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CLARITY – 8-19-19 Destination Known

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -8-19-19

Destination Known

What’s Happening: “It’s kind of like a huge ping pong ball…and nobody really knows its destination…or even its real name. I mean, the oil tanker from Iran was the Grace 1 when it was captured by the British near Gibraltar. It was suspected of heading for Syria, which is currently under EU sanctions. Then it was renamed the Adrian Darya 1 and the U.S. issued a warrant for its further detainment, but saying it was bound to release the vessel by EU law, the Adrian Darya 1 was released by Gibraltar and is  believed to be headed to Greece. Who really knows? BTW, the British oil tanker which was seized in the Strait of Hormuz by the Iranians weeks ago is still in an Iranian port (with its British crew) and won’t be released until the Adrian Darya 1 docks (https://www.yahoo.com/news/iranian-tanker-caught-standoff-west-053520289.html). ‘Until the Iranian oil tanker arrives at its destination the British must help end the crisis, This means that the crisis with Britain is not over. Britain has the primary responsibility for ending the oil tanker crisis,’ Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh, a member of parliament’s national security and foreign affairs committee said.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Sounds to me like the Iranians are holding the British crew hostage.”

Biblical Response:  “You’re probably right…and, at least until Brexit (no later than Oct. 31), the Brits are dancing to the EU’s timid tune. It’s all political…which much in our world  lately seems to be…and our time to pray…and be grateful that our destination is already sealed (2 Tim. 1:12). The world may be full of uncertainties, but a Christian’s ultimate destination is not one of them…and He promises we’ll never be alone (Matt. 28:20).” 

“Christians? Eternal security is one of our comforts. I wonder about that British crew…and the crew of the Adrian Darya 1.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to make things that are so complicated…simple. We will need Your wisdom, of course; 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 – 7-22-19 Preventing the Inevitable

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -7-22-19

Preventing the Inevitable

What’s Happening: “Iran moved closer last week to war as they seized the British-flagged oil tanker Steno Impero. Although Britain has registered a complaint with the UN,  there is little that can be done about the seizure. The tanker and its crew of 23 lies in a heavily militarized port in Iran. Iran claims the Impero hit a fishing boat; Britain denies this allegation and says it was just sailing in international waters in the Strait of Hormuz when gunboats surrounded it and boarded.  The British frigate, HMS Montrose, was 60 minutes away…too far to intervene in the seizure (https://www.marketwatch.com/story/new-audio-shows-british-navy-ship-was-too-far-away-to-prevent-iran-from-seizing-tanker-2019-07-21?siteid=yhoof2&yptr=yahoo). Quoting British Foreign Minister Heiko Maas: ‘This is about preventing war.’

Knee-Jerk Response:  “So? I mean, I’m sorry for the Brits, but what does that have to do with me?”

Biblical Response:  “Everything. When a bully rules the schoolyard, even the spectators are eventually pulled into the conflict. Sure, they may start on the sidelines, cheering on one or the other of the combatants. But upending peace has its consequences…sometimes the playground monitor wisely intervenes and both are sent to the Principal’s Office to ascertain the truth. When the truth is revealed, someone’s going to be suspended. Of course, we’re not really talking about non-lethal bullying. Real lives will be lost… energy markets will fluctuate…and, in the case of the world’s leading state sponsor of terror with nuclear ambitions (who, by the way, think they have a mandate from Allah)…we’re looking at mass destruction. We may have a reluctance (and naturally so) to go to war, but time is a multiplier.”

