The Texas State Board of Education is pitching a curriculum redesign that includes stories from the Bible.

The Texas public education system is once again at the center of a heated debate over religious teachings in the classroom. 

This time, the state has proposed incorporating Bible stories into its elementary school reading curriculum. Supporters say the initiative, which will impact over two million students, is intended to enhance cultural literacy by linking religious texts with classic American literature. 

However, the plan has sparked significant controversy, raising questions about the separation of church and state – and concerns about religious indoctrination in public schools.

What the State Is Proposing

The Texas State Board of Education is pitching a curriculum redesign that includes stories from the Bible alongside texts from other religions. The goal, according to proponents, is to provide students with a better understanding of cultural and literary references found in American literature and history. 

The Biblical material includes stories such as Queen Esther persuading the Persian king to save the Jews, and reading about Nebuchadnezzar in the Book of Daniel. 

In another instance, an art class analyzing Da Vinci’s “The Last Supper” will be required to read Bible passages for additional context about the famous painting.

“The Bible explains that Jesus knew that after this meal, he would be arrested, put on trial, and killed,” the curriculum reads. “Let’s read the story in the book of Matthew to see for ourselves what unfolded during the supper.”

By adding these Biblical reference points to school lessons, supporters of the measure say, students will develop a richer, more nuanced understanding of cultural narratives that have shaped American society.

“If you’re reading classic works of American literature, there are often religious allusions in that literature,” state education Commissioner Mike Morath told reporters. “Any changes being made are to reinforce the kind of background knowledge on these seminal works of the American cultural experience.”

They assert that this is not about promoting religion, but about cultural literacy. 

Critics Speak Out

However, critics argue that bringing Christian teachings into classrooms blurs the line between church and state. They also point out the coincidental timing – just days before the curriculum was announced, Texas leaders announced a platform that calls for mandatory instruction of the Bible in public schools statewide. 

Mark Chancey, a religious studies professor at SMU, has mixed feelings about the curriculum proposal.

“It is reasonable to devote some attention to [the Bible], and state education standards across the nation often require such attention,” Chancey says. “The problem, of course, is that sometimes the legitimate reason of cultural literacy is used as a smokescreen to hide religious and ideological agendas.”

Staci Childs, a member of the State Board of Education, has similar qualms. 

"As a Christian, I think it is okay [to teach the Bible] as long as you’re normalizing the introduction of all religions and all types of mythologies so students have a varied and robust and true depiction of the materials in the text of our past,” Childs said. However, “to only infuse Bible verses and teachings of the Bible is completely insensitive to all the different types of students we have in Texas and a disrespect to the faiths they may acknowledge,” she added.

Meanwhile, the Texas branch of the ACLU didn’t mince words, saying: “The same state leaders censoring history are now trying to impose government-sponsored religion in our public schools.”

Some went so far as to call it “Christian nationalism”:

Equal Treatment of Faiths?

In response to these concerns, proponents underscore that stories from various religious traditions will be taught, not just from Christianity. The goal, they say, is to present a balanced perspective that reflects the diverse religious landscape of Texas and the United States. 

However, it’s unclear whether all faiths will actually enjoy equal treatment under the curriculum. Amplify, the publishing company that was initially contracted to create the updated lessons, found that state officials seemed biased toward Christian stories. 

According to Amplify spokeswoman Kristine Frech, when they made suggestions for content to include from non-Christian religions, the state rejected their ideas.

“There was not much appetite for a variety of wisdom texts. There was much more of an appetite for the tie to traditional Christian texts,” Frech said. 

Amplify later backed out of the contract. 

What Happens Next

The curriculum redesign is currently in the public review phase, allowing educators, parents, and other stakeholders to provide feedback. Ultimately, Texans will have a chance to make their voices heard about how religion is taught in their schools. But this isn’t happening in a silo; the debate in Texas is just one of many similar conversations popping up in school districts all over the country. No doubt other states will be following closely to see how things shake out. 

The questions at the heart of it all: does the Bible belong in public schools? If so, how should it be handled?

105 comments

  1. shiningwolf9's Avatar shiningwolf9

    This is more than disrespectful, it is christianism's way of taking over school curriculum and using public education as a tool TO FORCE YOUNG CHILDREN INTO BELIEVING RELIGIOUS DOCTRINES AGAINST THEIR AND PARENT'S WILL. You do notice, no other religious faith, or Spirituality is going to be taught along side their own trash. So called christ likes can not point out their supposed lords teaching where he told them to FORCE people to be his disciple. Parents need to start making creating shirts and book bags that have their own beliefs on them, and DARE TO SUE TEACHERS AND SCHOOL BOARDS if made to go home and change, or are verbally reprimanded in front of classmates.

    1. Marcia Ann Ridgeway-Mensen's Avatar Marcia Ann Ridgeway-Mensen

      Children only know what their parents teach them, good or bad, right or wrong. Children should have the opportunity and right to read the Bible (King James Version) to enhance their knowledge of diversification.

      1. Rev. Rory's Avatar Rev. Rory

        Why King James? Because it is commonly used?

        There are currently over 3,142 versions in over 2,073 languages available digitally on bible.com. I'm in favor of teaching world history of religion (all of them or at least the 12 major ones) in public schools, not teaching religious doctrine as fact. It is only fact to believers. Good for them.

