If the end of all things was at hand in the days of Peter, what must we who are living two centuries later say of the time in which we are living? And if Paul could say that the night is far spent, the day is at hand, then what part of the night still remains now that it is two thousand years after Paul spoke these words? And if the time was “short” when Paul wrote his first epistle to the Corinthians, how much should we expect that there is left today? Without fear of contradiction it may be said that we are speeding toward the days of the final manifestation of the antichrist.
If in the days of Peter and Paul there were signs in nature, in the church and in the history of the world, which indicated that the return of Christ would soon be realized, then how much clearer those signs are today. Earthquakes in diverse places, places not even known by the Apostles; wars and rumors of wars, wars and plans and rumors for bigger and more dreadful wars; apostasy on every hand, a growing indifference to things spiritual and an increase in the itching ears that clamor for entertainment instead of spiritual instruction and comfort; nations seeking peace and prosperity in the way of the formation of one world; these are the things we see today. How much more distinct the signs become! Paul and Peter with tremendous spiritual insight could see the end rapidly coming even though to others the signs were not distinct. We do not need to see these things from such a great distance. They are right before us and with us. The time is short, the night is far spent and the end of all things is at hand.
What has served and will serve the purpose of the final, dreadful, world-embracing manifestation of the antichristian spirit in the world? What always has and always will mold the thought of man and prepare him for this worldwide kingdom of darkness? The answer is at hand. Men are prepared for things by means of instruction, propaganda, the printed page, the spoken word and constant repetition of the lesson you would have them learn.
Indeed, in a very real sense, the world must be instructed and prepared for the coming of the antichrist. The antichrist has not come as yet because men were not ready to receive him, and today the world still is not ready to receive him. Russia is bitterly opposed to the idea of one world unless it is a Russian-controlled and dominated world. We must never forget that tremendous fact of the confusion of speech at Babel when God frustrated man’s first attempt to form such a worldwide power of deviltry. It will take much education and instruction even today to bring the whole world into a universal kingdom under one head as the antichrist is pictured to us in Revelation 13. But the devil and men are striving toward this thing and fashioning their educational systems accordingly. The invention of the atomic bomb has caused them to hasten in their work. And it can be said without fear of contradiction that the schools, both of higher and lower education, will and are being used for that end. What other end can the world seek? How else can the world interpret current events? In socialistic nations the youth in its education was the special target of the propaganda put forth to insure the future of the views of the governing powers. Thus also today the youth is the special target of antichristian education to insure his rise and to prepare his way.
What explanation can the world give our children of the signs of Christ’s return? The world surely will not explain them as signs of His personal, final, triumphant and glorious return to redeem His own also from that last enemy, death. This they do not believe. How then shall they explain this increase of earthquakes and disturbances in the realm of creation. How will the world explain the wars and rumors of wars? Surely not in a way that will increase the fear of the Lord in our children.
Then, too, in close connection with this, it may be stated that such corrupt institutions in our own country as Hollywood are exerting a growing influence upon the educational systems and practices of our schools.
In these last few moments of the history of this world and just before the antichrist appears in that final form, we may surely believe that the institutions of education are the sure tool of the devil to prepare his way; and the danger in these schools for our children is greater than ever.
That holds true, as we said above, for the schools of higher education as well. In fact we would even begin there. The teachers that instruct your children in the schools of the world today receive a far more atheistic and antichristian education than before. And they come to their pupils with further developments of the lie than those of a few generations back. Instruction is becoming more and more uniform. Conventions are held, and attendance is demanded. Here the teacher in the one-room country school, who formerly went more or less his own way and was permitted to present his material from his own viewpoint, comes under the influence of more atheistic and antichristian philosophy than he would have experienced in his isolated position back home. For we must never forget that the world develops in the lie and in its foolish philosophies which become the backbone of its teaching methods and content. The unbeliever did not always believe in evolution. The world always scoffed at the idea of a divine Creator of all things. But when questioned as to where all things came from, a shrug of the shoulders simply expressed ignorance. But the particularly foolish and atheistic theory of evolution is of comparatively recent origin. So the world develops in all the fields of the lie. And one may say what he will, but one exposes his children to all this corruption when he gives his children over to the world for instruction.
