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Education Christianity & the State

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Book by J Gresham Machen


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Book by J Gresham Machen

30 review for Education Christianity & the State

  1. 4 out of 5

    Adam Calvert

    A great compilation on Machen’s thoughts regarding the title. I’m not sure I understand the order the articles appear in the book, and I wonder if a chronological order would’ve been easier to follow. Nonetheless, I’m very grateful to God for the Trinity Foundation publishing these articles by Westminster Seminary’s founder. They’re a great reminder of how the church ought to think Biblically in every aspect of life, including in the areas of education and the state. There are probably only a hand A great compilation on Machen’s thoughts regarding the title. I’m not sure I understand the order the articles appear in the book, and I wonder if a chronological order would’ve been easier to follow. Nonetheless, I’m very grateful to God for the Trinity Foundation publishing these articles by Westminster Seminary’s founder. They’re a great reminder of how the church ought to think Biblically in every aspect of life, including in the areas of education and the state. There are probably only a handful of thoughts to which I couldn’t give a rousing “Amen” in these essays: for instance at one point Machen says that government schools are a necessary evil (p. 63). He didn’t substantiate that statement Biblically. And perhaps I’m missing something from the historical context surrounding the statement. But I’m not sure how a Biblical view can validate the “necessity” of government schools at all - regardless of the amount of evil they do or do not espouse. But one thought in 155 pages of reading is hardly worth mentioning. This book is by far a solid read on the topic and would be very useful for Christian parents, educators, and politicians. If nothing else, it would at least expose more minds to the rich history of the Christian church and its relation to education and the state (while as of now it seems, from my limited understanding, that most Christians believe state run schools are good on principle - even if not in current practice - and have always been good on principle). And so I must recommend it to all Christian parents, educators, and politicians - probably all thinking Christians is what I’m really getting at here. Here is a modified table of contents based on chronology of when the articles first appeared or were stated (some of them are transcripts of public oral addresses): 1 (3) Christianity and Culture, 1912 2 (1) Faith and Knowledge, 1925 3 (4) Reforming the Government Schools, 1925 4 (6) Shall We Have a Federal Department of Education?, 1926 5 (7) Proposed Department of Education, 1926 6 (9) Westminster Theological Seminary: Its Purpose and Plan, 1929 7 (2) The Importance of Christian Scholarship, 1932 8 (5) The Necessity of the Christian School, 1934 9 (8) The Christian School: The Hope of America, 1934 While I don’t understand some of John W. Robbins’ overstatements in his postlogue (like “the seminaries” I assume he doesn’t mean all seminaries? being the “finishing schools of irrationalism”), I also appreciated much of what he wrote about the need for the church to teach the importance of the nature of truth, the knowability of truth, and the source of truth - God and His Word.

  2. 5 out of 5

    John

    This is a good book on the role of the state in education. Machen stands firmly against the government's strong role in education, as it inherently undermines the truth claims of the gospel. The book is a collection of essays and lectures given by Machen, even Congressional testimony. Naturally many of these overlap and the book often feels repetitive. But the arguments are there and they are compelling. He doesn't take his thesis far enough in my opinion, since if he's right, and I think he is- This is a good book on the role of the state in education. Machen stands firmly against the government's strong role in education, as it inherently undermines the truth claims of the gospel. The book is a collection of essays and lectures given by Machen, even Congressional testimony. Naturally many of these overlap and the book often feels repetitive. But the arguments are there and they are compelling. He doesn't take his thesis far enough in my opinion, since if he's right, and I think he is--then the Christian must reject any role the government might play in education. Perhaps he would agree with that, now that the state of education in America is even more rotten than when he criticized it in the early part of the 20th century.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Davey Ermold

    An incredible collection of essays all revolving around the nature and purpose of education both in the church and in society. Our children will certainly be reading some of these essays in their teenage years.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Drew

