Current Issues
Tenn. School Board OKs Bible Study Guidelines
February 2, 2010

Your prayers are making a difference. The article below represents the power of  people of faith working alongside lawmakers to protect religious freedom in society.

There is truth in the saying “without law there is no freedom”.   This nation is based on Biblical principles of which many were made into or changed by laws. As citizens of America and God’s Kingdom, there are certain processes that we are responsible to be a part of…

The Tennessee State Board of Education approved guidelines Thursday on how to teach the Bible in public high schools.

The curriculum, which will start next fall, was developed in response to a bill that coasted easily through the state legislature in 2008 following a series of unanimous votes on the house floor.

Under the bill, sponsored by Democratic Sen. Roy Herron, the state is authorized to create a course for a “nonsectarian, nonreligious academic study of the Bible.”

While the measure has raised concerns among opponents, who believe it would throw open school doors to proselytizing and breach the separation of church and state, Herron has argued that it would not force schools throughout the state to offer Bible classes. Instead, the bill would protect schools that already offer Bible classes, while making the classes an option for schools that wish to participate.

Still, the American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee intends to keep an eye on the legislation, noting that whether the Bible classes are constitutional or not depends on who is teaching them and how they are taught.

“The devil is in the details,” Hedy Weinberg, the state’s ACLU director, told The Tennessean.

Currently, over 70 of Tennessee’s 95 counties feature elective courses on the Bible in their schools.

Notably, academic study of the Bible in public schools is legal in all 50 U.S. states. In 1963, the Supreme Court ruled that public schools may not require devotional use of the Bible but explicitly acknowledged that academic study of the Bible in public schools is constitutional, as part of a good education.

According to the Bible Literacy Project, public school students in over 35 states currently have the option of enrolling in non-denominational biblical literacy classes.

Full Article: