May 15, 2019

bible study imageSubject: Fruitful ground

Golden text: Psalms 85:11-13

Faithfulness springs up from the ground, and righteousness looks down from the sky.
Yes, the Lord will give what is good, and our land will yield its increase. Righteousness will go before him and make his footsteps a way.

Joel 1:1-2, 4, 10, 19-20

The word of the Lord that came to Joel, the son of Pethuel: Hear this, you elders; give ear, all inhabitants of the land! Has such a thing happened in your days, or in the days of your fathers?

4What the cutting locust left,
the swarming locust has eaten.
What the swarming locust left,
the hopping locust has eaten,
and what the hopping locust left,
the destroying locust has eaten.

10 The fields are destroyed,
the ground mourns,
because the grain is destroyed,
the wine dries up,
the oil languishes.

19 To you, O Lord, I call.
For fire has devoured
the pastures of the wilderness,
and flame has burned
all the trees of the field.
20 Even the beasts of the field pant for you
because the water brooks are dried up,
and fire has devoured
the pastures of the wilderness.

21st Century Science and Health

The breaking up of material beliefs may seem to be famine and pestilence, deficit and depression, sin, sickness, and death, assuming new phases until their nothingness appears. These disturbances will continue until the end of error when all disorder will be swallowed up in spiritual Truth.

The tradition of telling people that if they take one doctrine and have total faith in it, they will be filled with the Holy Spirit, receives a strong rebuttal in the Scripture, “Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.”[1] Faith, at the level of belief, is like a motor piston shifting between nothing and something, having no fixity. Faith, advanced to understanding, gains evidence of Spirit. Spiritual evidence rebukes groundless beliefs of every kind and establishes the claims of God.

When the medical field finds no biological or physical cause for symptoms of disease, various forms of psychotherapy have been known to improve the unhealthy condition. Psychosomatic illnesses or psychophysiological disorders are admitted to be problems caused by mental processes. They are problems in the mind, and once the mind is corrected, the symptoms vanish as illusions vanish. Mental conditions, such as severe stress, anger, anxiety, resentment, depression, and guilt have produced rashes, allergies, loss of hair, eating disorders, and pain, among other problems. So, why not approve of a cure which in effect makes any disease appear to be what it really is—an illusion?

Here is the difficulty: it is not generally understood how one disease can be just as much a delusion as another.

In Hebrew, Greek, Latin, and English, the word faith and its corresponding words have these two definitions: trustfulness and trustworthiness. One kind of faith trusts one’s well-being to others. Another kind of faith understands divine Love and how to “work all the more strenuously at your salvation with reverence and trembling.”[2] “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”[3] This expresses the helplessness of blind faith; whereas the directive, “Believe…and you will be saved,”[4] demands self-reliant trustworthiness, which includes spiritual understanding and confides all to God.

Joel 2:12-13

“Yet even now,” declares the Lord,
“return to me with all your heart,
with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;
13     and rend your hearts and not your garments.”
Return to the Lord your God,
for he is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love;
and he relents over disaster.

21st Century Science and Health

Pantheism starts from a limited sense of God. It seeks to find cause in effect. Principle is not in its idea, and life and intelligence are not in mortal knowledge.

Finite substance must be unknown to the infinite substance of Mind. Symbols, symptoms, and elements of disorder and decay are not products of the infinite, orderly, and eternal All.  From Love and from Spirit’s home of light and harmony, only reflections of good can come. All things beautiful and harmless are substantial ideas of Mind. Mind creates and multiplies them and the product must be mental.

The systems of human philosophies, doctrines, and medicines are more or less infected with the thinking that humanity has a life-code of its own, but this thinking contradicts spirituality, revelation, and progressive reasoning. Logical and scientific conclusions are reached only through the knowledge that there are not two bases of being, but one alone—Mind.

Science corrects the grave mistakes that suppose separable entities are part of the reality, or that suppose personal mortal minds commune with the divine Mind. The sensualist can’t be made the mouthpiece of the spiritual, nor can the finite become the channel for the infinite. There is no communication between that which is subject to death and that which is not.

