Behold: the two absolutely worst arguments against homeschooling

The Matt Walsh Blog

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Here’s the email I received last week. I was saving it for today, as I’ll be speaking at a homeschool conference tomorrow:

*The subject line of this email was: “Not all public school teachers are the devil.”* 

Hi Matt,

I’ve been a pretty decent fan of some of your writings, and while I don’t always agree I find that you sometimes have an entertaining way of presenting your opinion. Anyway, all due respect, I find myself having a hard time continuing to follow you now that I’ve gone back and read through your views on education.

It doesn’t so much bother me that you seem to be PROUD of your lack of a college education. You seem to be of the lucky few smart enough to get away with having no real education to speak of (congratulations). What I can’t reconcile myself with is your vitriol and hatred for public…

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Time on Loan

Some say that time is money, whereas the Christian perspective must be that time is on loan. We are slaves to Christ, but before we are freed from our slavery to sin payment must be given. 1 Corinthians 7:23 says that Christ was that payment, for we are bought with a price! The sale is complete; therefore, be not slaves of men (or man’s desire). Since that is true, then our time is really not our own, but rather given to us as a gift with a dividend demanded in return (meaning we have to make “money” with our time). See Matthew 25:14-30 and Luke 19:12-28. Now obviously, God could care less about our money, His streets are made with gold, so I think it is safe to say that our “treasure” should be something else (Matthew 6:20). The question really is, what treasure does God want in return for His time?

I submit that His kingdom should be our focus, the way we return a profit to Him, our maker/owner/savior. Some might disagree and say that God only cares about spiritual things, and that we should abandon all earthly pursuits. My answer would be sort of yes, but mostly no, because all things have spiritual significance to God. If I am singularly focused on “spiritual” things, what happens (what’s the point?) when I have to do “un-spiritual” things?  If God only cared about spiritual things (which He does not) then why create a very “un-spiritual” and real world for His people? If there were no other purpose than “confessing Christ” as savior and praying, then why spend most of scripture talking about the law as it applies to every area of life? No, the point was never JUST about spiritual things; it was about the kingdom that is made up of both spiritual and physical things. If that is true, then every second of our day, every moment of time take on new significance. Now those “worldly” things become service to the King (who is spirit). So now the man that is faithful in his “spiritual thoughts” can take those thoughts and turn them into real spiritual actions! All the while he is advancing Christ’s kingdom and serving His king.

If our time is borrowed, and every action is a direct reflection of a spiritual truth, then what we do and when we do it becomes seriously important! For instance, a man who believes God is only concerned with spiritual things will be tempted to leave God at home when he heads to work. However, when he understands that God is in sovereign over spiritual as well as “non-spiritual” things, that man will never look at any part of his day the same. Every action becomes a testimony of his faith or the lack of it. Every moment is serious.

Okay, so practically? This is simple, but really hard. What is most important to you will take up most of your time. If I care more about sleeping in than I do my wife, it will show. If I care more about movies than I do my kids, they will see that. If I spend more time with sports than I do with God, what am I truly worshiping? Conversely, if I care more for providing for my family than myself, I am sure they will see that. If I serve God with my thought life all day, He knows where my treasure is. Prioritize your life to reflect Christ and what is important to Him. Do not waste your time, it is on loan and you owe interest.

-Soli Deo Gloria

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Intended Blessings

Gender confusion is rampant in our day. The church is often just as bad as the culture, and sometimes worse because we should know better. God has given us perfect, clear instructions on what it means to be a man or a woman. The gender issue is usually pointed at woman, but I am going to point it specifically at men. Though much of this applies to both genders, it is the men who must be out in front in just about every area of life.

Men
Does anyone know why we “used” to say ladies first? When Christian principle was still alive and well in western culture, women were treated with respect based on their own value and merit, rather than a socially-enforced mandate based on the feminist movement. We lost this as a culture when we lost Christ as a culture. Men used to stand up and protect women, and now, you rarely see that except in cowboy movies and fairy tales. Christian men, almost to the man, have become cowards in our day. Gents, this has to be fixed. We have to man up!

