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Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Dog with fawn
This is not our dog Roxie but sure looks a lot like her!  As we recall the family had adopted this fawn shortly after birth when the mother was killed on the road.
(Click on photo to enlarge)

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"Ever Learning"

"Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth" (2 Timothy 3:7).

A veterinarian has stated that dogs fall into two categories concerning their interface with skunks:
    1) Those who learn the first time.
    2) Those who never learn.

It appears that Roxie falls into the second category.  Yesterday I took her for a long morning walk across from our house on the tractor trail that runs beside a soybean field.  As we walked along I began to smell a faint but growing skunk scent. Before I knew it Roxie was romping through the soybean fields. When she darted out she brought with her the repulsive scent that comes from mingling with a skunk.

We walked back home and as I opened the dining room door Roxie dodged in quickly to greet Brooksyne.  I noted the expression on Brooksyne's face, but before she could even get a word out, I realized for certain that Roxie had been sprayed!  Once again Brooksyne mixed up a special skunk scent abatement bath and scrubbed away the odor from Roxie's fur. For several hours following her bath she demonstrated embarrassment but appears to be over it now.  But if the vet's theory is correct we are probably going to have more of these episodes as we do like to take Roxie out for walks in the country.  And it is certainly her most enjoyable pastime.

I have considered the vet's advice and how it bears a similarity in regard to people and how we learn.  Indeed some learn and some never learn.  Most of us are learning and as we do so the main issue is our response to what we learn.

Today's Biblical text is a tiny, easily overlooked gem in Paul's second letter to Timothy. Paul is writing of conditions in the last days which he describes as perilous. Among the conditions of people's hearts he lists deception. Among the characteristics of deceivers and the deceived is that they are "ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth." Another version states, "always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth."  Could it be that the philosophy of their day was much like ours today – make truth relative so that it conforms to our outlook and lifestyle, rather than accepting truth and conforming to its absolutes.

We surely live in the most "educated" period in human history. Information abounds as well as the means to acquire it. The Amplified Bible translates this verse "they are forever inquiring and getting information, but are never able to arrive at a recognition and knowledge of the Truth."  I believe the emphasis and capitalization of "the Truth" is significant. Paul is not merely speaking in a general sense as to what is true and what is not, but rather the supreme truth of God's revelation in Christ.  So many, many are indeed always learning and attaining knowledge without coming to the knowledge of this truth.

In the first two chapters of Romans we have three responses to the truth; suppression, exchange and disobedience (1:18,25;2:8). My, these are surely responses that abound in our day.

May it be said of us in regard to our response to the truth that we are learning and fully acknowledging the Truth.  If we are doing so we will grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Daily prayer: Father, You grant us access to Your presence through Your Son, Jesus, who is the Way, the Truth and the Life.  As we come into personal relationship with Him we begin to know the Truth that sets us free from the deceit and lies of Satan. Help us to faithfully engraft Your Word into our hearts so that we will filter all that we see, hear and read to find what You, the Source and very Essence of truth have to say to our hearts.  Help us to conform to Your will in all matters.  Amen.

New Testament references to the phrase "the truth".
Another message on this topic.

Roxie leaping through the wheat field
Roxie enjoyed leaping through the wheat fields this spring and now it's through the soybean fields. It's really an amazing sight to see her jump through the field with practically vertical hops. When she's not leaping (as in the photo where she's about 18 inches off the ground) we only spot the curly point of her tail above the soybeans. We shared a video this spring of Roxie jumping through the wheat field. Perhaps you missed it or would like to see it again! (watch the video)

Roxie getting her bath
Roxie getting her skunk smell abatement bath.
(This photo was actually from another skunk incident this last Spring)
We also wrote a message about this skunk episode!

Harvest Time

Neck Pumpkins ready for the Shady Maple
We visited with a farmer friend on Labor Day. His trailer filled to capacity was full of neck pumpkins bound for the Shady Maple, which is surely among the most remarkable eateries in our area and probably all of Southeast Pennsylvania.  Their website states"Ultimately, Marvin, Miriam and their three married sons, Philip, Curtis, Linford, their wives and families (eleven grandchildren), give the Lord Jesus Christ the glory for any success that has been accomplished over the years.

Another warrior has gone home - I just read that one of our favorite preachers and authors passed away this morning. D. James Kennedy wrote a number of books that I consider influential in my spiritual growth especially his "What if..." series. We often listened to his afternoon program on WDAC, our local Christian radio station.  We are now at an age when so many who have had a spiritual influence on us are being called home. May all who come behind us find us faithful!

Today's suggested music:
"The Voice Of Truth" (Listen)
"I Need Thee Every Hour" (Listen)
"Open The Eyes Of My Heart" (Listen)

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission; and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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