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CLARITY – 12-27-19 Whereabouts Known


A Biblical Response to Current Events – 12-27-19

Whereabouts Known

What’s Happening: “A deadly typhoon (called a tropical cyclone or hurricane in some regions) struck the Philippines Christmas day and the death toll has risen to 28, with 12 still missing. The storm had sustained winds of 75mph with gusts to 125mph. It was named Phanfone (known locally as Ursula). Typhoon Haiyan in 2013 was the region’s deadliest, killing over 6,000 ( ‘Communication lines are down. Electricity is still down,’ said Alkan police chief Jonathan Pablito.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “What does a Typhoon in the Philippines have to do with me? Don’t get me wrong, it’s a pity what happened to them…but so?”

Biblical Response:  “Because all tragedy is indeed local, I see your point…but until we truly hurt for the loss of other folks, we won’t do anything about it. Sure, as long as we live in a fallen world (see Gen. 3), we can only lessen somebody’s loss, not prevent it…that’s why we should give to relief agencies who seek to ameliorate tragedy (James 2:15-18). The real tragedy might be those missing. Of course, there’s really no one missing…being omnipresent, God knows where they are (Ps. 139).”

“Christians? We believe in lessening others’ losses, sharing their suffering (Rom. 12:15)…besides, sometimes this gives us an opportunity to speak about the things that have eternal significance (1 Pet. 3:15), not just temporal. We remember the old saying, ‘People don’t care how much you give, until they know how much you care.’ Sometimes you earn the right to be heard, because you demonstrated your love by giving.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while we don’t want to lessen our sincerity by merely writing a check, we don’t want our sacrifice to go unnoticed…maybe what You want is not equal giving, but equal sacrifice…help us; in Jesus’ Name, amen.”

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CLARITY – 10-26-19 Friendship?


A Biblical Response to Current Events – 10-26-19


It’s Happening: “Filipino President Duterte, making his second trip to Moscow in less than a year, may be seeking a strategic relationship with Russia, in particular Vladimir Putin. He has bought Russian military hardware (specifically helicopters and kilo-class submarines), which has been a poke-in-the-eye to the U.S., ostensibly to protect its interests in the South China Sea, a bone of contention with China. To make a confusing alliance even more chaotic, let’s not forget the ideological relationship between the Russians and the Chinese…both ‘Communist’ countries  ( The recently appointed by Moscow, Manilla Defense Attache was quoted as saying, ‘What we can assure you, if you are going to procure military equipment for us, we are going to give you brand new ones and not second hand’. This was a thinly-veiled poke at recent Philippine purchases from the U.S., which had purportedly used their allies as a dumping ground for old military hardware.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Why should I care who the Filipinos have as friends?”

Biblical Response:  “Because friendship implies certain strategic alliances…and they might not have America’s best interests at heart. Putin has a history of offering friendship with an angle. Talk about ‘quid pro quo’, it’s hard to say ‘no’ when the supplier of your military hardware makes certain demands on you. I have no idea what those demands might be, but you don’t load the gun of the guy who’s got it in your back. (Sure, the Filipinos might have elected the wrong guy, but they stuck with him for now…the Dems probably feel the same way aboutTrump.) The moral of the story is that friendship has consequences…not all of them positive (James 4:4).”  

“Christians? We know that friendship with a poisonous snake requires that certain precautions be taken…and that it rarely turns out harmless. That’s why choosing the short-term over the long-term seldom works out well (Matt. 6:19-21).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to choose our friends carefully…that way, we don’t always have to watch our backs; 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’