March 3, 2021

Subject: Soul

Golden text: Titus 2:11-14*

 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, 12 training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, 13 waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

Genesis 34:1-27

Now Dinah the daughter of Leah, whom she had borne to Jacob, went out to see the women of the land. And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her, he seized her and lay with her and humiliated her. And his soul was drawn to Dinah the daughter of Jacob. He loved the young woman and spoke tenderly to her. So Shechem spoke to his father Hamor, saying, “Get me this girl for my wife.”

Now Jacob heard that he had defiled his daughter Dinah. But his sons were with his livestock in the field, so Jacob held his peace until they came. And Hamor the father of Shechem went out to Jacob to speak with him. The sons of Jacob had come in from the field as soon as they heard of it, and the men were indignant and very angry, because he had done an outrageous thing in Israel by lying with Jacob’s daughter, for such a thing must not be done.

But Hamor spoke with them, saying, “The soul of my son Shechem longs for your[a] daughter. Please give her to him to be his wife. Make marriages with us. Give your daughters to us, and take our daughters for yourselves. 10 You shall dwell with us, and the land shall be open to you. Dwell and trade in it, and get property in it.” 11 Shechem also said to her father and to her brothers, “Let me find favor in your eyes, and whatever you say to me I will give. 12 Ask me for as great a bride-price and gift as you will, and I will give whatever you say to me. Only give me the young woman to be my wife.”

13 The sons of Jacob answered Shechem and his father Hamor deceitfully, because he had defiled their sister Dinah. 14 They said to them, “We cannot do this thing, to give our sister to one who is uncircumcised, for that would be a disgrace to us. 15 Only on this condition will we agree with you—that you will become as we are by every male among you being circumcised. 16 Then we will give our daughters to you, and we will take your daughters to ourselves, and we will dwell with you and become one people. 17 But if you will not listen to us and be circumcised, then we will take our daughter, and we will be gone.”

18 Their words pleased Hamor and Hamor’s son Shechem. 19 And the young man did not delay to do the thing, because he delighted in Jacob’s daughter. Now he was the most honored of all his father’s house. 20 So Hamor and his son Shechem came to the gate of their city and spoke to the men of their city, saying, 21 “These men are at peace with us; let them dwell in the land and trade in it, for behold, the land is large enough for them. Let us take their daughters as wives, and let us give them our daughters. 22 Only on this condition will the men agree to dwell with us to become one people—when every male among us is circumcised as they are circumcised. 23 Will not their livestock, their property and all their beasts be ours? Only let us agree with them, and they will dwell with us.” 24 And all who went out of the gate of his city listened to Hamor and his son Shechem, and every male was circumcised, all who went out of the gate of his city.

25 On the third day, when they were sore, two of the sons of Jacob, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brothers, took their swords and came against the city while it felt secure and killed all the males. 26 They killed Hamor and his son Shechem with the sword and took Dinah out of Shechem’s house and went away. 27 The sons of Jacob came upon the slain and plundered the city, because they had defiled their sister.

21st Century Science and Health**

The world of life in matter is not cognizant of life in Soul.

The educated belief that Soul is in the body causes human beings to regard death as a friend.

Research involving the human mind and its functions became active rather primitively in the 18th century with Franz Anton Mesmer.[1] He recognized that human beings can be manipulated, but didn’t understand the process. Mesmer theorized this manipulation occurred by means of a physical magnetic fluid. He even concluded that this magnetic fluid could be transmitted from one breathing creature to another as a therapeutic influential agent and termed his theory, animal magnetism. Today, it is realized that Mesmer actually hit upon the power of suggestion or collective mentality.

Observations of the workings of hypnosis, the collective unconscious, or crowd thinking, offer convincing evidence that they are not remedial agents. I am convinced that the effects of outside mortal mental influences on those who practice it, and on the people who do not resist it, lead to moral and physical death.

There is only one real attraction, that of Spirit. The pointing of the needle to the North Pole symbolizes this all-embracing power or attraction of God, divine Mind.

It is physical emotionalism, and not Soul, that triggers a nervous passion for God. Allow spiritual sense to guide your higher experiences, because fanaticism and self-satisfied devotion do not promote spirituality.

