In his Treatise “On Keeping Children in School” which was written as a thorough oratory for keeping Christian education alive in Germany during the restlessness of the Reformation, Luther battled the root issue on three fronts.
First he said that the issue of the value of Christian Education was a battle with Satan himself. Satan doesn’t care if your children are educated or not. What he will not tolerate is for children to be raised to know Christ, to be immersed and raised up in the faith that saves.
“Oh how that wretch of a Satan is now attacking us on all sides in this with force and guile.” (LW, Vol. 46, p. 217)
Second, Luther said that the battle extends to the parents as the devil gets a foothold with them in their indifference to the matter. Warning: Luther didn’t hold back here. He let loose and chided Christian parents rather sternly by saying that this was a “great and shameful ingratitude into which the devil is so craftily leading them.” (Ibid, p. 218). He then went on to say that God’s fiercest anger in this was most deserved:
“Ought not God to be angry over this? Ought not famine to come? Ought not pestilence find us out? Ought not blind, fierce, and savage tyrants come to power? Ought not war and contention arise?… Indeed, it would not be surprising if God were to open the doors and windows of hell and pelt and shower us with nothing but devils, or let brimstone and hell-fire rain down from heaven and inundate us…” (Ibid, p. 254)
Thirdly, Luther said that the world of commerce and business had sown the seeds of materialism as the only reason for a school and that the truth of God’s Word in this life was being considered secondary, or perhaps even worse, unnecessary.
“The run-of-the-mill miser despises such learning so deeply and says, ‘Ha, if my son can read and write German, do arithmetic, that is enough. I am going to make a businessman of him.” (Ibid, p. 251)
The purpose of our school is as iterated by our mission statement:
Our Savior Evangelical Lutheran School is an extension of our church to teach the Word of God’s Law and Gospel. Our goal is that all of our students and their families will know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior within the setting of academic excellence. In other words, quite simply, the children and families of Our Savior Evangelical Lutheran School are raised in the faith which clings to Jesus Christ, thereby being shaped rightly and holistically “to believe, to live, to pray, to suffer, and to die” (Luther’s Works, Vol. 47, pp. 52-53).