God calls men to be in a position of leadership, and the funny thing is (contrary to popular thought) that most men do not want this leadership. I am not talking about being the boss, or making the rules, I am talking about biblical leadership. This is the kind of leadership that hurts, the kind we have not really seen for a long time. Men today are more concerned with “important things” such as sports, movies, games, hobbies, etc. than with their calling. I am going to point out the three primary things a man should be interested in, to show himself a godly man. By primary I mean, a man should know more about these three areas than any other area of his life. By primary I mean he should spend more time in these three areas than any other area of his life. Consider:

Love of God- “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.” Mark 12:30 This, my fellow Christians, is the greatest commandment that God ever gave. That means that in order to be a godly man, Christ must be before his eyes at all times. None of us is perfect, but that is not an excuse that God will accept. Make God such a  part of your lives that people could not explain anything about you without using His name, this has to be our goal. Plain and simple.

Love of Others – “And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:31 This is the second greatest commandment God ever gave. A man must be more concerned about other than he is himself, because manhood is never selfish, sin is. God requires that men act as His leaders on this earth in all areas that God Himself created, self, family, church, civics, and any other tasks God has given mankind. If you have a wife, then this goes doubly for the way you treat her. Men are not godly men if they care more for themselves than for others, or spend more time on themselves than others. Plain and simple.

Love of the Kingdom – One of the benefits of being born again is that we can “see the Kingdom of God” (John 3:3). Today we often mistake the ‘heart of man’ for the kingdom of God because of our faulty view of the acts and purpose of God (among other things). The kingdom of God is the people of God, His Church universal (which means global scope!). If a man is not dedicated to the assistance, advancement, and defense of God’s kingdom, then he is missing a big point of his existence. Man was not put on earth so that God could curse him and then save his heart. That is a very narrow view of God’s plan. Man was put on earth to be instruments of God’s plan. If one sees his witness as only effecting himself, then he is blind to his position as a herald of God’s kingdom. Men need to forcibly advance, starting with themselves and families and ending with eternity. Get the vision, plain and simple.

Men need to step up, take responsibility, and lead! We cannot sit back and watch women do it, unless we enjoy watching our judgment (Isaiah 3:12). This starts with God and family, extends to others, and encompasses everything.

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1. I pray that men start to understand this concept and see that they “were bought at a price” 1 Corinthians 6:20. From this foundation will come the realization that a man is only a shadow of what he was created to be unless he serves (obeys) God. The issue is not what one is able to do, it is what one ought to do.

Okay, so practically? Start by thinking through your day, what place does God play in it? David made sure that his God was always before him (Psalm 16:8), meaning, God was always on his mind and the purpose of his actions. Take every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:5), and replace it with Christ! Those moments when you would rather crash and be selfish, turn to Christ and deny your flesh. Meaning, games, movies, and sports should not (and cannot) be more important than Christ, Bible, family, kids, etc. Get the vision and then pass it on!

-Soli Deo Gloria

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Beginning of Wisdom

Many Christians do not fear God with a Holy fear even though the Psalmist, the Preacher, the Apostles, etc. all tell us to fear God. (Psalm 111:10, Ecclesiastes 12:13, 2 Corinthians 7:1, etc.) This is a scary place to be because without this truth, you cannot understand the gospel.

To elaborate on that statement, allow me to ask a question: why did the Son of God, Jesus Christ, have to die? Any man is perfectly capable of dying for his own sin. So why did Christ do it?

God loves those He has chosen, or elected, (Colossians 3:12), but God cannot be anywhere near His chosen because of their sin (2 Corinthians 6:14). This presents a problem. God loves His people, but at the same time hates all the workers of iniquity (Psalm 5:5), not just their sin. Because of His righteousness, God is in the position of judge to all those who sin– which would be everyone.

