Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Probably Won't See This Again Soon

As Christians continue to lose cultural clout, it is interesting to recall that most of America's great academic institutions were originally founded for the purpose of educating pastors and furthering the Kingdom of God. Below are some of the rules required of men entering Harvard in 1643:

1) When any scholar is able to understand Tully or such like classical author EXTEMPORE, and make and speak true Latin in verse and prose, SUO UT AIUNT MARTE, and decline perfectly the paradigms of nouns and verbs in the Greek tongue: let him then, and not before, be capable of admission into the College.

2) Let every student be plainly instructed and earnestly pressed to consider well, the main end of his life and studies is, "to know God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life," John 17:3, and therefore to lay Christ in the bottom, as the only foundation of all sound knowledge and learning. And seeing the Lord only giveth wisdom, let everyone seriously set himself by prayer in secret to seek it of Him, Prov. 2:3.

3) Everyone shall so exercise himself in reading the scriptures twice a day, that he shall be ready to give such an account of his proficiency therein, both in theoretical observations of the language, and logic, and inpractical and spiritual truths, as his tutor shall require, according to his ability; seeing "the entrance of the Word giveth light, it giveth understanding to the simple," Psalm 119:130.

4) That they, eschewing all profanation of God’s name, attributes, word, ordinances, and times of worship, do study with good conscience, carefully to retain God, and the love of His truth in their minds. Else, let them know that (notwithstanding their learning) God may give them up "to strong delusions," and in the end “to a reprobate mind,” 2Thes.2:11, 12; Rom. 1:28.

5) That they studiously redeem the time; observe the general hours appointed for all the students, and the special hours for their own classes; and then diligently attend the lectures, without any disturbance by word or gesture. And if in anything they doubt, they shall inquire, as of their fellows, so (in the case of "nonsatisfaction"), modestly of their tutors.

6) None shall, under any pretense whatsoever, frequent the company and society of such men as lead an unfit and dissolute life. Nor shall any without his tutor’s leave, or (in his absence) the call of parents or guardians, go abroad to other towns.

7) Every scholar shall be present in his tutor’s chamber at the seventh hour in the morninng, immediately after the sound of the bell, at his opening the scripture and prayer; so also at the fifth hour of the night, and then give account of his own private reading, as aforesaid in particular the third, and constantly attend lectures in the hall at the hours appointed. But if any (without necessary impediment) shall absent himself from prayer or lectures, he shall be liable to admonition, if he offend above once a week.

8) If any scholar shall be found to transgress any of the laws of God, or the school, after twice admonition, he shall be liable, if not ADULTUS, to correction; if ADULTUS, his name shall be given up to the overseers of the College, that he may be admonished at the public monthly act.


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