Basic Concepts of Bible College Education -- By: Willard Maxwell Aldrich

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 119:475 (Jul 1962)
Article: Basic Concepts of Bible College Education
Author: Willard Maxwell Aldrich

Basic Concepts of Bible College Education

Willard Maxwell Aldrich

[Willard M. Aldrich is President of Multnomah School of the Bible, Portland, Oregon.]

Christian education as defined and limited by the Bible college movement rests squarely upon the belief in God as revealed in the Bible and in the Lord Jesus Christ. The God of the Bible is not an abstraction, a principle, or a personalized force. He is not merely a for-convenience-sake name given to the natural laws of the universe. He is essentially personal, and enters into personal relations with His creatures. While He is transcendent and not to be confused with His creation, yet He sustains relationships with it.

As Supreme Intelligence and possessed of all wisdom, God has a plan and a purpose. It is the business of Christian education to find and teach His will. He is infinitely and perfectly sensitive to moral distinctions, and out of the interplay of His divine holiness and love there arise His hatred for sin and His compassionate love for sinners. As God He is Sovereign Will. This is not supreme arbitrariness but rather a perfect conformity of His own central disposition, plans, purposes and relationships to His own holy nature.

Christian education recognizes that this true and living God has a twofold claim upon the race, each of which has an important bearing upon its philosophy of education: God is Creator and Sustainer of the universe, hence our knowledge and understanding of the world about us must recognize it as His handiwork; and He is the God of salvation, and by redemption He has a claim upon the life, time, thought, and service of man.

Christian education accepts Jesus Christ as God incarnate. As such He is the revealer of God. In this capacity the Apostle

John calls Him the Word: “The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). Plato said, “Education is to turn the eyes of the soul toward light.” The self-confessed tragedy of much of modern educational philosophy is that there is no light, and to use the words of Stace of Princeton, it is “man against the darkness.”1 Christian education focuses the eye of the soul upon Christ “the light of the world” (John 8:12).

Education has also been defined as a quest for truth. The Christian educator believes the claim of Christ, “I am the way, the truth and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). Nathan Pusey of Harvard has delineated education as a life-tranforming proce...

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