Christians arguing about schooling

My wife and I were grieved this week to read online some Christians we know arguing so divisively about whether homeschooling is a matter of right or wrong. Christian homeschooling for some is based on very strong convictions; in fact, for some, Christian parents who fail to home-educate their children are sinning because they fail to serve God's law in their families (Psalm 1:1-3). On the other side, some who disagree with this premise may feel so strongly opposed to this notion that they risk being just as judgmental on home-schoolers as they attack this biblical basis in justifying their own freedom to not home school.

In these situations, I'm reminded of Paul's approach and caution to the church at Rome when he commanded that divided community to stop condemning one another in areas that involve convictions of faith as we each seek to obey Christ according to our own understanding and conscience.

Romans 14 is the passage I'm referring to, where Paul does concede that even in regard to these issues, it nonetheless is a matter of weaker or stronger faith. If it is a matter of faith that causes the divide, it is even more surpising that Paul commands:
"Accept him whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters (vs. 1) ...
...and everything that does not come from faith is sin." (vs. 23)
Even though an issue may depends on understanding and confidence in God's word, or a love of his law, it does not for that reason mean that the issue is a matter of sinfulness or obedience; for all may be obeying Christ. We cannot for this reason enforce a rule about the issue upon other Christians.

Notice in this passage, what is sinful is not actually related to what we actually do or don't do -- whether we drink or don't drink alcohol, or whether we observe of don't observe the Sabbath (and I'd infer, whether we home school or don't home school).

But what is sinful is to either (or both):
1). Fail to accept other Christians who are acting to obey Christ according to their own understanding and conscience (Rom 14:1, 13, 19)
2). Fail to obey Christ according to our own understanding and conscience because we seek instead acceptance from other Christians (Rom 14:5, 14, 23)
Legalism and Judgmentalism

Much more important in working out what is right or wrong for us to do is why we are doing what we are doing. It's about our motives. Sin is always about the 'heart' of the matter. That's why the Apostles don't prescribe rules about right conduct (moralism), but they command right attitudes of obedience: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.

It is legalism to insist that homeschooling is an absolute matter of Christian righteousness for all. But it is also judgmentalism to condemn as moralistic another Christian who believes that their own homeschooling of their children is for them obedience to Christ.
"So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves." (Rom 14:22)

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