A powerful company with a religious agenda is now dictating a school curriculum in Oklahoma. Something called the “Museum of the Bible Curriculum,” created by Hobby Lobby president Steve Green will be beta-tested in an Oklahoma school district later this year.
Green hopes the program — which will be overseen by Jerry Pattengale, head of the Green Scholars Initiative — will be placed in “hundreds” of high schools by 2016, and “thousands” by 2017. It is a four-year elective course in which students will study the narrative, history, and impact of the Bible on Western Civilization. Because the book is being taught within an academic purview, it does not violate the Establishment Clause of the Constitution as interpreted by the Supreme Court in Abington School District v. Schempp.
“Nothing we have said here indicates that such study of the Bible,” the Court decided, “when presented objectively as part of a secular program of education, may not be effected consistently with the First Amendment.”
Statements made by Green when he received the 2013 Templeton Prize for Progress Toward Research or Discoveries about Spiritual Realities strongly suggest that the material in the Museum of the Bible Curriculum will neither be “presented objectively” nor “part of a secular program.”
In the speech, Green refers to the Bible as a “reliable historical document” that’s had a “great impact on the world,” but that people don’t understand that impact. “It’s our job to point that out,” Green said, “to show that whether it be our government, education, science, art, literature, family, on and on in every area of our life.”