Kevin Mulder—HS English, History
As a teacher, I have benefited from studying the gospels with the goal of learning from Jesus as He is “Rabboni,” the Master Teacher. When the law expert came to inquire of Jesus in Luke 10, he asked Jesus “Who is my neighbor?” Jesus responded by telling the parable of the Good Samaritan, an illustration to teach the people that loving one’s neighbor transcends those in one’s own church, neighborhood, social-economic class, etc. Loving one’s neighbor means to love as Christ loves sinners. Paul teaches us that “Christ died for the ungodly…while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us!” (Romans 5.6,8). I was an ungodly sinner, but Christ died for me!
In Deuteronomy 6, God commands the Israelites to love God above all. He told His people to teach this core truth to their children when they get up, when they lie down, when they are out and about, and when they are at home. Therefore, as a Christian schoolteacher, I must carry out this command to teach young people to love God and their neighbor in every situation. It is my responsibility and my privilege to obey God’s command to make disciples while also modeling for my students how they can follow Jesus and make disciples in their own walk of faith.
Not only is Jesus the greatest Teacher, He is also the greatest history Teacher. In Exodus 34, God reveals Himself to Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation” (Exodus 34.6-8). God as History Teacher shows that He punishes rebellion, but is also compassionate, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
In Hebrews 3 and 4, God reminds us how the Israelites did not enter Canaan because of their unbelief. He emphatically commands us, “Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts!” (Hebrews 3.8). Instead of simply giving the command to believe, our great History Teacher shows us the dire results of unbelief. Then, in Hebrews 11, God teaches us what true faith is and how to live in true faith by recalling example after example of how heroes of the past demonstrated great faith.
God’s role as History Teacher is inspiring for me. When I teach history, I am teaching His Story of redemption, love, grace, faithfulness, and compassion for sinners, but also His just punishment for sin. Whether I am teaching the ancient Egyptians, the Reformation, or the Troubles of Ireland, I emphasize the great things God has done.
Finally, as image-bearers, God commands us to be stewards. One aspect of this stewardship is to be a good steward of history. I embrace the responsibility of teaching my students the importance of learning history to understand better our human nature, including our depravity as well as His plan of redemption. According to Revelation 5:9, God will draw to Himself people from all nations across time, who will sing a new song to the Lamb, “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals,because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.”
I will seek to educate God’s children at NPC to sing, “To God be the glory; let’s praise the God of History each day and forever!”