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CLARITY – 11-13-18 “Don We Now Our ‘Gay’ Apparel”

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-13-18

“Don We Now Our ‘Gay’ Apparel”

 

What’s Happening: “An undercover reporter has exposed a Pentecostal church in England for its deliverance ministry ‘conversion therapy’ to gays which includes counseling, prayer and other ‘demeaning’ practices acording to the LGBTQ community (https://www.yahoo.com/news/undercover-reporter-exposes-gay-apos-040318195.html). .

Huffington Post reports that several states and principalities in the U.S. have adopted legislation to protect LGBTQ youth by banning the practice; among these are California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Washington, and the District of Columbia. ‘Gay’ did not always mean what it predominantly means today.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “It’s terrible what some churches do today!”

 

Biblical Response:  “What some churches do today may be terrible…but what this or many churches in America who offer homosexual lifestyle change (or counseling) is NOT terrible – it offers hope. Call me old fashioned, but the ‘Gay’ lifestyle is condemned by Scripture. Sure, there are scriptures against it in the Old Testament (Lev. 18:22; 20:13), but the New Testament condemns it, too (1 Cor. 6:9; 1 Tim 1:10). Dressing it up (no pun intended) with a nice word (GAY) does not make the practice any less reprehensible.”

 

Christians? It may not be politically correct to condemn so acceptable a practice, but I’d rather be in step with God, than popular with the world (1 John 2:15). Christians believe God created them ‘male and female’ (Gen 1:27); Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve. But you may say, ‘I was born this way’…this is my proclivity. So? I was born with the ‘proclivity’ to sin, but I ‘don’t let sin rule in my body’ (Rom. 6:12). Sure, I may be tempted to do this or that, but I can resist temptation (James 4:7-8). Will it be hard? Yes. But you do not struggle alone (Psalm 23; Matt. 28:20).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, let us call a spade a spade, even if it’s politically incorrect to do so; help us to embrace the truth that persecution is inevitable if you’re friends with God; 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 – 11-12-18 Oh, When Will We Ever Learn?

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-12-18

Oh, When Will We Ever Learn?

 

What’s Happening: “The 100th anniversary of the armistice for WWI (also known as the Great War or ironically, ‘the war to end all wars’) was celebrated across Europe Sunday, November 11th (though the article from the link below is just about the celebrations in England). Millions of soldiers died…even 6.32 million civilians died worldwide (https://www.yahoo.com/news/100-years-remember-them-britain-180223241.html). Geoff Talbot, 74, one of those who decorated his home in England said, ‘Lots of people have put a lot of effort to do this. In those days Aldridge was only a village, but a lot of local young men left and never came back. It is an absolutely nice way to do a tribute for them.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “That was a hundred years ago…and we’re still having wars!”

 

Biblical Response:  “And we’ll probably have them for years into the future. As long as there is evil in the world, someone will want to force their will on those less capable….sometimes it’s just a skirmish…but all conflicts have the potential of escalating. If you read about the reasons war was declared, you understand insanity is often met with insanity. That’s not to say that war is not sometimes warranted, but we all look forward to the day when we can beat our swords into plowshares (Isaiah 2:4).”

 

Christians? To say we’re not in a war today denies reality…it’s just that our weapons are not only carnal (2 Cor. 10:4). 2 Timothy 2:1-4 commends us to be strong, committing the lessons we have learned to the faithful and having the dedication of the focused. What are we focused on? The prize (Phil. 3:14), Are we assured the victory? You bet (1 John 5:4)!”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, we fight on in a war we are destined to win…sometimes we have to fight physically, but never let us only do 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

 

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CLARITY – 11-10-18 Retribution is Often Tragic

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-10-18

Retribution is Often Tragic

 

What’s Happening: “Paradise, California, a town of 27,000 was consumed by a wildfire…the cause of which is still unknown, though an electrical spark may be the culprit. So far, nine incinerated bodies have been found, including four who succumbed in their car presumably during the evacuation traffic jam. Malibu too, home to many of Hollywood’s stars, was evacuated (https://www.yahoo.com/news/heroism-harrowing-escapes-fire-destroys-california-town-065519309.html). Including fires in Southern California, nearly 250,000 have been displaced. All 6,700 homes in Paradise appear to have burned.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Wow! Talk about devastation….”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yeah…it’s apocalyptic, for sure! A fire of biblical proportions! Actually, that assessment may not be far off. You can’t flout God like the people of California have and remain unscathed. The scripture concerning reaping and sowing comes to mind (Gal. 6:7). One thing’s for sure, when you have environmental policies that preclude removing undergrowth and no rain for long periods, your vulnerability to wildfires increases.”

