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Apr
21

A Shift in the Homeschooling Movement

I have had a unique viewpoint in the homeschooling movement since 1978 when my mother started homeschooling my sister and me. The modern-day Christian homeschooling movement began in 1983, so I’ve literally seen just about everything that has ever happened in this sub-culture (for better or worse!). In 1988, my mother began publishing the national magazine, Home School Digest, which is the nation’s longest-running Christian home education magazine. I’ve personally worked full time in publishing, writing, and speaking in the homeschooling community since January 1993. I consistently speak to about 10,000-20,000 homeschoolers each year. My viewpoint is not omniscient, but I do think I have a unique perspective on where we have been and where we may be headed. My heart has been heavy for the future of this movement. In recent months, the homeschooling community has been rocked by a couple of national scandals involving some of the best-known speakers/advocates of homeschooling in America. As a result, many families are struggling to find their sense of “True North.” Many feel angry, some hurt, others betrayed, and more confused. I believe we are experiencing a shaking. That isn’t all bad. “And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain” (Hebrews 12:27). We’ve had some shifts before. In the early 1980’s and into the 1990’s, the homeschooling movement was largely controlled by those holding to a conservative, fundamentalist Baptist theology. The dominant curriculum publishers were A BEKA, Bob Jones University Press and ACE/School of Tomorrow. By the mid-1990’s, homeschooling leadership began to shift towards Reformed Theology. In many sectors of the homeschooling movement, the leaders were predominately adherents to some or all of the following: Christian Reconstruction, Dominion Theology, Postmillenialism, Calvinism, Covenant Theology, and Theonomy. Certain tenets of their theology influenced them to believe that they should have many children and systematically instruct them in the Christian faith. So homeschooling, for them, is a more logical outworking of their theology than it may be for Christians of other traditions. However, during this era, which began to diminish several years ago, many Christians who did not hold to this theology felt marginalized within the movement. Because of the staunch Biblical literalism and theological dogmatism entrenched in the movement, and traditional views on marriage and child-training, the Christian homeschooling movement has not been a welcoming place for a lot of people who do not hold to conservative views such as: Courtship/Betrothal as...
Apr
19

Distance from God?

The only thing that terrified Jesus was being out of fellowship with His Father. “My God, My God, why have you abandoned Me?” He cried from the cross.  (Mark 15:34 NLT) We’ve grown accustomed to being out of touch with God; the things that terrify us are the thought of losing our job, the price of gas, where’s the world headed…. Jesus, on the other hand, had faith concerning that which frightens us, yet was terrorized by that which we barely notice, distance from God. What if the greatest thing we feared was being distanced from God? How would our lives then look? What changes would we make? Richard Grom serves as the Pastor of Calvary Chapel Sunset Coast in Benton Harbor,...
Apr
18

General Revelation vs. Special Revelation

All truth comes ultimately from God. Not merely spiritual or moral truth…ALL Truth. There are really only two ways of knowing the Truth: General Revelation and Special Revelation. General Revelation Romans 1:18-20 tells us, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.” There is a type of revelation that is available to all men, regardless of their religious beliefs. This is called, “General Revelation.” Calvinists call this concept the “Doctrine of Common Grace.” Some philosophers call it “Natural Law.” Things in this category are what the American founding fathers referred to as, “Self-Evident” truths. General Revelation is very useful, but it can only take you so far in life. You can figure out, from the laws of the created world, how to fix a car, do math, build a house, balance a checkbook and read the encyclopedia. You don’t have to be a Christian to learn to do those things. You can get by fairly well in life, physically speaking, even if you have never heard a sermon, opened a Bible or heard an angel sing. The bad news, is that with General Revelation you only get enough knowledge to send you to hell, and not enough to admit you to heaven. You see, when you operate within the “Laws of the Universe,” you know instinctively that there must be a “Law-giver.” You can’t have a precisely designed universe without a designer. So whether you admit it or not, you know in the depths of your soul that God exists, that He is all-powerful and all-knowing. People often ask, “What about the people in the jungles who never get to hear the gospel? Why should they go to hell?” The answer is in Romans 1. According to God, He has given them all the information they needed to know that He is there, but they still rebel against Him. Special Revelation In order to please God, we need to acknowledge not only that He exists, but also that He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him (Heb. 11:6). God is not...
Apr
16

