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CLARITY – 6-30-20 ‘Xinjiang’ Strikes Fear

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-30-20

Xinjiang’ Strikes Fear

What’s Happening: “It is not a good time to be a woman AND a Uighur AND of reproductive age AND to be in Xinjiang. So says a report by The Associated Press on June 28. Forced sterilization, forced placement of an Intra-Urinary Device (IUD), infanticide, abortion,  or indefinite detention…those are your options if you are of the Uighur people, Muslim, and pregnant. The Chinese Government’s recent efforts of population control have seen a 60% decline in the Uighur minority from 2015-2018, dropping another 24% last year alone. Having too many children has mothers hiding their infants when soldiers do surprise inspections of homes…at neighbors’ recommendations…or paying huge fines…or being punished by detention (https://www.yahoo.com/news/china-forces-birth-control-muslims-040416780.html). Quoting: ‘While individual women have spoken out before about forced birth control, the practice is far more widespread and systematic than previously known, according to an AP investigation based on government statistics, state documents and interviews with 30 ex-detainees, family members and a former detention camp instructor. The campaign over the past four years in the far west region of Xinjiang is leading to what some experts are calling a form of ‘demographic genocide.’” 

“‘People there are now terrified of giving birth,’ one Uighur woman said. ‘When I think of the word ‘Xinjiang,’ I can still feel that fear’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “So now we’re against minority desrrimination in America, but for minority descrimination in China?!”

Biblical Response:  “Boy, are you confused! And it is confusing!We should be against minority descimination everywhere…except in heaven, I guess (assuming people who call themselves Christians are a minority in hell…I told you it was confusing…aren’t you glad He’s the judge?) Seriously, population control is one of those issues we should definitely leave up to God (Acts 17:26).”

“Christians?  Like Jeremiah, we believe that He knew us before we were even in the womb (Jer. 1:5 – of course, time is not an issue with God – Jesus was slain from the foundation of the world – Rev. 13:8). And how about this scripture?”

“Declaring the end from the beginning, and from  ancient  times things which have not been  done, Saying, ‘My purpose will be established,’ and ‘I will  accomplish all My good pleasure’;” (Isaiah 46:10 NASU)

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to leave more and more up to You…after all, aren’t You the Righteous Judge? (Ps. 7:11); in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-29-20 Much Ado About Not Much

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-29-20

Much Ado About Not Much

What’s Happening: “Two COVID-19 milestones were passed Sunday: 500,000 deaths worldwide, and the largest daily total of new confirmed cases at 10 million. The U.S. is by far the largest contributor and Brazil is second with half as many new cases as the U.S. Spikes in Italy, France, and some African countries after re-openings are blamed for some of the numbers’ increases. This has led to backing off reopening plans in Texas, California and Florida, with Governors so ordering. Schools in the fall and sports are still up in the air (https://www.yahoo.com/news/china-virus-cases-stabilize-italy-053531808.html). Quoting from the Associated Press article: ‘COVID-19 has taken a very swift and very dangerous turn in Texas over just the past few weeks,’ said Gov. Greg Abbott, who allowed businesses to start reopening in early May but on Friday shut down bars and limited restaurant dining (75% capacity down to 50%) amid a spike in cases.” 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I guess I and my family need to shelter in place, huh?” 

Biblical Response:  “If that will make you feel safer…I guess never driving a car  (or riding in one) will keep you from dying in a car crash. Don’t get me wrong, each death is tragic, but 500,000 worldwide is only .00007143857% 10,000,000 new cases is only .001428571%…not much compared to population  and other pandemics (AIDS – 2005-2012 – 36,000,000 deaths; Category 2 Flu – 1968 – 1,000,000 deaths; Asian Flu – 1956-1958 – 2,000,000; Spanish Flu – 1918 – 20,000,000 to 50,000,000; the Black Death {Bubonic Plague} – 1346-1353 – 200.000,000, etc.). 500,000 is not to be sneezed about (pardon the pun) but still not huge. Let’s keep things in perspective.”

