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CLARITY – 12-5-18 Tariffying

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 12-5-18

Tariffying

 

What’s Happening: “The stock market fell almost 800 points yesterday making it the biggest sell-off since October 10…mostly on fears of tariffs: ours on China ($250 Billion) and China on us ($110 Billion). Also, the starting date of the 90-day pause in those tariffs, agreed by Presidents Trump and Xi at the G20 Summit, was corrected from  January 1 to begin December 1 (https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/04/stock-market-dow-futures-fall-amid-us-china-trade-deal-skepticism.html) ‘ From a math standpoint, this is screaming buy. The only concern I have is people are going to start getting irrational. That’s when the emotional trading starts taking place,’ said Steven Dudash, president of IHT Wealth.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Sell!”

 

Biblical Response:  “That’s just the kind of emotionalism that a lot of financial experts are warning against. Sure, you can probably find those that urge the other way…maybe just as many, but I’m cautioning against fear. The Scripture says, “Fear hath torment” (1 John 4:18). Of course, fear of danger can also help you escape. But we are not called to react, but act. Will the U.S. and China settle their differences? Yes…eventually. Isn’t it better to leave the timing of that to God?”

 

“Christians? To be ruled by fear is just what the enemy wants. To be ruled by faith is what God wants. Is it ever time to sell? Of course…just not out of fear. Better to do things slowly, at the prompting of the Holy Spirit.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give us the wisdom and attentiveness, financially, to invest and divest at Your leading, not from the basis of fear; 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 – 11-16-18 Trust But Verify

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-16-18

Trust But Verify

 

What’s Happening: “Ronald Reagan may have said it first (referring to former Soviet promises to de-escalate), but now President Trump gets to use it as a doctrine in real time. And there has only been mixed progress in North Korean president Kim’s pledge to denuclearize. True, North Korea has not done any nuclear testing or launched a missile since the pledge, but there seems to be evidence of further new development…but the sanctions are still on….and also the U.S. has suspended joint U.S./South Korea military games. Obviously, the jury is still out…amid hopes (https://www.yahoo.com/news/pence-says-trump-likely-meet-kim-2019-wont-050838225–business.html). Vice President Pence declared, ‘The plans are ongoing. We believe that the summit will likely occur after the first of the year, but the when and the where of that is still being worked out.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “A lot of talk…”

 

Biblical Response:  “True…but talk is preferred to war, right? Of course, I’m concerned that North Korea is just using talks of peace as a stall technique…while centrifuges continue to spin. But you also have to give diplomacy…and sanctions…a chance. The only problem is that  I think the Chinese are ignoring sanctions to help the North Koreans…and to further delay the convenient distraction that this dance provides.”

 

Christians? The concept of ‘trust but verify’ is biblical. Moses (and later Joshua) sent out spies (Num. 13:2; Josh. 2:1) to determine what the truth of a matter was. It would be great if we were omniscient, but we’re not…God understands our need for verification and He doesn’t want us to operate under presumption. So, what are we called to do? Pray.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to have the faith and hope to trust, but also the wisdom to verify; 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 – 10-24-18 Bridge to Somewhere

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 10-24-18

Bridge to Somewhere

 

What’s Happening: “China opened the world’s longest sea-bridge…from mainland China to Hong Kong…a 34-mile-long marvel that took a decade to build, cost several lives, is opposed by some environmentalists, features many electronic monitoring technologies, and was partially paid for by Hong Kong taxpayer dollars (https://www.yahoo.com/news/world-apos-longest-sea-bridge-101352761.html). It turns out that few mainland China vehicles may be allowed on the bridge as a customs queue and shuttle busses may be required,”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy for the Chinese and the citizens of Hong Kong, but what does this have to do with me?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Maybe little…especially if you aren’t traveling to either China or Hong Kong, but it is another feat of engineering that proves that there are few things impossible to man…at least so he thinks. We may send people to Mars this year…or discover the cure to cancer…or do some other heretofore unimaginable feat, but building a huge bridge is no more laudable than building an unsinkable vessel (so the Titanic was heralded). What am I saying? I’m saying man is really puny in his attempts at being the self-sufficient master of the universe. His attempts at playing God are ultimately futile.”

 

“Christians? There is only one bridge that IS laudable (1 Tim. 2:5), the Bridge that spans the gap between  a holy God and an unholy Man. That gap is immeasurable, not a mere 34 miles long. Man’s engineering and technical feats need to be taken in the context of all that is never going to be possible for him (Matt. 19:26).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we should praise those who accomplish great things, let us never forget the tremendous things You have done – things we could never do; 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 – 10-15-18 Not Ready Yet

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 10-15-18

Not Ready Yet

 

What’s Happening: “In addition to all the commotion over whether Saudi-born journalist Jamal Khashoggi was actually killed by a Saudi hit squad, Trump is also dealing with the trade situation with China. He says that their economy is going down while ours is going up…and the stats seem to bear that out. Still , he says they’re not ready to make a bilateral trade deal (https://dcalert.com/2018/10/14/trump-says-china-economy-not-well/). ‘How will you know when China is ready to negotiate again?’ A Breitbart News reporter asked.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “That will probably mean no more cheap ‘Made in China’ stuff, huh?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yeah…kind of…it really depends on your definition of ‘cheap.’ Lower quality goods should cost less. Maybe we would rather buy less expensive stuff than the more expensive ‘Made in the USA”, better-economy-because-stuff-is-made-by-people-who-pay-taxes stuff that fills the Walmart shelves. Besides, don’t you usually get what you pay for?”

