Re: Faith-based schooling

The “protection” argument, in actual practice, just doesn’t materialize.

That’s generalizing a bit too much, I think. Do you really know this about all Christian schools, or even all Christian schools in our area?

Moreover, I got the impression that Paul is, on the whole, cautioning us against keeping company with Christians that are living in deliberate disobedience (expel the immoral brother).

He is in 1 Cor 5, to be sure. However, the other passages I indicated go further than that (e.g. James, keeping oneself “unstained” from the world”). And really, my point only needs to rely on the more basic (and sociologically and psychologically obvious) principle Paul mentions in 1 Cor. 15: who you “hang out” with changes your lifestyle. Surely this applies even more to impressionable children than adults. Granted, this can’t be taken in an absolute fashion (as Paul makes clear in 1 Cor. 5), but the principle must be recognized in some manner.

It seems that if you recognize the “protection” logic, then we’re just debating about the age at which this ends. Seeing as I think this is going to be a case-by-case issue, I see no point in arguing about that in an abstract way. I do want to point out, though, that protection supersedes the need of the lost, when it comes to children. If one feels a strong calling to witness in the public school system, then the parent should get a job as a teacher or a volunteer there.

In response to your comments on Keith’s post:

Now, someone might try to interpret “your” as collective — the people of Israel. This makes no sense though, as God really quite literally brings the point home — as you sit in your house.

The burden of spiritual education is on the parents, undeniably.

I don’t think Keith’s point in bringing up this passage was the corporate vs. parental responsibility aspect, but the amount of time aspect. This passage seems to give an image of constant formation in the ways of God, whereas public schools (to put it lightly) do not exactly focus on constant formation into God’s ways for their students.

Now, we know that as far as the OT was concerned, God considered culture and spirituality to be congruent, if not the same thing — His people were of a certain race, almost exclusively.

But what has since happened? Well, a veil was torn, some branches were grafted, and poof… there goes the old culture/religion paradigm.

It only disappears if you equate culture and race; but that’s not self-evident (in fact I’d say prima facie its false), and you haven’t given an argument for it. If you define culture more as social formation, then there is no NT divide between culture and spirituality. Much the opposite, in fact.