THE LORDSHIP OF CHRIST AND EDUCATION
By Andrew E. Courtis
Achievement that comes as the result of learning is truly an amazing thing. Think about the moment a baby is able to actually guide a spoon into their mouth after many failed and messy attempts. Up until this point, the baby has managed to get food in almost every place you can imagine except for their mouth! But after trial and error, the baby finally learns. Another example is to think about the sense of achievement that comes when a school child is able to read and write. This is an amazing thing to observe.
To be granted the opportunity to learn how things work, to be equipped for a task, and to then strive to achieve is a wonderful privilege. We call this process education. Education comes in all sorts of forms – both formal and informal. This ability to acquire knowledge is of immense value and significance. When this opportunity is withdrawn from people there are negative consequences for that individual and even for society. But there is something far worse being withdrawn and hidden from our children as they embark on the journey of education. What is it? It is the very thing that makes education possible and precious – I am talking about the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
When I say the Lordship of Christ, I am referring to the fact that Jesus Christ is Lord. To be Lord means that He is above all power and that He is the sovereign Master of the universe. Sadly, not everyone acknowledges this, but the Bible tells us that the time will come when “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Phil. 2:10-11). The fact that Jesus is Lord, and that His Lordship is over all things has some serious consequences. In my address this evening I would like to share with you three implications of the Lordship of Jesus Christ when it comes to life and education.
1. THE LORDSHIP OF CHIRST DEMONSTRATES SUPREMACY
Because Jesus Christ is Lord, He is Supreme. In his letter to the Colossian Christians Paul described the Jesus Christ in these terms,
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist (Col. 1:15-17)
Here we learn that because of who Jesus is, His supremacy is over all creation. When it comes to creation, He is supreme over it and this supremacy is demonstrated by the fact that He created it and sustains it. If Jesus Christ was to remove His hand from creation there would be chaos and it would cease to exist. For example, if there were no gravity the earth would eventually break apart piece-by-piece and float into the atmosphere. But that is not happening because Christ is the One holding the earth together.
What does this mean for our life and education? If we are going to understand learn effectively, we need to know and understand the one who is Lord over all things. That is to say, if you know Christ and see His supremacy, this will impact your educational process!
2. THE LORDSHIP OF CHIRST DENOUNCES SECULARISM
The world does not acknowledge the Lordship of Christ, and as a result life and education are approached in a secular way. Of course this has devastating results. If you build a worldview of life and education on anything other than Christ, you are placing yourself on a pathway that is marked by confusion, inconsistency and ultimately destruction. Because Jesus Christ is Lord, His Lordship denounces secularism. Secularism is a system or ideology that rejects religious thought. In other words, secularism in education does not affirm God; it completely removes Him from the process of learning. How does the Lordship of Christ denounce secularism? The Lordship of Jesus Christ brings meaning and significance to education. The entire universe, which came into existence by Christ, testifies of His glory (cf. Psalm 19:1). If you carefully examine the intricate details of creation and observe how things work, you will see evidence of design. This evidence, or witness of creation is a sermon declaring the power of God.
3. THE LORDSHIP OF CHRIST DEMANDS SERVICE
This brings me to my final point – the Lordship of Christ demands service. Knowing that He is Lord, why would we serve anyone else? Knowing that He is Lord ought to drive us to serve Him with passion. What does this mean when it comes to our life and approach to education. We ought to desire to learn so that we may bring Him the honour and glory due to His Name. We want to see children learn so that they may grow into being committed servants of Jesus Christ.
In this address I have provided three implications of the Lordship of Christ. Knowing and embracing His Lordship makes education an exciting and meaningful enterprise. The moment you attempt to disconnect the Lordship of Christ from education you are heading down a pathway that ultimately leads to destruction. By providing students with an approach to education that affirms the Lordship of Christ is to give them the fullest and most meaningful opportunity to learn and then in turn achieve.