        Every parent has the right to join a religious organization and use the services provided by that organization to educate their child about the religion. Why do public school boards have the right to choose a certain religion or a version of that religion for a public school? I taught a religion class in a religious school at one time. I also taught in public schools and religion was not on the agenda.

        1. Manda's Avatar Manda

          I agree. I would have loved to learn about religion in school. I graduated a Christian private school and we were taught about ONE religion. It’s probably why I’ve been so interested in all the others ever since.

      2. Donald J Rothschild Jr's Avatar Donald J Rothschild Jr

        Here is the problem with the KJV:

        The King James version of the New Testament was completed in 1611 by 8 members of the Church of England.

        There were (and still are) no original texts to translate. The oldest manuscripts we have were written down hundreds of years after the last apostle died. There are over 8,000 of these old manuscripts, with no two alike.

        The King James translators used none of these, anyway. Instead, they edited previous translations to create a version their king and Parliament would approve.

        So, 21st Century Christians believe the "Word of God" is a book edited in the 17th Century from 16th Century translations of 8,000 contradictory copies of 4th Century scrolls that claim to be copies of lost letters written in the 1st Century.

        That's not faith. That's insanity.

    2. Rev Samantha Counihan's Avatar Rev Samantha Counihan

      100% agree with you shiningwolf9

    3. Noe Domingo Martinez's Avatar Noe Domingo Martinez

      So it's people like you that are opposing the Bible in school but yet you can have a drag queen teach your kids about being a drag queen. It's really smart on your part man you must be an amazing parent.

      1. Michael Hunt's Avatar Michael Hunt

        What is harmful about dressing up in drag? Children play pretend and dress up all the time and no one bats an eye at it. Shiningwolf9 sounds like an awesome parent. You sound like a brainwashed Christian.

  1. Wilberta M. Berry's Avatar Wilberta M. Berry

    Bible stories belong in the home and churches that use Bibles. They are 100% not acceptable in schools. Aesop Fables would be a much better choice.

    1. Bishop William Dusenberry, DD's Avatar Bishop William Dusenberry, DD

      “Give me a child’s mind, before s/he reaches the age of six, and their minds will be mine forever” so saith an anonymous monk. The religious-brainwashing of little-bitty kiddies, is, perhaps, the most dangerous public-sanctioned type of child abuse routinely practiced; no child should be subjected to childhood religious brainwashing, until they reach an age, when there’s something in their brain, to wash, The GOP’s been morphing into being the Christian Nationalist Party, since Roosevelt implemented Social Security and Medicare in the 1930’s — and all types of Christians were weaned off helping the poor — and taught that their God wanted everyone to know, that the Christian God only helps those who help themselves. The poor, should have picked wealthy parents, instead of the impoverished ones they chose— so the poor only have themselves to blame,

      1. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

        William, secular humanism has been brainwashing our nation's children for years. It's time for some good values to be included as well.

        1. Brien's Avatar Brien

          What good values do you refer to? And who gets to make that decision? I would understand if there was a consensus of what a belief structure should look like, but there is the problem. Noone can agree on an acceptable belief so you either teach them all, (nearly impossible to do), or parents can send their own children to whatever religious school fits their beliefs. Just don't involve my children.

          1. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

            Brien, the good values of love, forgiveness, honesty, pride in one's family and country, compassion, sympathy, caring for others as human beings worthy of loving-kindness, and similar values. You know, pretty much the opposite of what secularism teaches of look out for number one, attack those who think differently from the herd, there's no objective right or wrong only subjective situations ethics, and similar lines of thought. The ones that let Mao, Stalin, Pol-Pot, Hitler, and so many others kill without a conscience.

            1. Brien's Avatar Brien

              Yes Russel, those are basic values that everyone should be taught, the parents need to teach those from the very beginning. But the schools want to teach a belief, one that not everyone subscribes to. Beliefs do not belong in the classroom. Respect, honor, dignity, and the freedom to be taught without judgement or political posturing, these things do belong in school because they are for everyone. If parents wish to teach their children religious beliefs, they can do so at home, or at a religion based school. Religion must not be forced in a public school setting. Religion is a belief, not a value. Some say it has historical merit as a lesson plan, but it has no basis in facts. The mythical god thing has no factual basis yet it is used to instill fear in order to get compliance. I have expanded my point so that you might understand my view. Peace

      2. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

        Actually Jesus said that first William. Not that exact way you've quoted but it's the same none the less.

        It's Christian groups that donate and deliver first to natural disaster areas. Afterwards the governments steal from their human capital then fail to deliver the supplies.

        As far as teaching children the way to be, every single education system on the planet agrees with Jesus. Teach people when they're young.

  1. Michael Holland's Avatar Michael Holland

    Bibles should be on the ban book list, it is the biggest book of fiction ever written. Does everyone know the Bible was written some years after christ supposed existence. If the Bible is read in school so should the Quran, The Book of Witchcraft ( if one exists) and every other religion in the world's text! Fair game!

    1. Rev. Rory's Avatar Rev. Rory

      Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Sikhism, Unitarianism, Native Spirituality, Zoroastrianism, Jainism, Judaism, Islam, Baha'i Faith....all must be taught if Christianity is taught. That would be soooooooo complicated and wrong so let's leave it to the religious organizations and the parents. That is THEIR job.

