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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 – 5-27-19 Laboring in Vain

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -5-27-19

Laboring in Vain

What’s Happening: “Appropriately, George Will writes a Memorial Day article for the National Review that deals with why our policy in Iran is wrongheaded. While I agree, it is not for the same reasons. He fears a unilateral action by a White House that likes to counterpunch and (rightfully) sees regime change as a good and necessary thing….conversion at the point of a sword, however, ultimately won’t work…like the Crusades, it’s medieval!  (https://www.yahoo.com/news/blame-america-disturbing-iran-policy-093036906.html).  Mr. Will’s problems with the administration are mostly Constitutional, mine are ideological. Quoting from the article: ‘Many conservatives who preen as ‘originalists’ when construing all the Constitution’s provisions other than the one pertaining to war powers are unimpressed by the Framers’ intention that Congress should be involved in initiating military force in situations other than repelling sudden attacks.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Why tie the President’s hands? He seems to be doing well with other things.”

Biblical Response:  “Doing well with the economy is one thing, and our military is obviously  superior, but being successful in the short run is not what we should be after.The Crusades had noble intentions…just not noble methods. And nothing but regime change will ever make a difference long-term. But it must be voluntary regime change, not forced regime change. That’s why victory on the battlefield in Iraq or Afghanistan has not (nor ever will) led to voluntary regime change. It’s one thing to win over the body…quite another to win over the heart. Apparently, MacArthur understood that. He called for the Christian mission organizations of the world to send immediately 30,000 missionaries to Japan (he was made President of Japan at the close of WWII). Their hearts swelled up the size of buckshot and they sent 3.”

“Christians? Why wait until some General calls. We’ve already been sent (Mark 16:15). Giving the heart makes every other godly act possible.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to have leaders who will play their roles…so that You can play Yours;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.’ He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

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CLARITY – 1-22-19 Multi-generational

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 1-22-19

Multi-generational

What’s Happening: “Some estimate 126 Afghan Army forces were killed when a Taliban suicide bomber detonated a car bomb yesterday in Maidan Shahr military base in Maidan Wardak Province, Afghanistan. Trump recently announced he wanted to pull troops out of Syria and Afghanistan, but Senator Lindsey Graham thinks it might be premature (https://www.yahoo.com/news/taliban-attack-military-kills-more-135415361.html). ‘To those who believe they should do more and America should do less, that’s coming true. One thing I can tell President Trump and the American people is that we are still needed. It is in our interests to see this through,’ Senator Graham said.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Yeah, but what if ‘seeing this through’ is too costly?”

Biblical Response:  “If it’s too costly we shouldn’t have begun in the first place. Taking your question a little more philosophically, I’m sure we started this ‘attack of the Taliban’ because they were involved in 9/11. Our goal should have had a long-term, a longer-term component, and a short-term one. The military option should have been short-term and our goal should have been to make it too costly to the Taliban to ever contemplate attacking us again (or harbor those who do – I’m thinking Osama Bin Laden). Long-term, we should have been seeking regime change…longer-term we should have been seeking ideology change. One is political, the other (the latter) is spiritual. When Gen.MacArthur became temporary president of Japan (at the close of WWII), he called the church in America to immediately send 3,000 missionaries (BTW, we sent 3). He knew what would be required long-term..”

“Christians? Are we prepared for such a task? Probably not, not that our government is wise enough – and it’s now not politically correct – to make such a request. What are we to do? Take it upon ourselves. After all, we’ve already been given the Great Commission (Matt. 28:18-20).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, we need Your courage to do what may cost us plenty…but then it cost You, too: 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/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent

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CLARITY – 12-21-18 Doing What’s Unpopular

CLARITY

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

Doing What’s Unpopular

What’s Happening: “With a government shutdown looming (tonight at midnight) and Trump so far intractable on his demands for border security, it seems an impasse is inevitable. Top all of that off with Defense Secretary Mattis’s resignation, the removal by Trump of 2,000 U.S. troops from Syria (and rumored 7,000 from Afghanistan), the stock market’s recent plunges, and you may have what some opponents describe as ‘chaos’ (https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2018/12/21/after-chaotic-day-trump-defends-wall-plan-risks-government-shutdown/2385388002/).  ‘Properly designed and built Walls work,’ said Trump.”  

Knee-Jerk Response:  “No wall is worth shutting down the government over.”

Biblical Response:  “There are a lot of things wrong with that statement. To name a few: 1) It’s a wall system – some repairs to existing structures, drones, other technology, beefed up training, more Border Patrol agents, …and some actual wall – besides, it’s just a downpayment of all that’s got to happen. 2) Government shutdowns do not mean a cessation of all government activities – Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, the Military, etc., will all continue unabated. 3) How else do you stop illegal immigration, drugs, and human trafficking?.”

“Christians? If we let popularity be our guide, much would never get done- much of  what must be done (1 John 2:15). We are for the government doing its job, but not to people that try to circumvent the law.

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we want to show mercy, we must show mercy to those who have waited in line first; help us do just 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: http://subdeo.com/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent