CLARITY – 2-19-18 Out of the Old Soviet Playbook

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-19-18

 

Out of the Old Soviet Playbook

What’s Happening:  “It has been described as a proxy war – from Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, and Iraq – reminiscent of something the failed regime of the old Soviet Union used to practice. This time the ‘unifying” factor is Hezbollah and their enabler, Iran. Gen. H.R. McMaster, the U.S. National Security Adviser, condemned the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Saturday for arming “Hezbollah-style” armies to destabilize the Middle East (https://www.yahoo.com/news/mcmaster-warns-growing-power-irans-network-proxies-124901296.html). ‘So the time is now, we think, to act against Iran,’ he said.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “So this means war in the Middle East?’

 

Biblical Response:  “Maybe…though there are some who would say it has already begun. I mean, Iran has sent a surveillance drone from Syria recently and shot down an Israeli F-16 that responded (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-israel/netanyahu-says-israel-undeterred-after-syria-shoots-down-f-16-idUSKBN1FV0LR). The Iranians like to have plausible deniability. Launching their attacks through surrogates and promising them a seat at the proverbial table. Does that remind you of anyone? (If you said the USSR…ding, ding, ding! You win!).”

 

“Christians? Let’s hope we don’t have to learn the lesson twice. Bad company STILL corrupts good morals (1 Cor. 15:33).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give those that lead the foresight of wisdom so that this world does not have to learn the lessons of history again; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-17-18 It Took a Miracle

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-17-18

 

It Took a Miracle

What’s Happening:  “How about some good news for a change? An American Airlines ticket agent, working at Sacramento International Airport, called the sheriff when two girls, 15 and 17, tried to check in for a flight to New York…which may have been for the purpose of human trafficking. The agent, Denise Miracle (yes, that’s her real name) is being called a hero (https://www.yahoo.com/news/american-airlines-agent-saves-2-153552330.html). Quoting Miracle, ‘It was a first-class ticket. It was very expensive. I told a supervisor, ‘I’m going to call the sheriff. It just doesn’t feel right to me,’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I guess their parents were relieved!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Shocked is more likely. Their girls had told them they were spending the night at a friend’s house. They were lured by a free ticket (though the one-way ticket they’d been told was 2-way) and an offer of $2,000 to model for a video. Wouldn’t they have been surprised?”

 

“Christians? We’ve all got a price…hopefully Christians realize they’ve been bought with a price (1 Cor. 7:23). Being “not your own” (1 Cor. 6:20) takes a little getting used to. We have to ask the Owner for permission for everything questionable. The trouble comes when we want to do (or allow to be done) things we used to do, but that are no longer allowed.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give us the discretion and the discernment we need…the discretion not to succumb to our old defaults, and the discernment not to ask in the first place for permission to do those things we already know He will respond to negatively; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-16-18 Meanwhile…

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-16-18

 

Meanwhile…

What’s Happening:  “Everyone is sad about the tragedy in Florida…however, meanwhile much has happened you did not hear about…like Rex Tillerson going to Turkey to ease tensions there (https://www.yahoo.com/news/tillerson-heads-ankara-ease-turkey-tensions-054722277.html), or the comments the Vice President made about the White House’s wisdom in its handling of the Porter issue (https://www.yahoo.com/news/pence-porter-scandal-white-house-couldve-handled-better-195530523.html), or the news that Austrian snowboarder Markus Schairer broke his neck  during the snowbardcross quarterfinals at the Olympics in Pyeongchang (https://www.yahoo.com/news/austrian-snowboarder-markus-schairer-breaks-001400738.html), or…the list could go on …but the media controls the narrative…and ratings control the media. Not until people tune out bad news in preference of good news will that change.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “But that’s human nature and that’ll never change.”

 

Biblical Response:  “It would really be sad if that were true…thankfully, it is possible to change (Ezek. 11:19-20). Isaiah 11 might sound weird and other-worldly, but it’s a promise and God doesn’t make empty promises.”

 

“Sure, the human nature wants to dominate. In fact, it takes a constant act of the will (Eph. 2:5), a daily decision (Luke 9:23), or the world will just take over by default (Rom. 8:4-6).”

 

“Christians? We’re under these same influences from without, but we choose to be influenced by God within (Josh. 24:15). What is required to change this culture? The nature change of those in it.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to choose the to be attracted to those things that bless, rather than those things that curse; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY -2-15-18 Tragic Tolerance

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-15-18

 

Tragic Tolerance

What’s Happening:  “Nobody said anything; nobody was very surprised…when the Florida shooter (17 killed, 15 wounded), 19-year-old ex-student-of-the-school Nikolas Cruz was captured, the details began to emerge: he wore a gas mask, shot with a legally-obtained AR-15, and his social media accounts were full of blatant references to gun threats and even bomb sites visited (https://www.yahoo.com/news/injuries-reported-shooting-florida-high-201227723.html). Broward County, Sheriff Israel asked the local community to report any suspicious activity, especially online so to avoid ‘a major tragedy like this devastation that happened in Parkland tonight.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Surely, you’re not blaming the attack on our culture!’”