      Is Texas saying for example that a Jewish teacher that follows their faith will be forced into teaching their students Christianity? Not about Christianity - teaching Christianity. It's two different things. Interesting too because some schools now teach creationism in science class (sigh.) History teachers in Florida are now forced to use the approved history books for k-12 that state that slavery was beneficial to slaves because they learned job skills. Failure to do this causes a teacher to risk losing their job. Maybe that is why Florida has a teacher shortage of 10k to 12k teachers.

    2. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

      The Bible has historical significance for Western civilization and is still is influencial today. The Koran is not. There is no one definitive book of witchcraft to my knowledge as witchcraft is highly eclectic with no central authority. It should not be banned as book banning is a rather draconian act.

  1. Merlin's Avatar Merlin

    No, not in an publicly funded schools.

  1. Douglas Robert Spindler's Avatar Douglas Robert Spindler

    Christians wanting to teach young children stories of sex, rape, murder, violence, killing, pornography, pedophilia, and the beating of slaves as told in the Bible. I thought Texas was just trying to outlaw smutty books like the Bible.

    1. Danny D. Maynard's Avatar Danny D. Maynard

      The proof that the Bible is bad reading is in the Super-Sanitized versions they create for their children to read.

      1. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

        On the contrary, children should know early what they're up against when they meet people who think they need no moral corrections or guidance. They need to know what wicked people are willing to do to them.

        Surly when you read a book that documented the atrocities of Hitler, you don't believe the author is in favor of the atrocities do you? If someone writes a book on President Trump's crimes you don't think the author is pro Trump do you?

        So it is true with the author of the bible.

        1. Elizabeth Jane Erbe Wilcox's Avatar Elizabeth Jane Erbe Wilcox

          Who, exactly, authored the bible?

          Your attempt to turn the issue into being about the author is nonsense. The issue is separation of church and state.

  1. David Arthur Lewis's Avatar David Arthur Lewis

    Hott Dayyum!! Talk about GROOMING!!! This is so much worse than Gay Pride.

    1. Danny D. Maynard's Avatar Danny D. Maynard

      But Gay Pride is never bad!

      1. Elizabeth Jane Erbe Wilcox's Avatar Elizabeth Jane Erbe Wilcox

        Danny, your statement warms my heart. I hope you’ll be participating in some of the many PRIDE month parades and activities across our country this month ♥️

        I’m excited to be part of the Parasol Patrol, shielding children from the hateful protestors that occasionally show up to various events.

    2. Elizabeth Jane Erbe Wilcox's Avatar Elizabeth Jane Erbe Wilcox

      BINGO!!

  1. Robert Hauck, MD, FAAP's Avatar Robert Hauck, MD, FAAP

    Another thinly veiled effort to proselytize Christianity with total rejection of separation of church and state. Just what will Texas come up with next???

  1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

    I actually don’t think there is anything wrong with teaching children about books of fiction that they might come into contact with during their life. They need to know about “religious fictional books” such as the Bible, Qu’ran, Bhagavad Gita, Book of Mormon, etc., it’s all part of education. I’m sure they will learn of other books of fiction like Harry Potter, Robin Hood, etc,.

    Teaching them that any of these books are not fiction is where the problem lies.

    🦁❤️

    1. James Riggle-Johnson's Avatar James Riggle-Johnson

      I think some school districts banned Harry Potter because it's sorcerry. Lol

      1. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

        James, I think you're right about that. It was dumb for any school district to ban Harry Potter books. Some people who claim the title Christian act rather badly.

  1. LL's Avatar LL

    RELIGION is personal. As far as teaching other religions ...Do other Countries provinces etc teach different religions!? I doubt very much if you are in A Jewish School they are teaching other religions etc and so on. Your faith is personal and private and should NEVER BE FORCED ON OTHERS PERIOD.

    1. Rev Samantha Counihan's Avatar Rev Samantha Counihan

      exactly

  1. The Marriage Minister's Avatar The Marriage Minister

    This is primarily being shoved down the throats by Christian Nationalists. They want to dismantle the "separation of church and state" clause. These same people bend a knee and kiss the ring of a convicted felon. The Republican party is not the party of family values. Prime example is trump and his abuse of women and his infidelity. Boebert acting like a horny 16 year old by her theatrics and Greenes infidelity. I'm conclusion public school is not the place to indoctrinate religious stories (not so kids are Christian or worship). Private and Christian schools is a different story.

  1. Nicholas J Page's Avatar Nicholas J Page

    You can't teach one religion without the other religions not everyone is Christian these days.Then again should students be forced to read the Bible Somehow I think not It's different to 60 years ago when here in England it was part of learning.

  1. CB Cuff's Avatar CB Cuff

    Sunday School is the place for reading bible stories, not public learning institutes funded by tax dollars. Be interesting to hear how school boards would try to force non christian teachers to comply.

    1. Noe Domingo Martinez's Avatar Noe Domingo Martinez

      You're wrong. Sunday School is actually a place to learn about God's love and God's plan for an individual. Learning institute funded by tax dollars should be allowed to teach teach the Bible as a literary work of art not as religion. The Bible has many stories. It contains love stories, sad stories, war stories and it also contains one of the most unequivocal history book that has never been disproven.

