Principles of Seventh-Day Adventist Education

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 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 responsible 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, emotionally, physically, and socially. Its time 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; to embrace all that is true, good, and beautiful.

Seventh-day Adventists, within the context of their beliefs, acknowledge that:

  • 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, choose, and do.
  • God is the source of all that is true, good, and beautiful, and He has chosen to reveal Himself to humankind.
  • Humans, by their own choice, rebelled against God and fell into a state of sin that has separated them from God and each other, affecting the entire planet and plunging it into the cosmic conflict between good and evil. In spite of this, the world and human beings still reveal, however, 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.

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