Imagine the quiet of your home shattered when dozens of social workers and armed police appear at your front door with a battering ram.
Imagine being treated like a terrorist because you’re a dad who’s trying to bring your children up in the fear and admonition of the Lord.
Imagine having your children forcibly removed, split up, taken to an unknown location, and you have no means of finding and seeing them.
Imagine the government illegally taking your children’s passports so you’re not able to leave the country.
Imagine all this happening simply because you teach your children at home.
Sadly, and tragically, this isn’t the figment of imagination, it’s real, and it’s happening in Germany.
Not to be antagonistic, Dan, but wouldn’t other principals come into play here? We are told that we are to obey our government (Romans 13) as long as they don’t go against God’s commands (Acts 4).
While I don’t think that what the family was doing (in and of itself) is a wrong thing to do, it seems that in a country where the government has clearly deemed it illegal, they were in the wrong. I am not sure of any Scriptural command to home-school your kids (and if there is, then most of the Church is actively living in sin today).
Interested in your thoughts.
No antagonism taken, Tom! I’ve had similar thoughts as well, as this isn’t the first time this has happened in Germany (and recently as well in Sweden).
Fundamentally, Christian parents are responsible for the rearing and training of their children, and that instruction must be explicitly Christian (Eph 6:4). (BTW, I hang my hat on more than just one text, but that’s another post.) While I am not an adherent of the line of thought that homeschooling is the only biblical way to educate one’s children, I am compelled by Scripture that education must be explicitly Christian. Anything else is idolatrous.
German government officials have made it clear they believe that one’s religious beliefs should adapt to those of the state for the good of the country. In the case at hand, and to apply the passages you mentioned, isn’t the government going against God’s commands by requiring parents to educate their children in humanism? It seems so to me! 🙂
Also, it appears that the German government is in violation of some laws/agreements in how they are “upholding” this law. Is this really the way to carry out the law, by forcibly taking children away from parents and viewing the latter as essentially enemies of the state? There is more at play than merely educational choice. I’m sure we agree on this point.
Perhaps another thought here would be in order: If a family knowingly “breaks a law” which they believe breaks God’s law, they should be prepared to deal with the potential consequences (e.g. Acts 5:40)