Kentucky Governor Signs Bill Authorizing Elective Social Studies Courses on the Bible

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Republican governor of Kentucky has signed a bill that authorizes the creation of elective social studies courses on the Bible in public schools.

House Bill 128 overwhelmingly passed the state Senate last month 34-4 after clearing the House 80-14.

As previously reported, the legislation was introduced by Rep. DJ Johnson, R-Owensboro, who says that its purpose is “to provide guidance, uniformity, and constitutional support for the local school boards that may be wanting to offer such courses, but are unsure of the way to proceed.”

Under policies to be crafted by the Kentucky Department of Education, the course would “teach students knowledge of biblical content, characters, poetry, and narratives that are prerequisites to understanding contemporary society and culture, including literature, art, music, mores, oratory, and public policy.”

It would serve historical purposes rather than provide religious instruction, and districts would be required to stay neutral on Christianity.

Sen. Danny Carroll, R-Paducah, told Kentucky Today that a high school in his district is already offering a Bible course, and there has been much interest from students.

“I’ve learned it is one of the most popular classes,” he said. “It’s very successful; the sky didn’t fall with this being taught, and it is very beneficial.”

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The bill had been criticized by the Kentucky Council of Churches, which said that the move could be harmful to religious freedom.

“If this were a world religions class or something that gave students the opportunity to learn the historical significance of all religious traditions or sacred text, then we would not be opposed to it,” Interim Executive Director Peggy Hinds told reporters.

But Paul Chitwood, the executive director of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, stated that he is thankful that both the General Assembly and the governor have enacted legislation “to make clear that the Bible is perfectly acceptable on school campuses and in classrooms.” Bevin had also recently signed into law a bill intended to “prevent people of faith from having their political or religious opinions silenced in schools.”

“Having seen so many students and teachers needlessly hurt by administrators who misunderstood religious liberty protections already in place, I believe these new laws will go a long way to clear misconceptions,” he told the Baptist Press.

During debate in the House, Rep. Stan Lee, R-Lexington, also declared that America was not founded on Islam or other religions—it was founded by men who read and followed the Scriptures.

“This country—whether some people want to believe it or not—wasn’t founded as a Muslim nation, wasn’t founded as a Hindu nation, wasn’t founded as a Hari Krishna nation. It was founded as a Christian nation,” he said.

“It’s been said on the floor today that teaching the Bible ain’t going to get it done. Well, let me tell you what didn’t get it done: Kicking God out of school, kicking the Bible out of school, kicking prayer out of school,” Lee proclaimed.

As previously reported, the first textbook used in the American colonies even before the nation’s founding, “The New England Primer,” was largely focused on the Scriptures, and was stated to be popular in public and private schools alike until approximately the early 1900’s. It used mostly the King James Bible as reference, and spoke much about sin, salvation and proper behavior.

“Save me, O God, from evil all this day long, and let me love and serve Thee forever, for the sake of Jesus Christ, Thy Son,” it read.

Many of the Founders’ children learned to read from the primer.

Noah Webster’s famous “Blue Back Speller” also referenced Christianity, including God-centered statements in reading lessons such as “The preacher is to preach the gospel,” “Blasphemy is contemptuous treatment of God,” and “We do not like to see our own sins.” Webster is known as the father of American education.


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  • Trilemma

    So, Kentucky just passed a law respecting an establishment of religion.

    “This country—whether some people want to believe it or not—wasn’t
    founded as a Muslim nation, wasn’t founded as a Hindu nation, wasn’t
    founded as a Hari Krishna nation. It was founded as a Christian nation,” he said.

    This country was not founded as a Christian nation. It was founded as a secular nation that happened to be populated predominately by Christians.

    • Michael Ellis

      America was certainly not founded as a secular country. Although obviously not a theocracy, you’d have to be blind not to recognize that is was established on Judeo/Christian principles and values, and the framework of the Republic was intentionally laid out that way by the predominantly Bible believing founders.

      • Trilemma

        America was founded as a secular nation for the purpose of protecting rights. If American had been founded as a Christian nation then the purpose would have been to impose morality. When Christianity has political power you get things like the Spanish Inquisition and the Salem witch trials.

        • Gary Whiteman

          What you know of history would fit on a Post-It note.

          • Jason Todd

            You are being generous.

        • Michael Ellis

          You mean God given rights?!?!
          The intended purpose of the founders in forming a nation based on Judeo / Christian values was primarily for freedom to worship God without State interference (that’s why it’s in the FIRST Amendment). As for enforcement of ethics, where do you think the basis of the rule of law (right and wrong) in civilized society comes from? It certainly doesn’t come from the inherent goodness of human beings. It comes from God’s moral law and the 10 Commandments.

          • Jason Todd

            Trilemma’s problem is simple: He wishes to believe God has no presence in the foundation of this country, and yet, he cannot explain the direct reference to Him in the Declaration of Independence.

            This country was never meant to be Godless. That’s a sociopolitical philosophy that belongs in China, Cuba, and the Soviet Union 30 years ago. It’s a philosophy that has no place in the United States of America.

            Ever. Period.

          • Tangent002

            There are deistic references to “Nature’s God” and “Divine Providence,” but nothing specific to the Christian religion.

            Further, there is no reference to God in the Constitution, which is our foundational authority.

          • Bob Johnson

            The Declaration of Independence is, technically, a British document, directed to the King of England, who is head of the Anglican Church. Therefore, since the colonies were claiming to be going over the head of state we might assume that the Supreme Judge would be the Anglican (Episcopalian) God. As an aside, many folks on this website do not concider Episcopalians to be Christians.

          • Jason Todd

            And your point is….?

          • Bob Johnson

            You pontificated, “…explain the direct reference to Him in the Declaration of Independence.”

            my answer,
            1 – it is a British document
            2 – Britain is a theocracy

          • Jason Todd

            1 – It is an American document. It doesn’t sit in the National Archives because people were defecting from America.

            Blocked.

          • Trilemma

            The reference to god in the Declaration of Independence was to Thomas Jefferson’s god of deism and not the God of Christianity. The American Revolutionary War was rebellion against God.

            Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. – Romans 3:1 ESV

            Christians who tried to be obedient to Romans 3:1 were persecuted to such an extent they had to flee to Canada.

          • Jason Todd

            Bull. Blocked.

          • Jason Todd

            I mean, come on! To say “The American Revolution was rebellion against God?” This clown knows NOTHING about how or why the American Revolution became necessary.

          • Trilemma

            The Declaration of Independence lists the reasons why the American Revolution became necessary. Do you remember, “No taxation without representation.”

          • Trilemma

            In the Declaration of Independence, it’s the god of deism that endows people with inalienable rights. YHWY doesn’t endow people with inalienable rights. The Declaration of Independence lists many reasons for declaring independence but the freedom to worship God without State interference isn’t one of them. One of the big reasons for independence was, “No Taxation Without Representation.”

            The rule of law in America does not come from the Ten Commandments. There is not law requiring everyone to worship Jesus only. There is no law requiring everyone to not make a graven image and bowing down to it. There is no law requiring everyone to not take the Lord’s name in vain. There is no law requiring everyone to observe the Sabbath. There is no law requiring everyone to honor their mother and father. There is no law requiring everyone to not to covet.

        • Chris

          Everyone’s speaking about the Declaration of Independence but it is irrelevant to the United states. The US only started to exist with the signing of the constitution.The declaration is merely signally intent and is NOT binding.

    • bowie1

      The way I understand it is not the establishment of religion that is unconstitutional but only the promotion or prohibition there of. It sounds like this bill only allows but does not require religious studies.

      • RWH

        This entire affair is not as good as it looks. There is no problem with the Bible being taught as literature, and the materials will be restricted to that position. Nothing that looks like it proselytizes will be allowed. So, expect the kids to have materials that advocate an allegorical interpretation of Genesis and a neutral stance toward everything else. They’re not going to look anything like Sunday School materials.

      • Trilemma

        Christianity is an establishment of religion and this law promotes it by allowing Bible studies as a class rather than a club. It is also preferential in that it allows Bible studies but not Quran studies. Even though the law requires neutrality toward Christianity, it’s clearly the first step in an effort to get the Bible and Christianity into schools.

    • james blue

      Correct. The bible is the foundation of the Christian church in this nation, The nation was not founded as a Christian nation

    • Jason Todd

      You can’t create a pre-existing religion.

      • Trilemma

        The First Amendment says the government can’t make a law respecting a pre-existing religion.

        • Jason Todd

          Wrong. It says Congress can’t create its own religion.

