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• Does the application of a state workers' compensation statute to churches violate the constitutional guaranty of religious freedom? No, concluded a federal district court in Ohio. A Baptist church argued that the state of Ohio, through its workers' compensation system, had "assumed lordship over the church in direct contravention to the biblical principle that Jesus is 'head over all things to the church' (Eph. 1:22) and that 'in all things [Christ] might have preeminence' (Col. 1:18)." In addition, the church argued that "it would be a sin to contribute workers' compensation out of church funds designated for biblical purposes and that tithe and offering money … belongs to God." The court concluded that these allegations were "sufficient to allege infringement of [the church's] religious beliefs." However, "the mere fact that a religious practice is burdened by a governmental ...

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  • May 2, 1988