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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Bible classes for Georgia schools?

I just saw this news out of the Georgia Legislature today:

Georgia public school students would be allowed to study the Bible under a plan proposed by Democrats in the state Senate Wednesday.

The bill authorizes the state school board to approve an optional course that would teach about the Bible’s influence on literature, art, culture and politics.

The bill is sponsored by Sen. Tim Golden of Valdosta, chairman of the Senate’s Democratic caucus. Golden said it would allow for “nonsectarian, nonreligious academic study” of the Bible and would require it “be taught in an objective and nondevotional manner with no attempt made to indoctrinate students.”

As a conservative evangelical Christian, I am adamantly opposed to this sort of legislation. Let's consider a few reasons why this bill is bad.

  1. There is talk that teaching the Bible in a public school setting will allow teachers to push their faith. I think just the opposite. It is just as likely that those teaching a class on the Bible will push a viewpoint that says that the Bible is not the inspired word of God.
  2. In what way are public school teachers capable or equipped to teach the Bible? How many of them have taken classes in Greek or Hebrew? I find it very unlikely to find qualified teachers.
  3. Finally this seems to be a case of in loco parentis and in loco ecclesia. I certainly want my children to learn the Bible and learn it well. But the place to learn it is at home and at church. The Bible is not simply a historical piece of literature. Is that not how it would be taught at school?

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