          • Trilemma

            An establishment is something that has been established. An establishment of religion is a religion that has been established.

          • Jason Todd

            Wrong again. Check out the definition of “establish” in the Websters 1828 dictionary.

          • Trilemma

            Why would I look up “establish” when it’s not used in The First Amendment.

            Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

            From the Webster’s 1828 dictionary definition for establishment:

            5. That which is fixed or established; as a permanent military force, a fixed garrison, a local government, an agency, a factory, etc. The king has establishments to support, in the four quarters of the globe.

          • Jason Todd

            Because it’s used in the Preamble. And it isn’t used twice to mean two different things.

            You cannot set up or fix a religion that existed for over 1000 years!

            Good heavens!!

          • Trilemma

            Two different words, two different meanings. In the preamble the word “establish” is a verb. In the First Amendment the word “establishment” is a noun.

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            Jason, the courts have found that establishment means any governmental action that either promotes or materially supports one church at the expense of a secular purpose.

            Go read Lemon v. Kurtzman, 403 U.S. 602 (1971). It established the Lemon Test, which is used to evaluate government actions that tread close to the First Amendment’s Establishment clause.

            The Lemon Test is three-pronged.

            1. The statute must have a secular legislative purpose. (Also known as the Purpose Prong)

            2. The principal or primary effect of the statute must not advance nor
            inhibit religion. (Also known as the Effect Prong)

            3. The statute must not result in an “excessive government entanglement” with religion. (Also known as the Entanglement Prong)

            That’s it. If these classes teach the Bible as a document of historical and social interest, and do so in a purely academic way, fine. But the moment a teacher crosses the line into preaching, or another teacher is forbidden to reference materials like the Talmud or the Koran, it fails the test.

          • Jason Todd

            Yes, it was decreed by men in black robes.

            People like Trilemma and organizations like the FFRF have perverted this fallacy as part of their anti-Christian crusade.

            Which is why I always go back to what the Constitution says.

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            And what specifically does the Constitution say?

          • Jason Todd

            I answered that question elsewhere in this thread. Find it.

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            Then you did a terrible job of it. The law recognizes establishment to mean any action that gives the weight of government support to a single religion at the expense of other faiths or secular considerations. This is long settled law.

            The Preamble uses establish twice, once to define what the document sets out to do, and then to declare that we “ordain and establish” the Constitution. This use has nothing to establishment as used in the First Amendment.

            For example, take this sentence. “I went to the 49ers game and they go killed by the Patriots, then I went home and killed my neighbors.”

            As always when reading, you have to look at context. Obviously, the New England Patriots did not cause the deaths of the 49ers entire roster, it was an expression for a lopsided game. However, the second clause in that sentence uses the word killed as a verb, suggesting that Herb and Marge next door met an untimely end at my hands.

            So in the First Amendment, the Establishment Clause is very very. The government cannot contribute to any establishment of religion, and due to the Supremacy Clause, that extends down to state and local governments as well.

          • Jason Todd

            This is long settled law.

            According to whom?

            The Preamble uses establish twice, once to define what the document sets out to do, and then to declare that we “ordain and establish” the Constitution. This use has nothing to establishment as used in the First Amendment.

            You know, for a “lawyer” your syntax is rather sloppy.

            And for you to say the word “establish” has a meaning that runs counter to its definition in Webster’s 1828 dictionary? Bollocks.

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            1. According to the body of US law and court rulings. Like it our not, our legal system uses precedent as a guide on how the Constitution and laws enacted by Congress or the States should be interpreted.

            2. Can you go one post without a personal attack?

            3. I’m using the word the way the founders used it.

          • Jason Todd

            1. I do not care what some people in black robes and sporting God complexes think. I go by what the Constitution says. And like it or not, there is no such thing as “separation of church and state.”

            2. That says a lot about you. Have I blocked you in the past? Maybe I should do so again.

            3. The way the founders used it is the way it was defined in 1828. So you are full of it, there.

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            1. Then you are ignoring how the government works. The Constitution is written in a broad manner precisely because the founders understood that they could not predict how things might change.

            For example, there is no mention of the Air Force in the Constitution. Because heavier-than-air flight wouldn’t be a thing for over a century. However, the Constitution gives the power to create new offices and departments as needed. The document was meant to be examined and debate, not followed slavishly. The meaning of the Establishment Clause is clear and has been ruled on consistently by the courts for decades. It is the wall of separation between church and state.

