February 11th, 2011
07:55 AM ET

Kentucky Senate passes bill to teach Bible classes in public schools

From CNN Louisville, Kentucky affiliate WLKY

Frankfort, Kentucky - Bible classes could be taught in Kentucky public schools under a bill that's made it halfway through Kentucky's legislature.

State Senator Joe Bowen wants Kentucky public school students to have an opportunity to take classes about the Bible.

"No doubt about it, the most important book ever written and obviously, it's had so much influence on our society and all of western civilization," Bowen said. Last year, former State Senator David Boswell introduced the same bill. It passed the Senate, but died in the house. Bowen defeated Boswell last November.

Read the full story from CNN Louisville, Kentucky affiliate WLKY.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Education • Kentucky • United States

soundoff (1,056 Responses)
  1. James

    I love the Bible and read it often. It and my Christian faith has deeply enriched my life. However, I am not very comfortable with a state backing a religious system. It inevitably leads to persecution of faith systems that don't walk lock step with their own agenda or sect. This, along with prayer in school is a bad idea. As far as Creationism being tought in school, why not teach both theories and allow *gasp* kids to make their own mind.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:20 am |
  2. Matt

    Come on Kentucky. You know better than this. Clearly there is precedent in the courts and even if you spend your valuable time passing this it will be a waste of thousands of tax payer dollars. Got ahead and try to make a statement while good legislation likely dies. How about we start offering classes about the Qur'an? I'm sure you would be ok with that right?

    February 11, 2011 at 11:20 am |
  3. Ken

    I know that in my 5th graders class ( in California ) , the teacher spent 3 weeks on teaching Hinduism, 3 weeks teaching Egyptian mythology, 3 weeks teaching greek mythology, made them create their own god and make a list as to why they should worship it, but only spend 1/2 day on Christianity and Judaism. In addition, she spent the rest of the time teaching the principles of the largest and most powerful religion – Humanism, where man is his own God, where there is no ultimate truth, and where man decides what is right and what is wrong. I don't have a problem with teaching religion, but let's be fair. The avoidance of mentioning God in teaching is not keeping religion out of schools, it is just a cover for teaching that man is the ultimate authority.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:20 am |
    • benny

      As long as the course was called 'christian mythology' i'd be okay with it.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:23 am |
  4. LivinginVA

    Why not just a Comparative Religion course? Oh, right, we don't want to expose our kids to other ideas.....

    February 11, 2011 at 11:20 am |
    • Give Me A Break

      Exactly! this is sly dog way to try and get the bible in the schools and has nothing to do with wanting to teach history or literature and those pushing the bill know that. To have a class that taught the Bible as well as what's in other religious books would defeat the whole purpose of 'taking back this country' and implementing the 'good old way' things used to be done.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:30 am |
  5. g

    of course they would pass a bill to keep people under delusional beliefs.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:19 am |
  6. ccl

    Just from an historical standpoint, it's a good thing. I'd rather my kids read the book that has impacted and shaped western civilization the most in the last several hundred years than they be required to read Twilight in their American Lit class. Many people today don't even know what is in the bible wether they believe in it or not.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:18 am |
  7. Lopes Teixeira

    Será que alguma religião deve ser imposta, pelo visto no Kentucky acham que sim. A liberdade de escolha é a unica via para uma sociedade que se quer civilizada e democratica.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:18 am |
  8. Freedom

    It's funny now many people here complain about teaching the Bible in public schools (which are a disaster at this point in the US), which actually teaches good morals, yet nobody seems to care when public schools make our kids read greek mythology, horror stories in Halloween, and Harry Potter, which basically teaches witchcraft.

