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“Is it safe?” That line from the 1970s movie “Marathon Man” asks in three words a question that is pondered by humanity. (A good movie that made me anxious for the rest my life about going to the dentist!)

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The biggest … perhaps I should say “the grandest” question that mankind has to ask must be “is there a God?”

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“John, if I walked in through the doors of the church, the roof and the walls would most likely collapse in on me.” This statement made by a man that I’ve gotten to know during a couple of years in California made me laugh aloud. Not just because of the imagery his statement created but also…

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Next week’s Gospel lesson from Luke about the prayer habits of a Pharisee and a tax collector seems pretty straightforward. We start with characters out of biblical central casting and a surprising judgment from Jesus that may not be quite what we think it is.

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“He is a Good Samaritan.” Many people recognize this sentence as describing someone who does gratuitous good deeds for others. It is hard to believe that a substantial number of readers know where the reference comes from.

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The phrase “an enemy hath done this” is from Matthew 13:28 in the King James translation. It is part of Jesus’ parable of the wheat and the tares, (to stay in the King James language), which is part of the larger group of “the Kingdom of Heaven is like…” parables in Matthew.

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Maybe you were like me? There was a time when I felt as if a giant finger straight from hell was pointing at me, while an accusing voice was screaming, “Shame on you!”

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I was looking through The Mountain Mail newspaper this week, and several headlines struck me: “Sheriff’s office make five arrests this week,” “Salida police make arrests for DUI, identity theft.” Then there was an article on the dangers of vaping, yet so many are determined to do whatever th…

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This weekend Living Waters Church will have a big celebration. Our church facilities are “paid in full.” 

While our church had some loose organization since the late 1920s, it was 1949 when the church became officially recognized with a pastor and a facility at Third and D streets. 

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I’ve recently discovered something like a mathematical formula in my understanding of God’s goodness: Gratitude plus love equals joy and expectation of good.

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In the Bible, the prophet Isaiah relates the promise that the Lord will guide us and satisfy us and that we shall “be like a watered garden” (Isaiah 58:11). I like to think of caring for ourselves as we would for a flower garden.

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Before I learned about God and Jesus, I knew something was missing in my life but couldn’t explain what it was. I was looking for love but had looked in many wrong places.

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If this Christian denomination, Christian Science, or The First Church of Christ, Scientist, is new to you or if you’ve heard of it, it’s possible you might have some questions or reservations about what you’ve heard.

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You were made to behold glory. Biblical glory is the manifestation of God’s nature and acts (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, under “glory”).

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If you are anything like me (meaning an average human), you’ve gone through a difficult period where perhaps God wasn’t responding to you the way you expected.

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If you have been following my articles the last several years, you have been following my wife’s heart-transplant journey and how this event has impacted our lives. The journey continues, even after her death on Nov. 3.

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I’m writing this article on July 1, excited about one of my favorite holidays coming up: the Fourth of July. I must admit, I’m a bit of a sucker for all that the July Fourth celebration entails. Barbecue, parades, barbecue, fireworks, getting together with family and friends, oh yes, and we …

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Over the summer, I am preaching through the letter to the Hebrews in the New Testament. I’m excited, for a few reasons.

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There is a story in the Bible about a prophet named Elijah. Elijah was a good prophet, maybe the best.

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Last week, during the 75th anniversary of D-Day, my son and I watched the movie “Saving Private Ryan.”

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The Rev. Tom Abbott is the new pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Salida. He assumed the pastorship Saturday and offered his first service on Sunday.

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“And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God” – 1 Corinthians 2:4-5 NKJV.

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Saved? The Bible teaches “For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God” – Romans 3:23. Not one of us, but all of mankind has sinned.

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Something good was about to happen, then Adam and Eve believed an interesting teaser: 10 percent truth and 90 percent lie.

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This coming Sunday is Mother’s Day. If you have a mother in your life I hope you will call, send cards, flowers or go in person to see Mom. If you’re married and your wife is a mother, honor her in whatever thoughtful way you can. If you have lost your mother, take time to thank God for her.

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Yes, I know: Some of you don’t believe in a devil or God. That’s OK. I believe this article will entertain you.

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Today on “Creative Spotlight” I would like to introduce you to a man who uses both sides of the brain and has a strong Christian background.

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And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” – that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” – Matthew 27:46 (ESV)

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“Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, ‘It is finished!’ And he bowed his head and gave up his spirit” – John 19:30.

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“Truly I say to you, today you shall be with me in paradise” – Luke 23:43.

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“Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” – Luke 23:34.

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I had the misfortune recently of watching a Facebook post from a preacher in Arizona who was clearly upset about the status of women today and railing against it as a sin against God and nature.

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The first lesson for this Sunday is from Exodus. “God said to Moses, ‘I am who I am.’” He said further, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’’’

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In the lead-up to Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke’s Gospel, Jesus is questioned by a “lawyer” who asks, “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

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The BBC police detective drama series “Hinterland” on PBS is a good, although noir show. Richard Harington plays the main character, DCI Tom Mathias. The program is set in Aberystwyth, Wales, and the series’ three years have been filmed on location, often in rural areas. One naturally wonder…

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This coming Tuesday, March 5, is named in the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement as “Shrove Tuesday.” Some time ago it was supposed to be a day when Christians made confessions of their sins and thus were “shriven,” as a preparation for a penitential season of Lent. Corporate confession …

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People around the world will celebrate World Day of Prayer Friday, March 1. A local service will be held at 1 p.m. at The First Christian Church in Salida, 302 E. Fourth St.

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When I was a boy, my family joined a fledgling church that was trying to find its sea legs. This church was an assemblage of people who had been wounded by and left another church. This exodus took place before I came on the scene, but here is my understanding of what happened.

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Long ago, in the Greek city of Corinth, there was a fledgling faith community. It was full of people who had only recently given allegiance to Jesus over Caesar. 

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For the last few months, a group of friends and I have gotten together each week to read portions of the biblical book of Ecclesiastes. The book is only a few pages long, but it is perhaps the most grueling and exhausting book of the Bible.

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Sitting in a dank underground cell, Paul looks up to see his old friend Epaphras. Things are not well in Epaphras’ home church back in Colossae, and he has come to get wisdom and counsel from the saintly apostle.

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Statements about purpose have been heavily used in the business world for the past 15 to 20 years. Google, for example, in its value statement uses the terminology “don’t be evil,” asking current employees and those considering joining Google to adhere to the value statement of the company.

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The Mountain Mail, Nov. 18, 1994: After eight years of playing baseball in Buena Vista, 14-year old Bryan Green has decided to take his show on the road.

Green will travel to China next August to play ball with other American youngsters on an international ambassador team if he is able to raise the $4,000 needed for the trip.

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The Salida Daily Mail, Nov. 22, 1944:  C.H. Kelleher, manager of the Public Service company in Chaffee and Saguache counties, received word from Denver today that his company has contributed to the Chaffee county and Saguache county bond drives.

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The Salida Mail, Nov. 21, 1919: The well-known Doctor mine on Spring Creek is changing hands this week, or rather the owners are taking charge after the expiration of the five-year lease which has been held by Frank Hohiesel and his associates, Messers. Wolfe, Gilbert and Runtz of Aspen.

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The Mountain Mail, Nov. 18, 1994: As the holiday gift buying season begins, check out our local businesses; you’ll find some great buys here locally and find items uniquely special to the town or county.

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The Mountain Mail, Nov. 19, 1969: An article in “Education Colorado,” a publication of the Colorado Department of Education, concerning a joint effort of the high school and the local radio station in broadcasting the student bulletin every morning appeared in the November 18 issue, according to Charles Melien, principal of Salida High School.

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The Salida Daily Mail, Nov. 20, 1944: The Poncha Springs Grange met Thursday night at the Poncha Spings schoolhouse with a large number of members attending.

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The Salida Mail,  Nov. 21, 1919: A story appearing in the current number of Boy’s Life, the official magazine of the Boy Scouts, is from the pen of the Rev. Denzil C. Lees, pastor of the Church of the Ascension. The story is called “The White Arab” and relates to the intrigues of the Arabs against the men of white blood.

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The Salida Mail, Nov. 21, 1919: The Salida Commercial club has issued an invitation to fifteen cities in Southwestern Colorado to meet here Dec. 10 to formulate plans to work together for the purpose of attracting tourists to this part of the state.

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The Mountain Mail, Nov. 14, 1969: Members of the Salida Quarterback Club heard basketball coach Tom Breunich outline what can be expected in the way of offensive play on the courts this year. Breunich utilized both film and chalk talk in making the explanations of variations available from the continuity offense.