            2. Sir, you are the one making attacks. You do seem to use the blocking feature a great deal, and mostly on those making points you can’t refute. Feel free to block me, I won’t care a bit.

            3. Funny, but you left this part of the definition out. From the 1828 Webster’s definition of establishment:

            “The episcopal form of religion, so called in England.”

            Why did you cherry-pick the section you want, and ignore this other line? Could it be that you realized that using the full definition would undermine your argument?

            I don’t expect an answer. You’ll just block me and pretend this never happened.

          • Jason Todd

            1. The phrase comes from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson, but it was not an explanation of the First Amendment. George Washington and John Adams would routinely issue religious proclamations. Thomas Jefferson stated he didn’t not like religious proclamations because it was something that King George did. Alexander Hamilton, who campaigned for John Adams in the election against Jefferson, used these words to imply he was an atheists and would ban religion. When Jefferson was elected, the Danbury Baptists were afraid Jefferson would use the office of the Presidency to outlaw their faith. Jefferson responded, saying no matter what his personal views were, the First Amendment served to build a wall that separated Church from the State, thus protecting religion from undue influence by the State.

            This clause was not cited in a Supreme Court case until 1878, in Reynolds vs. the United States. In that case, the US had outlawed polygamy. Reynolds, a Mormon, challenged this law by marrying two women. He used his religion as his defense. The Court upheld his conviction, citing this phrase, to demonstrate the separation worked both way, otherwise, each person could create their own religion to place themselves above the law. For example, someone could claim that human sacrifices were part of their religion to avoid being convicted of killing someone.

            The phrase was never meant to exclude faiths from participating in their government or benefiting from their government. That has only been a more recent interpretation of people who do not like religion, particularly Christianity. (Thanks to audieho)

            2. I block morons, liars, anti-Christian bigots and a combination of the three.

            3. The Webster’s 1828 dictionary has a website: Webstersdictionary1828(dot)com. The sentence you refer to does not appear within the definitions of “establish” or “establishment.” Which makes you a liar. (Although I am sure you will call that a personal attack.)

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            1. You just supported my point. The state cannot establish religions, nor deny the right to worship freely. You missed this quote from Reynolds:

            “Marriage, while from its very nature a sacred obligation, is nevertheless, in most civilized nations, a civil contract, and usually regulated by law.”

            This established that marriage is both religious and civil, and that federal and state laws can impact marriages. Later cases, most notable Loving v. Virginia, established that the freedom to marry is protected by the 14th Amendment.

            That’s your problem, you cherry pick. Reynolds is an important case, but it has been built on over the years. You might also want to read up on The Late Corporation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints v. United States.

            For the record, I have no problem with consensual polyamory. The problem legally is the current set up addresses binary relationships. We’d have to write a bundles of new laws to deal with civil multiple participant marriages.

            The law was never meant to prevent people from practicing their faith, but to prevent the state from become an agent of a particular church.

            2. No, you block people who out argue you. I’ve seen you do it several times.

            3. The definition I cited was number 6 on the entry for Establishment. Right below the one you cited.

          • Trilemma

            I cited number 5. Jason rejected that one too.

          • Jason Todd

            You just supported my point. The state cannot establish religions, nor deny the right to worship freely.

            Actually, you just supported mine.

            No, you block people who out argue you. I’ve seen you do it several times.

            You don’t out argue people by being stupid. You do it by presenting actual facts. Homosexuals are not born that way, separation of church and state is not in the Constitution, the Freedom From Religion Foundation consists of anti-Christian bigots, morality is not something you are free to make up as you go along, etc. These are all incontrovertible, undeniable facts.

            If you wish to try to make reality bend to your will, I will leave you to do that. I refuse to be a part of your morally and intellectually vacant world. That’s how you get blocked.

            The definition I cited was number 6 on the entry for Establishment. Right below the one you cited.

            Dude, you need to stop lying. I cannot post screenshots here, but anyone with an IQ level above yours can go to the website as earlier posted, put in both words as previously mentioned, and clearly see you are a liar. So stop it.

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            1. All the science points to sexual orientation being as natural as handiness. I never chose to be straight, I just started noticed that girls were suddenly *very* interesting when I was about 11. Same goes for my LGBT friends and family.

            2. Separation of church and state can be found in Article VI and the First Amendment. I have two centuries of court rulings backing me up there.

