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CLARITY – 9-14-19 Heating Up…Again

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 9-14-19

Heating Up…Again  

What’s Happening: “With the addition of the Kalibr and other similar missiles (the equivalent of U.S. short and medium-range cruise missiles) Russia has done what was expected since Trump pulled the U.S. out of the INF….he did so in response to repeated violations of the treaty by Russia. Putting them in Venezuela (which he has threatened to do) would be (potentially\ another ‘Bay of Pigs’ situation. The Cold War may be heating up…again  (https://www.yahoo.com/news/venezuela-become-russian-missile-132300194.html). ‘Russia has legal grounds, in response to the emergence of new weapons from the USA after leaving the INF Treaty, to deploy their submarines and ships with medium and shorter-range missiles,’ said Russia’s National Association of Reserve Officers, Vladimir Bogatyrev.” 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I guess I should be doing duck-and-cover drills, huh?”

Biblical Response:  “If doing those ineffective anti-nuclear school drills from the sixties makes you feel better…oh, you were joking, right? Seriously, that any government would even contemplate survivability of a nuclear holocaust is…well, horrifying! Still, having land-based nuclear weapons located in our hemisphere is unthinkable. A war postponed is a war magnified, but a war avoided… Thankfully, the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly (2 Cor. 4-5). But spiritual, and those who would ‘push the button’ on both sides are subject to an irresistible force: God. That may sound cheesy, but it’s true (Acts 17:26). There are forces at play here that few have calculated as part of the equation.”

“Christians? Oh, we believe in the ultimate triumph of good over evil…and He supplies us with wisdom from His Holy Spirit, meanwhile (John 16:12-13).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give our leaders the wisdom from Your Spirit that sees peace as an alternative; 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 -5-15-19 Freedom Isn’t Free

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -5-15-19

Freedom Isn’t Free

What’s Happening: “The latest in Venezuela’s struggle for freedom (in January Juan Guaido, the National Assembly head, declared Maduro’s re-election bid to be a sham and his claim to the presidency illegitimate – last week, Guaido’s ‘coup’ attempt failed because the Russians and the Cubans stepped in to support Maduro) has the Security forces under Maduro blockading the members of the assembly from physically entering their building to meet. This intimidation follows the arrest of Guaido’s deputy, Edgar Zambrano (https://www.yahoo.com/news/venezuelan-lawmakers-accuse-security-services-intimidation-172132591.html).’SEBIN agents, using the excuse that there’s an explosive device within the facilities, took over the federal palace. We’re surrounded by intelligence agents,’ said lawmaker Manuela Bolivar.”  

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I thought Maduro would have backed down by now…is there going to be a war?”

Biblical Response:  “Me, too. I guess Russia and Cuba have more influence over Maduro than anyone thought. As far as the question about war, I don’t know. What I do know is that freedom isn’t free. Sure, spiritual freedom was purchased by Christ on the Cross, But ‘setting the prisoners free’ (ps. 146:7) was personally costly. Physical freedom in this world is not free, either. Ask Nathan Hale (Revolutionary War martyr, who famously said, ‘Give me liberty, or give me death’…just before he was hung by the British as a spy).  Was there bloodshed for America to obtain its freedom? Yes…lots. Will there be bloodshed in Venezuela? No doubt. Many have died already…freedom isn’t free?”

“Christians? The concept of physical freedom is opposed by the devil and his minions…the same forces that oppose spiritual freedom. The devil will ultimately lose both battles (Matt, 16:18), but there has already been much bloodshed, and there will be more, before we beat our ‘swords into ploughshares’ (Isaiah 2:4).”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to be wise, but ready to sacrifice for freedom…You were; 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 – 5-2-19 Same Old, Same Old

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events -5-2-19

Same Old, Same Old

What’s Happening: “Things have gone from bad to worse in Caracas, the capital city of Venezuela…where before inflation rates were ridiculous (hundreds of %), today it is unthinkable (a Million %!)….where mass exodus was once alarming, it is now making ghost towns of once bustling barrios…where intimidation squads were prevalent, now death squads are common…no one argues that the end is in sight…but that is a discussion that was held more than a decade ago (https://www.yahoo.com/news/maduros-death-squads-add-terrifying-181444096.html). In an exchange by journalist Hannah Strange and her friend after returning to Venezuela recently,  (Hannah is the author of the above link in The Telegraph), ‘You realise we were having this conversation a decade ago,’ my friend commented. ‘Yes, I remembered.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “This is unprecedented!”