Mark 7: 14-23

 And [Jesus] called the people to him again and said to them, “Hear me, all of you, and understand: 15 There is nothing outside a person that by going into him can defile him, but the things that come out of a person are what defile him.” 17 And when he had entered the house and left the people, his disciples asked him about the parable. 18 And he said to them, “Then are you also without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile him, 19 since it enters not his heart but his stomach, and is expelled?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.) 20 And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. 21 For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, 22 coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. 23 All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”

21st Century Science and Health

Jesus showed the difference between the offspring of Soul and of fleshly sense, of Truth and of error.

Christ Jesus was an excellent example. Like him, the healer should speak to disease as having authority over it, leaving Soul to prevail over the false evidence of the physical senses and to assert Spirit’s claims over mortality and disease.

Health is not a condition of matter, but of Mind.

Detach feelings from the body, or matter, which is only a type of human belief. Learn the meaning of God or good, and the nature of the immutable and immortal. Don’t worry when breaking away from mutating time and feelings, because you will not lose your sense of reality or your sense of identity. As you contemplate spiritual life, consciousness is being purified and groomed to experience the celestial.

We can forget the body while remembering good and the human race.

As we triumph over erroneous views and allow Soul to hold the control, we shall detest and correct wrongdoing under all its disguises. Only in this way can we bless our enemies, though they won’t take it as a blessing.

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.

The physician who lacks empathy for humanity is deficient in goodwill. The public then has the apostolic warrant for repeating: “Those who say, ‘I love God,’ and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen.”[2] Not having spiritual goodwill, the physician lacks faith in the divine Mind and can’t recognize infinite Love which alone confers the healing power. Such a so-called Scientist will “strain out a gnat”[3]  while they swallow the camels of bigoted pompous learning.

The physician must also pay attention so as not to be overwhelmed by either the hatefulness of sin or by the unveiling of wrong thinking (sin) in her or his own attitude. Sick people are sometimes terrified by their beliefs and sinners should be frightened by their own sinful thinking; however, the Scientist of universal Truth and Love must be calm in the presence of both sin and disease, knowing that Life is God, and God is All.

The divine Mind maintains all identities as distinct and eternal, from a blade of grass to a star. The questions are: What are the identities of God? What is Soul? Does life or soul exist trapped inside a thing or person?

Nothing is real and eternal—nothing is Spirit—except God and God’s idea. Evil has no reality. Evil is not a person, place, or thing, but is in the end a misinterpretation of reality, an illusion of human mortal perceptions.

The identity or idea of reality continues forever. Soul is synonymous with Spirit and is never inside Spirit’s formations. God, the creative, governing, infinite Principle, is reflected by creation. Forms reflect Spirit.

When we watch the sunrise, we admit a heliocentric position. We admit that the earth is spinning and circling the sun. So also, the Science of Mind reverses the delusive evidence that soul is in the body. We can admit that Soul is not in the body and that the body is accountable to Mind. People are the humble expressions of Mind, though it seems otherwise to our physical senses. We will never understand spiritual facts if we don’t metaphysically reverse the outward appearance. Individuals are not a dichotomy of non-intelligence and intelligence. We coexist with and reflect God, Soul, substance, unchangeable and intelligent.

Science reverses the false testimony of the physical senses and mortals arrive at the fundamental facts of being. The question inevitably arises: is a person sick if the physical senses indicate good health? No! Matter can make no conditions for man and woman. In divine Science, we are well even if the physical senses say we are sick, however, this doesn’t discount our responsibility to keep our germs to our self and heal. In Science, health is normal and disease is abnormal.

We must beware of making clean merely the “outside of the cup and dish.”[4]

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.

Life is the law of Soul, even the law of the spirit of Truth, and Soul is never without its representative. Our individual spirituality can no more die nor disappear in unconsciousness than can Soul, for both are immortal.

*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, 5th edition, copyrighted by Cheryl Petersen.


[1] Mesmer, Franz Anton (1734–1815) German physician

[2] I John 4:20 (NRSV)

[3] Matt. 23:24

[4] Matt. 23:25; Luke 11:39

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