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CLARITY – 3-15-18 Expelled

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-15-18

 

Expelled

 

What’s Happening:  “If you’re a student and get expelled…well, it’s one thing…but if you’re a diplomat and get called an ‘undeclared intelligence officer’ living in a host country at their behest and you get expelled…well that’s quite another thing. It’s an affront to a denying Kremlin and a test of loyalty to everyone else. Was Russia really involved in using a nerve agent in Salisbury? Something put spy-swapped Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in critical condition (http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-43402506). British PM Theresa May said the use of a Russian-made nerve agent on UK soil amounted to an ‘unlawful use of force.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Wasn’t a detective investigating the attack also harmed?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yes, Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey is in serious, but stable condition,  presumably from the same nerve agent that was used on the father-daughter pair…at least he was investigating the incident when he fell ill. I don’t want to call them guilty just based on accusation, but it it waddles and quacks like a duck… How will the U.S. respond? How should it respond? Even though the incident occurred on British soil (and their response should and will be more condemning), still our response (especially when concrete evidence becomes available…and it will…if it’s true) should be strong and supportive of our ally, the U.K. U.S, Ambassador to the U.N., Nikki Haley, was.”

 

“Christians?  A) We are no strangers to expulsion. When you say or do anything unpopular you can expect that kind of treatment Acts 4:1-21). B) However, there is no excuse for taking the law into your own hands. You night not like what someone says or does, but it’s no cause for vengeance, the exclusive territory of God (Rom. 12:19; Heb. 10:30). By the way, for all you ‘snowflakes’ out there who think we now serve only a universally forgiving God, both those scriptures were in the ‘merciful’ New Testament.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to demonstrate wisdom, patience, and discretion…and, of course, we do pray for Sergei, Yulia and Nick; 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 – 3-14-18 It Finally Caught Up

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-14-18

 

It Finally Caught Up

 

What’s Happening:  “At 76, Stephen Hawking, who just died, might have been the most famous and certainly the most brilliant person to have ever suffered from ALS. Also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease (for the famous ball player that may have died from the disease in 1941), most people diagnosed succumb within two or three years, making Hawking’s bout of over five decades extraordinary (https://www.yahoo.com/news/als-disease-stephen-hawking-defied-decades-070228204.html). Others who have died of ALS are ‘Sesame Street’ co-creator Jon Stone and playwright Sam Shepard (2017).”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Wasn’t Hawking a famous atheist?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yes, but he is probably better known as a British physicist. His perspective of God is now a little more accurate, no doubt, though I’ll leave the judging up to God. He battled ALS bravely, living most of his life in a wheelchair and spoke through a keyboard. ALS, a neurological disease, never impaired his thinking much, though it’s a shame he didn’t arrive at a saving faith…at least as far as we know.”

 

“Christians?  If we’re not too careful, we can become too smart for our own good (which is not to put down intelligence or education). Some things cannot be explained logically…that’s where faith comes in (Heb. 11:6).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give us the faith to believe the inexplicable and the mercy to empathize with the Hawking family; 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 – 3-13-18 Few Things Are Permanent

 

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-13-18

 

Few Things Are Permanent

What’s Happening:  “Out with Tillerson, in with Pompeo…President Trump reportedly asked Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to step down, but not until he had CIA Director, now Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, and team set for the upcoming talks with Kim Jong-un. Gina Haspel, the CIA Deputy, is to become the new Director of the CIA, the first woman ever to hold that position (https://www.yahoo.com/gma/trump-replaces-secretary-state-tillerson-cia-director-125003830–abc-news-topstories.html). Trump tweeted, ‘Mike Pompeo, Director of the CIA, will become our new Secretary of State. He will do a fantastic job! Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service! Gina Haspel will become the new Director of the CIA, and the first woman so chosen. Congratulations to all!’ I guess few things are permanent.

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “There’s a whole parade of folks leaving Trump’s cabinet…chaos!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Actually, Tillerson is only the second cabinet appointee to leave (Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price left in September over his use of taxpayer funded private jets), however there has been a lot of ‘palace intrigue’ over other White House staff (Priebus, Spicer, etc., out and Gen. Kelley, Sanders, etc., in). Whether for a break or posturing or for greater effectiveness, these departures underscore the transitory nature of political appointments.” .”