            3. The FFRF does great work. Not their fault that the people trying to impose religious rule in this nation are almost always Christians.

            4. Morality is defined by society. 400 years ago slavery was accepted in almost every Christian state on Earth. Now it’s abhorrent. Torture used to be a moral way of extracting confessions, sanctioned by church leaders all across Europe. Now it sickens us. Did you know that in the early 20th century there was a large religious movement against automobiles?

            5. Establishment

            ESTAB’LISHMENT, noun The act of establishing, founding, ratifying or ordaining.

            1. Settlement; ; fixed state.

            2. Confirmation; ratification of what has been settled or made.

            3. Settled regulation; form; ordinance; system of laws; constitution of government.

            Bring in that establishment by which all men should be contained in duty.

            4. Fixed or stated allowance for subsistence; income; salary.

            His excellency–might gradually lessen your establishment

            5. That which is fixed or established; as a permanent military force, a fixed garrison, a local government, an agency, a factory, etc. The king has establishments to support, in the four quarters of the globe.

            6. The episcopal form of religion, so called in England.

            7. Settlement or final rest.

            We set up our hopes and establishment here.

            I’ll put the link in a separate reply.

          • Jason Todd

            All the science points to sexual orientation being as natural as handiness.

            There’s no such thing as sexual orientation.

            Separation of church and state can be found in Article VI and the First Amendment.

            Liar. The phrase doesn’t appear anywhere, implied or explicit, in whole or in part. The fact you have chosen to ignore they actual origins of the phrase as well as its context makes the lie bald-faced.

            The FFRF does great work.

            This says a lot about you.

            Morality is defined by society.

            Wrong again. Morality, as defined, always comes from somewhere, whether it be God or an individual. Problem is, it should never be left to the individual because that’s where anarchy comes from.

            Now, being an honest person, I have noticed the episcopal thing you mention. However, there needs to be an argument on how and why that is even relevant.

            Placing both words “establish” and “establishment” in their proper context as they are used within the Constitution, it is clear the intent here is to be synonymous with fix, set and create, three things you cannot do with a 1700-year-old religion.

            In other words, Congress cannot create its own religion, nor keep people from practicing theirs. That is what the Constitution says, that is what it means. As said before, they only people arguing otherwise are those who hate religion, especially and specifically Christianity.

            You lose, and you are now blocked.

          • TheLastHonestLawyer

            I lose? No, I’ve win this, as you ran for cover and hid when confronted by the realities of US law.

            I swear pretty soon Jason is going to block everyone. I only block people who can’t construct a rational argument.

    • Louie

      The bible is a valuable historical and cultural reference. This should not be controversial. Admitting the existence of Christianity as well other Faiths needn’t be an endorsement. Pretending faith doesn’t exist (or just avoiding eye contact with faith) is as bad as denying sound science.

      • Trilemma

        I agree, but this law excludes other faiths.

    • Grace Kim Kwon

      USA is a Christian theocracy like other European nations. Read the Declaration of Independence. Americans trust and submit to the God of the Holy Bible alone. Christians create nations, the atheists destroy them, the foreigners take over the land, and the faith bounces back – the pattern on Planet Earth.

      • Johndoe

        Further proof that you know very little about our country. We are a nation of many faiths and no faith at all. We have never been a theocracy.

      • TheKingOfRhye

        Read Article VI, Section 3, and the 1at Amendment of the US Constitution. Oh, reread the definition of “theocracy”, too, while you’re at it.

        • Grace Kim Kwon

          America is a slave owner again. It was by racism before; this time by the mental illness of homosexuality and transgenderism. The latter is far worse.

          • TheKingOfRhye

            The US is not a theocracy and never has been. Anyone who claims it ever was doesn’t understand the meaning of the word.

            There’s actually only one Christian theocracy currently in existence. The rest are Islamic states.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            Americans don’t understand what theocracy means. Americans submit to God alone and not to any other; that’s a Christian theocracy. The world has 5 kinds today. 1) Historic Christendoms and their mimickers where there is freedom and fairness and education to all. 2) atheism’s dystopia which includes communist nations. 3) Islamic region where there is no freedom. 4) Western Sodom 5) Nations with various forms of illiteracy. #4 is corrupting the #1.

