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CLARITY – 5-10-18 There’s No Question Here

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-10-18

 

There’s No Question Here

 

What’s Happening:  “Tuesday, the Mormon Church announced the severance of its long relationship with the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), the starting of its own gospel-based group and the taking of its 425,000 scouts with them. Although the move is not to officially happen until December 31, 2019, the allowance of gay leaders and scouts in 2015 and girls in 2017, caused an immediate reaction in some troops. The Mormons have the largest denominational representation in the BSA with 19% of the organization’s 2.3 million members (http://www.foxnews.com/us/2018/05/09/mormons-to-end-long-association-with-boy-scouts-america.html). Their new program has as one of its stated goals the helping of young men and women develop their God-given identities.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Shouldn’t every American have the right to join any organization they choose?”

 

Biblical Response:  “No. Show me that in the Constitution. Sure, we have “certain unalienable rights,” but not BLANKET  unalienable rights…there is the right to “life liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, “ but nowhere does it give me the right to define what happiness is to me. Like gender identity is defined by the God-given DNA of each individual, so the pursuit of happiness is defined by the God Who gave it  “Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found.” (Ps. 19:35 NLT)

 

“Christians? Let me reprint here a letter I recently sent to the National Eagle Scout Association (NESA)

 

Dear NESA:

 

This letter has been long in coming – actually, I’m not sure anyone will read it…still, maybe I just needed to say these things.

 

First, a little background. My name is Alan E. Sargent. I attained the rank of  Eagle Scout at the age of thirteen. I was a Scoutmaster in the Lake Ouachita Area Council in Arkansas (though I got my Eagle award while I was a member of Troop 416 in Muskogee, OK). Scouting runs through my family (my Dad, Ray L. Sargent was my Scoutmaster – one of the youngest to ever lead boys as a Scoutmaster, he was visited by the National Council in the late ’40s so they could determine if they could make an exception because he was so young – at 18, he was too young, but his Scoutmaster got drafted…my sons, Jeremy and Jonathan Sargent both attained the rank of Eagle, too).

 

I was disturbed when the Boy Scouts began to admit gays. The “morally straight” part of the oath apparently does not mean what it used to. When the Boy Scouts was rumored to start admitting girls, I knew I had to speak up. We are in a time of political correctness as a culture. There are forces of “acceptance” and the desire not to offend often takes precedence over everything. However, we, as an organization, must not yield to those pressures.

 

Men are needed as much now as at any time in our history (Lord Baden Powell would agree with me, if he could). I think women are wonderful and as much in need of protection, provision and guidance as ever, and contribute indispensably to men’s successes – my 43 years (so far) of marriage is living proof. Having an organization that focuses its efforts on the male of the species in fundamental.

 

I’m all for there being a separate but equal organization of Girl Scouts (although there is some indication that they, too, may have succumbed to increasing cultural pressures).

 

I don’t expect to receive any reply to this tome, but I do expect that I don’t hold these views alone.

 

Sincerely,

 

Alan E. Sargent, Eagle

 

I hope this explains how I feel about it.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, it would be nice if all our extra-church organizations followed Your commands…but help us to pray for them; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-9-18 Standing Alone

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-9-18

 

Standing Alone

 

What’s Happening:  “It isn’t easy to stand alone, especially when the tide of almost global opinion is against you – but that is exactly what President Trump did by fulfilling his campaign promise to extract the U.S. from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) or Iran Deal. Although the leaders of France, Germany and the U.K. tried to persuade him to do otherwise, Iran’s Supreme Leader Hassan Rouhani threatened, and the Democrats postured, Trump pulled the U.S. out of the deal (https://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=WA18E16&f=WU18E06). It remains to be seen whether this will help or hurt in the upcoming negotiations with North Korea.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I thought Trump was a populist…how come he’s doing something so unpopular?”

