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Because the United States has such deep and important roots in Christianity, it is always going to be difficult to separate the two. One can make an argument that the United States is the most Christian nation on earth. (A possible exception is the Vatican.) One can also make an argument tha…

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We have been arguing with each other from the beginning. “That woman you gave me offered me the fruit and I ate it.” “Well, that serpent you let loose in the garden tricked me.” Cain, jealous of his brother, clouted Abel on the head with a rock and killed him. Sarah and Hagar. Jacob and Esau…

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Christian history is fascinating in every century but the transition in the fourth century from persecuted to being the official religion of the empire is difficult to top. Transition from persecuted to legal under Constantine in 313, to official under Theodosius in 380, to the criminalizati…

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I really hate to break this to all our young voters, but the current election cycle is not the most important one in our history. We are in no greater existential national crisis today than we were in the years immediately after the Declaration of Independence was signed. Or around 1812. Or …

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FestivalsWest Kentucky Christian Alliance will sponsor a 2020 Fall Christian Festival, 1-6 p.m. Saturday, at the Fort Jefferson Cross in Wickliffe. Free food, music and speaking. This year’s theme is “The Signs Are Here — Wake Up!” Information: 270-994-3230.

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Editor’s note: Due to “a slight medical issue,” Sean Niestrath was unable to prepare a column this week. Instead, here’s a column from this past January. “Not much has changed, if anything, we are in worse shape. Keep looking for the good,” he says.

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Remember when it was socially acceptable to shake hands with others? I am looking forward to that day again. There is so much revealed in that brief physical encounter. Traditionally it has been one of the first impressions that we make on others and they on us. Texture, strength, confidence…

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I do not write to pick sides, although sometimes it may be obvious which side I am on. Some people do write to pick sides. That is not my intention. I write to think on paper, and in doing so anyone that reads is carried along with my personal attempts to make sense of the world I am in. Agr…

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MURRAY — Westside Baptist Church of Murray has named Merrick Nunn lead pastor.

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There will always be “glass half full” and “glass half empty” people. Both will always be right. Personally, the thing that keeps me more on the half-full side are all the half-empty people that spoke and wrote in the past.

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“There is no lack in these days of captious listeners and questioners; but to find a character desirous of information, and seeking the truth as a remedy for ignorance, is very difficult. Just as in the hunter’s snare, or in the soldier’s ambush, the trick is generally ingeniously concealed,…

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West Kentucky Christian Alliance will host “What Is True Freedom?” an Independence Day celebration at Dolly McNutt Plaza, 5-7 p.m. today. There will be music, speaking and food. Bring a chair. All CDC regulations will be practiced. Information: 270-994-3230.

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I cannot say what I want for fear of being condemned as a “—phobe,” or a hater or a bigot. Language has been weaponized in a way that I cannot remember in my lifetime. I am not for hate speech, real hate speech. On the other hand, if an educated nation allows its haters to say what they want…

editor's pick
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Because the United States has such deep and important roots in Christianity, it is always going to be difficult to separate the two. One can make an argument that the United States is the most Christian nation on earth. (A possible exception is the Vatican.) One can also make an argument tha…

editor's pick
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We have been arguing with each other from the beginning. “That woman you gave me offered me the fruit and I ate it.” “Well, that serpent you let loose in the garden tricked me.” Cain, jealous of his brother, clouted Abel on the head with a rock and killed him. Sarah and Hagar. Jacob and Esau…

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West Kentucky Christian Alliance will host “God Our Father,” a Father’s Day celebration, at 5 p.m. Sunday at Mike Miller Park in Draffenville. Music, speeches and food will be available. Information: 270-994-3230.

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I am all out of words. I can say the same ones over and over, but they seem to vanish into thin air and have no effect whatsoever. If I say one thing I might hear, “You have no right to say that.” There is anger, apathy, confusion, distrust and emotional exhaustion gripping our nation right …

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I have heard it said that it is not a good thing to mix religion with politics. The only problem with that is its impossibility. We may mean different things when we say it but, upon reflection, we know the two are inextricably locked together. What I attempt to do personally is not allow pa…

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It would be foolish to compare today with the devastation wrought by the plague of the 14th century. What today we call the “black death.” Most of the destruction happened within a few years, but it recurred for at least another five decades after that. It took England 150 years to regain it…

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• West Kentucky Christian Alliance, Memorial Day Christian service, 5 p.m. Monday, McCracken County Courthouse lawn. Bring a chair. All CDC regulations will be enforced. Information: 270-994-3230.

