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Written by David Montgomery   

 

WHAT ABOUT SUNDAY SCHOOLS ?

The main body of Primitive Baptist Churches have been unified against the use of organized 'Sunday Schools' in their Churches. In my 38 years among the Primitive Baptists, I have been taught consistently that the reasons for this stand are twofold.

(1)  We believe that it is the responsibility of the parents to teach their children the scriptures in the home.

(2)  It is the responsibility of the Gospel minister to teach children the scriptures by preaching/teaching the Gospel, and by personal instruction to the children of the congregation. 
   
I still feel that these are good reasons. Moreover the scriptures themselves support these reasons. If these two sources of instruction are working in harmony and "as thus sayeth the Lord"; we can expect our children to be well taught in the Word of God.

THE ROLE OF THE PARENTS:

Genesis 18:19  (God speaking to Abraham) "For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him."

Ephesians 6:4 "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."

2Timothy 3:14-15 "But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus."

As a father of 4 young children, I must personally apply these scriptures. We live in a hectic, time demanding world. If I take time to teach my children such things as how to throw, catch, and hit a baseball; what political party is superior; what football team to root for; and not include the teaching of the scriptures; what does that say about my priorities?  What can more meaningful than to teach them the Holy Scriptures?  If we cannot find the time than we must do as the scripture says, "redeeming the time because the days are evil" (Ephesians 5:16). If the days were evil then, how much more evil are they today ?

I will make 2 statements that I hope all parents will consider.

1. If I would say, "I do not believe in Sunday School because I feel that it is my responsibility as the parent to teach my children", and then proceed in NOT teaching them, I make my position empty and vain.

2. There isn't a better person to teach a child than that child's Mother and Father. There is no person who understands better that child's personality, behavior, aptitudes and intelligence than the parent. Whom, other than ourselves and a minister of the Gospel, should we trust to teach our own precious children the most important thing they can learn?

THE ROLE OF THE GOSPEL MINISTER:

John 21:15 "So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, 'Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these?' He saith unto him, 'Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee.' He saith unto him, 'Feed my lambs' ".

It always makes me feel good when people tell me when they enjoyed the sermon; but it is thrilling when children tell me that. It was enjoined to the Apostle Peter by Jesus Christ Himself to not only feed the sheep, but to feed the lambs as well. I can remember the ministers of my younger days who preached simply and directly. Through the Spirit of God working through them and in me, I built a foundation of knowledge that supported me throughout my childhood and teenage years. There is no replacement in any child's spiritual education than to bring them to the House of God to hear the preached Gospel.

A good Pastor will take time to personally instruct the children outside of the pulpit. I do not see the scriptures teaching against an organized Bible Study, but I strongly feel that it should be conducted by the minister. He is the one whom the Lord called to preach. He is the under-shepherd of the sheep AND the lambs.
  
As a Pastor, I want to make myself available and accessible to the children in our assembly. A kind word; a special notice; a little time; goes a long way. If all the members could show that we are interested in them, perhaps they will turn to us when problems come into their lives instead of  turning to ungodly influences. Jesus took the little children into His arms. He touched them and blessed them. He rebuked the Apostles for forbidding them.

Dear friends, I believe that God's ways are always better than ours. If someone would ask me, "Does your Church have a Sunday School?" I would tell them, "Not as you might mean, we feel the Bible teaches a BETTER way!"
   
In His service,
Elder David Montgomery

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The Primitive or Old School Baptists cling to the doctrines and practices held by Baptist Churches throughout America at the close of the Revolutionary War. This site is dedicated to providing access to our rich heritage, with both historic and contemporary writings.