West Virginia May Allow the Teaching of Intelligent Design in Classrooms

by Ken Ham on January 25, 2024
Featured in Ken Ham Blog

Should public schools be allowed to teach the idea of Intelligent Design in the classroom? That’s the question the Senate Education Committee of West Virginia recently had to answer when bill SB 280 was presented to them—and they voted yes, moving the bill forward. Does this mean “religion” may eventually be taught in US public school classrooms?

Well, religion (the religion of atheistic, secular humanism) is already being taught every single day in the classroom, but consider the comments from one of the high school juniors who brought this bill forward:

ID [Intelligent Design] is “agnostic, meaning it only proposes some kind of consciousness behind the design of the universe; it’s not biblical creationism; it doesn’t posit any attributes of the consciousness or promote any religious precepts. It doesn’t even challenge the theory of evolution, only evolution’s precept that the formation of the universe was blind and undirected.

“It could be god or it could be a flying spaghetti monster,” he said.

All logical reasons and explanations should be allowed to be presented in schools, he said. The bill promoted “education justice” by respecting free speech rights and religious liberty, and by not discriminating against the rights or beliefs of people round the country.

Well, this young man is right—ID is not biblical or even Christian. In this view, the intelligence behind the universe could be anything—even aliens! The biblical God is not always in view or even necessary for these ideas. Many of those who posit a form of Intelligent Design rightly recognize the incredible intricacy and design of the universe . . . and then attribute that design to anyone or anything but the biblical God! That’s one reason why we’ve never promoted ID or leaned heavily on design arguments. Rather we start with the truth of God’s infallible Word and interpret everything through that lens.

You see, what is the benefit of convincing someone that there was an intelligence behind the universe if you don’t introduce them to the one true Creator? And, just looking at this broken world with all its death and suffering, someone might conclude that whoever or whatever the intelligence is, he/she/it must be an ogre. It’s the Bible’s history of a perfect creation marred by sin that explains both the intricacy and design of creation and the brokenness and ugliness of this world (Romans 8:22). And, beyond that, it’s only the Bible’s history that gives the answer for the sin and brokenness of this world—the God-man who stepped into history to take our penalty for us by dying on the cross and rising from the dead. ID offers no hope—the gospel does!

Pointing out evidence for the Creator without pointing people to the Creator might make a creationist, but it doesn’t solve that person’s ultimate problem—that they are a sinner in desperate need of a Savior, the Lord Jesus.

This new bill is a step in the right direction, although, ironically, the juniors putting the bill forward said they want the phrase “scientific theories” in the bill to purposefully exclude “religion,” i.e. creation, “at this point.” So much for academic freedom! (And, of course, biblical creation is scientific, making testable predictions, but that is ignored.) Yes, we applaud this attempt to allow more free speech in the classroom, but we recognize that ID doesn’t go far enough. Pointing out evidence for the Creator without pointing people to the Creator might make a creationist, but it doesn’t solve that person’s ultimate problem—that they are a sinner in desperate need of a Savior, the Lord Jesus.

Creationists Doing Science at Answers in Genesis

You know, a lot of people (like those behind this ID bill) think that creationists don’t do science—that creation is just religion. But that’s simply not true! Biblical creation is a historical lens, based on the eyewitness account of the history in the Bible, that we use for interpreting the world around us. The evidence is the same as what evolutionists look at—we just come to very different interpretations because we have a different starting point!

That’s why our researchers can do incredible, peer-reviewed scientific research, often published in Answers Research Journal, such as:

And there are many more examples. Check out Answers Research Journal to see the latest in creation research.

We love science because we love the Creator and we love studying what he has made. And we’re helping raise up the next generation of scientists and researchers who will study creation for God’s glory through our Explore programs, Explore Camps, high school labs, and more—including our inaugural STEM challenge, which is taking place November 6, 2024. This challenge will see teams competing against one another in a STEM design competition at the Ark Encounter for a grand prize of $5,000, while also exploring real-world applications and learning from experts in the field related to the challenge. You can register your team today to join the competition.

Yes, creationists love science, but we study it through a different lens, with a different foundation—the infallible Word of the Creator God.

Get More Answers on Answers News

This item was discussed yesterday on Answers News with cohosts Avery Foley, Roger Patterson, and Dr. Tim Chaffey. Answers News is our weekly news program filmed live before a studio audience here at the Creation Museum, broadcast on our Answers in Genesis YouTube channel, and posted to Answers TV. We also covered the following topics:

  • Is evolution not actually random?
  • Did insect wings evolve from gills?
  • Is the Old Testament important?
  • And more!

Watch the entire episode of Answers News for January 24, 2024.

Be sure to join us each Wednesday at 2 p.m. (ET) on YouTube or later that day on Answers TV for Answers News. You won’t want to miss this unique news program that gives science and culture news from a distinctly biblical and Christian perspective.

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying,

This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.

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