A Brief History of Christian Sunday Schools

By Hulan Bass

Compiled by: Hulan F. Bass (elder)

SUNDAY SCHOOLS                 
Brief Outline of the History of:                                          

Robert Raikes of Gloucester, England, was the founder of SUNDAY SCHOOLS in 1781, by teaching the poorer class of   children on SUNDAYS in the “Rudiments of a Common School Education”, and NOT in instructions in the THEOLOGY of The Bible.  See: Pages 539, 771, 844 in – Hassel’s History

2.  TYPE:
David Benedict (Fifty Years Among The Baptist) in Pawtuckett, Rhode Island, (Life – 1779-1874) did the same thing exactly in the U.S.A., as did Robert Raikes in England.     

See: Pages, beginning with 751 – – -, in Hassel’s History.

Modern Day THEOLOGICAL Sunday Schools are UN-SCRIPTURAL. John Wesley, first in 1784, expressed the hope that SUNDAY SCHOOLS would become :”NURSERIES FOR CHRISTIANS”.  (Wesley was the founder of “The Method” – The Methodist.

In McClintock & Strong’s Cyclopaedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature, vol. 10, page 21, it states that “within the last 50 years SUNDAY SCHOOLS have come to be regarded as an ESSENTIAL BRANCH of CHURCH ACTION, not merely in England and America, but throughout the PROTESTANT WORLD, whether in home or mission fields”; and this further states “that the problem of the CONVERSION OF THE WORLD is in PROCESS OF SOLUTION.”
If this all be true, thusly it appears that, for nearly 1800 years of the Christian era, the TRUE CHURCH, as set up by Jesus Christ in the Days of John The Baptist and The Apostles, has been DESTITUTE of an ESSENTIAL” requisite in it’s work, and the problem of the ONVERSION OF THE WORLD had not begun to be solved until the 19th Century.  Wonder why Jesus did not institute SUNDAY SCHOOLS, if they are so important to, and a function of, and a branch or part of the TRUE N.T. CHURCH ?   Also, wonder why Jesus, nor any of His Apostles, nor any of the NEW TESTAMENT WRITERS did not mention SUNDAY SCHOOLS ? Also see: Hassel’s History, pages: 311, 319, 323, 325, 348, 364-67, 539, 557, 583, 584, 589, 591, 599, 600, 616, 619, 623, 625, 642, 748, 751, 752, 766, 771, 772, 844, 845, 872, 892, 899, 904, 935…

Also Notice: It was the so-called modern contemporary New School Missionary Baptists, and others, including the Protestants, that have built this addition onto the Church. These Scriptures forbids such:  Deut. 4:2; Prov. 30:5; Rev. 22:18-19 

From the times of The Children of Israel in the Old Testament God taught the Parents to teach their children The Word of The Law – Deut. 6:1–6; 11:18-21.  The benefits of such teaching would be that they would inhabit the Land flowing with milk and honey; their days would be multiplied and the days of their children, in the land which The Lord sware unto their fathers to give them, as the days of Heaven upon the earth.  The Parents were to teach such, speaking of them when they sittest in their house, when walking by the way, when lying down, and risest up.  These Laws were written upon the door posts of their house and upon the gates.  They would possess great and goodly cities, which they built not; houses full of all good things, which they did not have to buy; wells digged, which they diggedst not, vineyards and olive trees, which they plantedst not.  This is the a historical picture of the New Testament Church of Timely Gospel benefit.

Solomon wisely wrote in – Prov. 22:6 – “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Again he taught in – Ecc. 12:1 – “Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth…”   Jeremiah taught in – Lam. 3:27 – “It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth.”  This teaching was to come directly from The Parents.  These prophesies point us directly to the same PRINCIPLE in the New Testament.

The anti-type, the literal substance realized and fulfilled was taught in the New Testament Church Kingdom in – Matt. 19:14 – “But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me, for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”  Also see: Mark 10:14; Luke 18:16… The Apostle Paul further magnifies this principle in – Eph. 6:4 – by telling the fathers (Parents) – “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.”  Paul lays this teaching responsibility at the door of the Parents.  Further, Paul amplifies this principle in – 2nd Tim. 1:5 – where he relates that young Timothy was taught at home by his Grand- mother and Mother.  2nd Tim. 3:15 – “And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures…”  There is no scripture teaching us to send our children to some other teaching instructor apart from the The Parents at Home; a God-called Preacher/Pastor/Teacher in the Assembly at Church.  Further, the O.T. procedure for teaching The Law is illustrated in – Deut. 31:12 – Gather the people together, men, and women, and children, and thy stranger that is within thy gates, that they may hear, and that they may learn, and fear the Lord your God, and observe to do all the words of this law:”  V.13 – “And that their children, which have not known any thing, may hear, and learn
to fear the Lord your God, as long as ye live in the land whither ye go over Jordan to possess it.”

Moreso – Joel 2:15-16 – “Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly: Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet.”

Therefore, it is clear, that the teaching of children about spiritual matters, is not to be “farmed-out” to some other entity (organization), but first by the Parents at Home, then in the Assembly where the men, women and children are GATHERED TOGETHER.  Separating children and others into various class-rooms by age, sex, marital status, etc., is not scriptural.

We even need to teach these facts to our children also…

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