“Christians? There is much more going on here than meets the eye. The real conflict is in the spiritual realm (Eph. 6:12). Meanwhile, though we may be assured of final victory (Matt. 16:18-19), there are bound to be casualties…at least temporally. We should pray for peace…and prepare for the inevitable.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give us the courage of our convictions, protect the innocent, and help us to embrace the principle of time’s multiplication; 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 – 7-2-19 The Futility of Limiting Power

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -7-2-19

The Futility of Limiting Power

What’s Happening: “Iran has announced that it has exceeded the maximum set by the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA – the nuclear deal) for medium grade (3.67% purity) fissionable material (661 pounds)…not to mention the 22,046 pounds of weapons grade – 20% – fissionable material it already stockpiles. Although the U.S. (Trump) unilaterally pulled out of the deal over a year ago, E.U. nations that signed on have tried to hold the deal together. Now they have clear evidence of non-compliance (https://www.yahoo.com/news/iran-says-broken-stockpile-limit-121553069.html). ‘The Iranian regime, armed with nuclear weapons, would pose an even greater danger to the region and to the world,’ Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo said.” 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Great! Just what we need! Another war!”

Biblical Response:  “Nobody wants war, but we’re talking about a whole paradigm shift. Give the world’s greatest state sponsor of terrorism a nuclear weapon  and we’re immediateley talking nuclear ransom on an unprecedented scale (actually, I don’t know whether it would be worse to have a nuke explode or just to fear one exploding – sometimes the unknown becomes more fearsome because it’s unknown). In any case, ‘power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely’ (Lord Acton). If anyone thinks that Iran could get close to the power it hungers for…but control itself, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I’d like to sell you. Iran deals in the torment of fear (1 John 4:18); that’s the denomination of terrorism.”

“Christians? Fear? We’d like to say we only fear God (Matt. 10:28), but we are aspiring to that…meanwhile, we pray for wisdom (Matt. 10:16).” 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us fight naivete’…with knowledge (John 8:32); 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 – 6-17-19 Appealing to a Higher Authority

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -6-17-19

Appealing to a Higher Authority

What’s Happening: “The husband of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a project manager with the Thomson Reuters Foundation, began a hunger strike Saturday in front of the Iranian Embassy in London, in solidarity for his wife’s unjust imprisonment since April, 2016, in Tehran. Zaghari-Ratcliffe was arrested after a family visit and at the airport, charged, convicted, and sentenced to five years for allegedly plotting to overthrow Iran’s clerical establishment (https://news.yahoo.com/jailed-british-iranian-aid-worker-170658469.html). She has begun her own hunger strike, her second one…the first was for ignored heath issues. ‘Today I received a phone call from Nazanin in prison. She had informed the judiciary that she has begun a new hunger strike – she will drink water – to protest at her continuing unfair imprisonment,’ the husband said.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “What good will a hunger strike do?”

Biblical Response:  “Not much, especially if unaccompanied by prayer. Actually, I don’t know if the media is using the secular term ‘hunger strike’ to hide the real ‘fasting’ or not. If either of them is appealing to God for her release…and fasting, too – fasting proves fervency (James 5:16) – they may get what they’re praying for. The clerics of Iran can be overruled by God. When faced with obstacles to overcome, one should go to the One Who has the power to change things. Besides, haven’t we been told how to overcome (Rev. 12:11)?”

“Christians? The ayatollahs of Iran may not acknowledge it now, but there is a Higher Authority. He rules (and overrules) in the affairs of men (The Declaration of Independence – based on Jer. 32:17).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, may others add fervency to their prayers for Zaghari-Ratcliffe; after all, some things only come out by fasting and prayer (Matt. 17:20)…and may she be released soon; 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 – 6-14-19 Who’s Really Behind the Attack

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -6-14-19

Who’s Really Behind the Attack

What’s Happening: “Now the Pentagon has released a video which it says proves that Iran was involved in the attack on the oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz while they were en route to Japan. The video purports to have caught an Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessel removing an unexploded mine from the Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous. The Iranians have used before the limpet mine, which attaches magnetically to the hull and is intended to cripple but not sink (https://www.yahoo.com/news/us-says-iran-removed-unexploded-020504854.html). ‘The U.S. and the international community stand ready to defend our interests, including the freedom of navigation,’ said Central Command spokesman Capt, Bill Urban. The United States has no interest in engaging in a new conflict in the Middle East. However, we will defend our interests.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “The video proves unmistakably who was behind the attack. I say tomahawk missiles are in order.”

