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CLARITY – 11-12-19 Chariots and Horses

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-12-19

Chariots and Horses

What’s Happening: “They kind of don’t want it to leak, kind of do…and pray that it never really does. I’m talking about the ‘rumored’ second nuclear-capable sub, the Sinpo-C, of North Korea. A satellite photo revealed that the North Koreans had one, but this second one…with accelerated development after the Trump/Kim talks…is only hear-say and strategic leaks. It might be true…as a deterrent to the U.S. should talks fail…or it might be false…to keep their leverage with Trump up. And, in a sense, nobody wants a sub to spring a leak (https://www.yahoo.com/news/north-korean-threat-evolving-come-223000664.html).  Quoting an article that appeared in the National Interest on the 10th, ‘The nuclear weapons, and the rocket technology to deliver them, are extremely expensive investments by Pyongyang, and the Kim dynasty is unlikely to give them up entirely because they are seen as guarantors against a U.S. attack.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Yeah, but their nuke-sub fleet is puny beside ours”

Biblical Response:  “True…but then it only takes one hit…or the threat of it…to sway opinion.  Of course, that assumes we only attack by submarine…which is not a serious consideration. Biblically, we are not to trust in horses (or chariots – Ps. 20:7). Our President boasts of the strongest military on earth…and he’s probably right. But then again, we’ve aborted over 60 million babies since Roe v. Wade (1973). It is not good to give God a reason to not favor you.”

“Christians? The familiar part of the above verse is that we should not trust in chariots or horses, but the rest of the verse is worth quoting, too… ‘but we will remember the name of the Lord our God.’ (KJV)”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we want to be strong…we also want to be humble; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-11-19 What Did They Think Was Going to Happen?

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-11-19

What Did They Think Was Going to Happen?

What’s Happening: “Another protester was shot by police in Hong Kong over the weekend. The victim could be seen on a Facebook post attacking an officer as he was collaring another protester. The protesters, who have been at it for five months protesting a proposed bill that would allow extradition to mainland China, were particularly agitated over the death of a protester who fell some time ago, but finally succumbed to his injuries Friday (https://www.yahoo.com/news/hong-kong-protester-appears-shot-020411886.html).  ‘I do not want to go into details, but I just want to make it very clear that we will spare no effort in finding ways and means that could end the violence in Hong Kong as soon as possible,’ leader of Hong Kong, Carrie Lam told reporters.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Any protests are useless and just a waste of time and lives.”

Biblical Response:  “You may be right…time alone will tell. However, I do remember a protest that began nearly 250 years ago against the greatest power of the day. That, too, ended in bloodshed and a ‘shot that was heard around the world’…and a new country that has become the envy of the world (I mean, I don’t see droves of people risking their lives to get into any other countries). What will be the outcome here? I don’t know. It’s a cinch more blood will be shed before it’s over. You give folks a taste of freedom and they usually want more. All that’s missing is a religious element (or the MSM is not reporting about it). One thing is for sure: ‘Freedom isn’t free…you’ve got to pay the price, you’ve got to sacrifice…for your liberty’ (a line from a song sung by ‘Up With People’). ”

“Christians? Do we believe in freedom? Absolutely…but we know it only comes with bloodshed (Rom. 5:9). Of course, I’m talking about spiritual freedom…but freedom in this world is akin to it (John 8:33-36).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help those who seek freedom to realize there is none without sacrifice; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-9-19 Be Careful What You Export

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-9-19

Be Careful What You Export

What’s Happening: “Russell Travers, acting director of the National Counterterrorism Center, said that many countries view the U.S. as exporting white supremacy. In an article yesterday, it was stated that Racially Motivated Violent Extremism (RMVE – pronounced ‘remvee’) is a global movement that has killed many in non-coordinated mass terrorism – Anders Brevjik killed 77 in two attacks in Norway in 2011; Dylann Roof, an American white supremacist who killed African-Americans in South Carolina in 2015; and Brenton Tarrant who killed 51 in two attacks on mosques in New Zealand this past March, to name a few (https://www.yahoo.com/news/america-seen-as-exporter-of-white-supremacist-ideology-says-us-counterterrorism-official-232420985.html). ‘For almost two decades, the United States has pointed abroad at countries who are exporters of extreme Islamist ideology,’ said Travers. ‘We are now being seen as the exporter of white supremacist ideology. That’s a reality with which we are going to have to deal.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Who cares what people believe. Doesn’t everyone have the right to believe any way they want?”