          • TheKingOfRhye

            “Americans don’t understand what theocracy means”

            Oxford Dictionary definition of theocracy: “a system of government in which priests rule in the name of God or a god.”. Apparently you’re using some other definition I haven’t heard of, because the US has never fit that description.

            “Americans submit to God alone and not to any other”

            That’s just completely wrong. Almost 30% of Americans are not Christians. (And that only goes up if you, as some Christians do, consider certain denominations to not be “True Christians”). Over 20% of Americans identify themselves as atheist, agnostic, or “no religion”.

            “atheism’s dystopia which includes communist nations.”

            An atheist state is not a theocracy because atheism is not a religion. By the way, I am not in favor of either an atheist state or communism.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            The USA was founded by the Judeo-Christian values and that’s why it was good. A theocracy by the priciples. Today, it’s a Sodom by unconditional adhering to homosexual immorality. Post-christian West have fallen into a Sodom. Westerners have no rights to deny theocracy, because the Pre-christian and pagans are a barbarism, Post-christian is a depraved immorality, and atheism is a terror. Judeo-Christian values alone are good.

          • TheKingOfRhye

            “The USA was founded by the Judeo-Christian values and that’s why it was good. A theocracy by the priciples”

            First of all, a nation founded on Judeo Christian values is not necessarily a theocracy, by the definition I quoted above. You are obviously defining that word in some other way, so tell me what that is.

            Also, what particular values, that are exclusive to Judeo Christianity, would those be?

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            The liberals have kept lying to mankind. The Western civilization has nothing good apart from the Judeo-Christian values. Today’s West’s Sodomic condition is the proof. All the excellences of the Western civilization threfore of the USA is from Christianity. As man is nothing apart from the truth, his conscience, and his parents. Non-christian Westerners are playboys and addicts. You guys need Christianity to become moral and civilized, not just to get saved.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            If the flags, banners, national anthems, national declarations, national pledges, or the money bills mention the protection from and submission to God and the signs of the Cross, it is a Christian theocracy. Atheists/humanists/secularists only destroy the existing nations and pollute the planet; they never create. Christians create excellent nations. (Psalm 14, Daniel chapters 7-12)

          • TheKingOfRhye

            None of those things has anything having to do with “the signs of a cross”. The flag contains no reference to God whatsoever.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            The European flags. The USA is a child of Europe. Because the USA ignores the fact how much they stole from the Christian Europe, the world is not grateful to the USA no matter how much the Americans give and sacrifice for the world. Cain’s descendants did not learn the way of the Lord or the history and went extinct without names. The USA must not become like Cain. Remember history and read the Word of God. The USA will be gone, but the Word of God remains forever. Isaiah 40.

          • TheKingOfRhye

            We’re obviously talking about two different things here.

            OK then, define “theocracy”.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            The reign of God on earth – the only thing all the American forefathers and the European creators of the nations aimed and dreamed about.

          • TheKingOfRhye

            Whatever that means to you, it’s not a definition you’ll find in any dictionary. If we’re going to define words in different ways, we might as well be talking in different languages.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            The secular West must stop pushing the depraved homosexual decadence; or the West is a human rights violator and the enemy of the truth and freedom this century. The fact does not change.

    • Sharon Neumann

      Not true. America was a land full of promise that settlers believed they could practice Christianity freely without a king having his rule over it. That is the premise of our foundational documents of our government, at times referred to as the great experiment.

      • Trilemma

        It’s true that many people came to American because they believed they could practice Christianity freely without a king having his rule over it. But religious freedom was not the reason for declaring independence. The Declaration of Independence lists 27 reasons for declaring independence. Freedom of religion isn’t one of them. Our government is called the great experiment because it is a democratic republic.

  • james blue

    So under this bill are other religious books allowed to be taught under the guise of “social studies”?

    • Sisyphus

      Better than under the guise of “science”.

  • Grace Kim Kwon

    Yes, the Christian education! It is the only way for mankind to learn to value everyone’s life including self and stop the future senseless killings!! Secularism is immoral, selfish, greedy, disloyal, disrespectful, lie-loving, meaningless, and depressing to the core. Man is not animal and should live to honor God and seek the truth. Having godly descendants is the true ever-lasting blessedness on earth and beyond. Secularists neither value the truth or their parents and only ruin the children. Man needs God to be good and have any meaning in life.