 

Biblical Response:  “I guess it depends on whom you talk to. Saudi Arabia, our ally Israel, and those who elected him like the move. Granted, it isn’t easy standing up for principle, but how can you trust anyone you can’t inspect. We were promised unfettered access…we haven’t received it. Sure, we never found them violating the terms of the agreement WHERE THEY ALLOWED US TO INSPECT…no surprise there. People don’t do what you expect, they only do what you inspect ”

 

“Christians? Standing Alone is really a misnomer. As the people of God, we never stand alone (Matt. 18:20). The challenge, however, is to never take a stand He cannot support…like the Iran deal.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us when we take a stand; let it be for something significant AND something You can support; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-8-18 The Smoke is Green

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-8-18

 

The Smoke is Green

 

What’s Happening:  “Being that it’s Tuesday today (and a week away from a vote or a combination or several weeks), it’s a good time to discuss several marijuana initiatives on ballots. Although there is a recent wave of new legislation favoring medical or recreational marijuana (or both), the jury is far from out (https://www.thoughtco.com/pros-and-cons-legalizing-marijuana-3325521?utm_term=pros+and+cons+of+weed+legalization&utm_content=p1-main-1-title&utm_medium=sem&utm_source=msn_s&utm_campaign=adid-d94b7830-6fe5-4c7b-a1f9-dd9f13dfb6b5-0-ab_msb_ocode-22833&ad=semD&an=msn_s&am=broad&q=pros+and+cons+of+weed+legalization&o=22833&qsrc=999&l=sem&askid=d94b7830-6fe5-4c7b-a1f9-dd9f13dfb6b5-0-ab_ms) The recent spate of legislation has led to increased legalized use (and nine state have legalization on the ballot), but it’s really all about money https://www.thoughtco.com/pros-and-cons-legalizing-marijuana-3325521?utm_term=pros+and+cons+of+weed+legalization&utm_content=p1-main-1-title&utm_medium=sem&utm_source=msn_s&utm_campaign=adid-d94b7830-6fe5-4c7b-a1f9-dd9f13dfb6b5-0-ab_msb_ocode-22833&ad=semD&an=msn_s&am=broad&q=pros+and+cons+of+weed+legalization&o=22833&qsrc=999&l=sem&askid=d94b7830-6fe5-4c7b-a1f9-dd9f13dfb6b5-0-ab_msb)  However, the federal government still takes a dim view of all marijuana use.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “It seems like my old girlfriend, Mary Jane, is becoming more popular.”

 

Biblical Response:  “True, but is that good news? It has been likened to alcohol consumption, but few but distillery or distributors…or body shops…would consider an increase in alcohol  consumption good news. Sure, their may be some temporary relief from pain or present circumstances, but your problems are still there when you come down. And, like alcohol, an increased amount might be needed to get the same relief. AND it can be a gateway to other more dangerous (and more addicting) illegal substances. ”

 

“Christians? As the Scripture states, “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be mastered by anything.” (1 Cor. 6:12

NASU) Whether it’s marijuana or alcohol, it’s really a question of who’s in control.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to value sobriety and the responsibility it was designed to bring; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-7-18 “Justify-ing” Gambling

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-7-18

 

“Justify-ing” Gambling

 

What’s Happening:  “In the rainiest Kentucky Derby in recent memory, a Texas woman won $1.2 million on an $18 dollar bet, as Justify won it all. The horse itself had to work much harder, but he went home with a little more money too…$1.24 million! (https://www.yahoo.com/sports/texas-woman-wins-1-2-million-18-kentucky-derby-bet-003649507.html). Sure, it was as rare as winning the lottery or lotto, but it might not make her rich. History is full of stories of big winners who squandered fast-gotten wealth (http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/tragic-stories-lottery-winners-article-1.2492941).”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Yeah, but if I won big, it would be different.”

 

Biblical Response:  “Maybe…if you have the money and it doesn’t have you…and the very fact that you gambled does not bode well. There are a lot of people who just want to (pardon the pun) “defy the odds.” Unfortunately, the very drive they had to risk on gambling is the fatal flaw in their ability to wisely invest.”

 

“Christians? We are warned not to seek quick riches (Prov. 28:20). Sure, few want to slave it out for 45 years at hard labor and saving, but often the getting of the small nest egg you can attain garners much more happiness than the sum itself. Quick gain does not come with the character to use wisely. The real question is not how you quickly you can fill your pockets,but how long you can keep the money you do put in there.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to be wise in the getting, the giving, the investing and the spending of the blessings that You send our way; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-5-18 Surprise! Surprise!

CLARITY

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

 

Surprise! Surprise!

