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By Nolan Lewallen, The Stream, May 9, 2023

Nolan Lewallen is a retired pilot of a major airline and lives near Stephenville, Texas, with his wife, Kim. Nolan’s two greatest passions are the Bible and politics. His latest book, The Integration of Church & State: How We Transform “In God We Trust” From Motto to Reality, brings the two together.


I remember soon after I became a Christian in the late seventies and learned just enough of the Bible to become a “loose cannon,” I got into a heated discussion with my uncle, who was an atheist. In response to one of his comments, I replied with the utmost of confidence (and probably cockiness), “But the Bible says, “Xyz!” As I stood there, so proud of myself for remembering that scripture and expecting him to drop to his knees in repentance any second, I was shocked to hear him say, “Yeah, but I don’t believe the Bible.”

That completely threw me for a loop, and I had no comeback. I mistakenly thought that we were somehow beginning with the same “square one” and then diverged on some subsequent square. Like maybe he believed the Bible was good and true but that it was written solely by the wisdom of man. I didn’t know for sure what he believed, except that he was an atheist. But given my maturity level at the time, I knew our conversation was over. When two people can no longer debate using the authority of the Bible as the starting point, the conversation has to change into a completely different conversation. And I was not prepared at the time to go there. …

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