“Christians?  We think every death is tragic…it is, after all, the cessation of decision-making- about-eternity (Heb. 9:27). Still, Christians need to be about faith, not fear (1 John 4:18). People have a tendency to react, not act; to shoot first and ask questions later. Instead, we need to be bastions of stability and reason…not fear mongers. We need to rejoice (what a great time to be alive!). Evangelism ought to be easy: we can offer a solution to the madness!”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to remember that no plague ‘can come nigh our dwelling’ (Ps. 91:10 – don’t forget the qualification of verse 1); in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-27-20 Falling Behind

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-27-20

Falling Behind

What’s Happening: “In a The National Interest article that appeared yesterday, the Thursday remarks of Senator Jim Inhofe (Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee) from the Senate floor were referenced saying the U.S. was falling behind China and Russia, especially in their pursuit of technological military superiority. The cure: an increase in our priority of scientific advancement…and a consequent increase in military spending. Russia and China have ramped up in the last ten years their pursuit of hypersonics, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and quantum computing…and this doesn’t even include China’s recent bellicose activities in the South China Sea or their killing of 20 Indian soldiers on their border (https://www.yahoo.com/news/donald-trump-worried-u-military-134900975.html).  Quoting from the article: ‘Inhofe provided a lot of detail about strategic, political, economic and military concerns regarding both Russia and China, citing massive increases in the military budgets of both countries.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “So we can’t shout: ‘We’re Number One!’ Big deal; does it really matter if we’re Number Two or Three?”

Biblical Response:  “Yes, it matters. Your adversaries don’t attack if they think they aren’t going to win (Like 14:31-32). Why do you think the governments of our adversaries spend huge amounts on military parades? Two reasons: 1) To make their populace feel secure 2) To make their enemies think twice about attacking (I’m sue it doesn’t harm the military’s morale, either). We shouldn’t trust in military superiority (Ps. 20:7), but our enemies have respect for strength.”

“Christians?  We believe that while we should burnish our shields and sharpen our swords..and put more watchers on the wall (not too vague references to the modern equivalents of defensive and offensive capabilities…and increased electronic surveillance), our trust is in the Lord (the above scripture  reference in Psalms). Of course, we hope we never have to use them, but superior military capabilities may be one of the best deterrents to that possibility.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to remember that missionary agencies have sent many Gospel emissaries from our militarily strong shores (more than the rest of the world combined); and this truth: there will never be peace on earth till the Prince of Peace rules in the heart of every man (the reason we should continue to send); in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-26-20 Only a Fool

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-26-20

Only a Fool

What’s Happening: “Over 100 people in northern India are dead from lightning strikes in recent days the BBC reports. This is monsoon season for them and working outside in the rain ranks as one of the most unwise activities. That is a nice way of saying foolishness breeds dangerous behavior (Eccl. 7:25). There is more than 2,000 people killed annually by lightning and you’d think people would learn…but you’d be wrong. 83 people were killed in Bihar and over 20 were killed in neighboring Uttar Pradesh. Working outside during a thunderstorm has got to be ranked with changing screens on a submarine, having a tea party with a bear, or changing a diaper on a full-grown lion…other foolish activities (https://www.yahoo.com/news/lightning-kills-more-100-northern-195516436.html). Quoting yesterday’s article: ‘The authorities have warned residents to be vigilant and stay indoors, as meteorologists forecast more bad weather.’… you think?!”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Aren’t lightning bolts God’s purview?”

Biblical Response:  “He can take a fool’s life by lightning…but He surely is not limited to that. I’m sure, there have been instances when He could have used that method to take someone’s life (of course, in 262 references to lightning in 13 versions there is no mention of it), but the Lord is Sovereign. He created each of us and has the absolute right to end any of us at any time…by any method…and that doesn’t mean we can’t do something foolish and end our own life.”