You may say that this is all counteracted by the education and instruction he receives at home, in catechism and Sunday School. But the question may be asked, “Is it very likely and is it practiced, that the parent who so indifferently sends his child to the world for his instruction, will and does show enough interest in his instruction when he returns home in the late afternoon to feel him out in regard to his instruction and to correct the dangerous impressions he received in school?” We are afraid that this is not the case. It is a tedious task that must be performed EVERY day. You cannot wait for your child to reveal of himself the evil philosophies he has learned. If he reveals them, then it shows that he has detected the lie himself. But there are so many small, unnoticed bits of philosophy which soon build up—and that in a systematic way—-into a deeply entrenched evil outlook on life. Do not forget that a teacher who has received his A.B. degree and has taught for years is a capable instructor with the qualification to impart his own philosophy upon his pupils. And your children will respect his opinion before they will yours, even though you are his parent. Recently undersigned spoke to a group of thirteen and fourteen year old grade school pupils who had been taught that God created all things in periods of thousands of years rather than in six days. The instructor, apparently a capable teacher, skilled in presenting his view, had convinced his pupils that this was very true and also entirely in harmony with Scripture. The point we wish to make here is that we wonder how many of the parents of these children were aware that their children believed this, and how many were able to refute it to the satisfaction of their children? In this particular case all appeal to Scripture by the undersigned had little: “effect, for at that age children can easily be deceived by a text that seems to substantiate the false doctrine. A day is as a thousand years in God’s sight. So the Psalmist speaks, and to these children by the teacher’s guidance, that meant that those days were indeed really thousands of years. The group became convinced only when it was made plain to it that then Adam could not have been 930 years old when he died but must at least have been 1930 years old, for he must have lived through the entire thousand yearlong seventh day. Thus these things creep into the minds of our children and constant vigil is needed. But if we throw off our calling to see to it that they are instructed in the fear of the Lord to the utmost of our power and instead send them to the world, will we retain enough interest to check up EVERY day on what they have received in the way of subtle instruction in the lie?
Besides this, school occupies such a big place in the life of our children. In comparison with home training, catechism, Sunday School and church services the world has our children if we send them there for their training the greater share of the time. How can we expect our little to overthrow so much? Then, too, by our very act of sending them to the world we are teaching them a wrong lesson. You may teach them at home that the natural man can do no good. In catechism he may be taught the total depravity of man. But when you send him to the world, you say by your actions, “Yes, but there is some good yet left in the world. The world is so good that I can send my child there to his schools without the fear of ethical moral taint. In the realm of the natural, .at least, the world does good.” But be not deceived, your child does not simply get a little training in reading, writing and arithmetic. He gets all these from the viewpoint and unto the goal of those who are ethically under the dominion of the evil one.
Our children are our most precious heritage and gift here below. And as we live in the fear of the Lord, we ought to do so with them and through them. Our own fear of the Lord ought to be exercised through our dealings with our children. And this fear of reverence and deep respect for the God of our salvation ought to cause us to be extremely diligent and faithful in bringing up our children—His children—to the utmost of our power in the truth and strive as much as in us lies to keep them away from all danger of worldly philosophy.
We should not send our children where they cannot live in the fear of the Lord with us. And if we are not living in the fear of the Lord through the instruction to which we submit them, we are not personally enjoying the fear of the Lord ourselves either. We can enjoy the fear of the Lord ourselves only when we are seeing to it that the children God has given us are also enjoying the truth and growing in His fear.
We are not advocating world flight when we demand the withdrawal of all God’s covenant children from the dangers they face when taught by the unbelievers. But we are indeed advocating world fight, the world fight of . And we may not deceive our children into thinking that there is any cessation in any sphere of life of this battle of the ages. In these days when the world and the false church put forth such a hypocritically friendly front, it is above all urgent that they be reminded of the spiritual difference between light and darkness. When the world tries to appear Christian, you may be sure that the antichrist is not far away. It still denies the incarnation, the cross and the resurrection and is antichristian rather than Christian. Let us not lay a stumbling block in the way for our children but with them and through them live in the fear of the Lord.