    No, all those things are ok, but not the Bible, please... and no it won't be a "mass". It would be just studying the Bible for its historical and literate significance, no one would be "forced" to believe in anything.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:18 am |
    • Give Me A Break

      So long as ONLY as much time is spent on the bible as those books you mentioned and so long as it's presented as FICTION like the books you mentioned I have no problem at all with it being discussed in school. But if it's taught as the literal word of God in a religious manner.. and please you all know it will be... then no it has no business in the public schools period.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:26 am |
    • Shawn

      The difference is Greek Mythology is taught as a myth. Harry Potter is a fiction. If the Bible is taught with a disclaimer stating that it is a faith book not history book I think it’s a great idea. The teacher would need to point out that to believe in the bible one must disregard all the laws of science and intellectual reason.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:57 am |
  9. Brad

    Hey Switcher, alot of things are taught in school that contradict, do you want to be taught that you're just a"super ape" or made in God's image and likeness?

    February 11, 2011 at 11:18 am |
    • antione

      Thank you for summing up the theory of evolution by referring to human beings as "super apes." Teach your children the bible in your own home.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:31 am |
  10. Mark

    @ Steve...

    The fool says in his heart, “There is no God" Psalms 53:1

    What do you suppose that makes you?

    February 11, 2011 at 11:18 am |
    • Godless

      So because some book says there is a god, everyone who isn't swayed by this is a fool? Sounds like someone else is the fool.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:42 am |
    • Trenor

      My Book states
      "The fool says in his heart, There is no Flying Spaghetti Monster" Marinara 16.5

      Dont believe?? When you realize why you dont believe my book you will understand while others dont believe yours.

      February 12, 2011 at 10:23 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Mark, the USA slipped in it's educational ranking as soon as Jesus' teachings were banned from public schools.

      Now is the time to teach His wisdom and emphasize His teachings on ethics and morals.

      February 13, 2011 at 5:52 am |
  11. Mike

    Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica by Isaac Newton is the most important book ever written

    February 11, 2011 at 11:17 am |
  12. Maria

    as far as I'm concerned the bible is nothing more than a book to control women and make men think they are superior.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:17 am |
    • Godless

      That's just silly Maria.... it's meant to control men, too...

      February 11, 2011 at 11:41 am |
  13. gt

    wow what a pagan...

    February 11, 2011 at 11:16 am |
  14. Observer

    Children spend less than 20% of their time in school. What a massive failure it is for Christians to be unable to teach their children about their religion in the remaining 80% of their time.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:16 am |
  15. radam82

    I hope they'll start teaching classes on the Satanic Bible.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:16 am |
  16. Nick

    **other religion** (not of religion)

    February 11, 2011 at 11:15 am |
  17. Kris

    WOW! I am reluctant to bash Kentucky for the same old stereotypes that have been circulated forever, but this is sooooo easy. When is this county going to start calling the Religious Right Wing Tea Party exactly what they are? INSANE! Teach your children about religion at HOME! No SCHOOL!

    February 11, 2011 at 11:15 am |
  18. Brooke Willson

    While I absolutely believe comparative religion should be taught in our schools as an essential part of social studies and history, I worry about "Bible classes" in public schools. Who writes the curriculum? Who will teach the classes? As a Christian, it's MY job, and my church's, to teach our faith, not the government's. How odd that the very people who decry government intrusion in private life are now trying to get that same government to teach theology!

    February 11, 2011 at 11:15 am |
  19. Nick

    So can students in Kentucky High Schools also take a class on the Kuran? Or any of religion? If not, then this bill should not pass.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:15 am |
    • Alan

      I agree teach all religions or none at all.

      February 11, 2011 at 11:27 am |
  20. SteveInMI

    Echoing JDB and others... if they teach what's ACTUALLY in the BIble – not the made-up stuff that churches CLAIM is in the bible – it could be a good class. Anything that drives up the number of atheists in Kentucky is a good thing, and a genuine study of the bible is on of the best ways to turn people off to Christianity.

    Now the chances of anyone in a Kentucky classroom teaching the Bible's contents honestly? Meh.

    February 11, 2011 at 11:15 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.