September 4, 2019

bible study imageSubject: Body

Golden text: Matthew 5:29*

 If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell.

Genesis 32:9-12, 22-32

And Jacob said, “O God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, O Lord who said to me, ‘Return to your country and to your kindred, that I may do you good,’ 10 I am not worthy of the least of all the deeds of steadfast love and all the faithfulness that you have shown to your servant, for with only my staff I crossed this Jordan, and now I have become two camps. 11 Please deliver me from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau, for I fear him, that he may come and attack me, the mothers with the children. 12 But you said, ‘I will surely do you good, and make your offspring as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.’”

22 The same night he arose and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. 23 He took them and sent them across the stream, and everything else that he had. 24 And Jacob was left alone. And a man wrestled with him until the breaking of the day. 25 When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he touched his hip socket, and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him. 26 Then he said, “Let me go, for the day has broken.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” 27 And he said to him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Jacob.” 28 Then he said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.” 29 Then Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.” But he said, “Why is it that you ask my name?” And there he blessed him. 30 So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, “For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered.” 31 The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his hip. 32 Therefore to this day the people of Israel do not eat the sinew of the thigh that is on the hip socket, because he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip on the sinew of the thigh.

21st Century Science and Health**

Humanity should be free to help themselves and society. “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”[1] Love and Truth liberate, whereas evil and error lead into captivity.

If our real nature is the bodily structure, a portion of our being would be gone if a limb was amputated; or a surgeon could remove our manhood or womanhood; or bacteria would annihilate our existence. What happens to the identity of an organ recipient? How can DNA be the foundation of our identity when it mutates and replicates? After a person is gone their DNA is still here on earth, so where is the individual? On another note, people have repeatedly proven that the loss of a limb cannot take away their intelligence and stature. Many people, classified as disabled, have presented more nobility, more manliness and womanliness, than the polished athlete or glamour model—teaching society that true identity and nature come from spirituality, divine consciousness.

Jacob was alone, wrestling with error—struggling with flesh and its pleasures and pains—when an angel, a message from Truth and Love appeared. The angel struck the sinew or strength of Jacob’s flesh talk, until he perceived its unreality. Truth, being thereby understood, gave Jacob spiritual strength in this Peniel of divine Science. The angel said: “Let me go, for it is daybreak;”[2] that is, the light of Truth and Love dawns on you, however, Jacob didn’t loosen his hold on this glorious light until his nature was transformed. The angel then said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome.”[3] Jacob asked his deliverer, “Please tell me your name.”[4]  However, a specific name was withheld because the messenger was not a corporeal being, but a nameless, bodiless communication of divine Love—giving a more complete sense of being that naturally rebuked the incomplete materialist sense. The Psalmist also experienced this same angel-inspired confidence of Love and wrote that it “restores my Soul.”[5]

Jacob’s wrestling resulted in a new understanding of Spirit and spiritual power that conquered his worried human mindset. This changed the man. He was no longer called Jacob, but Israel—a prince of God, or a soldier of God, who had fought a good fight. He was to become the father of those who through earnest effort repeated his demonstration of the power of Spirit over the human senses. The people who followed the patriarch’s example were to be called the children of Israel, until the Messiah should rename them. Problem is, when people stray and forget that Life is God, they are brought back through great tribulation. Suffering compels us to deny false life perceptions, and to understand the divine power which heals the sick and sinning.

The Science of being shows it to be impossible for infinite Spirit or Soul to be in a finite body or for person to have intelligence separate from our Maker. It is self-evident that Life is not structural, because biological life always ends in death. Life is never for a moment extinct. Life isn’t absorbed or limited by its own formations.

If Soul-healing is abused by those who boast in their own pious conceit, their treatment becomes an irksome trouble maker. Instead of scientifically affecting a cure, these posers in Science start petty crossfires over those who are disabled and sick. Humanity should not be knocked around with superficial and heartless remarks like: It’s all in your head; matter is not real; be more spiritual; you really are perfect.