 

Christians? This is an opportunity for the Church to shine – not just in commiserating (Rom. 12:15), but in practical ways, too (James 2:16-17). Now is not the time to wag a finger, but lend a hand.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to offer tears to extinguish the flames… and practical help to rebuild; there’ll be plenty of opportunity to correct. After all, doesn’t the Scriptures say: ‘Let him who is without sin, cast the first stone’?; 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 – 11-9-18 I Know What He Suffers From

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-9-18

I Know What He Suffers From

 

What’s Happening: “As a former Scoutmaster, I’m familiar with 11-year olds’ creativity…the boy in the article for which I provided a link…well, his actions go way beyond that. The police were called out to chase down the family SUV as an 11-year old was acting out for his Mom taking away his playstation. Apparently, this is the second time he has done this and last time the charges were dismissed…this time he crashed into a parked truck; he was treated and released (https://www.yahoo.com/news/11-old-ohio-boy-takes-180003214.html). Inside Edition reported the police say he suffers from ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder), bipolar disorder and oppositional defiant disorder.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Sound like a psychologists’ diagnosis.”

 

Biblical Response:  “It may have been…but naming something is just knowing what the treatment ‘should’ be…assuming the diagnosis is right…and I’m not sure of that. Maybe ‘the board of education’ should have gotten involved, if you know what I mean. Sometimes a visit to the woodshed can forestall a visit to the prison. Of course, I’m not a doctor and I don’t know fully the particular situation.”

 

Christians? We’re outdated when it comes to child discipline…the Bible teaches corporal punishment, especially for children (Prov. 13:24) and discipline (2 Tim. 1:7; Eph. 4:2; Col. 3:12; Rev. 3:19), both of which are no longer politically correct. Oh well, sow the wind, reap the whirlwind (Hos. 8:7). Sure, it’s easier to allow tech and games to babysit our kids, but we’ll end up paying for it in the end. Pity that the kids will pay, too.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, forgive the self-centeredness that makes us pursue our own pleasure at the expense of our kids; 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 – 11-7-18 Waxes and Wanes

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-7-18

Waxes and Wanes

 

What’s Happening: “Much more was decided yesterday than who won the House, Senate or Governor’s seats (BTW, the House was taken by the Dems…investigate or legislate?; that is the question…the Republicans increased their hold on the Senate…and  the Republicans won in crucial gubernatorial races in Ohio, Florida, and Missouri…Abrams is still not conceding in Georgia). Marijuana usage (medical or recreational…or both – Michigan became the 10th state to legalize recreational marijuana), Felons getting the vote (they did…at least in Florida), and a plethora of state questions, bond issues, etc. – all of which are of local concern) were decided too (https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2018/11/06/election-results-2018-florida-votes-restore-felons-voting-rights/1895272002/).

Some gained and are celebrating, some lost and are licking their wounds (or planning their move elsewhere). All in all, the real winners are the ad agencies who collected on the most expensive races ever. It’s like my Dad said, “There are two winners in every lawsuit…and both of them are attorneys.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I’ll bet Donald Trump is quaking in his boots!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Probably not…don’t get me wrong, I don’t expect the Democratically controlled House to do anything but investigate…but this only helps Trump in 2020. He plays the long game. Of course, it will distract him from his agenda…which may be all the Dems want to do. Will the wall get built? Probably not…the Republicans need a campaign issue in 2020. And, in spite of predictions and Chicken Little’s concerns, the sky will not fall.”

