The article deals with religious and pedagogical ideas of humanist Erasmus of Rotterdam in his philosophical legacy. Is is stressed that the legacy of Erasmus of Rotterdam is the highest point of the development of Renaissance humanism, and not just «humanism», but «Christian humanism» – the name given to this direction, common in Northern Europe. Erasmus-teacher insisted on the importance of secular education. Sparing no effort, he promoted this idea among monarchs, diplomats, politicians, burghers and other segments of the population. The educational program of the Renaissance humanists covers a range of humanitarian knowledge – studia humanitatis (unlike studia divinitatis – the «divine Sciences»). It was the ancient classics, restored at a new level, as a result of hard work and years of searching. The main role was given to moral philosophy (ethics), which, together with other disciplines – literature, rhetoric, and history – was to form a «moral person», a worthy representative of the human race. Erasmus fought for education through education, through study of the texts of classical authors, which set out the basic tenets of morality. Traditionally, the basis of morality is a virtue, a radical in theology is called the four categories: prudence (wisdom), fortitude (courage), temperance and justice. Being a Christian and a theologian, Erasmus of Rotterdam was not particularly orthodoxy; he sharply criticized the Catholic Church, the ignorance of the clergy, the monastic institution, and so on. Humanist was a staunch opponent of dogmatism, religious fanaticism, intolerance for dissent, obscurantism. Erasmus did not oppose faith and knowledge, and sought to harmonize them. To the Scriptures, he came up as an object of scientific and philosophical reflection. If Luther considered it untouchable for the reason that Erasmus has done a great job by clearing the sacred texts from the medieval accretions and «dark places». The author concludes that the merit of Erasmus was the release of Christian doctrine its moral essence. He sought to make the ethics of Christianity the measure of everyday behavior and not the subject of scholastic debate. This experience is extremely valuable for educators, and Ministers of the Church in our time.