I have but two simple things to say in regards to this subject: Firstly, if it is at all possible for one to receive his or her education in a Christian environment, by all means, do it! Secondly, if gaining a Christian education is absolutely impossible, let us not forget that Daniel faced certainly no greater obstacle than overcoming his pagan education–which he did by the way–and still remaining true to the Lord God of Israel.
Let us proceed with the first point. We know from the Old Testament that a child is to be brought up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord; As Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
"A child is an extremely pliable soul; therefore, it is most urgent to begin training him in the ways of God from his birth. The ways of sin must be checked by parental and spiritual guidance–even physical discipline. According to Proverbs 22:15, “Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.” Children need desperately to have guidance in the right (godly) direction. They must be taught to fear God–something they will not be taught in a public institution. A Christian education is most beneficial for the child, in that he will receive basic and advanced education from the perspective of the believer. He is not “missing out” but is being brought up in the fear of the Lord. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding” (Proverbs 9:10.) So we see that it is really a “no-brainer” that Christian parents place their children in an atmosphere most conducive to learning to fear God and walk uprightly.
Unfortunately, not all Christian children and teens are afforded the blessing of a Christian education; some are forced to overcome the world’s filthy education system–often with great opposition and even persecution. Daniel was certainly no exception; being torn from his home as a young man, he was faced with the most wicked and godless education of his day. The key to Daniel’s success over the “public school system” of Babylon was this: “But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself(Daniel 1:8)” A commentator made the following remarks: “Here Daniel shows his endurance of what he could not cast off or escape; but meanwhile he took care that he did not depart from the fear of God, nor become a stranger to his race, but he always retains the remembrance of his origin, and remains a pure, and unspotted, and sincere worshiper of God.”
Right from the start, Daniel determines to not allow peer pressure to override his faith and walk before God. Time and time again, Daniel proves that he is loyal to God and has been rooted in the law of the LORD; first with the king’s meat, and then with the kingdom-wide “ban” on prayer to God. Daniel is perhaps the best example of a child overcoming his evil education by determining to be true to God in the face of hard and even life-threatening circumstances. Let us try with all our might and resources to obtain a Christian education, but if all else fails, forget not Daniel’s life.
7 King James Version
8 John Calvin’s Commentaries Vol.XII
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