“That reminds me of another foolish activity: atheism. Here’s a great scripture on that: 

    ‘The fool has said in his heart, “There is no God.” (Ps. 14:1 NASU)

“Christians?  We believe we reap what we sow (Gal. 6:7). We can play or work outside during a thunderstorm…if we are foolish. And we shouldn’t blame God for the reward of folly.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to be wise in our activities, not give an angel overtime work; in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-25-20 Justice Prevails

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-25-20

Justice Prevails

What’s Happening: “The Prosecutor decided not to file charges against Officer Kevin Davis Wednesday in the shooting death of 17-year-old Josh Ruffin in Columbia, South Carolina. Ruffin was initially seen in a high-crime area with a bag on his shoulder. Asked to stop for a discussion, Josh ran from Davis who chased him till the teen stopped and pointed a .45 caliber pistol at Davis. What ensued was a tragedy, by anyone’s estimation (https://www.yahoo.com/news/prosecutor-discuss-black-sc-teen-143725151.html). Black Presecutor Byron Gipson said, ‘There is no joy in this room having this conversation.’ All this adds fuel to the flames of the brouhaha over black George Floyd’s kneeling death at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I’m happy for the Davis family and I weep for the Ruffin family.”

Biblical Response:  “Yeah, me too. What a tragedy! Ruffin shouldn’t have been out late, especially in that area. And he should never have pointed a gun at anyone trained to defend himself…let alone a police officer. A failure of fatherhood, no doubt (it’s every father’s responsibility to teach his children respect for authority – Prov. 22:6). This does not lessen the tragedy of racism in our country or the death of Josh or the fact that we should be even having this discussion. All we can be thankful for is that justice prevailed…as much as we may not have liked the outcome, it was just.”

“Christians?  We rejoice in the truth (1 Cor. 13:6). Justice is often not pretty…often it is downright ugly…still, we should (and will) rejoice. As I’ve said many times: Justice makes hell necessary; mercy makes heaven possible.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to rejoice at the final triumph of justice…and that the painful death of our Savior was just, because He took on Himself the punishment we deserved: in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-24-20 Deeds of the Flesh

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-24-20

Deeds of the Flesh

What’s Happening: “Madison, Wisconsin, the capital of the state, was the site Tuesday of mayhem that resulted in the assault of State Senator Tim Carpenter, after he stopped to take a photo of the protesters. They were alternatively protesting the death of black man George Floyd in Minneapolis at the hands of the police and the arrest of one of their crowd earlier. Senator Carpenter described his assaulters as a bunch of ‘thugs’ who hit him a half a dozen times and kicked him in the head. Protesters broke glass at the Tommy Thompson Center, broke the windows of the Dane County jail and toppled statues…some who fought for the Union. Protesters did not stop their rampage until police arrived at 1:00am. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) wondered why Gov. Tony Evers didn’t do anything (https://www.yahoo.com/news/madison-protesters-tear-down-capitol-072209491.html). ‘This is absolutely despicable. I am saddened at the cowardice of Madison officials to deal with these thugs,’ Speaker Vos tweeted.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “A State Senator! What is America coming to?!” 

Biblical Response:  “Anarchy…which is what happens in a country without a Christian consensus. The ‘deeds of the flesh’ (Gal. 5:19) are now our default. And it shouldn’t surprise us. To show self-control when you are angry over injustice only comes when you are controlled by the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22). And, this is the price of a society, when you’ve taken prayer and the Bible out of public schools (Engel v. Vitale – 1962), and higher education has been taken over by secular humanism. We can expect things to get worse before it gets better. Do I believe that we are headed back to a peaceable society? Yes, eventually, but I don’t know how many assaults, arson burnings, riots, or other violence lies ahead, first. And, things don’t change automatically.”