 

“Christians? We need to pray for all those lower-level bureaucrats that will do the real negotiating. They need to ‘be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.’  (Matt. 10:16 ASV)”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, since whoever has the best negotiators wins, help our leaders do what’s in Your people’s best interests; 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 – 9-4-18 $ = Influence

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 9-4-18

$ = Influence

 

What’s Happening:  “The People’s Republic of China (ROC) has announced a ‘Belt and Road initiative’ (BRI) promising $60 Billion in aid, loans and grants…amid accusations of a new colonialism. China considers Africa the forgotten continent…missionary organizations disagree (https://www.yahoo.com/news/china-raises-fears-apos-colonialism-173840507.html). ‘”Unilateralism and protectionism are on the rise. Economic growth lacks robust drive, China-Africa cooperation under the BRI is a way to common prosperity that brings benefits to both our peoples,’ President of China, Xi said.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “What’s wrong with a little investment capital? Everybody could use that.”

 

Biblical Response:  “It’s the strings that are attached that I’m worried about (sure, I know they said ‘no strings attached’ – but does anybody really believe they are altruistic?) Money equals influence in this world. It would be great if the Chinese Christian believers would see this  for the opportunity it is…the jury is still out on us.”’

 

“Christians? While money may be the tender of worldly influence, sacrifice is the tender of Godly influence. David Livingstone, Scottish physician, explorer and missionary to Africa in the 19th Century, sacrificed much and his influence for the kingdom lives on; but too much motivation by poachers and diamond-miners has spoiled much of his more pure motives. Missions work must continue (Matt, 28:18-20) with renewed vigor or the ‘dark’ continent will only have the ‘false light’ of Islam or investment capital with strings.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help our Chinese brethren  to seize an opportunity as it presents itself; 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 – 7-18-18 Freedom Isn’t Free

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 7-18-18

 

Freedom Isn’t Free

 

What’s Happening:  “Dong Yaoqiong, 28, an activist in China, was detained recently by the Communist government of China when she splashed ink on a poster of President Xi Jinping…no surprise there (as many from Tiananmen Square days will attest). She actually expected to be arrested and she was; a reasonable expectation…those in China who want the freedoms Americans enjoy must also pay the price our Founders and others have paid (https://www.yahoo.com/news/chinese-woman-detained-tossing-ink-xi-poster-activists-053044789.html). AFP reports: ‘The US-based Chinese Human Rights Defenders (CHRD) activist network said authorities have also taken the woman’s father and a Chinese artist into custody after they sought to publicize her plight on social media.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Her act was stupid!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Probably not…at least to her. She protested to get arrested…and she was successful. Sure, it’s a shame China does not have true freedom of speech…(neither do we on some college campuses)…but things will change for them only with bloodshed…at least that has been the historical fact.”

 

“Christians? Whether it is freedom of expression or freedom from the slavery of sin (Rom. 6:10), we believe in bloodshed. Our Founders shed blood for the former, our Savior shed His blood for the latter. Like this woman, we know that freedom isn’t free.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to applaud the courage of others as they seek freedom, and be brave (but wise and patient) ourselves as we seek to effect godly change; 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 – 5-25-18 Continuance

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-25-18

 

Continuance

 

What’s Happening:  “Trump cancelled the historic summit in Singapore scheduled for June 12 with DPRK leader Kim Jong-un because of a threat from Kim of nuclear war. Still, he said the meeting could be held later if tensions subsided (http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/05/24/trump-says-north-korea-summit-still-possible-after-pullout-but-warns-us-military-ready-if-necessary.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+foxnews%2Fpolitics+%28Internal+-+Politics+-+Text%29). ‘Nobody should be anxious. We have to get it right,’ Trump is reported to have said.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Why don’t we just nuke ‘em? We’ll win any conflict, right?”

 

Biblical Response:  “It’s not that simple. In the first place, thousands of innocent Koreans would die…in the North…and in the South. Secondly, so might a lot of innocent American soldiers’ families (there are 28,500 soldiers stationed in South Korea). Thirdly, how about the Japanese? Then there’s the possibility of China taking North Korea’s part. Need I go on? I’m as ready as the next guy for denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. Let’s just get it right. Give the ‘maximum pressure’ campaign a chance. A few months of sanctions will convince them of our solidarity…IF everyone (including China) will get on board.”

 

“Christians? I think patience is a fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23). Surely, we can demonstrate a little of that can’t we?”

 

”Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, our leadership needs Your wisdom…not their own bravado…help 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