November 20, 2019

bible study imageSubject: Choose as the Chosen

Golden text: Psalm 33:12*

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people whom he has chosen as his heritage!

I Peter 2:1-12

So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation— if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.

As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in Scripture:

“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone,
a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”

So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,

“The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone,” and

“A stone of stumbling,
and a rock of offense.”

They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

11 Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. 12 Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.

21st Century Science and Health**

It is most beneficial to become more familiar with good than with evil. We can guard against false beliefs as diligently as we bolt our doors against the approach of thieves and murderers. We should love our enemies and help them on the basis of the Golden Rule, “Do to others what you would have them do to you.”[1] Avoid throwing “your pearls to pigs,”[2] because if you do everyone loses out.

If human beings would properly guard against human mind, the brood of evils which infest it would be cleared out. We must begin with the human mind and empty out its negativity and self-delusion, or negativity and self-delusion will never cease. The conventional human systems disappoint the weary searcher who is looking for a divine theology, a theology adequate to teach above human theology.

Sin and disease are thought before they are made manifest, whether thought by you or someone else. You must control evil thoughts in the first instance or they will control you in the second. Jesus declared that to look with desire on forbidden objects was to break a moral precept. He laid great stress on watching the action of the human mind, unseen to the senses.

Evil thoughts and aims reach no further and do no more harm than one’s thinking permits. Lusts and malicious purposes can’t move around like wandering pollen from one human mind to another if virtue and truth build a strong defense. It is important to be aware of your mental environment so as not to be a naive receptor of evil thoughts. You would rather choose a doctor who has the flu to treat you than be treated mentally by a metaphysician who isn’t obeying the requirements of divine Science.

Character development should be strongly fortified with virtue. It is not so much academic education as ethical and spiritual learning which improves the character. The pure and uplifting thoughts from teachers and instructors, constantly imparted to pupils, reach higher than the heavens of astronomy. Corrupt and dubious minds, though gifted with scholarly attainment, will degrade the characters it should inform and elevate. Strive to see the whole picture when selecting teachers and speakers. When choosing a teacher, it is imperative to consider the instructor’s morality along with their credentials and skill level.

Physicians whom the sick employ in their helplessness should be models of integrity. They should be wise spiritual guides to health and hope. To the frightened patient on the brink of death, physicians can be prepared to share an understanding of the Truth which is Life and perpetuates being. When the soul is willing and the flesh is weak, the patient may be willing to plant their feet on the rock of the true idea of spiritual power.

Clergy, chaplains, and spiritual leaders who observe the world should advance the standard of Truth. They should inspire listeners to love grappling new right ideas and broaden their views. Love of spirituality, rather than love of popularity, should stimulate work and progress. Truth should emanate from the pulpit, but never be strangled there. A special privilege is commissioned in the ministry. How will it be used? Sacredly, in the interests of humanity, not of self or sect.

Luke 1:5-17

 In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah,[a] of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. And they were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and statutes of the Lord. But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and both were advanced in years.

Now while he was serving as priest before God when his division was on duty, according to the custom of the priesthood, he was chosen by lot to enter the temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense. 11 And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. 13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. 14 And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, 15 for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. 16 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, 17 and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”

21st Century Science and Health

Every law of physics or the body supposed to govern people, is rendered null and void by the law of Life, God. Unaware of our God-given rights, we allow unjust decisions and make excuses for imperfection. Our educational systems are biased, expounding homogeny and marketing a resignation to poor choices. Become aware metaphysically.

The erroneous senses represent birth and death as irresistible or untimely, like weeds growing rapidly or flowers withered by the sun or nipped by frost, but this is true only of a mortal, not of God’s children. The truth of being is perennial and errors of thought are unreal and obsolete.

When we feel the loss of human peace, the desire for spiritual joy gets stronger. This desire for heavenly good comes even before we discover what belongs to wisdom and Love. The loss of earthly hopes and pleasures brightens the spiritual path.