Biblical Response:  “To respond to your first statement: the relatives of those killed care. To answer your question: sure, everyone has a right to believe how they like…as long as they don’t take violent means to express themselves. What really saddens me (apart from the indiscriminate loss of innocent lives), is that America is ‘exporting’ any message other than the Good News (Mk. 16:15-16). I believe this is our reason for our founding…for our ongoing existence. Should we cease to ‘export’ the Gospel, we will cease to exist…at least we will no longer be fulfilling our unique destiny. Some might argue that sincerity is the real test of truth, that all one really needs to do is sincerely believe ANY truth. 19 men who flew planes into buildings on September 11 thought that way. They were wrong…as 2,994 now cannot attest!”

“Christians? We’ve, like Don Francisco’s song says, ‘…got to tell somebody.’ We should be driven by a compulsion to share the Good News of God’s grace…in season and out (2 Tim. 4:2).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us, from the love we have so freely received, to feel compelled to give to others so great a message of hope; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-8-19 It’s Not the First One You Should Fear

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-8-19

It’s Not the First One You Should Fear

What’s Happening: “Multiple rapist and convicted of the rape and murder of Stacey Stites, Texas death row inmate Rodney Reed is scheduled for death by lethal injection in a couple weeks. Several celebrities, a number of bi-partisan Texas lawmakers, and the Ambassador to the European Union have asked Governor Abbot for a reprieve. Some have accused former policeman and Stites’ fiance, Jimmy Fennell, of the crime (https://www.yahoo.com/news/celebrities-others-ask-texas-halt-211903059.html).  ‘All the evidence makes it plain as day that Rodney Reed is the killer and these fantastic 11th hour attempts to implicate Jimmy are the same song, 200th verse,” Bob Phillips, attorney for Fennell said.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “With a list of objectors like that, surely Gov. Abbot will reconsider.”

Biblical Response:  “Maybe. He has granted one reprieve since he took office in January of 2015. Still, the evidence is pretty strong for the crime that was committed 25 years ago. Much of Reed’s support is coming from people who just oppose the death penalty…and the justice and closure the Stites’ family seeks must also be taken into consideration. Besides, he was convicted by a jury of twelve, and sentenced to death. Is he innocent of Stites’ murder? I don’t know. Only God does. However, it’s not the first death that Rodney Reed should fear, rather it’s the second one (Matt. 10:28; Rev. 20:14).”

“Christians? Do we believe in the second death? Absolutely! And fear of it is MUCH greater than the fear of the first one (and should be). Will justice be served? Ultimately. We can trust God… even if we get it wrong.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to get it right, but trust in ultimate justice before we do our own penal system; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-7-19 Snapshots

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-7-19

Snapshots

What’s Happening: “Arwin Rahi of The National Interest published a story yesterday about how the Taliban may now be the victor in the U.S.’s 19-year war in Afghanistan, citing the on-again/off-again talks between the insurgent Taliban and the U.S., which he views as parlaying with the enemy. He also cites the victories his people have had historically, first with the British and later with the Soviets…and he may not be wrong,,,at least in the short-term (https://news.yahoo.com/taliban-won-americas-nineteen-war-162600538.html). Quoting from the opinion piece, ‘Despite some important—albeit fragile—achievements, Afghanistan as a whole hasn’t benefited the way it should have from U.S. presence, owing to the collective incompetence and irresponsibility of the international community and the Afghans alike.’

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I thought we didn’t negotiate with terrorists…”

Biblical Response:  “We don’t, but in the Taliban’s case, it’s complicated. You have to separate the Taliban (which is now – allegedly – more of a political organization with a violent wing) from Al-Qaeda, those involved in the 9/11 attack. Like I said, it’s complicated. To give you a little recent history lesson, go to Wikipedia’s site (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_invasion_of_Afghanistan).

In any case, I think we all have a tendency to judge long-term issues myopically (in short-term measures). I call it ‘snapshot judgment.’ You know, you look at a group of people who smile at the camera for a picture…say: ‘cheese!’. It’s kind of like the pictures we hang over our mantel of our happy families…the visiting public has no knowledge of the family bickering or inbred competition that goes on elsewhere. When Joseph made his brothers swear to carry his bones to the Promised Land (Gen. 50:25), he was taking the correct longer view. The Taliban may look like the victor now (there was a time when the Brits, the Soviets, and the Americans did, too). But only God really knows what the score truly is.”

“Christians? We believe an eternal perspective is the only correct one. That’s why we look to the One Who declares the end from the beginning (Is. 46:10) for our direction. Any other perspective is just too short-term.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to see and judge from Your eternal perspective, not our own temporal one; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-6-19 Mandatory Appointment

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-6-19

Mandatory Appointment

It’s Happening: “Another tragedy may have been a case of mistaken identity as 9 people from Utah with dual Mexican/American citizenship were brutally murdered early yesterday by rival drug cartels, four of them children, all on their way to a wedding they never attended. Several escaped, some of them wounded, and several are missing and feared kidnapped. The grisly details include the torching of one of the three cars they were traveling in and the murder of 4-month old twins. It all occurred in Sonora State just south of the border in Mexico and evoked a tweet by President Trump, offering help to the Mexican President (https://www.yahoo.com/news/least-10-members-mormon-family-124805674.html). ‘A wonderful family and friends from Utah got caught between two vicious drug cartels, who were shooting at each other, with the result being many great American people killed, including young children, and some missing. If Mexico needs or requests help in cleaning out these…..’””

