The true object of education is to restore the image of God in the soul. In the beginning, God created man in his own likeness. He endowed him with noble qualities. His mind was well-balanced, and all the powers of his being were harmonious. But the fall and its effects have perverted these gifts. Sin has marred and well-nigh obliterated the image of God in man. It was to restore this that the plan of salvation was devised, and a life of probation was granted to man. To bring him back to the perfection in which he was first created, is the great object of life,–the object that underlies every other. It is the work of parents and teachers, in the education of the youth, to co-operate with the divine purpose; and in so doing they are “laborers together with God.” [1 Corinthians 3:9.]
All the varied capabilities that men possess–of mind and soul and body–are given them by God, to be so employed as to reach the highest possible degree of excellence. But this cannot be a selfish and exclusive culture; for the character of God, whose likeness we are to receive, is benevolence and love. Every faculty, every attribute, with which the Creator has endowed us, is to be employed for his glory and for the uplifting of our fellow-men. And in this employment is found its purest, noblest, and happiest exercise.
– Christian Education, pg. 63, 64