February 21, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Advantages

Golden text: Isaiah 1:31*

The mighty man will become tinder and his work a spark; both will burn together, with no one to quench the fire.”

II Kings 10:18-28

 Then Jehu brought all the people together and said to them, “Ahab served Baal a little; Jehu will serve him much. 19 Now summon all the prophets of Baal, all his servants and all his priests. See that no one is missing, because I am going to hold a great sacrifice for Baal. Anyone who fails to come will no longer live.” But Jehu was acting deceptively in order to destroy the servants of Baal.

20 Jehu said, “Call an assembly in honor of Baal.” So they proclaimed it. 21 Then he sent word throughout Israel, and all the servants of Baal came; not one stayed away. They crowded into the temple of Baal until it was full from one end to the other. 22 And Jehu said to the keeper of the wardrobe, “Bring robes for all the servants of Baal.” So he brought out robes for them.

23 Then Jehu and Jehonadab son of Rekab went into the temple of Baal. Jehu said to the servants of Baal, “Look around and see that no one who serves the Lord is here with you—only servants of Baal.” 24 So they went in to make sacrifices and burnt offerings. Now Jehu had posted eighty men outside with this warning: “If one of you lets any of the men I am placing in your hands escape, it will be your life for his life.”

25 As soon as Jehu had finished making the burnt offering, he ordered the guards and officers: “Go in and kill them; let no one escape.” So they cut them down with the sword. The guards and officers threw the bodies out and then entered the inner shrine of the temple of Baal. 26 They brought the sacred stone out of the temple of Baal and burned it. 27 They demolished the sacred stone of Baal and tore down the temple of Baal, and people have used it for a latrine to this day.

28 So Jehu destroyed Baal worship in Israel.

From 21st Century Science and Health**

We have no authority in divine Science and no moral right to attempt to influence the thoughts of others except to benefit them. In mental practice, you must not forget that erring human opinions, conflicting selfish motives, and ignorant attempts to do good may render you incapable of knowing or judging accurately the real need of those who you are helping. Therefore, the rule is to heal the sick when called on and save the victims of the mental assassins.

Human mind, acting from the basis of sensation in matter, is susceptible to suggestions. This so-called mind from which comes all evil, contradicts itself and must finally yield to eternal Truth as expressed in Science. In proportion to our understanding of Christian Science, we are freed from the suggestions of physical inheritance or mind in illusive matter. We disarm sin of its imaginary power as we scientifically understand the status of spiritual being.

Unaware of the methods and the basis of metaphysical healing, you may attempt to unite it with hypnotism, brain manipulation, or psychics. However, none of these methods benefit metaphysical healing.

Outside of divine Science all is relative. Earthly experience exposes the relativity of error, indirectly leading to the infinite capacities of Truth. Spiritual beings agree with the absolute and harmonious Principle of being. Immortality does not sin, suffer, or die and our spiritual experiences will multiply instead of diminish as God’s kingdom comes on earth. The spiritual way leads to Life instead of to death and we realize our God-given dominion to overcome temporal limitations.

Whatever guides thought spiritually, benefits mind and body. We need to understand the affirmations of divine Science, dismiss superstition, and demonstrate truth according to Christ.

John 12:42-50

42 Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in [Jesus Christ]. But because of the Pharisees they would not openly acknowledge their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved human praise more than praise from God.

44 Then Jesus cried out, “Whoever believes in me does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. 45 The one who looks at me is seeing the one who sent me. 46 I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.

47 “If anyone hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge that person. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. 48 There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day. 49 For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. 50 I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

Why the reluctance to expose error and stop repeating mistakes? We hesitate because people like us better when we tell them their virtues than when we tell them their vices. It requires the spirit of Truth and Love to point out faulty thinking. We risk human disapproval for the sake of doing right and benefiting humanity.

Question. Are doctrines and creeds a benefit to human beings?

Answer. I subscribed to an orthodox creed when young, and tried to adhere to it until I caught the first view of that which interprets God as above human mortal perceptions. The new view rebuked human beliefs and gave the spiritual interpretation, expressed through Science, of all that proceeds from the divine Mind. Since then my highest creed has been divine Science, which, reduced to human comprehension, I named Christian Science. This Science teaches us that God is the only Life, and that this Life is truth and love; that God is to be understood, compassionately respected, and demonstrated; and that divine Truth drives out supposed errors and heals the sick.

The way which leads to Christian Science is straight and narrow. God’s mark has been put on Science, making it equal to all that is real and related only to that which is harmonious and eternal. Sickness, sin, and death, being inharmonious, do not originate in God nor belong to Truth’s government. God’s law, rightly understood, destroys all that contradicts Life, Truth, and Love.

Surely, we need to do more than preserve unreliable and useless dogmas, derived from religious traditions and stamped with human approval or authorization.

Inconsistency is shown by words without deeds, which is like a car without an engine, a cell-phone without a charge. If our words fail to express our deeds, God will redeem that weakness and out of the mouth of babes Soul will perfect praise. Consistency is seen in example more than in precept. The night of materiality is burning out and Truth’s glow wakens human beings spiritually to hear and to speak the new tongue.

Wrongdoing should become unreal to everyone. Sin is inconsistent, a divided kingdom with a realism that has no divine authority, and I rejoice in the understanding of this grand truth.

Philippians 1:10-22

10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.

12 Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. 13 As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. 14 And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.

15 It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. 16 The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17 The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. 18 But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.

Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, 19 for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. 20 I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know!

From 21st Century Science and Health

Who will decide what truth and love are?

The point to decide is whether human mind or spiritual Mind acts as the cause.

The action of human mind on the body was not so injurious before curiosity took up medical study and distracted thought away from spiritual healing. “Where ignorance is bliss, tis folly to be wise,”[1] and there is truth in this sentiment.

Permit the stomach and bowels to act in obedience to nature. Give the gospel a chance to be seen in its glorious effects upon the body. Dismiss the ghastly collection of diseases paraded before your imagination. Keep to “sermons in stones, and good in everything.”[2] When the mechanism of the human mind gives place to the divine Mind, selfishness and sin, disease and death, will lose their grip.

The apostles who were Jesus’ students, as well as Paul who was not his student, healed the sick and reformed the sinner by their religion. Hence the mistake which allows words, rather than works, to follow such examples! Whoever is first to press along the line of gospel-healing humbly and conscientiously, is considered a heretic.

Christian Science is sometimes disapproved of because it claims God as the only absolute Life and Soul, and person to be God’s idea—that is, Spirit’s image. However, Scriptures confirm the claim, saying that God created “man” (a generic term for person given in many Bible versions), “in our image, in our likeness.”[3] Is it sacrilegious to theorize that God’s likeness is not found in fleshly beings, sinful, sick, and dying? In reality, the person referred to as God’s image represents the normal, healthful, and sinless condition of individuals in divine Science.

One moment of divine consciousness, or the spiritual understanding of Life and Love, is a foretaste of eternity. This exalted view, obtained and retained when the Science of being is understood, would bridge over with life discerned spiritually the interval of death, and humanity would be in the full consciousness of our spirituality and eternal harmony, where sin, sickness, and death are unknown.

Unspoken thoughts are not unknown to divine Mind. Prayer is desire. No loss can come from trusting God to form and exalt our desires before they are put into words and action.

Exalted thoughts lead us to new and glorified trusts, to higher ideals of life and joys.

*Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. www.zondervan.com The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™

**Text from 21st Century Science and Health can’t be reproduced in part or as a whole without the written permission of Healing Science Today

[1] Thomas Gray, (1716–1771) English poet. Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College.

[2] Shakespeare, William, (1564–1616) As You Like It, Act 2, Scene 1.

[3] Gen. 1:26

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