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I’m glad I don’t live in Mexico!”

Biblical Response:  “…or apparently in Chicago. I don’t know if it was a case of mistaken identity or delayed retribution (they were kin to activist Benjamin LeBaron, who was murdered in 2009). Perhaps they were just in the ‘wrong’ place at the wrong time. An acquaintance of mine just lost his 22-year old son to being shot by a robber a couple of blocks from me. He was trying to protect the four women who were also there. Perhaps another case of being in the ‘wrong’ place at the wrong time. In any case, we live in a fallen world (read Genesis 3) and the resultant evil that was unleashed occasionally has devastating collateral damage.”

“We all have an appointment with death. We shall get so many days…no more, no less (Ex. 23:26; Job 14;1-12); and after that comes judgment (Heb. 9:27). Just because God knew when it would occur (Is. 46:10), does that make Him culpable? Hardly! He’s just as upset about it as we are (Heb. 4:15). I thought He was in control of all things…He is! Just because we don’t like an outcome, doesn’t mean it wasn’t appointed.”

“Christians? We believe we all have an appointment with death, but that God is going to see to it that we get the full measure of our days (Ps. 39:4). Since we don’t know exactly when our demise is going to occur, we should live every day as if it were our last..”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to live meaningful lives…and keep short accounts…not knowing when our account may be called due: 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-5-19 A Quid Without a Quo

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-5-19

A Quid Without a Quo

It’s Happening: “Is Trump offering a new defense? ’The quid did not happen, but if it did, so what?’ This seems to be the tack some Republican lawmakers are now (as of Sunday) trying to say. The old saying: quid pro quo, means that if you do something, I’ll do something…I’ll give in on the promised Ukrainian military aid, if you’ll investigate the Bidens…which Trump says you can only read into the transcript of the call…it was never said. But that is moot…so say some )https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-no-quid-pro-quo-perhaps-not-impeachable-143731986.html). On Friday night, the Washington Post (and later Axios) reported ‘a growing number of Senate Republicans are ready to acknowledge that President Trump used U.S. military aid as leverage to force Ukraine to investigate former vice president Joe Biden and his family.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Whom should I believe? Trump or the media?”

Biblical Response:  “That”s a question many are asking…I guess we may not know what the public thinks until the election. Trump claims the transcript is accurate and he clearly made no conditional demand. The Dems say that others, who were privy to the call disagree. Perhaps the truth cannot be known by anyone but God. One thing’s for sure, Jesus death (and God’s love) is unconditional. In fact, Romans 5:8 says that ‘But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.’ (KJV) I didn’t have to clean up my act to be worthy. His righteousness was my sufficiency! (Rom. 3:25-26)

“Christians? We believe God offered a quid without a quo…it was unconditional. It is our job to get this Good News out to others. That’s what evangelism is all about.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to not strain at a gnat politically and realize that getting the message of free salvation out to others is our task…a blessed task, at that; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-4-19 If True, Disgusting

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-4-19

If True, Disgusting

It’s Happening: “An Assistant Scoutmaster, Jonathan Spohrer, 26, was arraigned Friday on charges he was sexually abusing a 12-year old boy at several BSA retreats and meetings. He has pled not-guilty, but his duties and interaction with Scouts has been suspended. He was arrested at his home after a lengthy investigation and will stand trial in New York. An AP report, published Saturday said: ‘Chris Coscia, CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Council of the Boy Scouts, said the organization is ‘shocked and disgusted’ at the alleged behavior’ (https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/assistant-scoutmaster-charged-sexually-abusing-boy-12-66711854). ‘Upon learning of these reports, we removed this individual and prohibited him from any future participation in our programs,’ Coscia said.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “That’s why my kids are not in Scouts.”

Biblical Response:  “That might be reasonable and true…of course, it might also be a convenient excuse for parental non-involvement that rather favors any one of a number of self-indulging activities…like gaming, pornography, addiction to entertainment, etc. Listen, as a former Scoutmaster (for eight years), an Eagle Scout, and disappointed in their recent national decisions (like including girls and homosexuals), I have mixed emotions about Scouting. Fortunately, there are many faith-based alternatives (Royal Rangers, AWANA Clubs. etc.). Whatever any parent decides, boys need to be familiarized with proven outdoor survival skills (it improves his self-esteem), matters of personal integrity, leadership training, etc. We will be handing him a future that desperately needs these attributes.

