Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6
These days, it’s rather popular in some circles for certain parents to boast about how they avoid indoctrinating their children in order to let them make up their own minds about religion and/or philosophy. As a matter of fact, some parents are rather belligerent in their opinion that it’s just plain wrong to indoctrinate children at all.
‘THE MAJORITY of children born into the world tend to inherit the beliefs of their parents, and that to me is one of the most regrettable facts of them all. Do not indoctrinate your children. Teach them how to think for themselves, how to evaluate evidence, and how to disagree with you. The Bible may be an arresting and poetic work of fiction, but it is not the sort of book you should give your children to form their morals,’ says one commenter at a website recently.
So is there a right way versus a wrong way to approach indoctrination? I believe we must first consider what indoctrination actually is. According to the dictionary, to indoctrinate means “ doctrine,
‘All humans are born Atheists. No baby arrives with specific beliefs, or religious knowledge there is no modesty, or shame, no prejudices. These beliefs and knowledge must be taught and presented to a suggestible mind, one that does not yet have the ability to think on it’s own, no alternative views, and nothing to compare anything too… aka; indoctrination “Get em while there young”,,, force feed them,, makes for good, obeying and fearful adults…’ according to another commenter on a website.
While this commenter is obviously slamming one type of indoctrination with falsehoods (no one is really born atheist since there’s no such thing as an atheist and every human has inherent knowledge of God’s existence although they may not know him personally), he/she is promoting their own set of indoctrination and prejudices, hoping children will have enough of a suggestible mind to buy into their beliefs. So this statement is blatantly hypocritical.
These two commenters’ statements are taken straight out of Hitler’s playbook. He hated the idea that parents indoctrinated their children, preferring them to be indoctrinated by his government to match his warped way of thinking (William Shirer, Rise and Fall of the Third Reich New York: Simon and Schuster, 1960), 249.). Just as his atheist/socialist indoctrination led to the destruction of Germany, those who hold to his philosophy are contributing to the downward spiral in today’s society. As I mentioned in another post, the facts show that America’s educational system has become worse for kids since 1965, the decade that saw evolution take over as the prevailing scientific teaching and the expulsion of adult-led prayers and Bible teaching from public schools by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Anti-Christians have made it clear they want to indoctrinate children who come from Christian homes, which leads to destructive outcomes (think Columbine). That’s why God has commanded Christian parents to be active, not passive, when it comes to what kids are taught because his concern is for their salvation reflected by positive control of their lives while anti-Christians just want negative control to exalt their selfish, humanistic ends. Godly indoctrination in no way means a child won’t make up their own minds. Salvation requires a person to decide for themselves. God wants us to give them enough information so they will have opportunities to make right decisions.
Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. 1 Timothy 3:12