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6 Methods to Preserve College students from Being Taken Captive by False Mental Concepts


“See to it that nobody takes you captive by philosophy…”

When the apostle Paul wrote his letter to the church at Colossae, he was a prisoner in Rome. By this level, he had confronted each attainable opponent. He may subsequently survey the pagan Roman Empire and know all the assorted challenges confronting the younger church buildings. 

Though overt persecution by the Jews was paramount, Paul acknowledged there have been rising mental forces that sought to undermine the Biblical-philosophical foundations of Christianity. He knew they have been very harmful. 

Whereas outward bodily oppression was attempting, it usually resulted in strengthening the religion of these being persecuted. This was not the case with false mental concepts. As a substitute, they acted like a gradual poison within the soil of Christianity, ultimately killing all progress. One want solely have a look at the historical past of the West in Europe and the US to see its outcomes.

Why is that this?

In contrast to different religions, Christianity rests on a historical-philosophical basis. Most Christians as we speak don’t notice this; however simply take a second to think about the Apostles’ Creed: it makes very sturdy historical-philosophical statements concerning the nature of the God, Jesus Christ, the world, redemption, and way more.

When you can remodel the concepts represented by these statements, or take away the philosophical floor on which they stand, then perception turns into tough if not inconceivable.

The apostle Paul writing his letters.

It was this hazard that was dealing with the brand new church at Colossae. Paul subsequently opens his letter with a staunch protection of the mental foundations of Christianity, telling the Colossians to “see to it that nobody takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, in line with human custom, in line with the basic spirits of the world, and never in line with Christ.” (Col 2:8)

Though non-Christian philosophy has grown extra refined over the previous 2000 years, the strategy to preventing it has not modified. It’s the similar wrestle as we speak because it was within the first century—with the identical dire penalties for many who select to disregard it.

Listed here are six methods you’ll be able to assist preserve your college students from being taken captive by the deceitful philosophical concepts of our day —or any day.

1. Train them the Bible

That is greater than realizing Bible tales. As a substitute, college students want to know your entire Bible, having learn it from cowl to cowl not less than as soon as. The Outdated Testomony ought to be used to know the New Testomony, and vice versa. If this appears like quite a lot of work, it’s—however the good factor is that it may be achieved slowly and incrementally. I like to recommend two issues: 

First, each scholar must utilizing a conservative Examine Bible with notes, cross-references, maps, and introductions. The ESV Pupil Examine Bible or the NASB Examine Bible are good choices. You need to personal an grownup Examine Bible your self; they’re wonderful references. College students want the Bible to be put in historic and grammatical context; if not, it’s simply disconnected from actuality.

A cutaway of Solomon’s Temple from the ESV Pupil Examine Bible.

Second, try to be studying by way of the Bible as a household and speaking about it on the dinner desk, within the automotive, or everytime you’re collectively. Once you’re studying by way of most books, there shall be lots to talk about. However the notes and charts will even enable you get by way of extra obscure books akin to Leviticus, Deuteronomy, and the Prophets.

Learn, learn, learn – there’s no different path to realizing the Phrase of God. Paul, the truth is, begins his letter to the Colossians by reminding them to recollect what they “have heard earlier than within the phrase of the reality, the gospel, which has come to you, as certainly in the entire world it’s bearing fruit and rising…” (Col 1:5-6)

2. Train them Theology

Understanding the Bible is step one, however the Bible have to be interpreted as an entire to see how all the pieces matches collectively.  That is the position of theology. It has at all times been important to the church, beginning with Paul’s letters and persevering with by way of the primary centuries, to the Medievals and Reformers, and as much as the current day.

There are various methods to show theology. Our theological forefathers wrote confessions and catechisms that designate theology in a systemic manner.  A few of the most well-known are the Westminster Confession and Catechisms (Reformed), the Augsburg Confession (Lutheran), The Baptist Confession of 1689 (Baptist), amongst quite a few others. These are older paperwork, however nonetheless very helpful.

Pastors and theologians on the Westminster Meeting.

Newer books on theology embody systematic theologies and books on doctrine. Clearly there are totally different Christian traditions, so you’ll be able to ask your pastor or somebody you belief when you’re undecided the place to go.

Listed here are a number of that I’ve discovered helpful: Important Truths of the Christian Religion by RC Sproul and Abstract of Christian Doctrine by Louis Berkhof. You possibly can learn a piece at a time and discuss it as a household. You’ll be stunned at how a lot youngsters are taken with these matters.

3. Train them Worldview & Apologetics

Francis Schaeffer was one of many first Christians to popularize fascinated with Christianity from a worldview perspective. He defines a worldview because the grid by way of which we see all the pieces on this planet, from tradition to science to ethics to training.  

This strategy, nonetheless, has roots that return to Paul. He reminds the Colossians that “all of the treasures of knowledge and data” are to be present in Christ and that “all issues have been created by way of Him and for Him.” In different phrases, the reality of the created order can solely be understood in its relationship to God. Paul tells them this “so that nobody could delude you with believable arguments.” 

