Atheistic Religion in the Classroom

By Wayne Jackson

We are constantly being told that religion is not taught in the public school system. Such, it is alleged, would be a violation of the principle of the separation of church and state. For instance, the claim is made that in science classes students will be taught only scientific facts; religious ideology will be excluded. That simply is not so. Consider the following quote from a recent biology textbook.

Darwin knew that accepting his theory required believing in philosophical materialism, the conviction that matter is the stuff of all existence and that all mental and spiritual phenomenon [sic] are its by-products. . . . In Darwin’s world we are not helpless prisoners of a static world order, but, rather, masters of our own fate. . . . And from a strictly scientific point of view rejecting biological evolution is no different from rejecting other natural phenomenon [sic] such as electricity and gravity (Levine and Miller 1994, 161; emphasis added).

Let us reflect upon several things that are smuggled into this little paragraph.

(1) Note that the paragraph concludes by suggesting that the theory of evolution is as well-established as electricity or gravity. Aren’t we all familiar with the fact that electricity is a reality? And who doubts the law of gravity? The implication behind the statement is quite clear: if one doesn’t accept Darwinian evolution as a basic law of science, he’s stupid. This clearly is an intimidating tactic. No rain—just thunder.

(2) If one acknowledges evolution as factual (which he must if he is to be viewed as intelligent), then such requires accepting philosophical materialism. This is the notion that there is nothing in existence that is not material in nature. This is clearly designed to dismiss the idea that there is a non-material Reality (i.e., a spirit Being) whom the Bible identifies as God.

Supposedly it is a violation of the Constitution to suggest that God exists, but it is not an infraction of constitutional law to suggest that he does not exist! Where is the logic—or fairness—in that?

Further, the allusion to the exclusively material nature of all that exists denies that the human being possesses a soul. This implies, of course, that one is not accountable for his conduct in terms of any sort of eternal judgment. The ultimate basis of all moral conduct is the reality that there is final accountability.

(3) The authors suggest that “spiritual” phenomena is but a by-product of the evolutionary process. Spiritual concepts are thus but a quirk of nature that may or may not be useful, depending upon the whim of the individual. How, pray tell, does a discussion of the spiritual fit into a biology textbook?

(4) The authors affirm that Darwinism demands that we accept the conclusion that we are “masters of our own fate.” One would suspect that this phrase was borrowed from the infidel William Henley. In his famous poem, Invictus, he wrote: “I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul.” It suggests that man is his own “god”—that he can manage his own destiny without any need of instruction from a Creator.

The public school system is not teaching your children merely readin’, writin’, and arithmatic. It is instructing them in atheism, hedonism (acceptance of varying sexual lifestyles), and other soul-destroying ideologies. Christian parents must take responsibility for the education of their children. Every day we must inoculate against the corrupting influences of society. Work at it!

Sources/Footnotes
  • Levine, Joseph and Kenneth Miller. 1994. Biology: Discovering Life. Lexington, MA: Heath & Co.
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About the Author

Wayne Jackson has written for and edited the Christian Courier since its inception in 1965. He has also written several books on a variety of biblical topics including The Bible and Science, Creation, Evolution, and the Age of the Earth, The Bible on Trial, and a number of commentaries. He lives in Stockton, California with his dear wife, and life-long partner, Betty.