After a two-month break let’s return to our discussion of the Essential Elements of Classical, Christian, and Covenantal Education. Earlier we looked at how 1) Faith is at the Core of Human Identity and 2) Neutrality of Knowledge is a Myth. As stated previously it is critical that we understand the theological, philosophical, and educational ideas that inform and shape how we teach and learn at Veritas Academy. We need to understand the assumptions behind how we do school, the “essential elements” that undergird our teaching and learning.
The third Essential Element of Classical, Christian, and Covenantal Education is “The Gospel Must be our Primary Motivation for Education.” The Gospel (the truth that Christ came to redeem and restore His people AND all of creation from its fallen state) encompasses all of life and every sphere of existence. Therefore, we study to understand everything to which the Gospel applies. In other words, Christ is Lord of ALL. His work of redemption encompasses ALL (Romans 8:19-25, Acts 3:21, Rev 21, and others). So, we study and learn about it ALL. The Gospel is certainly a message of individual salvation, but it speaks to much more than forgiveness of my sin and your sin. The Gospel announces the redemption of all creation, so all the concerns of creation are integral to the Gospel.
A passage from Peter Leithart (a Veritas grandparent) is helpful here. [These] challenges are usually based on a limited and therefore false grasp of the gospel. Instead of saying that Christianity is bigger than the gospel, we should say that the gospel is bigger than is often imagined. The gospel is not a message of individual salvation, which can then be applied to the “worldly” concerns of literature and politics, of economics and art. Rather, it announces the world’s redemption, and “worldly” concerns are inherent to it . . .
The gospel announces that the wall is broken down by the Cross, and therefore the Gentiles are welcomed to the same table and on the same basis as Jews; thus the gospel is sociology. It announces that the babble of tongues has been transformed into the harmony of Pentecost; thus the gospel is international relations. It announces that God has founded a new city, the Body of Christ, and that the King has been installed in heaven, at the right hand of the Father; thus the gospel is politics. It announces the coming of the new creation and includes the promise that the groaning creation’s labor will someday end in a glorious birth; thus the gospel is science . . . (Cruciform Education, Touchstone Magazine, September 2003)
Adequate incomes, meaningful careers, helping others, being a productive citizen, etc. all have their place in motivating education, but they must always be secondary motivations. The Gospel, Christ’s work of redemption in our lives and in all aspects of creation, must be our primary motivation as we teach and learn at Veritas Academy.