“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge” Proverbs 1:7.
“The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none who does good” Psalm 14:1.
We live in a world that seems to highly value education. We spend vast amounts of money to become “educated.” Yet the question needs to be asked: “What is real education?” It’s an important question and different people would answer it in different ways. True education is the process of gaining knowledge and training that will prepare you to be successful in life.
However, true education must begin at the right starting point. God and His Word is the foundation of all real education. In fact, to be truly educated, a person has to start with the Word of God and end with the Word of God and every step in the middle should be permeated with the Word of God. Those who don’t know God can never be truly “educated.”
Yet tragically, modern education leaves God out of the picture. This is, of course, a huge, sad mistake because to leave God out of education is to completely cut the foundation out from under it. As stated in Proverbs 1:7, "Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline" Proverbs 1:7 NLT. God is the foundation of all education and is also the means that brings it all together. To put it another way, the world and life don’t make sense if God is subtracted from it.
So, if God is absent from one’s education, one is not really educated even though secular forces in the world insist one is. Sadly, this is where many people are today, “educated” in the eyes of the world, yet not truly educated at all.
Again, Psalm 14:1 states “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none who does good.” An “educated” person who knows little or nothing about God is what one would call an “educated“ fool. This is not an insult. It’s a statement of fact.
To put it another way, to understand the world accurately, correctly, scientifically, and with mathematical correctness, you have to know God. From elementary school to college, if we have been in school without gaining an understanding of God or His Word, our training has been entirely inadequate.
Many seem to think that going to college makes you exceptionally intellectual or smart. Going to college doesn't necessarily make you smart or wise. In fact, in some instances, it may help to make some people somewhat stupid. In view of our educational system today and some of the things taught and courses offered, you may literally be paying for 'smart' instructors to help you to become foolish in your thinking.
"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge...” says Proverbs 1:7. A very important part of the education that begins and flows from the Word of God is an understanding of right and wrong based on the counsel of God’s Word. It teaches us to love, revere and respect Him. It teaches us to love and respect others. An education founded on the Word of God teaches us about freedom and liberty, respect for other people’s lives and their property.
The Ten Commandments illustrate this very clearly and powerfully. They teach us about life, liberty, love, and respect for God and others. They are:
- You shall have no other gods before me.
- You shall not make for yourselves any graven images.
- You shall not use God’s Name in vain.
- Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.
- Honor your father and mother.
- You shall not murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal
- You shall not tell lies.
- You shall not covet.
Sadly, the world has “educated” many people, who don’t love or care about God and don’t particularly love or care about people either. Hence there are many “educated” people with wicked hearts. The story is told of a railroad owner who discovers a young lad stealing railroad pegs. He tells him “Son, I’m going to help you out. Instead of having you arrested, I’m going to send you to school and when you finish, I want you to come and work for me.” In the process of time this happens, and the young man finishes college and does, in fact, come back and is hired to work for the railroad owner. But within six months, the educated young man – steals a train.” His mind had been “educated” but not his heart.
Real education begins and ends with the Word of God. A truly educated person knows God and walks with Him. He is not adding to the problems of the world. He or she is helping to solve them.