A Philosophy of Education and a Philosophy of Government

Guest essay by Katherine Dang 

If education’s goal is to produce good citizens (Webster’s American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828), then, one’s philosophy of education is one’s philosophy of government. History has illustrated how doctrine can direct a generation’s character, which in turn has determined the government over them.

Frankness forces one to step down and away from clichéd exposé and attribute the ills of American society to the ills within American Christianity. Present-day America is an expression of a nation removed from its Biblical foundations. As Biblical foundations cannot be laid by men of pagan minds, so neither can they be responsible for maintaining the purity of those principles. Only Christians and believers of the Gospel can “backslide” and turn away from America’s Biblical standards for civil government. Without true knowledge and internal light, can the pagan be expected to faithfully and effectively affect the culture of a Christian civilization?

While American Christians forsook the Word of God, the benevolent humanitarian has been unjustly burdened with a task for which he is not internally equipped-the defense of America against the onslaughts of anti-Christ. The question to ask is not will America ever be restored, but rather, if Providence should permit America’s return to her constitutional foundations, of what is required of today’s evangelical Christians? Much more is required of today’s faithful few than of today’s infidels. Practical and deliberate steps to stem the tide of modem socialism across America need to be instituted. A conscious offense to false, unbiblical doctrines of God, man and government-the dogmas of democratic socialism-is beginning with a philosophy of education and government dependent wholly on its Christian integrity, with the express intent of preserving America’s Christian purpose, the propagation of the Gospel in a state which protects individual liberty of conscience, without which there could not be rue conversion.

Understood, that through the instrumentality of education, successive generations have been gradually raised to alter and efface America’s Christian

Constitution and the republican institutions which the Constitution purports. Local self-government, predicated upon self-directing and self-initiating, responsible citizenry, has given way and dissolved through interference and the pressures of democratic determinism simply because the American character has been molded by pagan, socialistic views. Americans have been educated to yield to socialism. Thus, the sustaining of America’s Christian form of civil government-the source, the flow, and the dispensing of civil power-requires American Christianity to separate from all forms of socialism in all the spheres of activity and build, again, upon an American Christian philosophy of education and government.

America’s uniqueness is her form and system of civil government. She offers the only alternative to governments founded upon degradation and oppression of the individual contrived, since the days of Nimrod, as a series of various tyrannical schemes for one part of mankind having dominion over the rest, with the effort to deny God’s right to the individual. Christianity, having developed into sturdy manhood and independency, attained through spiritual and civil struggle with imperial into sturdy manhood and independency, attained through spiritual and civil struggle with imperial Europe, was transplanted by God to America, where a free church becomes the seed of a free state. Who but God could destine America to establish a form of civil government Christian principle, the Christian self-governing individual, and Christian in purpose, the free propagation of the Gospel. This form of government is peculiarly of American Christianity, from a philosophy especial to the hearts and minds of America’s Founding Father generations.

Modern Socialism

A philosophy of education constitutes course content, methods, and the resulting character formed. When these constituents of educational philosophy are expanded to their social implication, they become, in fact, those essential elements of one’s philosophy of government: a view of the individual or man, a view as to how the individual should be controlled or regulated, and the form of civil government which, in practice, answers those views. This line of reasoning forms the basis of the charts which follow.

Philosophy of Education’Philosophy of Government
(What is taught)
View of the Individual 
(The causative sphere of civil government)
A godless universe operating upon natural Laws at the command of human intellectA higher form of animal; men as purely social and interdependent beings
Man’s reasoning apart from divine revelationA passing species whose link with the past and future is irrelevant and meaningless
Subjects divorced from their divine origins and purposesSophistication in pragmatism without regard for supernatural
Subjective, existential truth, wherein man and the collectively determined good are the highest authorityPhilosophical sources of authority; Hobbs, Rousseau, Darwin, Marx, Spencer, Marcuse, Mao
The glory of human survivalSurvival by expedient adaptation to changing social structures and systems
(How subjects are taught)
Government of the Individual
Psycho-physiological approach to learningControl, regulate the animal and physical instincts
Conditioned, stimulus-response in non-reflective activityConditioned conformity to the will of the collective majority
Emphasis upon experimental and experiential: knowledge from the five sensesDemocratic determinism without liberty of individual conscience; society regulates individual rights
Piecemeal, graduated instruction of subjects
Rating of student industry and progress according to the group
Character Formed 
Form of Civil Government 
Inert, dependent, slavishSovereignty of a ‘benevolent’ dictator who organizes the welfare state
Sensual, carnal, hedonistic, selfish, materialisticRepresentatives ceding local liberties and self-government over to centralized control
Puppet-mentality, irresponsible, inept and ignorantSocialized public possession of private property; rights dealt out by society

American Christianity

Philosophy of EducationPhilosophy of Government
(What is taught)
View of the Individual 
(The causative sphere of civil government)
A universe subject to its Creator and Governor and revelational of HimA unique creation, not bestial, but in God’s likeness: individuality, an everlasting soul, and the faculty of reason
Courses established, rooted to their origins and purposesAccountable to God for every sphere of activity
Authority resting in the Word of GodFallen, depraved, a sinner who is the object of divine love and redemption
Truth is absolute and the measure of progress and success
(How courses are taught)
Government of the Individual
Individual industry and accountability in exercising reasoningBy voluntary consent or tacit approval
Wholistic approach, the integrity and completeness of each of the arts and science; mastery, skill and discipline given to equip each studentLiberty of conscience as his “most sacred of all property”
Emphasis on developing the faculty of reasoning from fixed, biblical principles before experimental learning
Inspiring obedience to Truth
Preservation and protection by law of his God-given rights
For the greatest good for the greatest number
Character Formed 
(The effect)
Form of Civil Government 
(The effect)
Industrious, diligent, energetic, independentSovereignty, power flowing from the free and independent individual
Apt to teach self and othersBiblical representation; an elected delegate stands in the place of the individuals in his district to which he pledges his allegiance
Christian, self-governing, yielded to the government of God and His lawsSelf-government with union; voluntary union of local self-governing republics
Functions of government: judicial, executive and legislative are not concentrated but safely separated
Laws for the lawless and liberty for the lawful

This essay originally appeared in 1978.

Katherine Dang, is President and founder of Philomath Foundation. She is an author, editor, consultant and a featured speaker in Christian History study groups, home-school support groups, seminars and conferences. With a Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of California, Berkeley, she entered the ministry of American Christian Education at American Heritage Christian School in Hayward, California, under the able leadership of the late Mr. James B. Rose, then headmaster. From 1979-1995, she served as administrative director of Chinese Christian Schools, which she helped found and establish. She has classroom teaching experience spanning levels from elementary through adult in a wide range of subjects: Bible, history, geography, English grammar, literature, science, government, economics and mathematics. Miss Dang is the author of several articles published in A Guide to American Christian Education for the Home and School: The Principle Approach, by James B. Rose. She has completed and published two of four Universal History volumes: Ancient History—Law Without Liberty and Middle History—The Law of Liberty

© 2019 Used by Permission

Nordskog Publishing (NPI) provides articles and essays by select guest authors which we believe have much to offer the Christian community—to motivate Biblical thinking and action. We believe in the market place of ideas within the context of God’s Word. However, we may disagree at points.  Publishing an article does not mean absolute agreement. Therefore, please understand that opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of NPI, nor of its editorial staff.

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