True Education



Early in 1903 Ellen G. White published the book Education. It was widely circulated and read with appreciation. For decades, the fundamental principles clearly unfolded made it the handbook of tens of thousands of parents and teachers. TEd 5.1

Recognizing that nearly one hundred years have passed since this influential book first appeared, and that a new generation is now on the scene, the North American Division Department of Education requested that a special edition be prepared. The present volume, adapted from Education and titled True Education, is the result. Edited to appeal to the modern mind, we believe it will attract a host of new readers. Unless otherwise indicated, all scripture quotations are from the New King James Version (NKJV) of the Bible, a modern revision of the King James Version, which Mrs. White used most often. TEd 5.2

Every person must face the practical realities of life—its opportunities and responsibilities, its successes and its defeats. How one meets these experiences, whether becoming master or victim of circumstances, depends largely on the kind of education one receives. TEd 5.3

Many books on the principles and philosophy of education have been published, each one based on a particular core theory as its paradigm. This volume is singularly different in that it flows out of a theological principle that the author calls “the central theme of the Bible” (p. 75). That theme is the “redemption plan, the restoration in the human soul of the image of God” (ibid.). In other of her writings, Ellen White describes this core principle as the Great Controversy theme. TEd 5.4

Thus, the author points out that “the work of education and the work of redemption are one” (p. 21). With this paradigm in mind, parents and teachers lead students to appreciate that they are “endowed with a power akin to that of the Creator—individuality, power to think and to do.” Students who grasp this God-given power are those who “bear responsibilities, ... are leaders in enterprise, and who influence character. ... Instead of ... educated weaklings, ... [they] are strong to think and to act, ... masters and not slaves of circumstances, ... who possess breadth of mind, clearness of thought, and the courage of their convictions” (p. 12). TEd 6.1

The motivating objective of the author in her extensive writings on the subject of education was that youth on the threshold of life might be ready to take their place as good citizens, well prepared for the practical experiences of living, fully developed physically, God-fearing, with characters untarnished and hearts true to principle. TEd 6.2

Ellen White was a friend of young men and women. She was for many years in close touch with institutions of learning and was well acquainted with the problems of youth in preparation for their lifework. Above all, she was endued with more than ordinary knowledge and skill as a writer and speaker. TEd 6.3

Concerned as it is with great principles, and not with the details of curriculum or the merits of differing educational systems, this book, we believe, will have unusual power to guide parents and teachers as they educate today’s youth. TEd 6.4