How to Answer the Fool – Sye Ten Bruggencate

How should you answer a fool? Should you answer him at all? “Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest you be like him yourself. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes.” (Proverbs 26-4-5, ESV) So which is it, should you answer a fool according to his folly, or shouldn’t you? Is this a contradiction in the Bible? Remember that the Law of Non-Contradiction asserts that two opposing statements cannot both be true AT THE SAME TIME and IN THE SAME SENSE. The key to understanding this verse is to realize that this passage is using the same statement twice, but in two totally difference senses (or meanings).” The fool needs to be shown the foolishness of his argument, but you don’t need to use a foolish argument (or method) to reach him. There are three primary approaches to Christian apologetics: Presuppositional Apologetics Classical Apologetics Evidential Apologetics The main branch of Presuppositional Approach to Apologetics was largely formulated by Cornelius Van Til. His student, Greg Bahnsen (Francis Schaeffer, John Frame and R.J. Rushdoony were other students of Van Til) picked up the baton and brought Presuppositional Apologetics into the 1980’s and 1990’s as a force to be reckoned with. Bahnsen died young in 1995, and in the new millennium, a lot of younger Christians have never heard of the Presuppositional Approach. Well, enter Canadian apologist, Sye Ten Bruggencate. The one thing this guy will not often be accused of is being timid! He has produced, through American Vision in Atlanta, a fast-paced video that distills the teachings of Van Til (who was REALLY hard to understand), and Bahnsen, into terms that the average Joe American can understand. His argument is that the skeptic DOESN’T need more evidence. He argues from Romans 1 that the skeptic already has all the information he needs to know there is a God. His problem is not an intellectual problem. His problem is a rebellion problem. He doesn’t WANT to acknowledge God or submit to Him. This is a radically different approach than one that assumes that the skeptic just hasn’t been given adequate evidence. If you are interested in Evangelism and/or Christian Apologetics, I am going to encourage you to watch this video. How To Answer The Fool – Trailer from Crown Rights on Vimeo. This video includes a section with Eric Hovind of Creation Today and an endorsement from Jason Lisle of the Institute for Creation...
Apr
10

The Henry Morris Study Bible – Review

My family has recently finished a complete study through the Bible, verse by verse, which has taken us over 6 years to complete. In addition to reading the text of Scripture, we have utilized many other supplementary resources as well. I describe a bit of our approach to studying the Bible as a family HERE. As we have cycled back around to Genesis, there are a couple of resources that we have found to be invaluable. One of the resources I highly recommend is Ken Ham‘s Foundations DVD set, and Answers Academy Curriculum from Answers in Genesis. However, for the actual study of the text itself, I have found no better resource than the verse-by-verse commentary provided by Dr. Henry Morris Study Bible (the co-founder of the modern Creationist movement). I don’t know if anyone ever studied the book of Genesis more intently in one lifetime than Dr. Morris. His commitment to Biblical authority and his deep understanding of the world of Science make this Bible a wonderful lifetime investment. Available in beautiful genuine leather, this KJV translation masterpiece features over 10,000 study notes. This 2,215 page volume uses a 10 point font and a two column format making it easy to read. Inside you will also find the Words of Christ in red, 22 total appendices, full color maps and a concordance. Personally, I would never want to teach through the book of Genesis without this unique resource in my hands. I highly recommend it to your family as a family heirloom to pass on from generation to generation. Israel Wayne is an Author and Conference Speaker and the Director of Family Renewal,...

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