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Historical Interpretation


History is subject to many interpretations. The same historical event can be explained in several ways by different historians, depending on each scholar’s worldview. As Will Rogers quipped, “I doubt if there is a thing in the world as wrong or unreliable as history. History ain’t what it is; it’s what some writer wanted it to be. . . .”

But a responsibility of Christian teachers is to instill in the students a loving and respectful acceptance of the Christian view of history, that is, what God wants history to be. “A nation thrives or perishes,” Herbert Hoover declared, “upon what it believes to be true.”

Let each teacher encourage his or her students to accept the truth of God and realize with Longfellow that

Lives of great men all remind us We can make our lives sublime, And, departing, leave behind us Footprints on the sands of time.

[Excerpted from p. 191, Teacher: Teaching and Being Taught, Copyright, Dennis L. Peterson, 2017]

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