February 28, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Church and state

Golden text: Proverbs 19:6*

Many curry favor with a ruler, and everyone is the friend of one who gives gifts.

II Kings 4:8-17

One day Elisha went to Shunem. And a well-to-do woman was there, who urged him to stay for a meal. So whenever he came by, he stopped there to eat. She said to her husband, “I know that this man who often comes our way is a holy man of God. 10 Let’s make a small room on the roof and put in it a bed and a table, a chair and a lamp for him. Then he can stay there whenever he comes to us.”

11 One day when Elisha came, he went up to his room and lay down there. 12 He said to his servant Gehazi, “Call the Shunammite.” So he called her, and she stood before him. 13 Elisha said to him, “Tell her, ‘You have gone to all this trouble for us. Now what can be done for you? Can we speak on your behalf to the king or the commander of the army?’”

She replied, “I have a home among my own people.”

14 “What can be done for her?” Elisha asked.

Gehazi said, “She has no son, and her husband is old.”

15 Then Elisha said, “Call her.” So he called her, and she stood in the doorway. 16 “About this time next year,” Elisha said, “you will hold a son in your arms.”

“No, my lord!” she objected. “Please, man of God, don’t mislead your servant!”

17 But the woman became pregnant, and the next year about that same time she gave birth to a son, just as Elisha had told her.

From 21st Century Science and Health**

As Roman and Greek mythology has yielded to a more spiritual idea of God, so will our human theories yield to spiritual ideas until the finite gives place to the infinite, sickness gives way to health, sin to holiness, and God’s kingdom comes “on earth as it is in heaven.”[1] The basis of all health, purity, and spirituality is the great fact that God is the only Mind; and this Mind must not merely be believed but it must be understood. To get rid of anything that opposes Love is to deprive the opposition of any supposed mind or reality, and never to admit the competitor can have intelligence or power, pain or pleasure. You conquer error by denying it validity. Our various theories will never lose their imaginary power for good or evil until we lose our faith in them and make life its own proof of harmony and God.

The legacy of the tribe of Judah shows that beliefs engendering a national theology or political religion are the antithesis of true Christianity. Narrow systems and theories concerning God, human beings, health, and a religious society, are restrictive.

Meet the initial stages of disease with as powerful mental opposition as a legislator would employ to defeat the passage of an inhuman law. Rise in the conscious strength of the spirit of Truth to overthrow the petition of human mind, alias mortal conditions lobbying against the supremacy of Spirit. Exclude the images of finite human mind and its beliefs in sickness and sin.

When overstepping some supposed mortal law, you say that there is danger. This fear is the danger and induces the physical effects. We cannot in reality suffer from breaking anything except a moral or spiritual law. The supposed laws of mortal knowledge are destroyed by the understanding that the law of Soul is immortal. The human mind cannot legislate the times, conditions, and types of disease with which humans die. God is the lawmaker, but God is not the author of ruthless rules. In infinite Life and Love there is no sickness, no twisted good, no fatality.

Luke 20:19-26

19 The teachers of the law and the chief priests looked for a way to arrest [Jesus] immediately, because they knew he had spoken this parable against them. But they were afraid of the people.

20 Keeping a close watch on him, they sent spies, who pretended to be sincere. They hoped to catch Jesus in something he said, so that they might hand him over to the power and authority of the governor. 21 So the spies questioned him: “Teacher, we know that you speak and teach what is right, and that you do not show partiality but teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. 22 Is it right for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”

23 He saw through their duplicity and said to them, 24 “Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?”

“Caesar’s,” they replied.

25 He said to them, “Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

26 They were unable to trap him in what he had said there in public. And astonished by his answer, they became silent.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Jesus’ impersonation of the spiritual idea had a brief human history, however, “his kingdom will never end.”[2] God’s idea, Christ, will ultimately rule all nations and peoples—imperatively, absolutely, finally—with divine Science.

