Concerned Women Through History: Education – Eunice, Septima Clark, and Jill Noble

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Eunice is one of the lesser known women of the Bible.  She’s referenced twice, once in Acts and once in Paul’s letter to Timothy.

2 Timothy 1:5 states: “I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also.” This passage helps us connect with the humanity of Paul and Timothy as they discuss common relationships and admire educational achievements.

It is Timothy’s mother, and her mother before her, who set the young leader on a good path.  We learn here that education and the family are linked.  We are reminded that spiritual maturity — learning the ways of God in our life — begins at home and extends out to an entire community.

Furthermore, we know from Acts 16:1 that Eunice was married to an unbeliever.  So she managed to raise her son in the faith, despite what could have been opposition and marital tension.  Eunice’s name means “victory.”  Indeed, Timothy’s faith was a great victory not only for Eunice, but meant great victories in the church — both historically and today.

What Eunice did for the church, Septima did for her race.  Septima Poinsette Clark’s husband died tragically shortly after their marriage, so, like Eunice, she had to forge her own advocacy.  She was African-American and spent her life making sure African-Americans received proper education and civil rights.  She was a teacher who lost her job for her desire to work in the NAACP.

And in 1961, she joined the Southern Christian Leadership Conference as director of education and teaching, helping to create over 800 schools. 

Jill Noble, the Greater Kansas City area director for Concerned Women for America, also knows education is a tool for empowerment.  In her home state of Missouri, she fought Common Core curriculums, which were putting local needs aside and reducing intelligence standards to the lowest common denominator.

Her deep passion for education comes from a deep awareness of its divine origin.  As she puts it:

“We always need to remember that it was God Himself who created the ability to transfer a grapheme symbol to represent a spoken word.  There is great power in this technology that we call ‘reading.’  It was designed from the beginning to educate God’s people out of slavery into a holy nation. We saw that in the giving of the Ten Commandments and, ultimately, in the giving of the entire Word of God.  It was and is entirely designed to educate the human race in all areas of life.  Today, education is under assault in large part because liberal policies cannot easily control an educated population.  And so we continue to educate our children and ourselves in order to uphold the precepts of God, as well as the Constitution of the United States of America.”

These women understand the reverberating effects of education — on a church, for a race, and in a nation. We admire them as heroines who know the next generation needs our care.

 

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