From an interview by Bill Moyers: “MOYERS: Is there a scientific basis for the idea that optimism makes a difference?

“ORNISH: It’s not so much optimism in the sense of telling jokes and making light of things. But I think there is a scientific basis to the idea that beliefs are powerful. If you believe that you have some control over your life, and that you have the ability to make choices instead of being the passive recipient of medical care, or the victim of bad luck or bad genes, then you are more likely to make changes that are going to do you good in terms both of your behavior and of the direct effects of your mind on your body.”[3]— Bill Moyers interviewing Dean Ornish, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor Medicine and President and Director of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute at the School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco.

It is right to say that the educated class of scientists and medical doctors are great people. They are more scientific than are false claimants to Christian Science. There is much that yet remains to be said and done before all humankind is saved, and before all the mental microbes of sin and disease thought-germs are exterminated. Human systems based on temporal premises lack the anointing of divine Science.

If you or I should appear to die, we should not be dead. Death is caused by the collective human thinking that we must die, or by mental assassins, but this does not in the least disprove divine Science. Rather it evidences the truth of its basic proposition that human thoughts rule the mis-called life in the body or in matter. However, the fact remains paramount that Life, Truth, and Love save from sin, disease, and death. “When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: ‘Death has been swallowed up in victory.’”[4]

Luke 10:38-42

Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” 41 But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, 42 but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”

21st Century Science and Health

The revelation of Truth in the understanding comes gradually and apparently through divine power. When a new spiritual idea is born to earth, the prophetic Scripture of Isaiah is again fulfilled: “For to us a child is born…and he will be called Wonderful Counselor.”[5]

“Jesus answered, ‘My teaching is not my own. It comes from him who sent me. If anyone chooses to do God’s will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own.’”[6]

The principles of Spirit are omnipotence, omnipresence, omniscience—Spirit possessing all power, filling all space, and constituting all Science. These facts contradict the belief that human mind can be actual and reveal existence as the radiant reality of God’s creation, in which everything Mind’s wisdom made is pronounced good.

Learning the allness of God is how I perceived, as never before, the awful unreality called evil. Consequently, with equal force, another glorious proposal was brought to light—our ability to experience goodness.

In following these leadings of scientific revelation, the Bible was my only textbook. The Scriptures were illumined; reason and revelation were reconciled, and afterward the truth of divine Science was demonstrated. No human pen or tongue taught me the Science contained in this book, Science and Health. Tongue or pen can’t overthrow Science. This book may be distorted by shallow criticism or by negligent or malicious students, and its ideas may be temporarily abused and misrepresented; but the Science and truth therein will forever remain to be discerned and demonstrated.

Jesus illustrated the power of divine Science to heal human minds and bodies. But this power was lost sight of and must again be spiritually discerned, taught, and demonstrated as commanded by Truth, with “accompanying signs.”[7] Its Science must be understood by as many as believe on Christ and spiritually comprehend Truth.

Man and woman is not the creator, and Mind divine is not the created. God, or good, never made us capable of insanely chasing after illusions. Contorted perceptions instigate wrongdoing and because they are contorted, they have no real basis. God is not the cause of illusions. The parent of misperceptions is a lie, evil.

The Bible declares: “All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.”[8] This is the eternal truth of Christian Science. If human transgressions, vulnerabilities, and losses were understood as nonbeing, they would disappear to the reality of good which naturally banishes evil, just as acts of kindness make self-pity go away. One must hide the other. How important, then, to choose good as the reality! We are secured by God, Spirit, and by nothing else.

*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] Matt. 7:12

[2] Matt. 7:6

[3] Healing and the Mind: Bill Moyers. Ed. Betty Sue Flowers and David Grubin. Copyright © 1993 by Public Affairs Television, Inc., and David Grubin (New York: First Main Street Books Edition by arrangement with Doubleday, 1995)

[4] I Cor. 15:54

[5] Isa. 9:6

[6] John 7:16–17

[7] Mark 16:20 (ESV)

[8] John 1:3 (NKJV)

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