August 7, 2019

bible study imageSubject: Purification

Golden text: Philippians 3:12*

Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.

Ezekiel 23:1-6, 10-12, 22, 49

The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, there were two women, the daughters of one mother. They played the whore in Egypt; they played the whore in their youth; there their breasts were pressed and their virgin bosoms handled. Oholah was the name of the elder and Oholibah the name of her sister. They became mine, and they bore sons and daughters. As for their names, Oholah is Samaria, and Oholibah is Jerusalem.

“Oholah played the whore while she was mine, and she lusted after her lovers the Assyrians, warriors clothed in purple, governors and commanders, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding on horses.

10 These uncovered her nakedness; they seized her sons and her daughters; and as for her, they killed her with the sword; and she became a byword among women, when judgment had been executed on her. 11 “Her sister Oholibah saw this, and she became more corrupt than her sister in her lust and in her whoring, which was worse than that of her sister. 12 She lusted after the Assyrians, governors and commanders, warriors clothed in full armor, horsemen riding on horses, all of them desirable young men.

22 Therefore, O Oholibah, thus says the Lord God: “Behold, I will stir up against you your lovers from whom you turned in disgust, and I will bring them against you from every side:

49 And they shall return your lewdness upon you, and you shall bear the penalty for your sinful idolatry, and you shall know that I am the Lord God.”

21st Century Science and Health**

The description of people as purely molecular, or as a mixture of molecules and spirituality—but in either case dependent upon their physical organization—is a can of worms. Opening this can, we find all ills, especially depression. Materiality takes divine power into its own hands and claims to be a creator, but it is only a fabricated fiction. In this fabrication, idolatry and lust are so encouraged by society that humankind has caught their moral contagion.

The terms souls, spirits, or human beings are as unsustainable as the term gods. Soul or Spirit signifies infinite Being and nothing else. There are not finite souls, spirits, or beings. Soul or Spirit means only one Mind and cannot be rendered in the plural. Mythology and human philosophies have perpetuated the fallacy that intelligence, soul, and life can be divided and confined, and thereby materialized. Idolatry and ritualism are the outcome of all human-made beliefs.

Idolatry caused some people to go after “foreign gods.”[1] They called the Supreme Being by the national name of Yahweh, or Jehovah. In that name of Yahweh, the true idea of God seems almost lost. God becomes “a warrior,”[2] a tribal god to be worshipped, rather than Love, the divine Principle to be lived and honored.

To love our neighbor’s spiritual nature as we love our own innate identity is a divine idea; but this idea can never be seen, felt, or understood through the physical senses. Physical senses mix with excitable emotions such as human tied adorations, religious convictions, and disgust. These effects, however, do not proceed from spirituality or spiritual phenomena. Both, idolization and irreverence are spin-offs of mortal belief.

The design of Love is to reform the sinner. So long as a person’s thought continues in a confused sinful state, they will perceive suffering. Punishment can’t be avoided, since justice is the instrument of mercy. If suffering is insufficient to remove the sin, then heaven is hell to the sinner.  People who do not experience purity and love will not find happiness and peace through death. With divine Science, you must spare no effort to purify thought before and after death.

Luke 11:37-54

While Jesus was speaking, a Pharisee asked him to dine with him, so he went in and reclined at table. 38 The Pharisee was astonished to see that he did not first wash before dinner. 39 And the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness. 40 You fools! Did not he who made the outside make the inside also? 41 But give as alms those things that are within, and behold, everything is clean for you. 42 “But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and every herb, and neglect justice and the love of God. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. 43 Woe to you Pharisees! For you love the best seat in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces. 44 Woe to you! For you are like unmarked graves, and people walk over them without knowing it.” 45 One of the lawyers answered him, “Teacher, in saying these things you insult us also.” 46 And he said, “Woe to you lawyers also! For you load people with burdens hard to bear, and you yourselves do not touch the burdens with one of your fingers. 47 Woe to you! For you build the tombs of the prophets whom your fathers killed. 48 So you are witnesses and you consent to the deeds of your fathers, for they killed them, and you build their tombs. 49 Therefore also the Wisdom of God said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and persecute,’ 50 so that the blood of all the prophets, shed from the foundation of the world, may be charged against this generation, 51 from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who perished between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, it will be required of this generation. 52 Woe to you lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge. You did not enter yourselves, and you hindered those who were entering.” 53 As he went away from there, the scribes and the Pharisees began to press him hard and to provoke him to speak about many things, 54 lying in wait for him, to catch him in something he might say.

