PAOLA — A representative from the Pearl Street Reformed Baptist Church addressed members of the Paola school board at their Feb. 14 meeting, urging them to “obey the Lord of the universe, Jesus Christ.”
During the public comment portion of the meeting, Jon Tyte read a letter addressed to the school board and signed by members of Pearl Street Reformed Baptist Church.
“We, and many citizens of Paola, ask you, our leaders, to have the stones to stand up and resist the powers that be when they ask you to violate God’s standard of justice,” Tyte said. .
The full letter said:
“We want to remind you that Jesus Christ is Lord of this school district just as He is Lord of all the universe. Jesus said in Matthew 28:18 that “all power in heaven and on earth” had given. Therefore, Jesus insisted that the gospel be proclaimed throughout the world and that every man, woman, and child be taught to obey its commandments. “Everyone” includes this school district.
When there are conflicts between the commandments of Jesus and the commandments and standards of our government, educational agencies, and school boards, who should you obey? You must obey the Lord of the Universe, Jesus Christ!
You should know that Jesus Christ gives us permission to disobey any order given by any authority in obedience to his higher authority. If the Lord of the Universe has declared a man to be a man and a woman to be a woman, it doesn’t matter what program, government authority, or regulatory agency tells you to do otherwise. You must consider the highest authority, the Lord.
If the teachers in this school are instructed by the principal to teach anything that violates the words of Jesus Christ, the teachers have not only the right but the obligation to disobey the principal. This means that if the school board orders the principal to enforce a standard or implement a program that violates the Word of God, then the principal has not only the right but the obligation to disobey the board. And if any state agency or federal agency directs this council to do anything that violates God’s commandments and God’s standards, then you have not only the right but the obligation to disobey.
This disobedience can cost you dearly. You can face shame. You risk losing your job. You could face legal consequences. Would you rather keep your reputation, your job or your money and lose your soul? Would you be crazy enough to offend a Holy, Just, and Omnipotent God just to keep your job or your reputation? One day each of you will stand before the judge of all the earth and you will be judged. The standard by which you will be judged will not be the standard of the Biden administration, or Laura Kelly’s education policy, or anything else. You will be judged by the standard of God’s holy and unchanging Word.
We, and many citizens of Paola, ask you, our leaders, to have the stones to stand up and resist the powers that be when they ask you to violate God’s standard of justice.
School board member Scott Golubski asked why the issue was being raised at this time and whether the church believed the Paola School District was currently in trouble.
Tyte said there were issues across the country, but the letter spoke generically and not just about one issue with Paola Schools.
The church also posted the letter on its Facebook page and received several comments from community members.
The church then issued an update on February 17, stating, “Due to the overwhelming feedback this letter has produced, we wanted to clarify some misunderstandings and provide a bit more context regarding our intent. Last fall, one of our students was confronted with a controversial program. The teacher who gave the assignment said she felt pressure from others to use the program. The parents properly confronted the school and the school took action to correct the problem. Due to this incident and similar incidents occurring across the country, we felt it was necessary to voice our strong opposition. We are not interested in “exposing” certain teachers or administrators, but rather wanted to support those in the district by letting them know that we would support their decision to go against all authority to stand with Christ. »