    This book is a compilation of topically related addresses, and as is the case in such publications, it has significant overlap and repetition. The content is solid and helpful, and in some places a nearly biographical window into the way Machen thought and responded. It's a good book, but not racing to the top of any list. This book is a compilation of topically related addresses, and as is the case in such publications, it has significant overlap and repetition. The content is solid and helpful, and in some places a nearly biographical window into the way Machen thought and responded. It's a good book, but not racing to the top of any list.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Seth Mcdevitt

    Wonderful resource. Gets a little repetitive in the middle, but each speech gains ground and by the time we make it to Machen testimony against creating a Department Of Education he is rolling full strength.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Sean Higgins

    Who knew that anyone was arguing against a Federal Department of Education in 1926?! Machen was. This book has some great thoughts on the problems with anti-intellectualism, with government interference and the loss of liberty, as well as on the importance of Christian families and Christian schools.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Brett

    This is an excellent collection of essays by J. Gresham Machen regarding the value and need for Christian schools in America. There are many things that make this such a good read. First, I was amazed at the relevance of his analysis of the educational system of his time (20's and 30's) to the educational woes of our own age. Too many think that the educational system of this era was the "golden age" of learning. Machen does not hold back in his criticism of the public schools and its inability This is an excellent collection of essays by J. Gresham Machen regarding the value and need for Christian schools in America. There are many things that make this such a good read. First, I was amazed at the relevance of his analysis of the educational system of his time (20's and 30's) to the educational woes of our own age. Too many think that the educational system of this era was the "golden age" of learning. Machen does not hold back in his criticism of the public schools and its inability to effectively educate children in both knowledge and morality. A large portion of the essays contains his argument against the coming Department of Education and why this department would be a threat to American liberty. Machen provides a prophetic voice as he acutely foresees the dangerous educational trajectory of American education. How right he was! The book contains an engaging dialogue between Machen and a Senate committee about the bill to establish the Department of Education. The reader will read particular analogies and arguments several times as the essays were written independently for various audiences. I enjoyed the Ford analogy all four times but it was more impressive the first time. This book is a good read for Christians, educators, and parents.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Seth

    Good, but Clark is better. Found it interesting that his main point of opposition was that the formation of a Federal Department of Education had as a goal, and would in fact succeed, in making education, and students, more uniform. I believe he is correct in seeing this as harmful, but he never addressed the fundamental issue, What is the purpose of government and does it have authority to educate?

  9. 4 out of 5

    Mark Cotterman

    Outstanding insights into recent history of our education system and the forming of the Dept of Education in particular. Machen's testimony prior to the forming of the Dept of Education is prolific. Issues we have with our government schools today are forewarned and we can see them unfolding before our eyes now. Outstanding insights into recent history of our education system and the forming of the Dept of Education in particular. Machen's testimony prior to the forming of the Dept of Education is prolific. Issues we have with our government schools today are forewarned and we can see them unfolding before our eyes now.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Sally

    attributed to this book: "This notion that the children belong to the state, that their education must be provided for by the state … is inimical at every step to liberty.” attributed to this book: "This notion that the children belong to the state, that their education must be provided for by the state … is inimical at every step to liberty.”

  11. 5 out of 5

    Mark Mcculley

  12. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Wells

  13. 4 out of 5

    Bill

  14. 5 out of 5

    Frank

  15. 4 out of 5

    Bob Hayton

  16. 5 out of 5

    Louis

  17. 4 out of 5

    Femke De Vries

  18. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Kleven

  19. 5 out of 5

    Hermes

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Petit

  21. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Allen

  22. 4 out of 5

    Stanley Jebb

  23. 4 out of 5

    Chris Dunn

  24. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Roberts

  25. 5 out of 5

    Charlie

  26. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Dass

  27. 5 out of 5

    Randall Sterk

  28. 4 out of 5

    Neal

  29. 4 out of 5

    altered heart works

  30. 5 out of 5

    Shelby Minick

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