 

Biblical Response:  “Uh, yeah! I mean, Nikolas Cruz is majorly to blame for his premeditated murderous acts…but everyone who could have reported his obvious violent speech and social-media craziness must also share in the blame. Have we created such an air of tolerance that we just ignore the warning signs of aberrant behavior? He sought mental health help a year earlier…he was expelled from the same school for bad behavior…nobody was surprised by his acts…but nobody said anything, either. Sure, there will be renewed calls for gun control, more security at schools, and mental health laws…but nothing will help in a culture that allows everything in the name of tolerance.”

 

“Christians? Sure, this is the time to weep (Rom. 12:15)…and the time for prayer (Phil. 4:6)…but it may be the time to act, too…and be prepared (Amos 4:12)…or be repaired!

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, we lift up those who have lost someone in the recent shooting or who may be wounded; also, give us common sense, not reactionary anger; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-14-18 The Message

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-14-18

 

The Message

What’s Happening:  “With the article from the Post and the testimony of the FBI, White House staff secretary Rob Porter’s resignation over the women abuse (allegations and photos his two former wives submitted) has now run into some conflicts of timing: who knew what, when? White House Chief of Staff Gen. John Kelly may not have heeded the warning signs and Rob  Porter has proclaimed the allegations untrue (https://www.newyorker.com/news/our-columnists/what-did-john-kelly-see-in-rob-porter). ‘Rob Porter is a man of true integrity. I can’t say enough good things about him,..’ Kelly was reported to say, among other things. He may wish he could take those words back.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I thought it was ‘innocent until proven guilty.’”

 

Biblical Response:  “Maybe, for some low-level lackey’s job, but we’re talking about someone who gives to the leader of the free world everything he sees. That man needs to be above reproach. Whether or not he really did those things against his wives is irrelevant, it’s not beyond the possibility…and it needs to be. Well, you might ask, who is so squeaky-clean? Not many, but that’s why they gets paid so much. More is said by your actions than your pedigree (Porter is a Rhodes Scholar, Harvard graduate, and former Mormon missionary). Should he have resigned? Perhaps he should never have been hired.”

 

“Christians? This concept, ‘above reproach’ is not foreign to us (Phil.2:15; 1 Tim. 3:2: Col. 1:22). At least it shouldn’t be. That’s how we are supposed to pick leaders. And can I just say that men are charged to protect women and children, not give them bruises! We’re all for ‘due process,’ but we’re also for sending an unmixed message.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give our leaders the discernment necessary to select the men and women who set an example for us all; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-13-18 Dream On

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-13-18

 

Dream On

What’s Happening:  “The immigration deal that President Trump has proposed (1.8 million  ‘Dreamers’ on path to citizenship + 25 billion in border protection + end to immigration lottery + end to chain migration) doesn’t sit well with Republicans or Democrats. Whether enough of either party is willing to hold their nose and vote for it remains to be seen – reminds me of budget (https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-pushes-immigration-deal-says-last-chance-pass-111634053–politics.html). ‘”Wouldn’t it be great if we could finally, after so many years, solve the DACA puzzle,” Trump tweeted, ’This will be our last chance, there will never be another opportunity! March 5th.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “What are those brought here by parents to do?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Gee, they could apply legally…as long as this deal is approved it would really be a plus for them to get citizenship out of the deal…and it may happen. I guess we’ll know by March 5th…or whenever the courts decide. I appreciate that the ‘Dreamers’ were brought here through no fault of their own…and this deal provides a path to citizenship for them (800,000) and their parents (1,000,000); This is what Trump is willing to concede if he can only get the rest mentioned above.”

 

“Christians? Of course, we’re all here through no fault of our own (did we choose where we were born?). Here’s what I propose: at your 18th birthday (when your majority rights kick in – you are allowed to make your own decision as a legal adult), you can choose any country of the world in which to apply for citizenship; until accepted you’ll be from the country of your birth by default;  you have to decide by your 19th birthday. Sounds reasonable to me. As Christians we’re citizens by adoption, anyway (Eph. 2:18-19). I guess that makes us all ‘Dreamers.’”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, let us realize we’re all here by someone grace; therefore we should, as recipients of grace, show grace; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-12-18 1st, 2nd, and 3rd

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-12-18

 

1st, 2nd, and 3rd

What’s Happening:  “It’s being called ‘The Miracle on Snow’ and Krueger’s win in the Olympic Skiathlon will definitely make the NBC highlight reels (or thumb-drive or whatever). Moments after the start, Simen Hegstad Krueger went down in a tangle of skis and poles, almost certainly eliminating him from the competition in the grueling  cross-country race. But Norway’s Krueger got up and slowly began to regain his position. By race end it was he (Gold), Martin Sundby (Silver) and  Hans Holund (Bronze), and all Norwegians, who crossed the finish line 1, 2, 3 (https://www.pyeongchang2018.com/en/news/krueger-leads-norway-s-skiathlon-clean-sweep). His final break occurred toward the end of the race and left the others in the dust…er, I mean, the snow.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I guess that proves you should never give up.”