Biblical Response:  “Alas, it is not. Revolutions are almost always accompanied by riots and protesters….or are you not a student of history? From Iran’s (remember the hostage crisis when Shah Pahlavi left – 1979 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mohammad_Reza_Pahlavi  – ?); or ours (remember the Boston Tea Party – 1773 https://www.britannica.com/event/Boston-Tea-Party  -?); I cannot think of an exception. Except when God steps in (Acts 9:2-16) as He did with Saul/Paul. Why is that? It might have something to do with Man’s fallen nature (read Gen. 3). Unless God steps in again, there is much more bloodshed ahead. The outcome? Venezuela is not specifically spoken of in scripture (of course, neither is America).”

“Christians? We need to be more concerned with the revolution He needs to bring about in our hearts. That is not to say revolutions elsewhere are not sometimes necessary and important, just that they need to be put in context.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to remember to pray for our brethren amidst their persecutions, and our leaders amidst their deliberations; 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 – 3-26-19 Red Sky at Morning

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-26-19

Red Sky at Morning

What’s Happening: “When planes and troops from Russia landed at Caracas airport (Venezuela),  the U.S. saw it as a provocation, escalating the tensions that already exist between those who support Maduro (Cuba, Russia…and to a lesser extent, China) and those who support Juan Guaido (the OAS – Organization of American States – the U.S., and the rest of the western world – over 50 countries in all). Venezuela maintains the Russians are just there to service military equipment that some previous bilateral agreement purchased (https://www.yahoo.com/news/pompeo-urges-moscow-cease-unconstructive-behavior-venezuela-145013258.html). ‘The United States condemns Russia’s deployment of military aircraft and personnel to Caracas, which is another contradiction of both Nicolas Maduro’s and Russia’s calls for non-intervention in Venezuela and is a reckless escalation of the situation,’ said the State Department.”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “This is just so much ‘sabre-rattling.’”’

Biblical Response:  “Maybe. I know Trump has said he is not taking the military option off the table. The Russians surely don’t want a war fought over a little two-bit dictatorship in a country on the other side of the world. Still, it would love to have a socialist puppet in our backyard…and they already have a lot invested in Cuba. With socialism on the Democrats’ playlist. I wouldn’t dismiss anything offhand. Hopefully, someone’s advising Trump to seek the diplomatic solution as recommended in scripture first (Luke 12:56-58). If not, there might be a lot of deaths in the future. I’m not saying: ‘better red, than dead,’ but diplomacy should be tried first.”

“Christians? The companion scripture in Matthew (16:3) reveals how we shouldn’t be surprised here, but how to solve the problem is from Luke  12:56-58…if a peaceful agreement is possible. It might not be.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, let those who negotiate these things act slowly and thoughtfully, not emotionally and reactionarily; 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 – 3-14-19 Wrong Assumptions

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 3-14-19

Wrong Assumptions

What’s Happening: “After a fifth night with rolling blackouts throughout the country and protests continuing in the streets of Caracas, Venezuela, it is increasingly clear that something has got to give…and SOON. It is feared by Western powers (primarily the US and its backers) that China, Russia and Cuba want a petro-foothold in the West and their (at least Russia’s) drilling projects in the Orinoco Basin  may represent a financial investment that a proxy war might help (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-russia-rosneft-special-repo/special-report-how-russia-sank-billions-of-dollars-into-venezuela-quicksand-idUSKCN1QV1HN). The above link shows the investment history has not been pretty. In my estimation, it’s a socialist mentality trying to play a capitalist’s game. The people of Venezuela will be the biggest losers here; they duly voted out  Chavez’s successor Maduro (though he rigged the election and seized power). Backing Juan Guido, the US and its allies may have to use the military option. ”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “It doesn’t look good for the starving millions of Venezuela.”