So, what of His love of the elect? The answer is Jesus Christ. We understand (though dimly) that Christ showed His love on the cross. Everyone knows this. Not everyone knows that Christ had to die to save us from the wrath of God, the wrath of Himself. So now, you start to see that Jesus did not die to save you from your sin ultimately, He died to save you from Himself because of your sin.

When you start to understand what the cross really means, you get a healthy fear of God. That is balanced by the grace of God, but it does not negate his wrath. Grace would mean nothing without God’s wrath. Christ did not die because of any power that sin has. He died because of the power His judgment has.

Having established that God will judge, and all will be condemned (apart from Christ!) then hopefully you now see the basis of our fear of the Lord. If you read the verses I started out with you will see that it is required, wise, and good to fear God. From this foundation we can move to understand our Sovereign King; anything less and we will miss who God is and why we should love Him.

-Soli Deo Gloria

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On the Law

“We are not under the law we are under grace, yet  if we do not obey the law we are not under grace.”

Take a moment to consider that statement. Do you agree?

My basis for this type of thought can be found in Romans 6:14 & 1 John 2:3-4, which seem to conflict, but do they?  Romans 6:14 reads:

“For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.”

This is talking about our new covenantal relationship and hierarchy under Christ– which is to say, we are no longer saved on the basis of the law (Romans 3:28), and the law does not come between us and God (Romans 3:24). However, Paul is not saying that the law is not important or even critical. Consider:

Romans 3:31 “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.”

So what’s really going on here? Let’s read 1 John 2:3:

“And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.”

This is where we almost come full circle, back to the law of God as our delight (Psalm 40:8, Romans 7:22). We are able to “prove” our salvation by faith alone only by our works! James 2:26 lays it out perfectly.

“…Faith without works is dead.”

So, in closing:

“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13)

We are no longer under the law, because Christ fulfilled the law perfectly and brought us under Him directly. However, we are called, as those that fear God, to either obey His word as contained in the whole Bible, or disregard the several hundred places where God commands our obedience. If we chose the latter, our faith is dead and we are still in need of salvation.

-Soli Deo Gloria

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Mighty Man of Valor

What sets apart a man of God from a man of the world? If we call ourselves Christians, then why do we cower in the dark instead of shouting on the mountain top? Why are we unable to stand and face the world completely unashamed and without fear? These questions that plague every man have a rather simple answer and it lies in something we already know!

Do you recall Gideon? He was the man whom God called to lead His people in battle against the Amalekites and the peoples of the east. Its universal relevance to all men is often lost, sadly. Gideon was a young man, an average man. He worked on the family farm and lived in fear of the enemy just like everyone else. He was neither smarter nor stronger than average men. In fact, he was the youngest son of the smallest family of the smallest tribe. There was nothing about this man that would make us call him great; however, that is not how God looked at him. He saw a man who was willing to follow Him regardless how crazy it seemed, not caring that it may cost him his life or the lives of those he loved. Even though the world saw nothing special about him, the Lord did: Gideon had a heart that wanted to serve God.

Consider within yourself: are you that man? Do you seek to serve God in everything? Even if you feel weak, unlearned, or oppressed, is there a divine spark that burns in your heart? If so, then you are no different than this mighty man of valor, Gideon. He heard the word of the Lord and followed it.

He committed to God with an offering, representing everything that he was. As he placed it before the Lord, he knew something would change and he was willing to accept it. The angel of the Lord, seeing his sacrifice, came and reached out his staff to completely consume it by fire.

There was no turning back now, and Gideon was ready for what lay ahead. He knew he was following the word of the Lord and knew that it was to be trusted. That night, he took some of his men and destroyed the altar of Baal. He took a stand, one that would cost him, and one from which he would never be able to return. The next morning when the men of the city came out they saw that the altar had been destroyed and asked who did it that they may kill him.

