Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Is there a place for the Holy Bible in America's public school system?

You bet there is! Before you go thinking it's that simple, however, please allow me to elaborate. Is there a place for the Bible in our schools? Yes...but not as "required reading", as a supplement to a science class, or as a basis for the teaching of history. There are, however, two places where the Christian Bible has a definite place in our public school system.

The Bible is one of the greatest literary works of all time, holds the all-time world record for copies published, was the first book ever printed using "movable typeset", and is responsible for influencing more people than any other book in the history of mankind. It should most certainly be studied in our high-school literature classes, if only on this basis alone.

Second, an elective course on the study of the "holy books" of the three major monotheistic religions (the Christian Bible, the Jewish Talmud, and the Muslim Koran) would most certainly do wonders for our understanding of other cultures, if these books were compared and contrasted in a manner that a student of these books may understand what is really written in them, then perhaps the people of this world may grow a little more tolerant of others. Lest we forget, Christ himself was the most tolerant man ever to have lived.

Moving right along, let's get back to the places in our public school system where the Holy Bible SHOULD NOT be taught:

Why? Because the bible is not a scientific text, unless you are counting the science of Theology. Theology is not a science taught in our public schools. Perhaps the most debated part of the "science and the bible" argument is the debate of "Creation v. Evolution"...or, as modern Christian science (not to be confused with the "Church of Christ, Scientist", because I don't know enough about that particular denomination to form an opinion) would call it, "Intelligent Design v. Evolution".

Regardless of what anyone may try to tell you, "Intelligent Design" is nothing more than a trumped-up jumble of pseudoscience and five-dollar words intended to get the message across that "Darwinian theory is a fraud". Anyone with even a minute understanding of human biology can easily see that "Intelligent Design" is, blatantly and bluntly, pure and simple BULLSHIT. Pardon my French, but I can't seem to think of a better way to describe it. The entire basis of "Intelligent Design Theory" is the notion of "irreducible complexity"...and I can't help but wonder if these people have ever heard of such a thing as a virus, or even understand what DNA is.

Furthermore, the "Young Earth" theory (stating that the Earth is less than 7k years old) is based upon, at least what I've read so far, nothing more than fanatical conjecture and outright ignorance of basic 7th Grade science. On several occasions (the most notable is the repeatedly-photoshopped hackjobs of a faint image found at Natural Bridges National Monument), complete and utter lies are exhibited as "evidence". For real, if you want to use an altered photograph to convince people of your version of the "truth", do so in a manner that doesn't make you look like a high school sophomore who just discovered photoshop.

***From three separate "Creation Science" sources***



Now, let's look at an UNRETOUCHED photo of the actual "dinosaur and man":

How hard is it to "fake" a photograph? Well, this is most certainly my face...but is this my body? You be the judge:

I'm a shecksy bastard, huh? You like my washboard abs? They're every bit as real as the "man hunting the dinosaur"...

Unlike science, the bible actually DOES contain a historic account. Unfortunately, the majority of biblical history is nowhere near being anywhere close to "accurate" as far as timelines are concerned in the Old Testament. Even the very EXISTENCE of a man named Jesus Christ is still being debated amongst actual archaeologists and historians with actual degrees in history, anthropology, and archaeology, from actual accredited universities, from all over the world. As far as actual evidence ASIDE FROM the Christian bible goes, it's actually easier to discredit the mere existence of a man named Jesus Christ than it is to discredit the supposed innocence of O.J. Simpson. Seriously.

Don't get it twisted, I'm speaking of evidence found OUTSIDE the bible here...but there is actually far more evidence supporting the theory that Jesus DID NOT exist, than there is supporting the theory that He did exist. Also, keep in mind, I'm not speaking of evidence that Jesus is the Son of God. I'm merely speaking of his existence, as a "regular Joe", or anything else.

I believe in Jesus. In my opinion, there's no doubt that he was here. He was born of a virgin, lead a sinless life, was executed, and then rose again. That DOESN'T mean that there is a definitive record of his life, outside of the Christian Bible. In fact, outside of the bible, there is more evidence that he WAS NOT an "actual person", as opposed to evidence that he was an actual person.


This is why I oppose the usage of the Holy Bible in our public schools, for the purposes of instruction in science and history. Doing so results in the "dumbing down" of our students.

In the subjects of science and history, it is imperative that we MUST examine facts if we are to learn science and history.

To understand science, you cannot begin with presupposed notion and build evidence around it, while ignoring evidence that does not support it. Man is not God, and vice versa. We've already had that amalgamation. His name was Jesus. Unless you're claiming to be the second coming, please stick to the scientific method if you plan on discussing science. The Holy Bible, as "scientific evidence", simply does not count as evidence.

The same holds true with history. When biblical history does not consistently coincide with known written history, it CANNOT be used as "historical fact" in such a context.

I say this NOT because I don't have faith in the Holy Bible, because I do have faith in the Good Book. I say this merely because my God gave me a brain, and I choose to use it to the best ability He has provided me with.

In high school, I studied three different languages. Naturally, a greater knowledge of my mother tongue was attained, because English was taught all through high school (as well as the rest of my public-school career). Also, while in high school, I studied a bit of Spanish, as well as three years of Latin instruction under a man who was the greatest teacher I've ever had (BTW, I can say without a doubt that you should NOT attempt to learn two non-native languages at the same time, it will mess with your head!), and I came to understand that there are some things that simply WILL NOT translate properly and accurately across different languages.

The Holy Bible was written in ancient languages (AFTER being passed down through oral history through untold generations prior to its historians having a written language of their own), and then further translated across Hebrew, Greek, Latin, and later into English. Even today, there are several different English translations of the Holy Bible that DO NOT always line up with each other. A good demonstration of this would be the translation of the 6th Commandment (5th Commandment, if you're a Roman Catholic).

If a person begins on a foundation of factual "sand", you're going to have a structure liable to crumble. If you cannot be absolutely certain of something, you cannot be certain that anything built on the origin of uncertainty will stand the test of time.

Look at it from the machinist's point of view...if you don't have a true surface on the top, you can't flip it over and mill a true surface on the other side, and make it truly parallel to its opposite side.

If you want your children to learn from the Universal Truth of the Holy Bible, there really is a class you can take them to. In the majority of cases, you don't even have to pay for your child to attend. These classes meet every Sunday...hence the name "Sunday School".

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Faith is not something that you can touch, taste, see, or feel. Faith is something you must believe. You can't produce timelines, pie charts, or bar graphs to prove what your faith makes you believe. If it was able to be proven, it wouldn't be called "faith". It would be called FACT.

As such, "faith" should never be taught as "fact", in any setting other than a class that provides religious instruction.

Then again, these are just my opinions...

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