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We are grateful to our God and our Lord Jesus Christ that the Editor of The Standard Bearer has so ably defended the matter of parental financing of our Christian schools over against those who are misleading many Christian parents sinfully to transfer this parental duty and responsibility to government in part or in whole. Surely this issue is of such great importance and significance for the spiritual welfare of our schools that we should all become rightly concerned to do the will of God in this question.

These false slogans, such as “fair share”, “justice”, “educational freedom”, may fool some parents; but these should not deceive those who know the Scriptures and the commandments of Christ. We ought to be very careful not to be so influenced, so that we also begin to say that if we can get this miscalled “fair share” of tax money without government control over the instruction of our covenant children, then we should take it. It is to be feared that if our Protestant Reformed parents talk this way, we have already lost the fight. Even if this should be the case, it would still be wrong and sinful to transfer this duty to government. We surely will succumb to the lure of easy money if we do not have the more solid foundation of God’s word to stand upon.

There cannot be any such thing as “fair share”, justice”, “educational freedom” when such proposals are based upon wrong principles. When we wrongly seek or take government taxes for our schools we say in effect that the public school plan for financing their schools is right and good and that our Christian schools should also adopt this method of financing. But how can we do this when we have always maintained that the public school system is not according to God’s commandments? Our God has not commanded government to administer and to finance the education of children. This duty and responsibility has been given to parents—not government. Parents must instruct their children in the home and family, and our Christian schools must always and ever be considered as the extension of home training and as an aid to parents. Teachers in the school act and instruct only in the name, and by the authority, of the parents. Financing of these Christian schools is as much the duty and responsibility of parents as is the instruction of the children. These two cannot be separated. In disobeying God’s commandments by transferring the duty of financing Christian schools to government, we may not and should not expect God’s blessing on the instruction the children receive. It is man who maintains that government should provide and finance schools for children. This is nothing other than sinful, devilish rebellion against God and His commandments. When parents send their children to public schools, they disobey God and Christ; and when we as parents accept government financing of our schools in part or in whole, then we too share in this disobedience.

When we in humble trust in Christ and from the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit establish our own Christian schools and finance them as we should, we are a testimony for righteousness and a judgment of God against those who wrongly insist that government owned and operated public school systems are right. When we would accept government financing of our schools, our testimony for the commandments of God would be destroyed. We would lose our witness in this world for the truth of the holy Gospel that God saves His covenant people so that they are enabled to do his good commandments. It is not by human power nor by government force that we obey the commandments of Christ, but by His Spirit. How disgraceful to Christ if we should say with those that seek to have government take over the financing of their Christian schools—that if this government money is not received, the Christian schools will soon be closing their doors. How shameful to talk this way! How dishonoring to Christ who sits on the throne at the right hand of God the Father in all his kingly power and majesty! He is a million times more powerful and able than any earthly government. Let us in all child-like humility and faith put all our trust in our glorious and wonderful Savior, and may we count it but a mild form of persecution that we are sinfully forced by government to pay taxes for non-Biblical and non-Christian public-school systems. Our blessed Lord Jesus said: “Ye are the light of the world”. This is also so in the instruction of children in parental Christian schools. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father in heaven,” (Matt. 5:16).

H. Tilma

Grand Rapids, Mich.