“The difference in the classroom instruction of a Christian educator and that of a secular educator should be more than just prayer at the beginning of class.” I remember hearing this statement on my first day of teacher inservice before my first year of teaching. Our administrator was trying to emphasize the point that “all truth is God’s truth,” and that we need to teach Biblical principles as we teach our subject matter.
Frankly, I have had difficulty linking a Biblical principle to every mathematical concept that I have taught. I have asked the Lord to open my eyes to opportunities for showing His glory in the study of math. I feel that sharing Christ in my content area, like teaching, is a journey. I would like to share a few ideas from my “journey.”
First, an understanding of 3dimensional geometry can give us perspective as we read Genesis 6:15 and Revelation 21:16. We realize the immensity of Noah’s Ark (450 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high) and of the New Jerusalem (1400 miles wide, long, and high). We can also emphasize God’s precision in the blueprint for the ark and His majestic creativity in the design of the New Jerusalem.
A second example is making a simple reference to Proverbs 17:10 when introducing the study of inequalities. The writer of proverbs gives value to one reproof of a wise man that is greater than one hundred lashes to a fool. Many other examples are available, including Judges 16:30, Luke 15:7, and John 12:43.
Third, we can use a lesson on sequences as an opportunity to talk about the Fibonacci sequence. There is a 4minute video available at http://disclose.tv/action/viewvideo/67897/Fibonacci_numbers___The_Fingerprint_of_God. This video portrays our God as one who values order and as one Who has repeatedly left a clear identifying mark on creation. I am amazed at how often this sequence appears.
Fourth, Jesus’ parable of the debtor from Matthew 18:2134 can be used as an illustration of ratios, proportions, and unit conversion. Bible scholars believe that 1 talent = 75 pounds of gold (http://www.sundayschoolresources.com/biblestoryactivities2.htm). Then, 10000 talents = 750000 pounds of gold, which is 12000000 ounces. Recently, gold was valued at $1776 per ounce; so in today’s figures, 12000000 ounces would equal $21,312,000,000. Certainly, this parable teaches a valuable lesson on forgiving one another, but it should also remind us that God has made provision for us to be forgiven from a sin debt that we could never repay.
Finally, I would like to share some thoughts from the book Mathematics: Is God Silent?, by James Nickel (Ross House Books, 2001):
“Is there a connection between mathematics and evangelism? It has been shown that nonnumerical mathematical methods such as set theory, modern abstract algebra, topology, and mathematical logic can be applied to the task of Bible translation. These mathematical formulations are powerful enough to deal with the structured relationships found in the complexity of linguistic structures.” (277278)
We should continuoually evaluate ourselves, not just in how we teach our content, but in how we link math and the Bible. May our journey as Christian math teachers center on seeking God in our discipline!
I welcome any comments you may have regarding this article, as well as any ideas you have used in your classroom.
Mathematics from a Biblical Perspective
March 15, 2012 by 2 Comments

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Phil Price