Biblical Response:  “Iran was probably involved…I say ‘probably’, because it is now technically possible to simulate digitally through CG (Computer Graphics) anything you like. Still, simulated or not, Iran has a history of attacking vessels. One thing’s for sure, ‘the thief has come but for to steal, kill and destroy…’ (John 10:10). The enemy (the devil) is behind it all. He would like nothing more than to inflame two governments into a conflict that will destroy innocents on both sides. We must think carefully before we respond.”

“Christians? There is no ambivalence in the devil’s intent. And Iran is the ideal proxy. Now is the time to pray…for our leaders, for those that will be the ‘innocent’ victims, and for God’s will and justice.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, bring order out of chaos and help us to realize whom our real enemy is; 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 – 5-27-19 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 – 5-22-19 Rumors of War

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -5-22-19

Rumors of War

What’s Happening: “A poll released yesterday revealed that most believe that war with Iran is imminent…the majority also believe that a first strike would be a mistake, but favor a military response if attacked, with 39% favoring an outright invasion (https://www.yahoo.com/news/half-american-adults-expect-war-iran-within-next-043709356.html). Quoting the author of the above-linked article, Chris Kahn: ‘Trump has said he would like to negotiate with the Islamic Republic’s leaders. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani rejected talks on Tuesday and has said “economic war” is being waged against Iran.’”   

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Iran’s just upset that the U.S. has pulled out of the Nuclear Deal. They’re not getting as much Euro-attention.”

Biblical Response:  “Maybe…especially if that Euro-attention brought petro dollars with it. Still, those crazy Iranians are the world’s largest sponsor of terrorism, and just wacky enough to think they might have something to gain by being in a war with us. This is not Armageddon, but American culture today knows nothing of world warfare. The Vietnam War was horrific (over 55, 000 Americans lost), and so was America’s longest war, Afghanistan (as of 5 August 2018, 3,458 coalition deaths). By comparison, WWII records 21-25 million soldiers and 50-55 million civilians! This culture might mature awfully quick if it experienced anything on that scale. Of course, China, Russia, and North Korea would have to get involved to produce those kinds of numbers. Like I said, that would be a quick, albeit drastic, route to maturity for a culture…but stranger things have happened…recently, as world history records time.”

“Christians? Pray (Phil. 4:6). Note that that scripture starts out by saying,”Don’t worry about anything…” Sure, we should take precautions like any responsible watchman (Ezek. 33:6), but God’s got an agenda that won’t be denied (perhaps I shouldn’t remind Him that we’ve aborted 60 million since Roe v. Wade).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father,help us to be wise and remember our frailty when You exact justice…and be merciful: 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 – 5-20-19 Don’t Mistake Forbearance For Fear

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -5-20-19

Don’t Mistake Forbearance For Fear

What’s Happening: “Iran launched a Katyusha rocket that landed dangerously close to the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq late last night, escalating rhetoric via Twitter. Both governments warned the other not to threaten. Is it more mere saber-rattling or genuine? (https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-warns-iran-not-threaten-us-face-end-065953536.html).  Jeremy Hunt, British Foreign Secretary said: ‘…if American interests are attacked, they will retaliate. We want the situation to de-escalate because this is a part of the world where things can get triggered accidentally,’”  

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Nothing’s going to happen. They’re (the leaders of both nations) just building their Twitter audiences.”

Biblical Response:  “I hope you’re right, but never let the Iranians mistake forbearance for fear, reticence for lack of resolve. That’s what happened by the Japanese in WWII at Pearl Harbor…and by Osama Bin Laden at 9/11. It took ten years, but justice always has a way of arriving. Remember, Jesus is coming back…and it won’t be a pretty sight for some (as a matter of fact, the Bible depicts Him coming with a sword protruding from His mouth – Rev. 1:16, 2:16).”

