Seventh day Adventists, within the context of their basic beliefs, acknowledge that God is the Creator and Sustainer of the entire universe animate and inanimate.
God is the Creator and Sustainer of the entire universe animate and inanimate.
He created perfect human beings in His own image with power to think, to choose, and to do.
God is the source of all that is true, good, and beautiful, and has chosen to reveal Himself to humankind.
Humans, by their own choice, rebelled against God and fell into a state of sin that has affected the entire planet, plunging it into the cosmic conflict between good and evil. In spite of this, the world and human beings still reveal, however dimly, the goodness and beauty of their original condition.
The Godhead met the problem of sin through the plan of redemption. This plan aims to restore human beings to God’s image and the universe back to its original state of perfection, love, and harmony.
God invites us to choose His plan of restoration and to relate to this world creatively and responsibly until He intervenes in history to bring about the new heavens and the new earth.
The Seventh day Adventist philosophy of education is Christ centered. Adventists believe that under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, God’s character and purposes can be understood as revealed in nature, the Bible, and Jesus Christ. The distinctive characteristics of Adventist education derived from the Bible and the writings of Ellen G. White point to the redemptive aim of true education: to restore human beings into the image of their Maker.
Seventh day Adventists believe that God is infinitely loving, wise, and powerful. He relates to human beings on a personal level, presenting His character as the ultimate norm for human conduct and His grace as the means of restoration.
Adventists recognize, however, that human motives, thinking, and behavior have fallen short of God’s ideal. Education in its broadest sense is a means of restoring human beings to their original relationship with God. Working together, homes, schools, and churches cooperate with divine agencies in preparing learners for responsable citizenship in this world and in the world to come.
Adventist education imparts more than academic knowledge. It fosters a balanced development of the whole person spiritually, intellectually, physically and socially. Its tune dimensions span eternity. It seeks to develop a life of faith in God and respect for the dignity of all human beings; to build character akin to that of the Creator; to nurture thinkers rather than mere reflectors of others’ thoughts; to promote loving service rather than selfish ambition; to ensure maximum development of each individual’s potential; and to embrace all that is true, good, and beautiful.
Aim and Mission
Adventist education prepares students for a useful and joy filled life, fostering friendship with God, whole person development, Bible based values, and selfless service in accordance with the Seventh day Adventist mission to the world.
Agencies of Education
The home is society’s primary and most basic educational agency. Parents are the first and most influential teachers and have the responsibility to reflect God’s character to their children. Moreover, the whole familial setting shapes the values, attitudes, and worldview of the young. The church and the school, along with society’s other educational agencies, build on and supplement the work of the home. It is imperative that the home, in turn, support the educational work of the school.
The local church also has a major assignment in the lifelong educational enterprise. The congregation as a community of faith provides an atmosphere of acceptance and love in which it disciples those within its sphere of influence in a personal faith in Jesus Christ and in a growing understanding of the Word of God. This understanding includes both an intellectual aspect and a life of conformity to God’s will.
SCHOOL, COLLEGE, AND UNIVERSITY
All levels of Adventist schooling build on the foundation laid by the home and church. The Christian teacher fonctions in the classroom as God’s minister in the plan of redemption. The greatest need of students is to accept Jesus Christ as personal Savior and commit to a life of Christian values and service. The formai and non formai curricula help students reach their potential for spiritual, mental, physical, social, and vocational development. Preparing students for a life of service to their family, church, and the larger community is a primary aim of the school.
The world Church at all levels has oversight responsibility for the healthy functioning of learning in all three of the above venues, including lifelong learning. With reference to the school as an educational agency, its functions are ideally accomplished by institutions established by the Church for that purpose. The Church at large should make every effort to ensure that all Adventist children and youth have the opportunity to attend an Adventist educational institution. Realizing, however, that a large percentage of the church’s youth are not enrolled in Adventist schools, the world church must find ways to achieve the goals of Adventist education through alternative means (e.g., after school church based instruction, church sponsored centers on non Adventist campuses, etc.).