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Eighty-seven years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Abraham Lincoln delivered perhaps the most famous speech in American History. In its text is the ironic line, “the world will little note, nor long remember what we say here.” This is, of course the Gettysburg Address, …

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With my schedule disrupted like most of us, I decided to take the plunge and do something I have been putting off for years. You got it. I finally picked up “War and Peace.” It is my nighttime reading just before I go to bed, so it may yet take me a while to get through it. Yep. Just for fun…

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A bubbling stream, a few animals around, a partly cloudy sky, about 70 degrees and a wisp of a breeze — hopefully right after a rain. The birds are singing and there are absolutely no bugs anywhere. It is quiet. That poster says Psalm 23. (We forget about “the valley of the shadow of death,”…

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There is no doubt that our current circumstances have had various impacts on us. Some are busier than ever, others are working in different locations, and yet others are struggling and out of work completely. We are all concerned about different things even though the cause is the same.

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On the one hand, everyone needs to do their part and take care of themselves. On the other hand, everyone needs to look after their neighbor and take care of each other. Both of these statements are perfectly true, but if one is taken on its own without the other life would become unbalanced…

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There is an elephant in every room of our lives. It is a big bull elephant. Rather than being left alone and ignored, he is raging through the house out of control and then going after the neighbors. There is no one left unaffected, regardless of faith, work status or income. It takes some d…

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What a strange Lenten and Passover season we are finishing. I hope never to experience one like it again. We are away from our normal gatherings at this time of year. However, this one is perhaps more like those original events than any we will experience. Each family making its own preparat…

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I want to thank all of you who are reading each week. I am encouraged by the notes and comments that you occasionally send my way, even the ones that correct or challenge from time to time.

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This is how this always happens. This is how disaster overtakes us. We can never see it coming. We have learned to avert, be prepared, and predict a lot of things over the past centuries. But we are still surprised every 10 or 15 years or so by a disease, an attack, greed, or some other some…

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This may be a minor blip and we may soon forget, but make no mistake, we are changed. We do not know how we are changed yet, but we are. I recall a pleasant lunch my wife and I had several years ago in Milano, Italy. We were with two widows old enough to be our grandmothers. When we finished…

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Concert/MusicalsTrace Creek Baptist Church, 3577 Ky. 131, will present “The Promise 2020” at 7 p.m. April 3 and 10; at 2 and 7 p.m. April 4 and 11; and at 6 p.m. Easter Sunday, April 12. Doors open one hour before start time. There is no charge for admission. Reserved seating is available fo…

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What we practice when life is calm and predictable will present itself when life becomes more turbulent and less predictable. It is that spiritual muscle memory that we should be developing in our lives for when trouble rolls in and decides to stay for a while. The same applies to us physica…

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One of my favorite stories about Jesus and his disciples begins with a question about who to blame. Jesus walked by a blind man and those following him asked, “Teacher, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” (John 9:2, RSV). Jesus immediately turned from assigning blam…

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How could something so small cause so much trouble? How could something we can't see wreak so much havoc?

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When people will not listen to what we are saying, we are left with no choice but to act. This is at the root of most massive acts of civil disobedience. Acting is also generally riskier than writing or speaking - although those can get us into trouble as well. We may well remember famous wo…

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NEW YORK -- It has become standard practice for U.S. corporations to assure employees of support regardless of their race, gender or sexual orientation. There's now an intensifying push to ensure that companies are similarly supportive and inclusive when it comes to employees' religious beliefs.

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I refuse to pick a side and I also refuse to be neutral. Watching the State of the Union address was like watching some sort of combination of "Saturday Night Live" and "Madam Secretary." It was part drama and part comedy. This is not intended to be disrespectful. It is how I felt as I was w…

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MINNEAPOLIS -- In Midwestern boots or bare feet in sandals, the faithful walked in procession down a snow-covered street here, keeping the rhythm of festive music and carrying paintings of St. Paul, the patron saint of their hometown of Axochiapan, Mexico.

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LONSDALE, Minn. -- A Minnesota Roman Catholic priest apologized Wednesday for saying in a sermon that Islam was "the greatest threat in the world" to the United States and Christianity.

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I love hearing stories, and I love telling them to anyone who will listen. Even the same story told over again continues to have fresh meaning, because every time it is told it is spoken into a fresh context. Events, location, people present, the emotion in the room and the purpose of tellin…