Biblical Response:  “No, it doesn’t. I can’t, for the life of me figure out how socialism has any fans in America with Venezuela’s woes in the paper daily! No one over 40 holds to socialism as viable. And that may be the answer to my dilemma.

Academia doesn’t teach the ills of socialism…at least not in the public schools…or the universities. Which means that its philosophy that Man is basically good – a wrong assumption – is the prevailing view of the youth. Enter AOC, et al. Capitalism’s view of Man as basically bad – a right assumption (Rom. 3:23) – has greed, checked by law and order, producing the world’s most prosperous society. As the 1960’s era folk song verse says; ‘Oh when will we ever learn…?’”

“Christians? Of course, we are not for greed. But until everyone has been redeemed and operates truly with God’s love, we must have law. Like the scriptures teach (Rom. 8:29), love from God’s Spirit circumcises the heart and should make other laws eventually unnecessary. Living in a fallen world, however, makes the transformation slow (Rom. 12:2).  

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to make allowances for sin, while not promoting 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

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CLARITY – 2-20-19 Not If, But How

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 2-20-19

Not If, But How

What’s Happening: “In a stirring speech (at least to the Venezuelan and Cuban  immigrants) in Florida, President Donald Trump said that Maduro’s days are numbered and all options are on the table. He was also fighting the socialism of Venezuela that has produced an average weight loss of 24 pounds and an inflation rate of 10 million percent … and perhaps the socialism of many of the 2020 election Presidential Democrat party contenders (https://www.yahoo.com/news/nicolas-maduro-attacks-trump-apos-105545947.html).  Maduro’s reaction? ‘We will not make of the honorable Venezuela a Venezuela of beggars,’ Maduro said. ‘We will not accept it.’”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I smell armed conflict.”

Biblical Response:  “It may come to that…I certainly hope not; a lot of innocents may die. The outcome, however, is certain…what isn’t is the method of transition: peaceable…or not. With Russia, China, and, of course, Cuba backing Maduro…and most of the west backing Guaido…it is set up for a conflict. Sad, but if unchecked now it will get worse.”

“Christians? We believe that God really determines the outcome. Let me elaborate with a scripture:

‘…and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, …’ (Acts 17:26 NASU)

Like I said, the final outcome is determined. The details…not so much…at least from our perspective.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to act wisely and promote peace…You’ve already paid the price for 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 – 1-24-19 Recognized

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 1-24-19

Recognized

What’s Happening: “You may not have heard of him, but 35-year-old Juan Guaido is the newly recognized interim leader of Venezuela…at least so says the US, Canada, and dozens of other countries…(https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/statement-president-donald-j-trump-recognizing-venezuelan-national-assembly-president-juan-guaido-interim-president-venezuela/). Quoting Guaido: ‘Violence is the usurper’s weapon; we only have one clear action: to remain united and firm for a free Venezuela.’ To say ‘he has his work cut out’ may be an understatement. It has been recently reported that inflation rates have reached two million percent! To put that in terms the average person can grasp, imagine a cup of coffee going from 50 cents to $800.00!”

Knee-Jerk Response:  “I’m glad I live in the U.S.”

Biblical Response:  “True, but it’s a tragedy for the 30 Million that live there (though the recent mass exodus to neighboring Columbia may have decreased that somewhat – heck, some of them are no doubt in the next caravan). Will Gen. Maduro (‘elected’ in a highly suspicious election last May) have him arrested? It’s complicated (if it weren’t, he’d already be incarcerated). The opposition might riot worse if he is detained…though Maduro would be rid of a thorn to his socialist rule. That Maduro still has the loyalty of military leaders and their Supreme Court, only makes the tension higher.”

