The papacy and its teachings are popular, but they stand in the wrong knowing tradition and leaning upon the human innovations. Denominationalism is a popular cry, but it is man's doings destined to doom. It is easier to live in sin than to be righteous. It is easier to go with the crowd than to walk with the Lord, but the latter is much safer and more profitable. Why cannot members of the church be plain, humble, down-to-the-earth, what they really are? If we would be great, let us be humble followers of the Lord!

Human Wisdom Against Divine Wisdom!

If you will compare these Virtues, I believe you will find that most of the time in history they have clashed. There are different "levels" in the world, but only one in the church. There are different ways to be damned, but only one way to be saved. The Holy Spirit informs us that the "wisdom of the wise" will be destroyed, the understanding of the sages will be brought to naught, is made foolishness by God's wisdom, the wise become confounded by the things Jehovah selected, the wisdom of the world is foolishness with God, the wise are commanded to become fools, the thoughts of the wise are vain, and the wisdom of the world is foolishness with God. (1 Cor, 1 & 3). God did not select the wisdom of human speech to convert the world in human wisdom, but chose the simple words of God's Wisdom to turn man from sin to righteousness. Thus, the Holy Spirit announced the philosophies of men foolish and weak, commanding that our faith, "should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God." Therefore, to be instructed by the Holy Spirit is to receive the greatest teaching there is in the world. Human wisdom does not compare with it. You might spend a lifetime in search of the greatest theories ever discovered; you might attain the greatest height ever reached in human wisdom; after all this, place what you learned by the side of the Bible and the perishable wisdom is but refuse! Man is not rewarded by knowledge but by his faithfulness to God. The great will feel infinitely small before the great I AM. We are not arguing that education will send one to hell, though it might; we simply know it will not secure a reward for one in heaven.


We could very well get along without thousands of books in the world composed and compiled by man, but we cannot get along without the Bible. We can easily get by without thousands of human institutions, but we cannot get by without the church of the Lord. We could do without sin, but not without righteousness. There is not a religious paper we could not get along without, but we cannot get along without the letters of the New Testament. Things human are unnecessary, but things Divine are essential. Things earthly are dispensable, but things eternal are indispensable. Thus the college cannot supplant the church any more than human creeds can supplant the truth. The church stands aloof in the realm of salvation from sin. Our love for the church ought to be deep. Nothing should be able to wrest from us our love and respect for it. Ah, what price this for the church! Nothing in man's history sees God coming to redeem man from sin but this! The glory gleam and love light of Calvary shines and glows upon it and declares it to be "the light of the world." Without the church we are tossed to and fro in the tempest, and our vessel, the soul, is dashed upon the shoals and treacherous shallows of hopelessness and helplessness without it above all thing we need the church.