Gideon did not pander to the desires or fears of men. He was God’s servant and he was not in fear of what men would say or do to him. One could think that this man was somehow closer to the Lord, and He helped Gideon more than He would ever help you. This is a prevalent lie. God did not help Gideon any more than He helps you now; the difference is that Gideon followed God. Do you? Reading further we discover that he was not sure God would even help. That’s why he asks for a sign, with the fleece. He did not ask for one sign but two; he was going to make sure that this was God’s will. Later in the story, Gideon goes on to destroy the armies of the enemies of the Lord with only three hundred men!

God is calling every one of His children to bigger and better things. These things are not fun or comfortable. They are not things that just any man can do; they are things that only God’s man can do. Are you God’s man? Do you trust Him enough to let go of what you think makes you a man? Are you ready to forget what the world says and focus on Christ alone? Can you give your finances and your job to Him? What about your family, and your future? Are you willing to love the Lord your God with all of your heart, mind, and strength? Do you believe God is powerful enough to lead you? Or do you think you have all it taken care of?

It’s time, men; it’s time to turn away from the world and what the world says about men. If you are a believer in Christ, then you are equipped for every good work already. You have been prepared through the Word of God and His Holy Spirit. Do you have the faith of a mustard seed? Are you ready for the plunge? Will you take up the banner and follow Christ? Or will you continue to live as if you had no power? Take up your cross today and follow Him; at work, at play, or at rest. Take hold of what is yours and strike back at the lies and the sin that keeps you from living the life God has called you to.

It is time to be a Mighty Man of Valor – God already says you are!

-Soli Deo Gloria

(Originally written in 2007 and revised)

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Semper Reformanda

Always Reforming…

The New Testament talks about two kinds of “renewing”. It gives us a basic view of what our lives look like under Sanctification. The first type of renewal is that of the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5). This would normally be referred to as new birth or regeneration. This is the change without which you cannot see the kingdom of God (John 3:3), and if you cannot see it then you obviously cannot work for it (but that’s another topic). The second type of renewal is that of the mind (Romans 12:2); this is the part that we as Christians (having already been born again of the Spirit) will deal with on a day to day basis.

The Christians I meet usually are content with only having “faith” in their rebirth. At face value this may not seem like an issue, but when you look deeper, you will see that it is. If we believe our conversion is the ONLY point that matters in this Christian life, then we do not understand our calling. An easy example would be found in James 2:20:

“But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?”

He clearly draws a conclusion from the obvious: abstract faith is worthless. This means that if we rely solely on that profession of faith, apart from putting that faith into  practical action, then we have a dead and therefore worthless faith. We must first put our faith to the test (2 Corinthians 13:5). This could be illustrated in the following way:

Mike and John both state that they believe in airplanes. They each have a profession of faith.
Mike does not ever ride on a plane and therefore has an abstract faith, something completely intangible.
John flies on the plane every day and his belief in the plane is supported and substantiated by his actions.

While this is an imperfect and limited allegory, the point stands. So first of all, if we are not aware of and acting on our faith, we are in danger of finding ourselves outside of that faith. Salvation may be a one time act, but our (as humans) primary way of knowing whether that salvation from God took place is the out working of the Spirit, because of our faith, unto good works (2 Corinthians 13:5, 1 John 2:3).

Secondly, and my main point in all this, is that we must constantly be renewing our minds. It is a command from God (Romans 12:2). We must seek daily and at all times, without ceasing, to grow in, understand, and conform to Jesus Christ. I am sure every Christian would agree, but how much have you sought after God today? I speak to myself, but studying His Word or kneeling in prayer do not come easy to this flesh of mine. When we do not take every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:5), we serve sin. When we do not SEEK to know the truth and how to live it every day (proverbs 1:5), we sin.

James 4:17
“Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.”

I pray that our hearts will seek the truth of Christ Jesus and its application in and to our lives with a zeal.

-Soli Deo Gloria

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