“Christians? In addition to the prayers that should go up (Phil. 4:6), we should be cautiously optimistic. However, unless God has transformed the heart, self-rule doesn’t go very well (2 Pet. 2:10-11). Still, the rule of law and a good Bible-based Constitution has served us well these last 232 years.”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, help us to back the right man’s play…the only thing worse than opposing God and failing, is opposing Him and succeeding…and He might just let us have our way…even when we’re wrong…Lord, help us; 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 – 12-15-18 Lessons of History

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 12-15-18

Lessons of History

What’s Happening: “Nearly six years ago (2013) a little ripple was all that was made when gun sales were banned from all but government entities in Venezuela. Today, there may be some regret…and gun toting populaces might take note. Venezuela now has the highest homicide rate in the world. Some 90+ per 100,000…compare that with the U.S.’s rate of 4.9 per 100,000 (https://www.westernjournal.com/ct/country-crashes-burns-venezuelans-offer-chilling-warning-gun-grabbers/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=conservative-brief-CT&utm_campaign=dailyam&utm_content=conservative-tribune). ‘Guns would served as a vital pillar to remaining a free people, or at least able to put up a fight.’ lamented Javier Vanegas a teacher who fled Venezuela recently.”  

Knee-Jerk Response:  “The fewer the guns, the fewer the gun crimes.”

Biblical Response:  “I know the conventional mantra, but that simply is not borne out historically. Could it be that man’s fallen nature means those who want guns will find a way to get them? And exert the undue leverage of evil over the law-abiding? You can’t confiscate enough…if it’s not guns, it’s knives…or machetes…or vehicles…or toxins, etc. You can’t incarcerate fast enough…or put enough cops on the street…or write enough laws. What is the solution? Until you have a universal nature change…which may not happen this side of heaven…the best way that’s been found is to give everyone the power to defend themselves…(and that’s to say nothing about the restraint of a tyrannical government as power corrupts)”

“Christians? While we should be in the business of saving souls, it might not hurt to have the ability to save some bodies, too (Luke 22:36-38)!”

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, while none of us wants violence, those that threaten it must be met appropriately. Give us wisdom and discretion; 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 – 8-2-18 Learning Vicariously

CLARITY

A Biblical Response to Current Events – 8-2-18

 

Learning Vicariously

 

What’s Happening:  “The recent past has been rough in Venezuela…food and medicine shortages, no running water, no power…even President Nicolas Maduro realizes that Socialism has failed…yet Democratic Socialism seems to be where the whole Democratic Party is headed…at least if Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have their way (https://www.westernjournal.com/ct/venezuelan-president-finally-admits-that-socialism-is-broken-economy-is-destroyed/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=CTBreaking&utm_campaign=breaking&utm_content=conservative-tribune). An inflation rate of 1 million percent puts most purchasing out of reach. Hear what President Maduro told his ruling congress Tuesday: ‘The production models we’ve tried so far have failed and the responsibility is ours…’”

 

Knee-Jerk Response:  “Yeah, but Venezuela is in South America and I live in North America.”

 

Biblical Response:  “So? There’s no geographic limit to learning from others, is there? People and economic systems are the same the world over. Capitalism works in this world precisely because fallen man is out for number one. Socialism doesn’t work because that would require a benevolent dictator who never made mistakes, an endless supply of someone else’s money, and complete unselfishness. Anybody think that’s possible in this world? (Crickets) I didn’t think so.”

 

“Christians? While there was a need for sharing “all things in common” in the early church (Acts 2:44-45), that was not practised anywhere else for a reason (others apparently learned it was only for then and there). Sure, Jesus could have taken us with Him when He ascended, but He chose to leave us here because He was “not willing that any should perish” (2 Pet. 3:9). Living in and being sent to a fallen world (Mark 16:15) requires us to approach people from their own self interest. There’ll be plenty of time to share (and limitless resources) in the kingdom to come. Here, we share what we have, by God’s grace, acquired. He never calls us to share what others have acquired.”

 

Here’s a Prayer You Can Pray:  “Heavenly Father, give us the wisdom to not have to repeat the mistakes of others; 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