 “Christians?  We believe that the only thing that can help men is a nature change (1 Pet. 3:4). We must go from the control of the ‘deed of the flesh’ to the ‘fruit of the Spirit’ (Gal. 5:19-23):

Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality,

idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. (NASU)

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, show us, specifically, what we must do to get to that Christian consensus we seek…and the societal sanity it will  yield; in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY- 6-23-20 Right or Wrong

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-23-20

Right or Wrong

What’s Happening: “A class action lawsuit filed earlier this month was amended this week alleging BLM protesters, as they marched to register their complaint June 6, about the death of George Floyd on May 25, were the victims of excessive force by the LAPD, firing rubber bullets giving some of them permanent injuries. Several of the protesters were still dealing with the injuries they sustained weeks later…a fractured jaw, still-visible injury, nerve damage. 3,000 were arrested and some are suing for compensatory damages over unlawful detainment. Techniques employed since 1990 were used and the BLM crowd is none too happy about it (https://www.yahoo.com/news/protesters-join-class-action-lawsuit-060758591.html). Quoting the INSIDER article by Charles Davis: ‘An LAPD spokesperson did not immediately return a request for comment. But Capt. Gisselle Espinoza earlier told the Los Angeles Times that the department was ‘fully committed to investigating every allegation of misconduct or excessive force related to the recent protests.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I thought every American had a right to protest!”

Biblical Response:  “Yeah, sort of. I mean, that is what the first amendment says…free peech, and all…except for us there is a higher law. It’s expressed well in Romans, Chapter 14:

“One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike. Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord, and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to God. For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself; for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.” (Romans 14:5-8 NASU)

Doesn’t leave much wiggle room, does it? Maybe if more of us Christian lived this way we’d be the ‘peculiar people’ (1 Peter 2:9; Titus 2:14) the Bible talks about.”

“Christians?  Our identity as Christians comes before our identity as Americans. As much as we should love our country, we should remember we are just passing through…our real citizenship is in heaven (Eph.3:20; Phil. 2:19). We are partakers of a heavenly kingdom, an eternal home (2 Tim. 4:18).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to realize that we are not from here …and to act like it in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-22-20 No Such Thing as Secrets

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-22-20

No Such Thing as Secrets

What’s Happening: “Tim Cook, Apple’s openly gay CEO, has been described as a ‘man full of secrets’ by CBS’s John Dickerson (60 Minutes, last night),     and is hosting Apple’s 31st Annual Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) today. He promised to reveal the latest technological advancements for his iPhone, introduced in 2007. But this WWDC will be different because it will be virtual…due to COVID-19. The company’s market cap is 1.4 Trillion dollars, equivalent to whole countries, like Spain, Australia, or Saudi Arabia. Though he’s at odds with much that President Trump is trying to do, he doesn’t want to see corporate taxes go up (https://www.yahoo.com/news/apple-ceo-tim-cook-nexus-140004466.html). ‘You know, there was a time back many years ago where CEOs were just supposed to focus on profits only, and not so much the constituencies. And that’s never been my view. I’ve never subscribed to that,’ Cook said.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “$1.4 Trillion! I’ll bet that gives him a lot of clout!”

Biblical Response:  “You know what they say…’money talks.’ What is it saying? Not that you should go out and buy the latest iPhone or become gay or think you are ‘full of secrets.’ Tim Cook is no paragon of virtue and he is certainly not ‘full of secrets.’ Secrets are a myth anyway. 

Accordingly, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in the inner rooms will be proclaimed upon the housetops.’ (Luke 12:3 NASU)

God reveals what He wants to reveal, WHEN He wants to reveal it (Deut. 29:29). Technology is great, but it only underscores man’s need for God…the more he learns, the less he knows (of what [or Who] he needs to know). Besides, knowledge of this world can distract us from knowledge of Him. Properly used, technology can give us more time to pursue the knowledge that really counts.”