      1. Donald J Rothschild Jr's Avatar Donald J Rothschild Jr

        It also contains incest, rape, murder, theft, etc. the list goes on and on. Let’s get it right. NO religious book belongs in any public school. Religion is the responsibility of the child’s parents.

        1. Noe Domingo Martinez's Avatar Noe Domingo Martinez

          Yes it does contain all those things. But incest was allowed by God so the Earth could be populated. And yes there was lots of murder beginning with Cain and Abel. But that in itself is an amazing story. Lots of action. And theft and the list goes on and on. And I totally agree with you no religious books belongs in public school.

          I think we got to consider is if they're indoctrinating religion or teaching literature. All Bible stories in the Bible are literature full of action romance teachings let me rephrase that moral teachings. Which by the way there is no more.

          1. Brien's Avatar Brien

            Genocide, you forgot that one. The mythical god thing snapping his fingers and destroying the world, except for a wooden boat filled with animals. Mass murder, crimes against humanity too numerous to count. Keep your fear out of the PUBLIC classroom. As stated, there are plenty of religious schools to send your child to as is your parental right. You have NO right to brainwash my child. Now I simply can't understand why that is so difficult to grasp Nor do I understand why some random zealots think they should be allowed to indoctrinate my child. Please, explain that to me.

  1. Theresa C. Marquess's Avatar Theresa C. Marquess

    In a three-word summation, "Texas is wrong."

    1. Theresa C. Marquess's Avatar Theresa C. Marquess

      The climate of this country has drastically changed since the 1950, when I was in grade school and we read the bible at the beginning of each school day. By today's standards I don't agree with teaching religion in grade school or high school. Let's save that for classes like Comparative Religions in college. In the meantime, I believe that all parents should teach their religious beliefs in the home or in the church of their choice.

    2. Noe Domingo Martinez's Avatar Noe Domingo Martinez

      Comment removed by user.

  1. Dylan Tuatha Le Danaan's Avatar Dylan Tuatha Le Danaan

    The law of this land is the Constitution, and has made it clear that there is a distinct separation between secular public school life and religious life. The very fact that this is being pushed at this time shows that a distinct party of anti-American persons living in this country are pushing their agenda. I request my fellow ministers to take a moment to look back up in the time of the 1930s when such agendas were forced upon the children of Germany creating the Hitler youth, who's educational standards even at high school level were found to be at a 5th graders level for that time. this is a severe to service to the future of our children and our country and must be nipped in the bud.

  1. Stacey Owens's Avatar Stacey Owens

    The problem with this, it won't be inspired. It will be inspired by Christian Nationalism which is according to their interpretation. Rest a sure, it won't be in spirit and in truth. It will be in fear. It's what Christian Nationalism is all about: idol worshipping.

  1. Cheryl Pettijohn's Avatar Cheryl Pettijohn

    This intentionally opens the door for indoctrination. I’m a Texan and a Christian and this move will marginalize others.

  1. Amber Fry's Avatar Amber Fry

    Honestly I don't care if individuals wish to have a bible and read it on their breaks but bible study or courses belong in the church. I never did quite understand why it's such a fundamental thing for certain Christian specific sects to push everyone else to learn it and follow it when so many of them don't themselves. Religion is supposed to be about personal belief and conduct, not forcing it on others. Be available in your own spaces and be proud of those beliefs and choices but give others the same respect. Why is that so hard?

  1. Rev Ned's Avatar Rev Ned

    Sounds like “grooming” to me. I thought GOPers were against that.

  1. Colleen McAllister's Avatar Colleen McAllister

    For religion itself to be taught in public schools is not wrong. For a majority of that teaching to be based on Christianity is not unusual as Christianty is the major religion in the USA. However, all other major religions must also be taught.

    1. Brien's Avatar Brien

      Religious beliefs are taught AT HOME not in public schools.

      1. Noe Domingo Martinez's Avatar Noe Domingo Martinez

        I agree religious beliefs should be taught at home, but it might not be a bad idea to teach the Bible as literary works much like Shakespeare and many other writers. There is a line between teaching religion and teaching the Bible as literary works. I think they should teach the Bible as literary works just because there are so many great stories in there that teach moral values. Or would you rather have them also teach the Quran which teaches the hate America. Or The book of Mormons which state it's okay to have many wives and it is also okay to marry your 12-year-old to an older man.

        1. Brien's Avatar Brien

          I would rather they NOT TEACH any religious beliefs in PUBLIC SCHOOLS. Why is that so hard to understand? I am not suggesting that the mythical book, (bible), be banned, unlike the religious zealots who want to ban anything that goes against their beliefs. The book can be in the library along with all the other works of fiction. However, teaching a belief in the classroom is tantamount to forced brainwashing. Christians seem to feel that everyone should bow down to their beliefs. The nazis felt the same way. Food for thought 🤔

  1. James Riggle-Johnson's Avatar James Riggle-Johnson

    No matter how hard the Texas Board of Education says this is about literature, they only want to teach religion. Too many parents are not going to church on Sundays, so they have to grab disciples another way. State sponsored/forced religion. And they say gay people are trying to indoctrinate children.

  1. Brien's Avatar Brien

    We have been down this road before. If you wish your child to be taught religion there are plenty of private schools that will do just that. Your mythical beliefs are not shared by everyone, and should NOT be taught in a public school setting. I am not one to ban books, so the bible should be available in libraries, just as all other religious texts should be. But a public school is meant for ALL students no matter their belief. I am sorry that I am one of those people that believe organized religions mount to nothing more than brainwashing.

  1. Danny D. Maynard's Avatar Danny D. Maynard

    Thus, Christian Nationalists want every day of the week to be Sunday School.

  1. Rev. Rory's Avatar Rev. Rory

    However, it’s unclear whether all faiths will actually enjoy equal treatment under the curriculum. Amplify, the publishing company that was initially contracted to create the updated lessons, found that state officials seemed biased toward Christian stories.

    "According to Amplify spokeswoman Kristine Frech, when they made suggestions for content to include from non-Christian religions, the state rejected their ideas.

    “There was not much appetite for a variety of wisdom texts. There was much more of an appetite for the tie to traditional Christian texts,” Frech said.

    Amplify later backed out of the contract."

    That says it all. Amplify did not want to have any part of this as it was not to be carried out as proposed.

  1. Rev. Dr. Father JJ's Avatar Rev. Dr. Father JJ

    This is about getting kristinsanity into pubic schools, nothing more nothing less. Once The Satanic Temple gets involved you can be assured texas will suddenly lose interest in forcing kristinsanity on students. Not to mention the abject fear of having to include the quran. Nope, this is just another fishing expedition by kristofascists to see what they can pull off, with the possible hopes of the Theocratic Supreme Court getting involved.

    1. Daniel Lee Minchew's Avatar Daniel Lee Minchew

      Dr. I sure hope and pray they will not teach the quran in any school or anywhere fir that matter. We as a country have gone to hell

      1. Rev. Dr. Father JJ's Avatar Rev. Dr. Father JJ

        so then, teach only the religion that YOU approve of? not very...what's that praise...oh yeah, not very christian of you is it.

  1. Tanya Keller's Avatar Tanya Keller

    I am surprised that Christian leaders in the state haven't asked the very important question of 'who will be teaching it?'. If I were a religious leader I would be concerned about the information and whether it actually represents their faith at all. Technically they could have anyone of any faith (or none at all) teaching Christian information. Strange to me to let others control/interpret your faith and give that information to others. I'm also surprised Christian schools in the state take no issue with this when they already provide this education to their students.

  1. Terri Gail George's Avatar Terri Gail George

    Religion should not be taught in public or publicly funded schools aside from how they may pertain to teaching cultural differences.

  1. James Dean Lawler's Avatar James Dean Lawler

    What happened to freedom of religion? If religion is taught in schools it should be an elective and all religions should be offered as well. I don't want my children forced to learn a religion they don't agree with. I let my children choose what faith they preferred when they were older. I never told them which church to attend.

    1. Brien's Avatar Brien

      If it worked as you have laid out, there would not be much to object to. That would also be a good family discussion moment. But the zealots believe in the scorched earth scenerio, an all or nothing approach. It is one of the unfortunate reasons why religion needs to stay out of the classroom. But I do like your scenerio.

  1. John Eubanks's Avatar John Eubanks

    As long as the Bible is being held up as the perfect, inerrant, actual word of God, as fundamental evangelicals do, it cannot be taught in public schools. There's no way to say biblical text is literature when the people who are pushing it promote it to be inerrent and the actual word of the creator. How long do you think it will be before nonsense like creationism, the flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, the Tower of babel, the exodus, and all of the other things in the Old Testament that not even one shred of evidence that it ever happened exists, except within the pages of that book. It is literature or it is inspired and inerrant. Pick one it ain't both.

  1. George S Guida's Avatar George S Guida

    The Christian Taliban. Alive and well in Texass.

  1. Ari Joseph Bertine's Avatar Ari Joseph Bertine

    This is almost cartoon-like in its obvious villainy. How stupid does someone have to be to think that anyone is buying their "Oh it's just for cultural context, for reals, we're not trying to convert everyone's kids to a religion with super aggressive proselytization tactics," nonsense? Especially since some of the stories that we were introduced to as children, in a cultural context, involved wily predators trying to trick their way into someone's home so they could eat them. Sorry, Big Bad Texas, we ain't buying the Grandma costume or the high-pitched voice, you are going to have to go ahead and blow the house down.

    Which they will, they're not afraid to do that either, it'll just cost them more.

  1. Rev Samantha Counihan's Avatar Rev Samantha Counihan

    teaching religion in public school is a violation, if it happens then Pagan religions has to be tought too, theres private schools for teaching religion, public school isnt suppose to teach religion, a classmate i went to school with brought a bible to school and got it taken away, because it violated the rules, also that classmate was forcing their religion on others, why shouldnt bible stuff be tought in school ? simple because its forced on others in different faiths, i wouldnt want my children learning bibles or christianity because that goes against my faith against the parents faith and the public school can get sued for it

  1. Mountainsage's Avatar Mountainsage

    What would be offensive about having religious classes for different faiths so each child could engage with their own religious doctrines? Additionally, those who wish To learn about other religions or experience them could do that also. I try to bring something positive to this website. Not al Christian’s are ‘haters.’

    1. Leslie Renee Gray's Avatar Leslie Renee Gray

      I don’t see anything positive about dragging christian theosophy into public schools. Contemporary christianity is hung up on their desire to push hatred for anyone who doesn’t conform to their unfounded beliefs on sexual orientation and gender identity that are not rooted in scripture at all. How can a term that didn’t exist before 1868 show up in a religious text that has a prohibition against such a thing built into it in the first place?

      1. James Riggle-Johnson's Avatar James Riggle-Johnson

        They didn't add the word until 1946. That's the problem. Which bible version do they want to study? Religous courses are okay when you're studying Theology in college. Leave it out of K – 12.

    2. Brien's Avatar Brien

      How about if a student or the parents of decline the forced religion? What then?

  1. rebadams7's Avatar rebadams7

    There are many allusions to biblical stories and allegories in much of western literature. Knowledge of those stories give cultural context to other literary work. It all depends on how it is presented. A generation ago it would not have been a shock to present a tale from the Bible as just that. A tale.

    1. James Riggle-Johnson's Avatar James Riggle-Johnson

      If it were just a tale that would be different. They want to teach it as fact, not the collection of stories that it is. Just my thoughts.

  1. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

    It's a great idea. They are right that good, classic literature has references to Biblical stories and knowing these stories helps to understand the literature better. I also enjoyed the stories of the Greek and Roman gods which I was introduced to in school. They are all part of our Western heritage and should be included.

  1. Daniel Lee Minchew's Avatar Daniel Lee Minchew

    So it's ok to teach transgender,hate groups,hate against Jews .......but not what this country was founded on? Unbelievable...

    1. Leslie Renee Gray's Avatar Leslie Renee Gray

      America was not founded on any form of religion regardless of the lies you’ve been told. Look up the views of our founding fathers on religion in government for the truth of the matter.

      “The Government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion.”
~ 1797 Treaty of Tripoli signed by John Adams

      “In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own. It is error alone that needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself.”
~ Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to Horatio Spofford, 1814

      Our founders knew the horrors of allowing religious leaders to control the government all too well.

      1. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

        The declaration of Independence states God is behind our founding. Read it, it's at the first part.

        Sure, sure, no mandated religion but that doesn't mean much when measured against intentions, which are in print.

        1. Michael Hunt's Avatar Michael Hunt

          Where in the declaration of independence does it state God is behind the founding of America? The closest reference is, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness" but that says nothing about God being the reason for America's founding. All it says is that a Creator has given all men certain rights.

    2. Rev. Dr. Father JJ's Avatar Rev. Dr. Father JJ

      you uh....what do...are you trying to...yeah I got nothing. ask an adult to help you clarify your thoughts and come back, try again

  1. Steven Ferrell's Avatar Steven Ferrell

    If they can have books in the classroom that promote socialism, promote the alphabet agenda and lifestyle, promote being promiscuous, promote islam without parents getting any say, then the same should apply to the Bible.

    1. Ari Joseph Bertine's Avatar Ari Joseph Bertine

      This is Texas, so no, they cannot have books that do any of those things, or even hint at them or anything even remotely related. Texas has voracious book bannings every year. They will ban a book for looking at them funny.

      Of course, this one book that promotes slavery, forced marriage, the slaughter of women and infants, and genocide is their favorite so it gets a pass for all the gore and explicit sexual weirdness in it.

  1. Noe Domingo Martinez's Avatar Noe Domingo Martinez

    You're wrong. Sunday School is actually a place to learn about God's love and God's plan for an individual. Learning institute funded by tax dollars should be allowed to teach teach the Bible as a literary work of art not as religion. The Bible has many stories. It contains love stories, sad stories, war stories and it also contains one of the most unequivocal history book that has never been disproven.

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      ".....it also contains one of the most unequivocal history book that has never been disproven."

      ....or proven! Apart from many obvious place names. In a way, very similar to Harry Potter books.

      🦁♥️

    2. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

      Noe,

      As I first studied the old testament I fact checked the things that could be fact checked. I was alarmed with what I'd found.
      The people, places and events indeed have been uncovered by archeologists and scientists. Both secular and believers alike either knowingly or unknowingly have validated many thing from the old testament. In around 2015 secular scientists even discovered what they believe was a meteor caused atmospheric explosion above the region of Sodom and Gahmorrah that had such intense heat that it instantly converted living tissue into crystalline structures, meeting the biblical account.

      One by one verified biblical accounts are revealed as truth. The document contains too much verified truth to be disproven.

      1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

        That is wonderful, I'm so glad you did a fact check on the biblical stories. Perhaps you can list here on where the evidence is for the reality of Adam, Eve, Moses, Abraham, Jesus, and God, just to name a few of the many thousands to be getting on with.

        Don't worry, I won't be asking for the evidence of the reality of a talking Snake, or Ass, or Unicorn. Or even the proof that someone died and rose from the dead to the amazement of so many people that no historians of the day wrote about it.

        🦁♥️

        1. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

          Lionheart,

          Abraham is reported biblically to be buried in a cave which is now under the control of Muslims. It's contents won't be able to be scientifically reviewed any time in the foreseeable future.

          Regarding mosses and Exodus, that might be tough but not impossible. The bible says God would essentially erase the knowledge whatever Pharaoh it was that enslaved the Israelites. As a result, the boys in the lab still don't know who ordered the great pyramids built or even how they were built. They're not even definite of when they were built but there they are.

          For what it's worth, my ex boss seems to have a silver forked tongue, maybe he's the dude you're looking for...

          1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

            Darn it! The Abrahamic evidence isn’t possible then.

            As for Moses, he remains a myth then in a book.

            Not sure how the pyramids have anything to do with your claims.

            As for God, Jesus and the other guys, it’s still a problem, right?

            Your boss just might be worth listening to. 🤭

            Thank you for your nice reply. 🤗

            🦁❤️

      2. Ari Joseph Bertine's Avatar Ari Joseph Bertine

        Whatever your source is has done some troubling editing of fact to try to align events with Biblical accounts. There is absolutely no evidence that the meteor that destroyed Tall el-Hammam altered living flesh in any way other than instant fragmentation and total destruction due to the shockwave and heat, in the same way that our atom bombs destroyed people in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Taking such artistic liberties with actual scientific findings is what gives the appearance of being anti-science. You should probably be more careful selecting your sources for scientific data.

        1. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

          Ari, how can you make such a judgement without having seen the program to which SOJ refers. I saw the same program, if indeed SOJ watched it and not a journalist's article reporting on the same evidence, and it was very interesting and compelling. It seems poor thinking to immediately dismiss newly discovered information like this.

    3. Rev. Dr. Father JJ's Avatar Rev. Dr. Father JJ

      the bible is NOT a literary work, it is claimed to be 'the word of goD' so yeah, no it can't be taught in public schools.

      amazing how many kristofascists insist on the bible being the inerrant word of goD and now claiming it's a literary work of art along side Moby Dick (will they even allow THAT title to be seen?).

      1. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

        JJ, why do you think it must it be one or the other? It can be both.

  1. Elaine Hopper's Avatar Elaine Hopper

    ithis is my first comment , I believe church and all things religlious should be kept with the family and church. IMHO

    1. Brien's Avatar Brien

      Agreed. Such a simple statement, yet one that the zealots will not accept.

  1. Billy Heckstall's Avatar Billy Heckstall

    A National Decision

    I must admit, that a Bible verse was required each morning in my elementary school by each student, as far as the fifth grade. Why this was required is beyond me. However, some of those verse did get me through some very bad times during my service in the military.

    I think, Biblical studies are not a bad thing to be offered in school as an elective for those who choose to attend ( for that matter, any faith). But, I also believe they should be taught by well informed scholars and not dogmatic zealots.

    Those who understand that the Bible is a great work of literature is nice. But, to be able to dissect the book into it’s various sectors of history, prophetic laws (some which are insane), poetry and mysticism is what makes it an educational journey, not a brainwashing. That would be preferable and great! It would also be a major step towards making this topic of a religious subject matter. A study, rather than a religious brainwashing and dictatorship by dogmatic lunatics group.

    As for teaching morality to young people? There are many levels in philosophy that covers a range of those subject matters, which can be broken down to an elementary level of study and understanding.

    While religious books and scrolls maybe good in some aspects of study, they should be left to theologians and research scholars. People mature enough to digest the subject matter in a positive manner and grow from it, rather than be influenced in a negative.

    While not perhaps, a great substitute for the education of moral values. Because, there are too many variables to say the desired out come would be achieved. A safe bet, would be to leave this subject matter in each family’s home, or as an elective for high school or college curriculum.

    However, any state law or institution that would enforce such an issue would in my opinion be a violation of our constitution. Which by all accounts should be the measuring stick by which all our state and national laws should be held in account.

    And let us all hope that the Absolute, whatever that means for each of us, is watching.

    Peace…

  1. George Walter Kauffman's Avatar George Walter Kauffman

    Next ... Which state is going to follow Texas' Lead ?

  1. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

    The only reason I would be opposed is we wouldn't want a magic bean believer teaching God's word.

    Sounds like they're giving other religions a fair shake at it also so that's fair I suppose.

    Bottom line, a teacher that believes flawlessly replicating life self spawned from funky space dust and modulated fractal cosmic lightning just won't comprehend reality. Not enough to teach it anyway.

    1. Rev. Dr. Father JJ's Avatar Rev. Dr. Father JJ

      ServentOfPoorJudgement; You seem to have a problem with (understanding) science, why is that? Moreover you seem to question a teacher's ability to comprehend reality because they understand and teach the science, why is that? Science is repeatable, modifiable, comprehensive and built on evidence that can prove or disprove scientific principals and theories where as your belief system is based on goat-herders tales, superstitions and centuries of ignorance. It's that person (like yourself) that I feel can not comprehend reality and lives in a fantasy world where a mystical, make-believe cloud-clown resides, torturing, ignoring, killing and shaming all the people who believe in her.

      Your thoughts?

      1. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

        Jj,

        I never said anything negative about science. I did say something about the belief in self spawning life though. The end game of science is proof demonstrated by repeatability or predictability. We agree on that, that's good. That's when you know your science is no longer a belief(hypothesis or theory).