Keep clearly in thought that we are the offspring of God, not of human beings; that we are spiritual, not defined by limitations; that Soul is Spirit, never trapped inside anything. Neither Quantum energy nor matter gives the body sensation and life. It breaks the dream of disease to understand that sickness is formed by the human mind, not by viruses, physiological malfunctions, time, or divine Mind.

Joyce Meyer wrote in her book The Battlefield of the Mind, “The mind is the leader or forerunner of all actions.”[3]  Statements such as this are as a “voice of one calling in the desert,”[4] preparing humanity for the real and eternal. Our thoughts are being led to look past the superficial. We can know the way of divine Science. Let us prepare for the supremacy of Spirit, the kingdom of heaven—the government and law of universal harmony, which cannot be lost or remain forever unseen.

Mind, not mechanical energy, is causation. A material body only expresses a temporal and human mind. Human beings possess this body and make it harmonious or discordant according to the images of thoughts imprinted upon it. You embrace your body in your thought. Be sure to outline on the body thoughts of health, not of sickness. Make the effort to banish all thoughts of disease and sin and of other beliefs connected to mortality. Our spirituality has an indestructible life. It is the mortal thinking which makes the body disordered and diseased in proportion as spiritual unawareness, fear, or human-will governs us.

Mind, supreme over all its formations and governing them all, is the central sun of its own system of ideas. God is the life and light of its own incalculable creation. We acknowledge divine Mind. The measurable human body or mind is not God’s child.

The world would collapse without Mind, without the intelligence which holds the “winds”[5] in its grasp. Neither philosophy nor skepticism can hinder the movement of Science which is ever revealing the supremacy of Mind. The intuitive sense of Mind-power reinforces the glory of Mind. Nearness, not distance, lends delight to this view.

Quantum mechanics; molecular reactions; electronic bionics; the patterns and relationships between masses and forces; and so on, are of no real importance when we remember that they all must give place to spiritual truths by the translation of the universe and us back into Spirit. As this transformation occurs, our true selfhood and the universe will be found harmonious and spiritual.

There is great danger in teaching Mind-healing indiscriminately, thus disregarding the morals of the student and caring only for the payments. Recall words that have been credited to Thomas Jefferson concerning slavery, “I tremble, when I remember that God is just.”[6] I tremble whenever I see a person, for the petty reward of money, teaching his or her slight knowledge of Mind-power—increasing the probability of communicating the teacher’s own bad morals. This sad state deals pitilessly with a community unprepared for self-defense.

Divine Science silences human will, disables fear with Truth and Love, and illustrates the unlabored motion of the divine energy in healing the sick. Self-indulgence, envy, emotionalism, arrogance, hatred, and revenge are dissolved by divine Mind which heals disease. The human will which makes and works a lie, hiding the divine Principle of harmony, is destructive to health and is the cause of disease rather than its cure.

Matthew 27:1-2, 11-14

Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people made their plans how to have Jesus executed. So they bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pilate the governor.

11 Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“You have said so,” Jesus replied.

12 When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. 13 Then Pilate asked him, “Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?” 14 But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Jesus was mocked by the religious authorities, the same authorities before whom he humbly and courageously walked. Contempt was thrown in Jesus’ face by the people to whom he had given clear-cut proof of divine power.

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.

Some Bible versions include an extra line at the end of the Lord’s Prayer. Bible scholars think that a later copyist may have added it. However, it doesn’t affect the meaning of the prayer itself and has been included here along with what I understand to be—in italics—the spiritual sense of the Lord’s Prayer:

Our Father in heaven,
Our Father-Mother God, all-harmonious,
Hallowed be Your name,
One sacred nature,
Your kingdom come,
Your government is come; You are ever-present,
Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

*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] Matt. 6:10

[2] Luke 1:33

[3] Meyer, Joyce. Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle in Your Mind.  New York: Warner, 1995.

[4] Isa. 40:3; Matt. 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4

[5] Rev. 7:1

[6] Jefferson, Thomas (1743–1826) Political philosopher. Founding Father. Principal author of Declaration of Independence. The third President of the United States.

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