“Christians? Oh, we believe in a patient God. But not in One where patience is mistaken for license. Read what the scripture has to say about it:

‘The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.’(2 Pet 3:9-10 NASU)

We should pray that our leaders have the wisdom know when to pull the trigger  and when to just speak louder.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, let not our enemies think we are kidding…You’re not; 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 – 5-11-19 They Forgot About the Wind

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -5-11-19

They Forgot About the Wind

What’s Happening: “There are mixed messages. While Iran is trying to ignore the landing of B52s in Qatar and the carrier Abraham Lincoln’s passing through the Suez Canal yesterday (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/iran-news-donald-trump-b-52-bombers-persian-gulf-revolutionary-guard-us-not-dare-attack/), there is an evangelical movement of the fastest growing church in the world with Muslims converting left and right…despite great persecution, even martyrdom  (https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/worth-a-thousand-years-of-waiting?utm_campaign=Daily%20Email&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=72492274&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-9U-V9g3wNv8XwB-9lFmmUYYlD5EU9XI58BUtp7gW5ifSc9Yj_01SntTcF07tMLH3cbTcyvVKuuSSOegf1Ir4C8eQoBhA&_hsmi=72492274).  There may have been an Islamic Revolution declared in Iran when pro-western Shah Pahlavi departed in 1979 (Tehran just celebrated its 40th anniversary), but God had another idea.”  

Knee-Jerk Response:  “So these two apparently unrelated events are related how?”

Biblical Response:  “Just that man has an agenda…but so does God. And, as the Scripture says: ‘Man proposes, but God disposes’ (Prov 19:21 LB). I’m not saying we shouldn’t as a country respond militarily to bellicose threats, I’m just saying there may be more afoot here than meets the eye. Besides, it wouldn’t be the first time God used some unsuspecting country to effect His will.”

“Christians? Like my wife likes to quip: ‘You may run from circumstance or try to hide from consequence, but you can never escape prayer.’ The Lord has a way of accomplishing His will. Maybe it’s time to figure out what He’s doing and ask how we can get on board.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help our leaders to act wisely and help our new brothers and sisters to hang tough; 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 – 5-10-19 Not At ALL Costs

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -5-10-19

Not At ALL Costs

What’s Happening: “No, I’m not talking about Iran, who expressed anger over increased U.S. military assets steaming toward the Persian Gulf yesterday (https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201812041070365051-us-aircraft-carrier-persian-gulf/). …or even North Korea. who tested an ICBM yesterday (we fired one off in response – (https://www.space.com/north-korea-us-missile-tests.html)…rather, I’m talking about the arrest (or kidnapping) of Edgar Zambrano, Vice President of the opposition National Assembly by Maduro’s henchmen, police for Venezuela’s illegitimate self-proclaimed president (https://www.yahoo.com/news/venezuelas-guaido-says-deputy-detained-intelligence-agents-000518340.html). ‘Maduro and his accomplices are those directly responsible for Zambrano’s security. If he is not immediately freed, there will be consequences,’ the U.S. Embassy said on Twitter.”  

Knee-Jerk Response:  “War is to be avoided at all costs!”

Biblical Response:  “Truly, war is not desirable…but not to be avoided at ALL costs. The ‘better red than dead’ mantra may be trying to rear its ugly head again. General Sherman (a Civil War General for the North) said:’War is hell.’ Surely, it is bad, and efforts to avoid it should be expended, but sometimes war is not only the only remaining reasonable option, it is better than the alternative (3 million have already emigrated to avoid starvation). Is there a time for war? You bet (Eccl. 3:8).”

“Christians? While we are definitely against war, we recognize its inevitability. War is the physical manifestation that sometimes develops when a resistance to evil is exercised. What we must realize is that the physical manifestation is not the controlling factor. Our resistance to evil must have a spiritual component if it is to be successful (Eph. 6:12). Someday, there might even be prayer warriors assigned to that spiritual task…and a part of the army…now wouldn’t that be something!”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help our leaders be sensitive to the voice of Your Spirit, not entangling us in something we should avoid…but not shrinking back in a fear that leaves the ground (and the people) to the enemy: 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