 

Christians? Regardless of your politics, you should be happy that there was such great voter turnout (Prov. 24:11-12; Mark 10:46-49). Did our side win? It depends on to whom you talk. Still, Edmund Burke was right, ‘The only necessary for evil to triumph, is for good men to do nothing’ (at least John F. Kennedy attributed that remark to him).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to accept the results…and redouble our efforts where appropriate. Perhaps we cannot say with Will Rogers, ‘I never met a man I didn’t like,’ but perhaps we can say, ‘I never met a man I couldn’t pray for;’…and I 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 – 11-5-18 Reportedly Innocent

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-5-18

Reportedly Innocent

 

What’s Happening: “The Senate Judiciary Committee, in a 414-Page report of Brett Kavanaugh, just concluded there was no credible evidence to support any of the numerous allegations of sexual misconduct (that range from groping to gang-raping). In fact, several names of his accusers were turned over to the DOJ and the FBI to investigate possible lying to the committee and obstruction of justice (see CLARITY blog of 11/3/18) (https://www.yahoo.com/news/senate-judiciary-report-exonerates-kavanaugh-044657605.html). ‘This was a serious and thorough investigation that left no stone unturned in our pursuit of the facts. In the end, there was no credible evidence to support the allegations against the nominee,’ said committee chair, Sen. Chuck Grassley.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “It was kind of embarrassing to watch that confirmation hearing.”

 

Biblical Response:  “Kind of?! I feel so sorry for his family. The only thing I would say that he should regret is his drinking (whether it was excessive or not). Still, haven’t we all made poor decisions in some situations when we were too young to understand the consequences? I’m sure Brett, like us all, wish there were ‘do-overs’ for some of his behavior…that’s why criminal records of juveniles are expunged after adulthood.”

 

“Christians? We are called to a higher standard once we are saved. Still, though salvation occurs at a moment in time, we are never free (in this world) of the temptation to default to our deadly lower nature. Read the warnings (and assurance) of Paul:

 

‘I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge. I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question? The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.’ (Rom. 7:22-25 MSG)”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to be patient with others (and ourselves) as the transformation process (Rom. 12:2) has its effect; 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 – 11-3-18 She Confesses

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-3-18

She Confesses

 

What’s Happening: “One of his accusers confessed, and I’m not even talking about Roy Moore (https://wentworthreport.com/2017/11/21/roy-moores-lying-accuser-admits-he-didnt-ever-touch-her/), but Brett Kavanaugh.  Judy Munro-Leighton, who admitting to being the ‘Jane Doe from Oceanside’ (the one who accused Kavanaugh and a friend of raping her in the back seat of a car) who sent Senator Chuck Grassley a letter accusing the nominee for the SCOTUS position (https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6348439/Kavanaugh-accuser-investigated-confessing-making-rape-claims.html) has confessed she was only ‘seeking attention.’ ‘Such acts are not only unfair; they are potentially illegal. It is illegal to make materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statements to Congressional investigators. It is illegal to obstruct Committee investigations,’ Grassley said.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Brett’s probably guilty of something.”

 

Biblical Response:  “Maybe…but then there’s the presumption of innocence (which the Democrats on the Judicial Committee completely ignored). And we can be grateful that the Committee is pursuing her prosecution. But why did many folks believe her in the first place?!  Is there an insatiable desire for scandal?”

 

“Christians? We are called not to be so inclined (2 Tim. 2:23-26). Titillation and sensation are tempting, but we must not bite. If we do, we might find ourselves too busy chewing to notice we are choking!”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to believe the best about people…even though it might be boring; 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 – 11-1-18 No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 11-1-18

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

 

What’s Happening: “Franklin Pierce Adams may have said it first (in his satirical poem by the same above title), but the visit on Tuesday by the President at the memorial to the 11 gunned down in the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, was not welcomed by all. His motorcade went through a group of protesters who chanted ‘turn you back’ to POTUS. Although the President and First Lady were welcomed by the rabbi of the synagogue and met and commiserated with some of the victims, some thought the visit distracted from the funerals (https://www.yahoo.com/news/pittsburgh-comes-together-mourn-victims-protesters-turn-backs-trump-012912167.html). ‘There are many, many constituents who’ve reached out to me by phone and email concerned that the president’s visit today will add to the trauma of the community and many community members’, said City councilor Erika Strassburger. ‘I won’t say that necessarily speaks for every single person in my district, that’s just what I’ve heard.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “He probably came just for show.”

