The way forward to where?

The Belfast Telegraph, the media ‘champion of Ecumenism’, states in its ‘Viewpoint’ of today (4/9/21) that “Integration is the only way forward for our children.”The immediate question that comes to my mind is “the way forward to where?”

The article informs its readers that “Integrated education was created by a group of idealistic Protestant and Catholic parents, who led the fight to establish Lagan College, the first integrated school, 40 years ago.”

It is rather a coincidence that the first Integrated School came into existence just two years after the first Free Presbyterian Independent Christian School in Kilskeery. Nothing stirs the devil’s camp like a moving forward in the Lord’s!

“And Samuel took a sucking lamb, and offered [it for] a burnt offering wholly unto the LORD: and Samuel cried unto the LORD for Israel; and the LORD heard him. And as Samuel was offering up the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to battle against Israel: but the LORD thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Philistines, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Israel,” 1 Samuel 7:9-10.

Sadly, the victory granted to Israel in answer to Samuel’s prayers and their diligent response to the Lord’s intervention, did not follow the commencement of Independent Christian schools. It says in verse 11 that “the men of Israel went out of Mizpeh, and pursued the Philistines, and smote them, until [they came] under Bethcar.”

Sadly, there were few who seized upon the opportunity presented by the door the Lord opened back in 1979.

Just why this was, whether it was the doubts that some expressed at the ability of Christian schools achieving the educational standards of the state schools (something that was proved to be an empty fear time and again in the subsequent years), or whether it was the financial constraints on the parents and also on any congregation which opened a school, or the increased work load that such a venture placed upon a minister (something complained of in my presence), or ultimately, the lack of any sense of a threat and danger to children presented by the curriculum and environment of the state school, or a combination of all these, only the Lord knows!

For whatever reason, sadly Christian parents did not respond as they should.

Today, the state school curriculum has the setting forth of same-sexism, LGBT rights, transgenderism, abortion justification and of course, religious Syncretism. Indeed, the latter was the chief reason for the starting integrated schools.

It is sad to see the zeal of the Ecumenists outstripping the interest in the spiritual welfare of their children by fundamentalist Christians here in Ulster and much wider afield. It has to be said that this attitude will reap a severe harvest, indeed, the reaping has begun. The reports of this reaping amongst the offspring of Christians is sadly all too obvious!

Where the philosophy that lies behind this perverted notion of education will lead the nation is not really too difficult to work out. All deviations from the truth of God embark on a single path – DOWNWARD!

That trend is seen in the nation clearly today. Irreligion abounds amongst the young and it cannot be otherwise since the only source of true religion, the BIBLE, is denied them in church and school!

Where a Bible does appear it is a perverted translation with its fusion of falsehood and elements of truth.

The growing scenario in educational circles is that of an outworking of the prophetic picture Paul paints of the last days in 2 Timothy 3:1-7. There we read of one aspect of the characteristic of those days. It is: ‘disobedient to parents.’ That must refer to the young of that end-time period. Linked to that we have, ‘unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good’.

Given the alarmingly frequent reports of teenagers involved in murderous and vicious random attacks upon utter strangers and even the elderly and frail, and that because of the slightest perceived insult or infringement of their ‘rights’, we see the very feature that Paul said would mark the ‘last days’!

Surely, we can see in this the fruit of an inadequate upbringing, devoid of proper moral instruction. The home, the school, the ‘church’ and the Government is to blame for this. In every sphere of society the vilest of examples are presented to the young! Immorality in the homes of the nation where marriages are a forgotten sanctity, perverted ‘church ministers’ dishonest public figures and flagrantly corrupt and deceitful politicians who cannot keep their promises to either the constituents or their wives, are the wicked and unrighteous influences under which the rising generation has been nurtured!

It is more than sad to see how Christians have failed to see the dangers and to avail themselves of the means, provided by the mercy of the Lord, to safeguard their children. Even in this day, there are Christians who slight Christian Education! How offensive this must be to the Lord. I have often thought too of the words of the Lord Jesus in Luke 17:1-2. “Then said he unto the disciples, It is impossible but that offences will come: but woe [unto him], through whom they come! It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.” The word ‘offend’ means ‘to put a stumbling block or impediment in the way, upon which another may trip and fall.’ I believe that the Christians who send their child to a state school, with all the dangers it presents, are placing a ‘stumbling block’ in the path of their child.

It is a principle of God that He judge according to the sins committed. Christians here in Ulster have rejected the warnings of God’s Word and as a result I believe that the sound of Bible preaching is diminishing in the land. The well being of children has been neglected and I believe that in consequence those guilty of this sin will lose their children!There are sad and terrible times coming upon our land!

Hear what the Lord said in the days of Ezekiel.

“Now [is] the end [come] upon thee, and I will send mine anger upon thee, and will judge thee according to thy ways, and will recompense upon thee all thine abominations. And mine eye shall not spare thee, neither will I have pity: but I will recompense thy ways upon thee, and thine abominations shall be in the midst of thee: and ye shall know that I [am] the LORD. Thus saith the Lord GOD; An evil, an only evil, behold, is come. An end is come, the end is come: it watcheth for thee; behold, it is come. The morning is come unto thee, O thou that dwellest in the land: the time is come, the day of trouble [is] near, and not the sounding again of the mountains. Now will I shortly pour out my fury upon thee, and accomplish mine anger upon thee: and I will judge thee according to thy ways, and will recompense thee for all thine abominations. And mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: I will recompense thee according to thy ways and thine abominations [that] are in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I [am] the LORD that smiteth.” Ezekiel 7:3-9.

No matter what warnings and exhortations may be addressed to the child, it becomes incumbent upon the child to understand the dangers it faces and to take appropriate action to safeguard itself! Few would allow their children to negotiate the dangers of the roads and the traffic of today, but would accompany their children to school. Then, have safely led them through those dangers, they abandon them to the dangers of an error-ridden curriculum and unconverted teachers.

Is this not placing a stumbling block before them, Christian? If it is, heed the words of the Saviour. “It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.”

May the Lord awaken and arouse His people in these evil times to obedience to His Word.

Rev Ivan Foster (Rtd)
4th September 2021