  • Grace Kim Kwon

    American kids need Christianity. America has no other conscience. Those who bash their own conscience get enslaved by the godless liberals and drugged into addicts and become bad people. Education should make kids good people. Freedom is for the truth and morality, not for appeasing the Western Sodomites. To value everyone’s life uncondiotionally, man needs Christianity. The current world is the proof. Pagans and atheists kill the unborns and the Christians. Secular Westerners kill the unborns and force Sodomy. Morality on Planet Earth = Judeo-Christian values.

    • Johndoe

      Rubbish

    • Bob Johnson

      However, this bill establishes a study of the Bible, the first half, and many of the classic stories, is not Christian but Jewish literature. There is also a question as to how is the best way to introduce the Bible to young people questioning the world, as a detailed and secular reading of the Bible may well be the reason many people leave the faith.

      The questions of apologetics and theodicy are now in the hands of the secular school system.

      • Tangent002

        Yes, but this is Kentucky. How “secular” do you really think they are going to be? This is a state that allows public school field trips to Ken Ham’s Creation Museum.

        • Bob Johnson

          It only takes one secular teacher to create an uproar.

          What textbook will they use – Bart Ehrman’s “Jesus, Interrupted.” or maybe Richard Friedman’s “Who Wrote The Bible?” Do they teach the Documentary Hypothesis? And if the point of view being taught is literature, that makes it difficult to present a literal reading of the Bible.

          And of course many of these Kentucky teachers may be Catholic and believe in theistic evolution,

  • Tangent002

    Nope. If it was “Religious Literature?” Yes. The Bible only? No. This is clearly the preference of one religion’s text over any other, even if it is an elective. Specificity in this degree is college-level.

    Bible classes are and should be taught by churches. There is no shortage.

    • TheLastHonestLawyer

      Having earned a degree in Medieval History, I have to disagree. Understanding the Bible (and all of the strife that went into assembling it and dealing with various religious movements) is vital to understanding large chunks of our collective history.

      • Delectable

        Bull. You never read a book in your life. Probably on food stamps in some HIV hospice.

        Gays don’t read books, they only look at porn.

  • BahamaMama

    Nothing wrong here. A knowledge of the Bible is needed to understand art, literature, and history in Europe and the US.

    • InTheChurch

      Amen

    • Sisyphus

      Studying the Tanakh would also serve that goal

      • Grace Kim Kwon

        No, the Holy Bible is unequal in the universe because it is the eternal Word of God. When the Westerners equate the Holy Bible and Christianity with others, they do it only because they want to continue the culture’s chaotic immorality. No exception.

        • Sisyphus

          If you really knew anything about your babblings​, you might realize the Tanakh predates Christ and is the textual source for the Old Testament in your favorite mythology.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            You are wrong. The Holy Bible is the etrnal truth of God. Secular Westerners are sexually immoral and not trustworthy. Immoral Westerners hate the Holy Bible; therefore the Holy Bible is true.

          • Sisyphus

            The first section of the Tanakh (Torah) consists of the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deutoronomy. Aren’t those books also in your Bible? Do your parents know you are using the computer?

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            I meant your description of “mythology.” The Torah is incomplete; the entire Word of God consists of 66 Cannonical Books, not just the first five.

    • Grace Kim Kwon

      And of understanding Israel and the entire mankind of both the past and present and future.

  • InTheChurch

    This class is an elective so those that want it, can have it. Those that don’t, don’t sign up for it. Simple.

    • Tangent002

      The law is unconstitutional because it refers solely to a single religious text. Whether or not it is elective is irrelevant.

      • Sisyphus

        I don’t think “unconstitutional” means what you think it means. Elective classes exploring the social and cultural aspects of religious texts should pass The Lemon Test. Where is the excessive government entanglement? As social studies curriculum it would fit into a well rounded liberal arts education.

        • Tangent002

          I’m fine with Bible study at the college level. It seems far to specific for an entire semester in high school.

          I’m really ashamed to admit a blatant prejudice: in any other state this might be fine, but it’s Kentucky, the state that gave tax breaks to Ken Ham’s Ark Encounter theme park and allowed him to hire only those employees that signed a statement of faith pledge.

          I just do not trust their motives.

          • Sisyphus

            I get that, to be fair, the entire nation gives tax exemption to religious organizations… many of them think veiled real estate holding companies.

  • Tangent002

    No article that begins with “Kentucky Governor” ends well.