 

What’s Happening:  “No, it was not an exclamation from a rerun of Gomer Pyle, USMC (‘Surprise! Surprise!’ was a comment Jim Nabors often made on the series), but it was real. The Kilauea Volcano, located on the Big Island (Hawaii) erupted and surprised residents as 1,500 evacuated at least two subdivisions yesterday. The volcano has been continuously erupting since 1983, so it should have come as no real surprise (https://www.yahoo.com/news/hawaii-apos-most-active-volcano-123519315.html). ‘It sounded like if you were to put a bunch of rocks into a dryer and turn it on as high as you could. You could just smell sulfur and burning trees and underbrush and stuff,’ said Jeremiah Osuna, local resident.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Guess I won’t be planning any Hawaiian trips soon!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Actually, Hawaii’s pretty big (the eruption occurred 220 miles from the Oahu Airport). Besides, many people visit the islands because they WANT to see an active volcano…not too closely, mind you. Building close to a volcano? Well, the insurance is probably high, and eruptions, while maybe disappointing, should be no surprise.”

 

“Christians? There are a few things that are inevitable…things that can be prepared for, but will, no doubt, occur. Like the Judgement (Heb. 9:27). Any person who does not prepare, or is not sure that God or the judgment exists…may indeed be surprised.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, there are some things that surprise. Help us not to be surprised with the inevitable; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-4-18 It Was Preempted So You Probably Heard Nothing

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-4-18

 

It Was Preempted So You Probably Heard Nothing

 

What’s Happening:  “It was announced Wednesday that 17-yr-old high school student Matin Azizi-Yarand made preparations to attack a shopping mall in Plano, TX, but quick astute FBI work done by an underground informant saved the day…his attack was planned for mid-May (https://www.yahoo.com/news/texas-teen-charged-plotting-inspired-shooting-mall-014534376.html). ‘Look at all the other lone wolves…what training did they have, yet they simply killed the kuffar (Arabic for disbeliever),’ said Azizi-Yarand.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “You don’t hear about the ones who are almost successful, do you?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Nope…and with Comey and all,  the media seldom carries anything positive about the FBI and law enforcement. Still, thank God they are there. These lone wolves weren’t a problem when Baseball heroes were admired. Today, Jihadis are admired. Blame it on a godless culture that’s hedonistic and unchallenged…kids just want to make a difference…to follow a hero…and they are easy targets for the blogs of the warped, but inspired.”

 

“Christians? There is no more challenging or inspiring activity than real relevant Christianity. The problem is, there are too few youth pastors who challenge their charges to such a lifestyle. Kids don’t get inspired by another party where they can numb themselves by alcohol or drugs…they hunger to be dared to make a difference. True Christianity, where they are challenged to love the sinner while hating their sin (Luke 6:27) IS attempting the impossible (it is impossible without God)…and it DOES make a difference!”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to inspire an energetic and enthusiastic generation that only seeks godly direction for their passion; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-3-18 Classy Response

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-3-18

 

Classy Response

 

What’s Happening:  “Mom responded to her middle-school’s daughter’s gesture of disrespect to a visit from Rep. Gaetz (R-FL) by chastising her Tuesday. The ‘flipping of the bird’ was taken in stride by Rep. Gaetz, who’s received more than a little persecution for his support of Trump (https://www.westernjournal.com/ct/moms-response-6th-grader-gop-rep/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=newsletter-CT&utm_campaign=dailypm&utm_content=conservative-tribune). ‘Her Congressman also had an occasional lapse of judgment as a middle-schooler. Teaching moments like this are a good thing. I had a lovely time with the students,’ Gaetz said.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “It was only a middle schooler, for crying out loud!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yeah, but lessons learned young often are going to stick around in later life. It is possible to disagree without being disagreeable. Perhaps there are members of Congress who need to learn this lesson. Self-control does not come naturally, but it is listed in the fruit of the Spirit in Gal. 5:22-23. Giving the middle finger to anyone is not just a vulgar sign of disrespect, it is an immature classless way of showing displeasure….like the Congressman said, a ‘teaching moment.’”

 

“Christians? There is no excuse for a Christian to act un-Christianly. Vulgarity is never just laughed at (Rom. 12:14). Often, more is negatively said about the person gesturing (or speaking) than the one to whom the gesture was intended. As ambassadors for Christ, we are called to be better than that (Eph. 6:19-20).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, show us the repercussions of our acts BEFORE we make huge faux pass. Help us to see it is more honorable (and less messy) to clean ourselves up ahead of our disagreement, not afterwards; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-2-18 Questionable

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-2-18

 

Questionable

 

What’s Happening:  “According to the NY Times, the Mueller probe sent Trump’s legal team the questions that would be used if any interview was granted on the subject of Russian collusion (though nobody really has come forward with the exact content of those questions). Trump calls the matter of possible Russian collusion a ‘witch hunt’ – others (mostly opponents) disagree (http://www.businessinsider.com/mueller-sent-questions-to-trump-dowd-before-calls-for-russia-probe-shutdown-2018-3).  Are the questions designed to trap the President? Will Trump fire Mueller? Will Trump agree to an interview? These are exact questions…with no exact answers…for now.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Who even cares about whether Trump colluded?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Lots of folks! The liberals want the matter to cloud the judgment of the voters about the GOP in the upcoming midterm elections…The conservatives want to get beyond what they consider a distraction and deal with issues they think favor them (a robust economy, peace in Korea, Iran’s desire for domination of the Middle East, immigration reform, etc.)…Russia just wants chaos to reign.”

 

“Christians? If nobody cares, the forces out to numb America into indifference have won…meanwhile, evil prospers (gee, that reminds me of an Edmund Burke quote: ‘Evil prospers when good men do nothing.’) We are the ‘good men.’ Let us get about our business (Eph. 6:12-18).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to have the necessary care to motivate us to action and prayer; 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

 

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CLARITY – 5-1-18 Prince of Lies

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 5-1-18

 

Prince of Lies

 

What’s Happening:  “Israeli PM, Benjamin Netanyahu said he had the goods on Iranian lies (and displayed replicas of 55, 000 documents and 183 CD’s he said his intelligence services seized) and asked the western world (in English – a video he obviously directed to Trump and American audiences) to get out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or otherwise known ,as the Nuclear Deal. Trump will have to reauthorize the deal May 12 (https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/pm-expected-to-reveal-how-iran-cheated-world-on-nuke-program-1.6045300). ‘Iran did not come clean about its nuclear program,’ said Netanyahu..”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Did anyone believe Iran? This is old news.”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yes, obviously Obama and his team believed it (or because they were operating from a position of military weakness, chose to). And it may be old news (although Netanyahu presented it as new corroborating evidence), but you can’t ‘trust, but verify’ if you are not having truly free access. I guess we’ll see on May 12 whether Trump thinks the deal is salvageable.”

 

“Christians? Are the Iranians liars? Obviously, Netanyahu thinks so. We are admonished to be ‘wise as serpents, but gentle as doves (Matt. 10:16). We need to not be naive…even if asking someone to prove their veracity might injure their pride.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help our leaders to be wise and look beyond posturing to motive; 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

 

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CLARITY – 4-30-18 Forced Peace

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 4-30-18

 

Forced Peace

 

What’s Happening:  “Whether in response to Trump’s “Maximum Pressure” campaign or Moon’s (the President of South Korea) peaceful overtures or the collapse  of nuclear test site Mount Mantap, Kim Jong-Un’s recent turn-around seems to be uncharacteristic (http://www.scmp.com/news/asia/east-asia/article/2143878/north-korea-close-mountain-nuclear-test-site-after-collapse). ‘“Once we start talking, the United States will know that I am not a person to launch nuclear weapons at South Korea, the Pacific or the United States,’ Kim was quoted. It’s a far cry from threatening the U.S.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Whatever the reason, I’m glad.”

 

Biblical Response:  “More like: ‘cautiously optimistic,’ but I know what you mean. Still, maybe God gave Kim no other choice. Maybe the mountain collapsed under too much nuclear testing…maybe the Olympics and Moon’s gestures had their non-pugnacious affect…maybe Trump dealing from a position of increased military strength and uncompromising rhetoric…probably some combination…or just maybe an act of God…in any case, as Reagan said, ‘trust, but verify.’”

 

“Christians? Are we for peace? Yes! (John 14:27). But not the ‘absence of conflict’…which is, by the way, what the Armistice that North Korea and South Korea signed on July 27, 1953. And we should not be so naive as to think God has nothing to do with today’s ongoing peace initiatives.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, although we seek peace, it is not ‘peace at any price’…help our leaders to keep both eyes open as we seek denuclearization; 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