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Teaching History Is Not a Mystery

A few days ago, I had the privilege of presenting a workshop for Cindy Rushton’s Ultimate Homeschool Expo. My goal was to share ideas for using the Bible to choose homeschooling methods and curriculum. A friend online said,

Yes! Please talk about history! I love listening to your audio sessions, and have heard you’re working on a history program. Can you talk about what to look for? We’re pretty happy with Mystery of History, but I’m always eager to learn more because biblical history is a weak point for me.

I’m so sorry that I didn’t talk much about history that day! It’s just such a massive subject that I didn’t know where to begin. It’s a topic that needs an audio all on its own! (Maybe I can do that sometime…)

But I thought I’d give some pointers today on my blog, in case you’re thinking about what to look for in a history program that is firmly based on God’s Word.

  • I believe that history is simply the unfolding of “His Story.” History (as well as the future) is all in God’s view, and everything that has happened and will happen is for His glory.
  • I believe that from Genesis to Revelation, God tells us about His Kingdom, why He created us, why sin is so destructive, and His amazing plan of redemption. (For more information on this, I highly recommend Myles Munroe’s Rediscovering the Kingdom.)
  • I believe that all of history (past, present and future) has been revealed in His Word. When we study prophecy in Scripture with our children, and as we see how God is always faithful to His Word, our faith and trust in Him is confirmed. This is a great reason to study history!

My goal is to present history not just as another subject in school but as another opportunity for us to be thrilled and amazed by God’s Word. There are MANY good history curriculum on the market, so no matter which one you use, keep these things in mind.

  • The account of creation and the centuries before the flood in Genesis are accurate history. They should be taught to your children as literal, factual, and important. Some resources to help you are Answers in Genesis, The Genesis Record, and Genesis: Finding Our Roots.
  • The details of the spread of civilization recorded in Genesis 10 are accurate history. Show your children how there are really just two religions: the worship of the Creator and the worship of the creation (Genesis 11:1-9; Romans 1:18-25). From Genesis 10-11, you can teach all world cultures, geography, world religions, and more. Some resources to help you are any ancient history publications by Diana Waring or Christine Miller.
  • Studying the Old Testament should be a priority over all other sources of ancient history. When dates disagree with God’s Word, dig in and find out why. Show your children tangible evidence why the Bible can be trusted. A resource to help you is World History Made Simple: Matching History with the Bible.
  • God revealed much history to the prophet Daniel. Daniel 4 tells about four great empires (Babylon, Media Persia, Greece and Rome). These empires, and the details revealed about them (see also Daniel 7-12), are worthy of much study. Again, authors Diana Waring, Christine Miller, and Ruth Beechick have written much about these times.
  • One interpretation of the book of Revelation is that God revealed history from the time of the apostle John until the return of Jesus Christ, which of course includes the last 2,000 years of history. While this is obviously not the only interpretation of Revelation (or even the most popular view), it is worthwhile to consider it when teaching history to our children. For a detailed (long) explanation of this view, begin with this blog post by Christine Miller, the book The Final Trumpet, and the homeschooling resources listed in All Through the Ages.

Yes, I’d love to publish a history curriculum. My vision isn’t fancy. I just want a simple set of lesson plans that share some of the things I’ve done with my own children. However, in reality, this dream is probably a long ways into the future. In the meantime, if this topic interests you, take advantage of the resources listed above, combining these ideas with one of the excellent ready-made curriculum already available. Some of my favorite are:

I’m sure there are other good ones, too! Have questions? Send me a comment below.

Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing some of your thoughts Anne. We’ve really enjoyed Diana Waring’s audios as well, I’d love to buy some of her books some day too!

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