 

“Christians?  With most Youth Pastors eyeing higher pastoral positions to which  they can advance, we are not unfamiliar with the procedure of ‘getting the right team’ in place. Sometimes, moves are legitimate…sometimes to demonstrate power…but, sometimes to truly answer an increasing call. Still, everyone likes the stability of the predictable. Unfortunately, change is often necessary. Few things are truly permanent….maybe it’s better that way.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we love for everything always to remain comfortably the same, progress is impossible without change. Help us to be pliable and full of faith for the future; 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 – 3-12-18 You Never Know

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-12-18

 

You Never Know

 

What’s Happening:  “It’s been almost a week, but the tragedy is still palpable: Tony-Award-winning actress (2015 – The King and I) Ruthie Ann Miles, pregnant, and her two children, 4 and 1 (in a stroller), were struck by a car going through an intersection (in Brooklyn, New York), against the light. Ruthie is in critical condition in a nearby hospital and her kids were pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the car had had a seizure and wasn’t even aware of the accident (https://www.liftable.com/amandathomason/pregnant-tony-winning-actress-struck-car-age-4-daughter-age-1-toddler-dead/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=patriotupdate&utm_campaign=weeklyam&utm_content=libertyalliance). You just never know.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Talk about being in the wrong place at the wrong time!”

 

Biblical Response:  “True…I’m just thinking about a grieving father, a praying family. Tragedy is unpredictable. I’m sure Ruthie never dreamed she would be clinging to life or that her kids would  be in heaven today. We should all pray…and hold our kids a little closer.”

 

“Christians?  Sometimes we forget we live in a fallen world, subject to the life-taking forces of natural events. Sometimes, the unexpected happens. And sometimes, bad things happen to good people (Luke 13:4-5). This is not cause to doubt our faith or question a seemingly capricious God. He’s as upset about it as we are…He sure didn’t create things to go that way. Is He not then impotent? Nope. He was just serious when He gave Man dominion (Gen. 1:26). Thankfully, He took it back from the serpent Man had yielded it to by dying on the cross.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we pray for Ruthie and her family, we know (and rejoice) that her two children that died are now sitting on the Savior’s lap; 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 – 3-10-18 Not Just Uncool but Dangerous

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-10-18

 

Not Just Uncool but Dangerous

 

What’s Happening:  “There was a lot at risk this week in Oakland, California (a declared ‘sanctuary state’): Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf’s reputation and personal freedom (she could even be arrested); President Trump’s and Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s reputation (they filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Federal Government against the state of California); the fate of felonious illegal immigrants (some of whom heeded the mayor’s warning that ICE was coming); not to mention the lives of the ICE officers and other law enforcement personnel who made the raids (https://www.yahoo.com/news/oakland-mayor-dings-trump-calls-031949115.html?.tsrc=jtc_news_index). ‘How dare you needlessly endanger the lives of our law enforcement officers to promote a radical open-borders agenda?’ AG Jeff Sessions said.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “It’s like the time just before the Civil War, huh?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Hopefully, it’s only a battle of words and lawsuits…you know, States’ Rights vs. Federal Rights (which was the real reason behind the original American Civil War, 157 years ago…slavery was just an expression of that). We haven’t heard the end of this conflict, but we have postponed it for awhile…lawsuits are ponderously slow.”

 

“Christians?  Respect for authority is supposed to be a hallmark of the godly (1 Tim. 2:1-3). That is not to say righteous disobedience is forbidden…just that the risk of incarceration must be considered…as Daniel Boone once responded to a reporter’s question if he could give the secret to his never being lost, he said, ‘Be sure you’re right…then go ahead.’ I give the Mayor of Oakland the same advice (I’m not saying she’s right or wrong); just be willing to bare the consequences of your actions.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help all parties above to just breathe…surely, there is an accommodation that can be made that is both merciful and just; 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 – 3-9-18 Throwing Around the “D” Word

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-9-18

 

Throwing Around the “D” Word

 

