Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Sgt Schultz

I think at our church we have the Sgt. Schultz approach to Christian education.

If you don't know, Schultz is a character in the ramschackle comedy 'Hogan's Heroes', set in a a prisoner of war camp in WW2.

Schultz maintained his calm by 'knowing nothing' about anything...I think we are training our kids to be the same about the Bible and their faith...know nothing.

On the weekend I was talking to a young teenager and mentioned the word 'apostle'. She asked me what an apostle was!

After 7 or 8 years in an evangelical church, she didn't know a basic word of our faith.

I wonder what else she didn't know.

I asked another young person about the studies in youth group. I asked if there was any structured program that took them through knowledge of the Bible, etc. Stone dead silence. He may not have known, of course, but basic to teaching is to tell your student what they are learning.

For a faith that includes the idea of knowledge in its writings and heritage, the fact that we don't seem to care about it astonishes and disappoints me.

By year 8 at high school a young person should know the basic structure of the Bible, how we got it, the text-critical issues that scholars have dealt with, the 'trajectory' of salvation, something of the historical movement through the Bible and contextual history: in outlines.

In practical terms they should have had some exposure to public Bible reading, praying and talking about their faith: maybe practiced in Sunday School/Kids' Church and youth group. For those who are interested, regular participation in services should be encouraged.

Then there's apologetics. They should know the basic points of resistance to the gospel and how to deal with them.


We put a ton of effort into 'outreach' but put nothing into the mission field within our walls!

Heaven help us.

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