“Christians? Sure, Jonathan needs to be prayed for…for repentance and probably deliverance (Matt. 17:21), but there is no place in the kingdom of God for sexual aberration (Rom. 1:24-32). We all need to be reminded from time to time that our youth are the leaders of tomorrow and need to be treated as the sacred truth that they are.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to be the worthy repositories of Your grace…and responsibility; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-2-19 Punishing Success

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-2-19

Punishing Success

It’s Happening: “Elizabeth Warren, 2020 Democrat hopeful, alternately front-runner and close runner-up, releasing her $52 Trillion Health care cost, said that she plans to pay for it by taxing the rich. Hedge-fund billionaire, Leon Cooperman, fired back in a 5-page letter to Warren saying, ‘However much it resonates with your base, your vilification of the rich is misguided,’ He cites his humble upbringing, his working to succeed, and his numerous philanthropic programs as he makes a case against her ‘vilification’ of the rich (https://www.yahoo.com/news/hedge-fund-billionaire-fires-back-at-warren-your-vilification-of-the-rich-is-misguided-223828623.html) Warren tweeted back, ‘Leon, you were able to succeed because of the opportunities this country gave you. Now why don’t you pitch in a bit more so everyone else has a chance at the American dream, too?’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “With a net worth over $3 Billion, why shouldn’t he pitch in?”

Biblical Response:  “And maybe he should…but why give the government more money? With the $20 Trillion of debt they already piled up, they haven’t really built up much of s good reputation for fiscal responsibility. Normally you reward success, not punish it. Money is a trust. Some have the ability to accumulate a lot of it. Some don’t. Apparently, the federal government has the ability to spend more than they have. You shouldn’t reward failure (Gal. 6:7).

“Luke 16:1-10 records the situation perfectly. It begins: ‘There was a certain rich man..’ .and concludes:… ‘He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.’ (KJV) It doesn’t take a genius to figure out who is faithful and who is not.”

“Christians? We believe in faithfulness, fiscal responsibility, and in having money…but not in money having us (1 Tim. 6:10; Mark 10:17-22).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, although heaven may render us acknowledgers that everything is Yours anyway, help us in the meanwhile to live here according to Your value system; 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:subdeo.com.’ 

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CLARITY – 11-1-19 I Guess We’ll See

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-1-19

I Guess We’ll See

It’s Happening: “Two things of great significance happened yesterday (and no, one of them was NOT Halloween…even if you take a more historical view…I’ll explain later): yesterday was the 502nd anniversary of Martin Luther’s nailing of his famous 95 Theses to the Wittenberg Chapel door (the start of the Protestant Reformation and hence Reformation Day) AND Ivanka Trump’s quoting of Thomas Jefferson in her response to the passage in the House of Representatives of a formal inquiry to Articles of Impeachment. She said on Twitter: ‘…surrounded by enemies and spies catching and perverting every word that falls from my lips or flows from my pen, and inventing where facts fail them.’ -Thomas Jefferson’s reflections on Washington, D.C. in a letter to his daughter Martha….’Some things never change, dad!’ (https://www.yahoo.com/news/ivanka-trump-quotes-thomas-jefferson-in-defense-of-her-father-165554385.html). Although Trump has released the complete transcript of his phone call with the Ukrainian President and claimed there was no ‘quid pro quo,’ the House still passed the request for a formal impeachment inquiry…the passage was on nearly a party line vote (232 to 196).”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “It’s all over the news.”

Biblical Response:  “Yeah, but it’s ‘much ado about nothing.’ If the Republicans are truly allowed to question witnesses the Democrats call, and even call their own witnesses, AND if the inquiry is truly public – which I doubt – the American public will see and decide for themselves if the President has committed an impeachable offense. The Democrats are being accused of trying to negate the results of an election they lost…I guess we’ll see.

“Christians? We believe that the truth sets free (John 8:32). In this case, we hope it sees the light of day. Another scripture comes to mind:

‘Truth stands the test of time; lies are soon exposed.’ (Prov. 12:19 LB)

Time alone will tell.”

“The historical explanation I promised? On October 31,  1517, Martin Luther, a priest and a teacher (he had his Ph. D. in Theology) in the Holy Roman Catholic Church, nailed his grievances to the door of the Wittenberg Chapel. Pagan influences may have created Halloween, but the day was originally a day of fasting and prayer…All Hallows Even’…the day before All Saints Day (you can see where the historical All Hallows Even’ was changed to Hallowe’en…or today’s Halloween) was created because the martyrs of the Church had become too numerous to celebrate individually. Before All Saints Day (Nov. 1), each anniversary of a martyr’s ‘homecoming’ was celebrated on the date of their martyrdom.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, reveal to us the truth of this situation…and give us the courage and wisdom to act only on the truth; 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:subdeo.com.’