“Christians?  Priority is everything. We believe in technology, as long as it doesn’t lead us to wrong conclusions or distract us from a more important pursuit (the pursuit of God). The last thing we need is to be so convinced of our moral superiority that we quit seeking (Matt. 7:22-23).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to realize that knowledge of You is better than all the knowledge technology may ever glean us; in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-20-20 A Warning of Impending Doom

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-20-20

A Warning of Impending Doom

What’s Happening: “Friday saw an impassioned Pompeo warning Europe of Chinese economic expansionism after meeting in Hawaii with Yang Jiechi, a top Chinese official. The Chinese purchases of port interests in Greece and Spain only served to underscore his remarks. Pompeo warned of pursuing the Chnese ‘surveillance state’ Huawei, the communist-owned giant telecom company. It was as if he was trying to get Europe from making the samw mistakes he says the U.S. has made over the past few decades. He even termed the Chinese as being a ‘rogue actor.’ Can Europe be great again? The U. S.’s doesn’t want to be the sole voice in decrying the Chinese, but it may be singing a solo when it really wants a quartet…or at least a trio… (https://www.yahoo.com/news/pompeo-warns-europeans-against-rogue-actor-china-161831884.html). ‘”There’s also no way to straddle these alternatives without abandoning who we are. Democracies dependent on authoritarians are not worthy of the name,’ Pompeo sid by teleconference to a forum gathered in Denmark.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Why should I care if the price of TVs or computers goes up or down in Europe?”

Biblical Response:  “Because everything is connected today. We live in a global marketplace. Instead of making decisions based on consumer prices, however, perhaps we should direct our efforts at using the interconnectivity to get the Gospel out (Prov. 25:25). More have been freed by exporting the truth (John 8:32), than will ever receive the benefits of our exporting democracy. Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for self-determinism…and that’s sure not going to take place under an atheistic communist regime…but self-determinism is ultimately trumped by God-Determinism. Why not cut to the chase?”

“Christians?  We believe in the freeing nature of the truth. We also believe God is much bigger than Xi or Trump or any number of European leaders. Regardless of motivations to the contrary, His will will prevail. Still, it’s always better to align yourself with His purposes than to oppose them.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give us insight to how we can be a part of Your plan, and our leaders wisdom to not pursue a course of action that only makes us feel good about ourselves; in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.

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CLARITY – 6-19-20 Shell Game

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 6-19-20

Shell Game

What’s Happening: “In an effort to deceive the U.S. from governing who is exempt from sanctions over Venezuelan oil (humanitarian oil-for-food is allowed), new sanctions were levied on three individuals, eight entities, and two vessels Thursday. According to investigators at U.S, Treasury, they were attempting to mask Venezuelan oil sales to Europe via Mexico, and Mexico’s Libre Abordo was accused of helping Caracas evade U.S. sanctions. A complicated shell game netted conspirators millions in profits…Maduro’s government’s efforts at obfuscation have proven failures (https://www.yahoo.com/news/u-sanctions-mexican-firms-individuals-184309210.html). Quoting the Reuters article by Daphne Psaledakis and Marianna Parraga: ‘Mexico’s peso slumped 2% after the U.S. action. Among those blacklisted were Mexico-based Libre Abordo and related Schlager Business Group, as well as their co-owners, Olga Maria Zepeda and Veronica Esparza.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Will this affect the price I pay at the pump?”

Biblical Response:  “Maybe…probably not…though hungry-for-profit oil companies will watch news of this closely and may try to maximize the consumers’ fears…or at least be accused of this…like I said, it’s complicated. What isn’t complicated is the attempt at profiting from deception. As the old saying goes: ‘Truth stands the test of time, lies are soon exposed.’ Oh wait, that’s a scripture (Prov. 12:19)”

“It might not make the headlines (at least that’s what Venezuela is hoping), but that’s what we have watchdogs for (like the U.S. Treasury and the NSA). Discovering deception and responding to it is what they are all about.”

“Christians?  We believe in truth. And truth, the real facts, are always eventually discoverable. God knows which shell covers the hidden object as there is nothing hidden from Him (Luke 8:17).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to rely on You for the exposure of what should be exposed…in Your good timing; in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

Share as you like, just give credit appropriately. For buying any of Alan E. Sargent’s books or to subscribe or to comment on any of his CLARITY blogs, go to the following link: http://subdeo.com.’ If he’s not in Twitter/Facebook/Email jail, he also tweets/posts.