        Here's a great example of good science: The goat herders were given the belief that eating shellfish and pork was bad for them. 4000 years later, science discovered microbes and dissolved heavy metals. A panel of scientists then declared eating pork and shellfish put ones health at risk. That's good science.

        One must ask the question, how did goat herders know so many things science just figured out last century? Not just with invisible dietary risks but also other facts of nature and mankind.

        Like with our creator, you won't find the proof you require to stop believing and start knowing about our origins under a rock, in a fossil or on the moon. Like me you have no choice but to believe you're right and I'm wrong. Furthermore, if man creates replicating life in a lab from non living materials that were never living or came from anything living, he will have done so in a laboratory, which the natural world has none of. As you know, man can do things that nature can not. Man is somewhat supernatural and he will have created the life, not the lab.

        To my point, I bet you agree, I would be a terrible teacher of evolution. A teacher that doesn't believe in what he's teaching ought not teach it.

        1. Rev. Dr. Father JJ's Avatar Rev. Dr. Father JJ

          eat shellfish, get sick, maybe die. happens enough times even the staunchest shellfish eater is going to decide it's not worth it. maybe make up some dietary law about it or some edict from a cloud clown.

          anyway, yes you kinda did say something negative about science when you said, "a teacher that believes flawlessly replicating life self spawned from funky space dust and modulated fractal cosmic lightning just won't comprehend reality. Not enough to teach it anyway."

          your contempt (and ignorance) of science is unfortunate but not shocking given that you seem to think some cloud clown and just create life from mud, or nothing, just KAPOW and universe. a little mud and (hopefully) spit and POW, a little human plaything. and here you are mocking and deprecating science and science teachers

          1. ServantOfJudgement's Avatar ServantOfJudgement

            I'm curious about your basic scientific knowledge JJ. These days we can look back with 20 20 vision. We don't dare assume the ancients knew what is common knowledge today.

            Let's test your knowledge now with this very simple and scientific question even primitive goat herders knew the answer to 4000 years ago.

            Can a man get pregnant?

            1. Michael Hunt's Avatar Michael Hunt

              Classic bait-and-switch. Here we're debating the science (or lack there of) of creation and you decide to switch the conversation to transgender issues. Maybe it's because you realize you can't debate on the merits so you have to switch topics to something you think you can debate.

              To answer your question, no a male cannot get pregnant, but a transgender man who still has ovaries and a uterus can. It's happened already. Science progresses and evolves as our understanding grows. Christianity is stuck in the bronze age.

              1. Russel A. Kester's Avatar Russel A. Kester

                Michael, there is no such creature as a man with ovaries. Experiencing gender dysphoria does not make a person the gender opposite of their biological sex. It does mean that they are experiencing mental health issues about gender association. But that health issue doesn't not turn a woman into a man. Not possible. You're following bad sociological theories, not science and not reality.

  1. Nancy Richards-Marcus's Avatar Nancy Richards-Marcus

    Teaching The Bible as Literature is a great Idea, if its taught alongside other religious text and beliefs, Comparative religion is well worth studying in school after the age of 7 when a child has reason. I had a class in high school Eastern and Western Philosophy and Religion and it was the best. This was my first introduction to the Bible for the most part as my parents never brought me to any religious studies or worship. I loved that class it was eye opening for sure. Ultimately I decided Taoism was where it was at and Eastern Philosophy made far more sense. But i really appreciated that class it was one of my favorites for sure. In looking back i only wish they included Paganism. I notice it's never an option when declaring a multiple choice religious affiliation question btw. Now i consider myself a Pagan, and i welcome the healing light of Christ, I relate to the Hindu gods and goddesses, i really like all of it and that was the begining of my journey that brings me here to this site today. Further i should say, i did not get much teaching in terms of morals or how to behave and treat others and care for myself, so i appreciate the spiritual texts with ideas how to be a decent person and get along in civilization, how to care for the self with meditation. I dont think its what people think it is much of the time and there is much misguided rebellion and vilification of actually some useful metaphor and outrageous stories. really that anyone could identify with and mediate on their own actions.There is no harm in putting history and ideas forth for the youth to consider, just how they will shape their lives. Assume positive intent. I think a good teacher can make all the difference in a kids life, and remember its all about love anyway. Isnt it just plain interesting.

  1. Terri Murray's Avatar Terri Murray

    The Bible is also a history book. What is so wrong using this teaching mechanism? How different is this than letting kids read things like "The Sorcerer and the Stone", among other books and fairy tales?

  1. RAYMOND BENITEZ's Avatar RAYMOND BENITEZ

    Colossians 3:2
    Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.... Sometimes we are as foolish as those around us. "If it's not broken why fix it". I will not entertain foolishness or commend sense question that for it is a waste of my time and energy. We have the President of the United States, and we have O Mighty God. Pick one. This will answer your question. Amen. How can one not criticize people when they are the ones who create the ideas to be criticize. If it is not from the Bible; leave it alone... Blessings

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      Are you suggesting we should adopt biblical principals, Sir Raymond? If you are, I don’t think I’m in favor of bringing back slavery, or stoning people to death, all condoned by that biblical god. But each to their own I guess 🤷🏼

      🦁❤️

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