Hobby Lobby's Bible course cancelled by Oklahoma school district

(Photo: Dave Edmonds)

A controversial, Oklahoma public school Bible curriculum has been cancelled by the school district.

The curriculum, spearheaded by Christian retail chain Hobby Lobby, had been previously postponed from an August to January launch.

Museum of the Bible Chairman Dr Jerry Pattengale and Hobby Lobby President Steve Green developed the course to coincide with the museum, which will open in Washington DC in 2017.

"We have a unique value proposition to offer with this curriculum, given our work with scholars, The Green Collection's rare biblical texts and artifacts that currently number more than 44,000, and the museum," Pattengale said earlier this year.

Mustang Public Schools in Mustang, Oklahoma unanimously approved the Bible course in April, but reversed their decision after receiving complaints from the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) and the ACLU.

"The topic of a Bible course in the Mustang School District is no longer a discussion item nor is there a plan to provide such a course in the foreseeable future," Superintendent Sean McDaniel informed the FFRF in an email this week.

FFRF co-president Annie Laurie Gaylor called the decision a victory.

"This development is a victory not only for reason and the law, but the sacrosanct right of a captive audience of students to be free from indoctrination in a public school setting," she said.

Dr Pattengale confirmed the district's decision.

"We understand Mustang's decision to withdraw the new, elective Bible course from consideration," he said in a statement.

"Museum of the Bible remains committed to providing an elective high school Bible curriculum and continues work on an innovative, high-tech course that will provide students and teachers with a scholarly overview of the Bible's history, narrative and impact."

Pattengale and Green plan to move forward with Bible curricula in other school districts that have expressed interest in the course.

The course's first textbook, "The Book: The Bible's History, Narrative and Impact," is still undergoing editing.