What’s Happening:  “‘Denuclearization’…such a big word for such a ‘little rocket man’…yet that, apparently, is what DPRK leader Kim Jong-un is saying in his offer to meet with South Korean leader Moon and President Trump (who has offered a May meeting). There is much to be gained by all: for the South, peace, and the possibility of re-unification…a long-held dream on the peninsula; for the U.S., a huge political win for Trump, validation for his ‘peace through strength’ posture…and his challenging rhetoric; for the North, an easing of sanctions…and more time for centrifuges to spin? (https://boingboing.net/2018/03/08/noko-denuke.html). ‘He pledged that North Korea will refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests,’ said South Korean spokesman  Chung Eui-yong. ‘President Trump would meet Kim Jong-un by May to achieve denuclearization.’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Whew! We dodged a big bullet!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Not so fast. There’s always hope for diplomacy to be productive, but this has happened before (I’m thinking of Clinton’s efforts, etc….however, you can only kick the can so far down the road). As ‘Ronnie Ray-gun’ was fond of saying: ‘Trust, but verify.’ Maybe Kim is being an honest broker…still, I’d use this opportunity to remove all U.S. citizens and non-essential personnel (I’m thinking the families of servicemen not the soldiers themselves) from South Korea; either the peace talks will work and they’ll be no longer needed or war is inevitable and why expose more than necessary to harm?”

 

“Christians?  Oh we believe in peace…and we believe you should give peace a chance…but we’re not naive. The heart of man is wicked and not to be trusted (Rom. 3:23). Kim Jong-un may want the best for his people…or his petty ego might get the best of him (or he may not be right in what he thinks is best for his people). In any case, let us proceed with one eye open….and the button within reach.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we want peace, we don’t want it at any price. Give our leaders wisdom and discretion; 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 – 3-7-18 And Rumors of Trade Wars

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-7-18

 

And Rumors of Trade Wars

 

What’s Happening:  “It depends on whom you talk to. Trump or the E.U., as to whether Trade Wars are a good thing or a bad thing (Trump thinks they might be good…and the U.S. will win them;  the E.U. thinks they are bad [threatening to go to the World Trade Organization {WTO} and slap a tariff on peanut butter, OJ, Harleys and Levis]) . Just the threat of tariffs to cure the $800 Billion U.S. annual trade deficit has the stock market plunging (and Speaker Paul Ryan warns against it – 25% for Steel, 10% for Aluminum). So far, no tariffs have been announced (https://www.theguardian.com/business/live/2018/mar/07/markets-slide-gary-cohn-resignation-fuels-trade-war-fears-business-live). Of course, U.S. Steel and other companies directly benefiting by Trump’s tariffs are cheering him on.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Maybe those are just threats…”

 

Biblical Response:  “Maybe, but you shouldn’t threaten what you’re unwilling to do. It’s really probably too complicated for anyone to predict. And the one man who could, Economic Adviser Cohn, has just resigned, Still, Trump didn’t become a billionaire by being stupid.”

 

“Christians? We shouldn’t be ruled by fear. Life has enough real emergencies to be too worried about what might happen.(Matt. 10:31). Besides, God has everything under control…His control (Eph. 1:11).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give us the grace to endure Your plan, even if it is not our plan (Is. 55:8-9); 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 – 3-6-18 The Difference of 15 Minutes

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-6-18

 

The Difference of 15 Minutes

 

What’s Happening:  “The Florida State Senate voted to ban the sales of AR-15’s, the most popular sporting gun in America…and then voted 15 minutes later to reverse themselves. To be fair, the first vote was a voice vote and ruled ‘passed’….and the second one was a roll-call vote which reversed the amendment 21-17, two Republicans joining the Democrats to make the 17 (https://conservativetribune.com/senate-bans-ar-15s-15-minutes/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=patriotupdate&utm_campaign=weeklypm&utm_content=libertyalliance). The measure now goes to the House, hopefully by Monday (yesterday), to be considered. It must pass and be signed by the Governor before they adjourn Friday to become Florida law.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Great! More deaths by AR-15’s!”

 

Biblical Response:  “Not necessarily; in fact, while sales have recently skyrocketed, deaths by AR-15’s have gone down. Since we are not willing to ban blunt objects, baseball bats, and fists (all of which have caused more death than the AR-15), we may see more deaths. Actually, we might get more desired results by just enforcing the laws already on the books (of course, law enforcement might actually have to respond with real action – hear that Sheriff’s Department and FBI?). Parents and students might feel safer by passing new laws (and I’m not saying our mental health system doesn’t need an overhaul), but for there to be an end to shootings you’d have to ban evil – wait a minute, that’s what all existing laws do..”

