God gave him The Wheel illustration. The hub represents Christ with four equal spokes connecting into the source of life and power.
Three Distinguishing Marks of Every Man and Woman of God
Dawson believed this was a graphic model of the kind of disciples Christ wanted. And ever since, it has helped countless believers understand what they are called to do as disciples of Christ. May it also benefit you. Throughout his ministry, Dawson Trotman, founder and first president of The Navigators, liked to use illustrations or diagrams like this to help others remember basic principles of the Christian life.
But Trotman became dissatisfied with the illustration. It left the Christian sitting down—certainly not a practical way to approach the dynamic Christian life he saw taught in the Bible. Now he had the Christian moving, but he began to see another weakness in the illustration. This emphasis on living every area of life with and for the Lord came at an important time. A command is a command! Rather, it was the theme of the entire Wheel. At the same time others realized that another basic element of the Christian life was not included in The Wheel, even though it was being practiced throughout the body of Christ and was found throughout the New Testament—fellowship.
That leaves us with The Wheel as it is today Illustration 5. Its purpose, therefore, is the development of the student in the image of God. This purpose determines both the content and the means of instruction. How perfectly David must have understood that the education of the child of God must include both the knowledge of God and the preparation for exercising that knowledge in service.
Accordingly, in Christian education students are taught to know God and to imitate Him in His character and in His works. The whole body of Christian educational theory rests on the recognition that all truth is of God.
A Classic Billy Graham Message: In the World, But Not of It
He is the God of truth Ps. No concept can be true that conflicts with the statements of the Scriptures. Conversely, no untruth is a legitimate support of divine revelation or has any place in the ministry of spiritual truth. A reverence for the God of truth compels a conscientious regard for accuracy in all areas of factual investigation and reporting.
Since it is the purpose of Christian education to develop redeemed man in the image of God, Christian educators must point students to the original of this image, God Himself. Of these, the more fully revealing of God is His Word; and, therefore, the Bible is the center of the Christian school curriculum. The Bible is not only the most important subject matter but also the source of the principles determining the other subject matters and the way in which they are taught. The presentation of biblical truth is thus not confined to a single segment of the curriculum—the study of the Bible—but is diffused throughout the teaching of all subjects.
The Scriptures possess this privileged status in the curriculum, for they are the primary means of conveying the knowledge of God. This knowledge of God implies more than just knowledge about God. Certainly an acquaintance with the facts about God in the written revelation is important. But the knowledge of God that is unique to Christian education is a per- sonal knowledge that begins with repentance of sin and faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and develops through obedience to and communion with God.
To know God is to be born into the family of God and to live in fellowship with Him 1 John ; Phil. It follows that without a student body composed mainly of students possessing this personal knowledge of God, no school can legitimately be regarded as a Christian educational institution. Though the Word of God is the main source of the knowledge of God, both factual and personal, and therefore deserves precedence, the works of God are also an important part of the Christian school curriculum.
The creation reveals the Creator, and that which reveals God is a proper study for man. The natural sciences are not disregarded.
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In the curriculum of the Christian school, the voice of creation joins with that of the written revelation in praise of the glory and goodness of God. In endeavoring to fulfill the purpose of Christian education—the development of Christlikeness in redeemed man—the Christian school teaches, as a consequence of the knowledge of God, the imitation of God. Students learn of God so that they may imitate Him. In following God they imitate both His nature and His works. The fruit of the Spirit Gal.
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Academic subjects—whether in the humanities or in the natural sciences, whether general or strictly vocational—are studied not as ends in themselves but as means of improving the student as a servant of God. Such instruction includes not only mental but also physical training: instruction in the proper care of the vehicle with which God has provided man to serve Him.
The student learns that bodies must not be abused or neglected but be de- veloped and disciplined for the service of God and presented to Him for His use and His glory Rom.
The Wheel Illustration | The Navigators
One of these powers is creativity. Human beings have been given the ability to create in imitation of God. The Christian school is concerned with the improvement of his tastes. In the Christian school the manner, no less than the matter, of its teaching must be consistent with the purpose of Christian education: to conform the redeemed student to the image of God in Christ.
The educational procedures and vehicles of Christian education in the Christian school must follow biblical example and norms. A method is, of course, a means to an end, not an end in itself. Methods are chosen for their power and efficiency in ac- complishing designated goals. Christian methodology naturally rejects any method contrary to the principles of Scripture. The Christian educator finds biblical warrant for a wide diversity of educational methods.
The Purpose of Baptism in the Christian Life
In His teaching, Christ, the Master Teacher, used an amazing variety of methods and materials. In the Old Testament God taught man through a diversity of means. In the Garden of Eden, He used a tree to teach Adam. The entire tabernacle was a prophetic object lesson, setting forth the person and work of His Son, Jesus Christ.
Biblical methods as a rule require some effort on the part of the student, though the effort need not be tedious. The parables, for example, required a mental searching on the part of the disciples before their truths were fully revealed. That which is learned at the cost of effort is not soon forgotten, and God delights in blessing those who are zealous for the knowledge of Him. The means of achieving godliness—the purpose of Christian education—is the imitation of God. Since the day of Pentecost, Christian believers have confessed faith in Jesus through baptism, which is a sign and seal of our union with Christ.
Scripture says:. Romans A Christian is a person who has reached a conclusion about Jesus Christ. Christians are in process about many things.
But we are not in process over who Jesus is. You have made a confession. Have you made this confession? Gentleness is patience with difficult people.
Notice the language—pursue, fight, take hold. The Christian life will be a struggle. Calvin says that:. Where do you find the energy for this struggle? Sometimes it is hard to keep going—too many disappointments, too many unanswered prayers, too many failures. You feel run down and you get weary in the struggle. How do you find the strength to sustain the rigors and the demands of this Christian life?
God will give you the energy you need for this. He sustains your life. And, he will give you strength for each day. Pursue your calling in the sight of the God who gives life.