 

Biblical Response:  “As if Winston Churchill hadn’t proven that already (if you haven’t seen the recent ‘Darkest Hour’ film,  you may not know why those Norwegians aren’t speaking German). The indomitable spirit will always win the day. Sayings like: ‘It’s always darkest just before the dawn’ or ‘The lowest ebb is the turning of the tide’ comes to mind.’”

 

“Christians? When it comes to an indomitable spirit, there is no better example than Christ. His formula for victory was the same as Krueger’s, you don’t quit before the end (John 19:30).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to struggle on in our battles, just not in our strength…Your strength, our victory; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-10-18 Imagine

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-10-18

 

Imagine

What’s Happening:  “John Lennon’s “Imagine” had a Korean twist as four members of Korean rock bands rendered the ‘globalism idealists’ theme song’ at the 2018 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony. South Korea and the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea – North) marched in together under a white flag with a light blue united Korean peninsula (North and South) on it; viewed by the U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and Kim Yo Jong, the sister of the North Korean leader – the VP remained seated a row ahead with his guest: the father of tortured and killed Otto Warmbier. The idealistic was tempered by the realistic (https://www.elitedaily.com/p/who-sang-imagine-at-the-2018-olympic-opening-ceremony-korean-singers-performed-the-rendition-8173367). ‘Dear athletes, now, it’s your turn!’ Bach, the IOC Chairman said.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Maybe there will now be peace between North and South.”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yeah…and maybe Santa Claus is real, too. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for forgiveness and mercy…but not for unrepentant violence accompanied by denials and delay. Meanwhile, the DPRK’s progress toward making their threats real continues. South Korea’s leader Moon seems lulled by the tune the charmer is playing, but there is a reason the Colt Company called the .45 revolver (that tamed the ‘Wild West’) the ‘Peacemaker.’”

 

“Christians? We’re all for peace…but the absence of conflict is not peace. The presence of God is. We are not supposed to call those things that are as though they weren’t, but “those things that aren’t as though they were” (Rom. 4:17). Denying reality is a sure path to the unimaginable. Sticking your head in the sand doesn’t change what’s happening above.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we want to pursue a path of non-aggression, let us not trust the nature of fallen Man; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-9-18 While You Slept

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-9-18

 

While You Slept

What’s Happening:  “The Senate and House passed a short-term spending bill (expires 3/23) and a long-term 2-Year budget deal early this morning…after a government shutdown that only will last hours. Both await the President’s signature Did the Republicans compromise? Yes. Did the Democrats compromise? Yes. The budget grows the fiscal size of government 13% Yes.(http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/02/09/senate-has-recesses-until-friday-at-12-01-m-assuring-shutdown.html). ‘…adding to the swamp…is not what we were sent here to do,’ said  spokesman for the 30-member House Freedom Caucus.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “So Congress did a good thing?”

 

Biblical Response:  “No…and yes. Kicking the can down the road is not necessarily a good thing…especially when the can gets bigger with each kick and the end of the road is inevitable. Yes, Congress did avert a gridlocking shutdown, but, as Mr. Paul will no doubt agree, fiscal responsibility must eventually happen.”

 

“Christians? Do we believe in fiscal responsibility? Of course (Rom. 13:8). At the same time, we want to be merciful to those who, through no fault of their own, suffer (the innocent opiod addicted, those hurricane victims  in Texas, Florida, or Puerto Rico). Still, I have to balance my budget at home, too. We have to hold our elected leaders accountable for making decisions that are untenable…with OUR money.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to find the balance between fiscal responsibility and accountable mercy…and may Your provision guide us; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

 

CLARITY – 2-8-18 If You Got It, Flaunt It

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-8-18

 

If You Got It, Flaunt It

What’s Happening:  “President Trump has asked the Pentagon to submit a plan for a military parade. Dates, hardware, and costs are being considered…maybe on the 100th anniversary of the close of the first world war this fall. Not since the end of the Gulf War in 1991 has such a parade been held in Washington…but it is not unprecedented…some are wondering if this is the time (https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/07/politics/us-military-parade-planning-underway/index.html). ‘We want to be peacemakers, not warmakers,’ said Steny Hoyer (D-MA).”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “If we have a parade, won’t Kim Jong-un be watching?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Hopefully…and I hope he realizes the national suicide he’s contemplating. Of course, there will be a number of reactions: all America will (read: should) applaud the bravery of our men and women who put themselves daily in harm’s way to ensure the fighting occurs ‘over there;’our enemies will watch with fear and trembling (surely Russia, China, Syria, Iran, and numerous terrorist organizations will think again); our allies should rejoice with us that the price paid to maintain freedom will not be borne by them alone;the Republicans will love it; the Democrats will hate it; etc.”

 

“Christians? Nobody wants war…the bloodshed of the Savior was meant to be the last of it…but everyone isn’t born again…there won’t be peace on earth until the Prince of Peace rules in the heart of everyone (Isaiah 2:4). Until then, there will wars, rumors of war…and parades.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, teach us to pray for peace and prepare for war…that the key to peace is strength; not ours…but Yours; in  Jesus’ Name, amen.”   © Alan E.Sargent

 

Share as you like; just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe to any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent