Bible=textbook?

A friend from school brought up a topic yesterday that I thought would be good to blog about: teaching the Bible in public schools.  As is very common for me, I disagreed with my friends’ views on this topic.  They think there would be nothing wrong with that. 

I do.

You all know the arguments, and I picked a side.  I really believe that you can’t say it’s okay to teach the Bible but forbid, say, the Koran.  That’s hypocritical.  And then the argument about the difference being our country was founded on Christian principles . . . cheap shot, nothing more.  First of all, because we can, indeed, disagree with the Founders, if we so choose.  But, more importantly, I don’t believe our Founders would want that.  The Church ruled England during the time people fled to the New World.  The Church ruled all of the civilized world for centuries.  Both Catholic and Protestant.  And, if you brush up on your history, you’ll find both groups did a terrible job. (Remember a little thing called the Crusades??)  The pilgrims and puritans and Huguenots and Quakers and all the others came here for religious FREEDOM.  They wanted a place where they could be LEFT ALONE to worship AS THEY CHOSE.  They would not have put religion in their law.  Okay, I take that back.  Those groups would have, yes.  They all lived in their own little religious communities, where they didn’t mingle with others, so it didn’t matter what they’re laws said.  But, let’s fast forward to the actual “Founders”.

George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry, John Hancock, etc. Jefferson penned the phrase endowed by their Creator into the Declaration of Independence.  I believe he meant it just like he wrote it.  Our Founders believed that GOD gave us the right to LIFE, LIBERTY and the PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS.  These are God-given, unearned, equally distributed gifts.  It doesn’t say anything more, or anything less than just that. 

The first Amendment gives us the right to Religion, Assembly, Speech, Press and Petition. Contrary to popular belief, NOWHERE in our Constitution does the phrase “separation of Church and State” emerge.  That is merely a quote from a letter Thomas Jefferson wrote in which he was speaking OF this First Amendment.  But it is not included in the Amendment itself. 

I don’t think we should try hamper religion in schools at all.  But that means ANY religion, not Christianity only.  Obviously, if the religion causes problems or has illegal activity (i.e. Islamic Extremists’ terrorism) that would be banned.  But overall, our country could use the reminder of love for our fellow man and some good old-fashioned morals. 

I do think it’s OKAY to use the Bible as a textbook, but I would include ALL world religions.  Honestly, I would LOVE to teach a class like that.  It would be a history of religion and it’s affects on our world/morals class.  I would have everything from Mythology to Scientology.  That would be fun and informative.  I think a person can learn a lot from religion, especially what not to do.  We all have to admit that every religion has screwed up in mega ways. 

As a Christian–yes, believe it or not, I am a Christian 🙂  –I can’t believe that forcing our beliefs down kids’ throats will convert them!  It’s not about all that technical nonsense, it’s about Jesus Christ.  Will you LIVE so that people can see Him in you?  Or will you argue and fight to get your Spiritual Guide Book–and yours alone–into our governments programs?  I don’t think Jesus would have wanted that.

“Give to Caesars what is Caesars, and give to God what is God’s,”  is a quote from Christ Himself. 

I think “Under God” and “In God We Trust” should stay.  Why change them?  They encompass ALL religions, not just one, and if they weren’t hurting you before, why are they now? 

I think prayer should be brought back into schools.  How was that POSSIBLY hurting anything?  I once read a quote that said, “As long as there are tests, there will be prayer in public schools.”   🙂  Very true.  I think THAT law broke the First Amendment. 

I do not think evolution should be taught as FACT, but it should be taught as a very possible–maybe even probable–THEORY.  We need to stop insulting our kids by not trusting them to make good decisions.  Tell them all options and theories that people believe–including Creationism, but again, only as theory.  Then, let them decide for themselves what they’ll believe.  Christians need to realize that if we don’t dare let our kids be taught anything but what we believe, they’ll only be following Christ because they don’t know any better and never really had a choice.  The same goes for other groups, as well.

But, despite all these other “Christiany” political beliefs I have, I still say that you need to keep the Bible out of schools, unless you’re willing to teach it as literature and include other influential religious books as well.  Kind of a long, complicated stance, but it’s what I believe.  I mean, is anything simple or cut-and-dry anymore??  

Well, that’s that.  Don’t hate me too much for it, please.  🙂

Blessings,

Emily Grace

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