II Corinthians 12:1-10

I must go on boasting. Though there is nothing to be gained by it, I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord. I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows. And I know that this man was caught up into paradise—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows— and he heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter. On behalf of this man I will boast, but on my own behalf I will not boast, except of my weaknesses— though if I should wish to boast, I would not be a fool, for I would be speaking the truth; but I refrain from it, so that no one may think more of me than he sees in me or hears from me. So to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

21st Century Science and Health

If the body’s physical senses were the medium through which to understand God, then paralysis, disabilities, blindness, and deafness would place people in terrible situations, “Without hope and without God in the world.”[6] These calamities however often drive human beings to seek and find a more secure and meaningful sense of happiness and existence in Spirit.

It is enlightened sense that understands God. Even though Truth is unjustly distorted, it will not forever be hidden from the enlightened sense of the people. The sick, the disabled, and the blind look to divine Science and receive blessings.

The disabled, the deaf, the dumb, the depressed, the visually impaired, the sick, the sensualist, the sinner, can be saved from the terrors of their own beliefs. Don’t waste your years away by serving an unreal master telling you that the body governs you rather than Mind. You can break the bondage, however you must then press on with faith in God through an awful conflict, the Red Sea and the wilderness, as you trust Truth, the strong deliverer, to guide your thought into the land of divine Science. In this divine land or state of consciousness, limitations are overcome and your rights are known and acknowledged.

Oppressive civil laws are disputed and human beings are taught their right to freedom. From this same standpoint, backward mental laws can be disputed. All self-sabotaging mortal laws must be denied and succeeded. The law of the divine Mind must end human repression or human beings will continue to be unaware of their inalienable rights. People are prone to hopeless obsessions and anguish because public teachers permit an unawareness of divine power.

Discerning the rights of people, we can’t fail to foresee the doom of oppression. Trepidation and misery are not legitimate states of people. God made us free. Paul said, “I was born a citizen.”[7]

Why not maintain a mental attitude of wanting to learn and grow?  Why not be conscious of unchanging divine Love rather than human love? Why not notice the manifestations of Spirit rather than the passing of years?

As our consciousness of the eternal replaces the consciousness of time, we literally could grow no older. This idea is symbolized from an empirical point of view since we know cell divisions take place in each living being continuously, practically creating new bodies. Old cells in our bodies die and yield to newly formed cells, signaling an ongoing identity.

Matthew 6:31-34

[Jesus said]  Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

21st Century Science and Health

Jesus said, “Do not worry about your life.”[8]  If we follow the direction of Jesus, we can depend less and less on bodily conditions, structure, or economy. We can be masters of the body, dictate its features, and form and control it with Truth.

I do not insist that anyone can exist in the flesh without food and clothes; but I do believe that individuals are image, idea, and live with Mind, not in human mind. Divine Science must be accepted at this period by induction. We admit the whole, because a part is proved and that part illustrates and proves the entire Principle. Divine Science can be taught only by those who are morally advanced and spiritually invested, for it is not artificial, nor is it discerned from the standpoint of human convictions. Only as spiritual perception is illumined can the light of understanding shine on this Science that reverses the evidence before the physical perceptions and furnishes the eternal interpretation of God and spiritual being.

Jesus strips all disguise from that which goes against life, truth, and love when his teachings are fully understood. By parable and argument, he explains the impossibility of good producing evil.

We should consecrate existence, not “to an unknown God” whom we “worship as something unknown,”[9] but to the eternal builder, the everlasting Father, to the life which mortal sense or human logic cannot disable or destroy. We must realize the ability of mental might to offset human misconceptions and to replace them with the life which is spiritual, not limited.

To grasp the reality and order of being in its Science, you must begin by admitting Love as the divine Principle of reality. Spirit, Life, Truth, Love, combine as one—and are the Scriptural names for God. All substance, intelligence, wisdom, being, immortality, cause, and effect belong to God. These are the attributes of the infinite divine Principle, Love. No wisdom is wise but Mind’s wisdom; no truth is true, no love is lovely, no life is Life but the divine; no good is, but the good God gives.

*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] II Cor. 3:17

[2] Gen. 32:26

[3] Gen. 32:28

[4] Gen. 32:29

[5] Ps. 23:3

[6] Eph. 2:12

[7] Acts 22:28

[8] Matt. 6:25; Luke 12:22

[9] Acts 17:23

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