 

Biblical Response:  “Perhaps…of course, his daughter and son-in-law are Jewish, he has proclaimed Jerusalem as that nation’s capital, and Trump condemned Iran for its anti-semitic rhetoric…but what do I know? There are those who blame the President for everything…even for doing things that are just part of the job…like attending memorials.”

 

“Christians? We’re all for commiserating (Rom. 12:15), for sharing others’ grief. And we are not unfamiliar with the concept  that ‘No Good Deed Goes Unpunished’ (John 15:18). Still, we are called to extinguish evil with love (Luke 6:27-35).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, it may be natural to return bad words spoken against us, but, thankfully, the Lord has given us a new heart, and He will help us react supernaturally instead; 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 – 10-31-18 Ultimate Justice

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 10-31-18

Ultimate Justice

 

What’s Happening: “James ‘Whitey’ Bulger is dead, apparently a homicide; someone probably beating him to death in his cell (and that ‘someone’ might be ‘Freddy’ Geas, notorious mafia hitman, also serving a life sentence in the prison). The 89-year-old Bulger, convicted of 11 homocides himself in 2013 and serving two life sentences, was wheelchair-bound and had just been transferred to the maximum security prison in West Virginia (https://www.boston.com/news/national-news/2018/10/30/whitey-bulger-death. ‘Freddy hated rats,’ said Ted McDonough, a private investigator. ‘Freddy hated guys who abused women. Whitey was a rat who killed women. It’s probably that simple.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I guess you can’t escape ultimate justice.”

 

Biblical Response:  “No, you can’t…but we are probably talking about two separate things. Sure, he probably did deserve to die a horribly excruciating physical death…though I really don’t know. I wasn’t on the jury…I didn’t hear the evidence presented at trial. As far as ultimate justice is concerned, that’s way above my paygrade…I’m not copping out…I just think that needs to be decided by Someone Who knows our hearts (Luke 16:15). After all, he may have repented. Which, by the way, does not absolve him from physical retribution (Gal. 6:9).”

 

“Christians? We believe that He is the Final Judge because He is the only one who knows the heart (Pr. 24:12). Of course, we believe in ultimate justice, but mercy makes heaven possible and justice makes hell necessary.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to keep short accounts with You and to consider that Christ’s death was our payment-in-full; 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 – 10-30-18 In Sessions

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 10-30-18

In Sessions

 

What’s Happening: “Attorney General Jeff Sessions was interrupted at least three times during his speech on religious liberty to a Federalist Society event. Reading Bible verses, one on taking in strangers and the other on exercising freedom of religion, both holding themselves out to be ministers of the Methodist and Baptist faiths, respectively, they interrupted Sessions and were promptly removed. Another protester was removed when he shouted out, ‘We will not be erased,’ holding up a gay pride flag, probably referring to recent Trump remarks that said that genitalia at birth should be the crucial factor to determine sex, male or female (https://www.yahoo.com/news/religious-leaders-trans-advocate-interrupt-204932250.html). Calls from the crowd could be heard, ‘Go home!’ and, ‘What do you know?’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “They were just trying to express their opinion…which they have a right to do.”

 

Biblical Response:  “I agree…and the security at the event had the right to remove them because speakers have the right to be heard. I’m all for free speech and all, but interrupters should not expect that their message is welcome. There is a time and place for all messages…even though I might disagree with their content (and I do).”

 

“Christians? Because our message is unpopular, (at least to the ‘world’), we should expect to be removed, and we should rejoice (James 1:2-4). Still, you attract a lot more bees with honey than you do with vinegar (Rom. 12:18). Interruption may grab headlines, but it’s impolite and un-glorifying.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to find the balance between getting attention and not being the center of 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/. He also tweets on Twitter.com every day @alanesargent