 

“Christians? We like that verse in Proverbs 29:27, ‘The good hate the wickedness of the wicked, and the wicked the goodness of the good.’ Of course, maybe if we didn’t hate the wicked, just their wickedness, a few more things would change.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us not to ‘throw out the baby with the bathwater;’ while we should despise the evil  that infects people, we need to love the people it infects; thank God You did; 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 – 3-5-18 In a Perfect World

CLARITY

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

 

In a Perfect World

 

What’s Happening:  “The Oscars last night garnered viewership plus depicted a worldview that surprised no one: Gary Oldman won Best Actor (for his portrayal of Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour), Frances McDormand got Best Actress (for her performance in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), Best Movie went to The Shape of Water, and there were political references (most overt) that supported liberal causes and trounced conservatism (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/arts-and-entertainment/wp/2018/03/05/oscars-2018-15-things-to-know-from-the-awkward-red-carpet-to-the-lady-bird-snub/?utm_term=.522923b51ccd).  ‘To all the dreamers out there, we stand with you,’ shouted Lupita Nyong’o and Kumail Nanjiani’s.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Doesn’t DACA end today?”

 

Biblical Response:  “Yeah…sort of…I mean, it was originally an Obama-era Constitutional overreach due to expire today, but the liberal courts have extended it on appeal – of course the Supreme Court, if it ever gets there, will probably cause its end to stand. What does that have to do with the Oscars? Nothing. Everything. Liberals have a worldview (depicted in most movies from Hollywood, taught in most universities) that is utopian. The only conflicts we have is with a world that doesn’t meet up with this view of perfection. The difference between this ‘perfect’ liberal view and the ‘imperfect’ conservative view is perhaps best depicted in the Olympic performance of John Lennon’s Imagine. Have you read the lyrics? (https://www.google.com/search?ei=62WdWpCjH8zJjwS0kJ3ADA&q=imagine+lyrics&oq=imagine+lyrics&gs_l=psy-ab.12…0.0.0.223539.0.0.0.0.0.0.0.0..0.0….0…1c..64.psy-ab..0.0.0….0.pqZ97xx44uI). ”

 

“Christians? Oh, we believe in a perfect world alright…but one made perfect by Christ’s sacrificial and substitutional death (Heb. 9:28). We’d all like a perfect world…the difference is what you believe on how we get there. Is it the perfection that comes with no laws? Freud, the serpent of Gen. 3, John Lennon and Hollywood think so.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, we need to give honor where honor is due, but we also need the balance of a realistic and biblical worldview; 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 – 3-3-18 A Race Nobody Wins

CLARITY

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

 

A Race Nobody Wins

 

What’s Happening:  “Russian President Putin, in his equivalent of our state-of-the-union message, boasted of a new arsenal of weapons that were designed to defeat all countermeasures by the west: missiles that have limitless nuclear engines and fly erratic patterns, underwater drones capable of carrying nuclear warheads, etc…..all signs that the cold war is heating up and may be spawning a new arms race. The last one bankrupted the old Soviet Union and resulted in their demise in 1991 (https://www.yahoo.com/news/putins-invincible-weapons-worried-001929405.html). ‘We already knew about the ‘Sarmat’ and we already knew about big complications with the rocket.

At the end of 2017 it wasn’t the rocket itself that was tested, but a mock-up. I suspect we were shown an edited clip: first the mock-up takes off, then another rocket is flying,’ said analyst Alexander Golts. Putin’s bellicose speech may herald a new arms race nobody can win.”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Trump says, ‘We’re going to win so much we’re going to get tired of winning.’ Was he wrong?”

 

Biblical Response:  “His statement was, no doubt, not in THAT context, as that is a race nobody wins! They make something ‘invincible’…we overcome it…we make something ‘invincible’…they overcome it. It is a philosophy that is aptly named: MAD, Mutually Assured Destruction. We already (and so do they, allegedly) have enough nukes to obliterate the world.”

 

“Christians? Thankfully, the weapons of our warfare are not carnal (2 Cor. 10:4). The question is not who has the bigger button, but whose kingdom will survive such a holocaust? We should only be mildly concerned about the first death…the second death?…well, that’s a different story (Rev. 20:14).”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give our leaders the requisite wisdom and discretion to run that race we always win; 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