President Donald Trump said in a tweet that he’d back states currently considering the addition of Bible literary classes in their public schools.
This is good news. “About time” news, in fact.
The secular side will rage. Let them. Let them and listen up: I was an atheist during my college years — but took a Bible class just the same. Why? For history’s sake. For English literary sake. For knowledge’s sake. And guess what: It didn’t hurt.
It didn’t turn me into a non-thinking, Bible-thumping, daisy-distributing religious nut. It didn’t even spark interest in God at the time, to be honest.
It just provided a perspective that helped with the literary challenges of William Shakespeare, Geoffrey Chaucer, Edmund Spenser and the like. It just flushed out some of the mysteries of literature’s spiritual and biblical references.
So, too, would Bible classes in today’s government-run schools.
“Numerous states introducing Bible Literary classes, giving students the option of studying the Bible,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Starting to make a turn back? Great!”
Yes, it is great.
Much can be learned from the Bible, and not all of it necessarily spiritual.
“[F]or [John] Adams,” The Gospel Coalition wrote, “the Bible was republican because it was an indispensable handbook for republican citizenship. In particular, the Sacred Text, more than any other source, taught the civic virtues required of citizens in order for republican self-government to succeed.”
The stuff of worthwhile study.
The stuff of worthwhile study even — yes, even — if you’re an atheist, an agnostic, a liberal, a progressive or someone of a faith other than Christian. The Bible, after all, isn’t the world’s best-selling book for nothing.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @ckchumley.
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