21st Century Science and Health

Outside of divine Science all is unstable and hypothetical, the opposite of Truth, yet this false view of God and us defiantly demands a blessing.

We must not continue to be impressed by superstitious thinking, but we must be wise and let go of all misdirected reverences.

Wordy prayers and long prayer sessions may give us a quiet sense of self-justification that feeds hypocrisy. We don’t need to despair of an honest heart, but there is little hope for the phony prayers of people who randomly face their faults only to try to hide those character flaws. Deceit holds secret fellowship with sin but can’t ultimately be hidden as Jesus noted, they are, “like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean.”[3]

Generally, people who haven’t been immersed in physical health laws are more receptive to spiritual power and faith in one God, compared to people who are devoted to those laws and who think they need to teach them to others. Would it be better to consider physical laws “more honored in the breach than the observance”?[4] A patient thoroughly booked in medical theories is more difficult to heal through Mind than one who is not. This verifies Jesus’ saying: “Anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”[5]

I rescued a man from spiritual oblivion who previously felt controlled by mortal senses. He wrote to me: “I should have died, but for the glorious Principle you teach—supporting the power of Mind over the body and showing me the nothingness of the so-called pleasures and pains of sense. The essays I had read and the medicines I had taken only abandoned me to more hopeless suffering and despair. Adherence to hygiene was useless. Mortal mind needed to be set right. The ailment was not bodily, but mental, and I was cured when I learned my way in Christian Science.”

We need a clean body and a clean mind—a body rendered pure by Mind as well as washed by water. One says: “I take good care of my body.” Physical care requires the pure and spiritualizing influence of the divine Mind on the body. The body is best taken care of when it is most out of thought. The Apostle Paul said he “would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord.”[6]

Take a hint from a combination of archival and experimental studies that shows links between air pollution and unethical behavior and anxiety. Experimental findings published in Psychological Science[7] reveals that increased exposure to air pollution, either physical or mental, accompanies increased crime and cheating. Hint: Align with divine Mind and strive to purify the environment, human mind and body.

Jesus taught as he was inspired by the Maker and would recognize no life, intelligence, or substance outside God.

As the true knowledge of God becomes evident, the dated concept of God as a mighty hero, lord, or king, will continue to vanish. But creeds and rituals still need to wash their hands of religious lore and stop opposing truth, whether by sword and spear as in times past, or in today’s more modern ways when idolatry, anger, envy, arrogance, egotism whispers, “Crucify! Crucify!”[8]

The word martyr, traced back to the Greek means witness or someone testifying for Truth, but the new faith in Christ, Truth, so roused the hatred of their opponents that followers were persecuted or burned to death and the word martyr narrowed in definition to mean someone who suffers for their convictions, and so it came about that human rights were canonized by the gallows and cross.

Human-made doctrines are failing, growing weaker in times of trouble. Void of Truth-power, how can human-made theologies illustrate the doctrines of Christ or the miracles of grace? Denial of the possibility of spiritual healing robs Christianity of the very element which gave it divine force and its astonishing and unequalled success in its first century.

Paradoxically, many of us are willing to tell people about the power of good resident in divine Mind, but we hesitate to point out the evil in human thought.

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. Who is telling humankind of the enemy in ambush? Does the informant see a foe? Listen and be wise. You can escape from error. You can also detect the unfaithful people who saw the danger and gave no warning.

At all times and under all circumstances, overcome evil with good. Know yourself, and God will supply the wisdom and the occasion for a victory over evil. Love is a protective covering. Wear it! Wrapped in love, human hatred can’t reach you. The confirmation of a higher humanity will unite all interests in the one divinity.

*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.

[1] Deut. 32:16

[2] Ex. 15:3

[3] Matt. 23:27

[4] Shakespeare, William (1564–1616) Hamlet, Act 1, iv.

[5] Mark 10:15; Luke 18:17

[6] II Cor. 5:8

[7] Jackson G. Lu, Julia J. Lee, Francesca Gino, Adam D. Galinsky. Polluted Morality: Air Pollution Predicts Criminal Activity and Unethical Behavior. Psychological Science, 2018; http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0956797617735807 (Accessed 4/16/2018) Updated paragraph.

[8] Mark 15:13–14; Luke 23:20; John 19:6

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