Apologetics is the method of familiarizing oneself with arguments for and in opposition to a Christian worldview in order that one can present a protection for the reality. Francis Schaeffer’s movie collection How Ought to We Then Stay is an effective place to start out as a result of it places a Christian worldview into historic perspective, bringing it shut sufficient to the current day to disclose the continuing risks of Marxism and Statism to Christianity.

However there are additionally some wonderful books that may be learn on this subject, relying in your scholar’s academic degree. We have now put collectively an inventory of 12 Books to Construct a Christian Worldview.

Francis Schaeffer from “How Ought to We Then Stay?”

Searching for philosophy & worldview curriculum?​

Attempt 4 Free Classes of our How Ought to We Then Stay Course​

How Should We Then Live? Apologetics

4. Train Them Philosophy

As soon as somebody understands the final historical past of concepts, it is very important go deeper and look at the precise philosophers and philosophies that influenced the currents of historical past. For this reason concepts are much more harmful than weapons: they kind the constructions of our day by day lives, whether or not it’s the State, Tradition, Training, Work, or the Household. 

When college students come face-to-face with essentially the most influential concepts in historical past, it’s virtually like pulling again the curtain on the Wizard of Oz—what appears menacing is definitely man-made and mundane.

As an illustration, when one reads Nietszche and sees what he thinks concerning the world when it comes to dominance and destruction, his nihilism is much much less engaging. When one reads Marx and sees what he thinks about individuals when it comes to battle and wrestle, his materialism turns into much more harmful. Moreover, one realizes their concepts have led to widespread destruction and loss of life — and but they’re nonetheless getting used to govern individuals as we speak.

But philosophy just isn’t at all times straightforward to know. That’s why we’ve developed a philosophy class that mixes the wonderful video instructing of RC Sproul, Christian commentary by John Body, and studying picks from the philosophers themselves.

Why is that this so necessary?  

John Body explains: “My entire thought is to reveal the truth that the historical past of philosophy and theology is nothing lower than religious warfare within the lifetime of the thoughts….I need to put together college students for the religious warfare because it exists in their very own time, with out neglecting the background of this battle in earlier occasions.” (Preface, A Historical past of Western Philosophy & Theology)

This is a vital class for understanding the concepts that we see in tradition as we speak, from relativism, to sexual liberation, to political extremism, to atheism. You possibly can attempt some pattern classes right here.  

R.C. Sproul as featured in our philosophy collection.

Searching for philosophy & worldview curriculum?​

Attempt 4 Free Classes of our Philosophy – Penalties of Concepts Course​

Philosophy Consequences of Ideas

5. Train them the Penalties of Worldview in Historical past

There’s a cause why the Greeks created the story of Pandora: as soon as a harmful thought emerges into the world, it’s inevitable that it’s going to do severe hurt to individuals. On the similar time, when a good suggestion is carried out, it’s inevitable that it’ll carry nice profit to individuals.

One of the best ways to see that is by a research of historical past from a worldview perspective. For this reason we’ve developed an extremely insightful historical past collection with Dave Raymond. The brilliance of Dave’s instructing is that he combines ethical precept and narrative story. In different phrases, he exhibits how totally different worldviews work themselves out within the lives of actual women and men.  

Most significantly, he exhibits how a Christian worldview is important for civilization to actually flourish. It’s no coincidence that he begins with American Historical past and divulges how Christian rules have been the idea of liberty, freedom, and prosperity.  

With Modernity, he goes deeper into the damaging outcomes of non-Christian concepts, such because the French Revolution, Darwinism, and Statism, all of which led to the best century of bloodshed and loss of life: the twentieth. 

The Russian Revolution resulted within the deaths of tens of tens of millions of its personal individuals.

He then goes again in time to look at the 2 competing strands of Biblical faith and Pagan faith rising aspect by aspect in Antiquity. Lastly, he’ll end the collection this 12 months with Christendom, displaying how the Church reworked the West and supplied it the muse to create trendy civilization.

There are additionally many wonderful books that present how worldviews work themselves out by way of historical past. Among the best is The One and the Many, a rare examination of the implications of concepts from the earliest days to the current.

6. Train them to Stroll within the Fact

In closing, our kids are rising up in a era that seems to be returning to paganism.  That is the struggle of our lives: pushing again on pagan concepts in order that Christian fact can triumph. It’s why Paul reminds the Colossians that Christ “disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open disgrace, by triumphing over them in Him.” 

After getting ready ourselves mentally, what ought to we do then? Paul tells the Colossians:

“Placed on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and endurance, bearing with each other…And no matter you do, in phrase or deed, do all the pieces within the title of the Lord Jesus, giving because of God the Father by way of him.”

In different phrases, pondering proper ideas about God and His world leads us to doing proper actions towards God and others. It isn’t a straightforward calling nowadays, however it’s the solely calling that can result in fulfilled lives beneath the reign of Christ.

Watch a trailer to our new collection on philosophy.

Searching for philosophy & worldview curriculum?​

Attempt 4 Free Classes of our Philosophy – Penalties of Concepts Course​

Philosophy Consequences of Ideas

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