If statistics mean anything at all, homeschooling is an extraordinarily beneficial method of academic instruction, and a superior choice in raising socially, emotionally, and psychologically healthy children. It’s good for families, good for the economy, good for society, and good for freedom.
However, despite its glowing track record, homeschooling is not the answer; at least, not to the most important question.
What must I do to be saved?
The second generation of homeschoolers, myself included, face an enormous temptation to believe that historical success will inevitably result in our children turning out okay, too. Oh, how we must take great care to guard against “trusting in princes” (Psalm 146:3)! The consequence of relying on a method for our children’s salvation is eternally fatal!
So what if our children turn out “okay”?
What good is it if they make it into college, are virgins on their wedding day, experience a great degree of material success, are outstanding members in their local church, and are blessed with a loving spouse and children, only to take their last breath at the end of their life and find themselves standing before the judgment seat of God without a Redeemer?
“On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’” Matthew 7: 22, 23
Our children’s most fundamental need cannot be fulfilled by simply keeping them home, out of public school, and following a certain educational approach, a particular curriculum, or the teachings of a motivational speaker. We’ve been reminded of this numerous times in the media lately. Adultery, homosexuality, pornography, rebellious attitudes and prodigal children are apparent in homeschooling families, too.
Homeschooling can’t give them Jesus.
Only the Holy Spirit can convict our children of their sin and need of a Savior. From beginning to end, salvation is God’s great work (Ephesians 2:8), and since our good works have nothing to do with it, what’s the point of homeschooling at all? Why bother putting in all the time and effort when there are no guarantees?
Because, when she cries during long division, thinks she’s not good enough and can’t do anything right, you get to offer her Jesus. (Philippians 4:13)
Because, when he’s frustrated by noise and busyness, distracted by too much going on, and searching for peace and rest, you get to offer him Jesus. (Isaiah 26:3)
Because, when she’s proud of her accomplishment and is headed for destruction with a haughty spirit, you get to offer her Jesus. (James 4:6)
Because, when you discover that trashy magazine stuffed between the pages of his Science book, you get to offer him Jesus. (Galatians 6:8)
Because, when she feels alone even in a house full of people and is searching for a friend that sticks closer than a brother, you get to offer her Jesus. (John 15:15)
Because, when you’re feeling overwhelmed and hit rock bottom, fall on your knees in front of God and everyone and cry out for mercy, they get to see that Mommy needs Jesus. (Psalm 61:2)
Because, when life is going smoothly and everyone seems to be enjoying each other and their studies, and there appears to be a growing temptation to rely on their own wisdom and abilities, you get to offer them Jesus. (Proverbs 3: 5, 6)
Because, offering them Jesus when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you rise up, and when you lie down, is the gift and privilege God has given to Moms and Dads (Deuteronomy 6: 7), and with that responsibility, comes precious promises from a faithful, covenant-keeping God that should give us all the hope and purpose in the world.
“Know therefore that the Lord thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations.” Deuteronomy 7: 9
“But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, long suffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth.” Psalm 86: 15
“Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised)…” Hebrews 10: 23
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6
“My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.” John 10:29