It’s impossible to return to physical or mental human conditions after leaving them. An acorn, after having dropped to the ground and sprouted, will never return to its pervious condition. The germinated seed has a new form and a different state of existence. When here or hereafter the belief of temporality is extinct, the error which has held the belief dissolves with the belief and never returns to the old condition.

As we stop thinking that love and intelligence are in human minds or circumstances, spiritual facts of being appear. The idea or intelligence of spiritual facts is in God. Spirit is reached through the understanding and demonstration of eternal Life and Truth and Love.

To cure a patient, the practitioner must first dismiss their own moral evils. Purification allows the practitioner to attain the spiritual freedom and ability to drive physical evils out of the patient. Healing will not radiate from someone who is so spiritually unproductive that they are unable to give drink to the thirsty or reach the patient’s thought. Mental poverty alienates faith and understanding.

Matthew 15:32-38

Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion on the crowd because they have been with me now three days and have nothing to eat. And I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way.” 33 And the disciples said to him, “Where are we to get enough bread in such a desolate place to feed so great a crowd?” 34 And Jesus said to them, “How many loaves do you have?” They said, “Seven, and a few small fish.” 35 And directing the crowd to sit down on the ground, 36 he took the seven loaves and the fish, and having given thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 37 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up seven baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 38 Those who ate were four thousand men, besides women and children.

21st Century Science and Health

A prayer grounded in Truth advocates spiritual understanding. Jesus’ humble prayers were deep and conscientious affirmations of Spirit—of man and woman’s likeness to God, and unity with Truth and Love.

God’s work is done. Prayer doesn’t motivate God to do what has already been done. The Infinite can do nothing less than give all goodness since God is absolute good, wisdom, and Love—the all-knowing Mind. God’s manifestation doesn’t appear simply on the ground of lip-service; however, modest fervent affirmations of God’s presence can kick-start prayer.

Physical laws would counteract the supremacy of Spirit and contradict the wisdom of the creator. There is no counteraction in Spirit. God never ordained a mortal law to annul the spiritual law. Jesus walked on the waves, fed the multitude, healed the sick, and raised the dead in direct opposition to mortal, physical laws. His acts were the demonstration of Science, overcoming the false claims of material law.

I Timothy 6:1-3

Let all who are under a yoke as bondservants regard their own masters as worthy of all honor, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled. Those who have believing masters must not be disrespectful on the ground that they are brothers; rather they must serve all the better since those who benefit by their good service are believers and beloved.

21st Century Science and Health

Physical sense creates its own forms of thought and gives the forms imaginative titles before worshiping and fearing them. Often, the forms are attributed with abilities beyond themselves. Basically, the beliefs of the human mind commit self-robbery and self-enslavement, and then charge the result to another illusive personification named Satan.

Society, advertisements, pharmaceutical companies, and the schools have made faith in drugs the fashion, rather than faith in God.

Error excludes itself from harmony. Error cultivates its own barren soil and buries itself in the ground, since ground and dust stand for nothingness.

By trusting misguided faith to destroy its own disorders, health and harmony have been sacrificed. Temporal systems are barren of the vitality of spiritual power by which physical sense is made the servant of Science, and religion becomes Christ-like.

Admitting to our self that person is God’s own likeness sets us free to master the infinite idea.

As the rules of scientific healing are discovered, practiced, and demonstrated you will become secure on the groundwork of divine Science. Your healing experiences will lift you high above fossilized human theories and enable you to grasp the spiritual facts of being, even if at first the facts don’t seem accessible or crystal clear.

The immortal creative thought is from Mind, not from the ground of mortal thinking. Mind makes all, so there is nothing left to be made by another power.

[1] James 2:17

[2] Phil. 2:12 (Moffatt)

[3] Mark 9:24

[4] Acts 16:31

*Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

** Text from 21st Century Science and Health, 6th edition, copyrighted by Cheryl Petersen.

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