December 29, 2021

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Subject: Grace

Golden text: James 1:4*

Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Matthew 2:8-40

 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

21 On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived.

22 When the time came for the purification rites required by the Law of Moses, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord”), 24 and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.”

25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

29 “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
    you may now dismiss your servant in peace.
30 For my eyes have seen your salvation,
31     which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
    and the glory of your people Israel.”

33 The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”

36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. 38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

39 When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. 40 And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.

21st Century Science and Health**

To attend properly the birth of the new child, or divine idea, be sure to detach mortal thoughts from the human conceptions so that the birth will be natural and safe. As the child gathers new energy, the divine idea cannot injure its useful surroundings in its spiritual birth. There is not a single element of error in a spiritual idea, and this truth properly removes anything that is offensive. The new idea, conceived and born of Truth and Love, is clothed in white garments and includes a humble beginning, a sturdy growth, and a renewing maturity. When this new birth takes place, the infant is born of the Spirit, born of God, and can cause the mother no more suffering. By this we know that Truth is here and has fulfilled its perfect work.

As a physical, theoretical life-basis is found to be a misinterpretation of existence, the scientific and divine Principle of our spirituality dawns upon human thought. Consciousness is guided to “where the child was”[1]—even to the birth of a new-old idea, to the spiritual sense of being and of what Life includes. Thus, the whole earth will be transformed by Truth as enlightened thought displaces the darkness of error.

The human thought must free itself from self-imposed materiality and bondage. Don’t take the effort to ask the genome, heart, or lungs: What are our prospects for life? Ask Mind about life. Mind is not helpless. Intelligence is not mute before non-intelligence.

Not by its own determination does a star proceed to shine, or a leaf unfold its fair outlines, or a flower open.

The Science of being reveals individual spirituality as based on Soul. Physical sense defines humanity as based on matter and from this premise infers the mortality of the body.

Self-delusion may imagine that opposites attract; but in Christ’s Science, Truth never mingles with error. Mind has no affinity with material limitation and therefore Truth can cast out the ills of the flesh. Mind, God, sends forth the aroma of Spirit, the atmosphere of intelligence. Believing that gray matter and white matter, plus the chemicals inside the skull is mind, is a mockery of intelligence—a mimicry of Mind.

We are scientists of Spirit only as we quit our reliance upon that which is false and grasp the truth. We are not metaphysical Scientists until we leave human opinions for spiritual Truth. Human attitudes come from the hearing of the ear, from physicality, instead of from Principle. Limited perceptions come from the mortal, instead of from the immortal. Spirit is not separate from God. Spirit is God.

Erring power is a material blind belief. Miscalled forces are the offspring of false intents and not of wisdom, they are of the human mind and not of the spiritual. Human power is war, the devouring flame, the exploding meteor. It is reckless lightning and hurricane. Human power is all that is selfish, wicked, dishonest, and impure.

Moral and spiritual power belongs to Spirit, who gathers the “wind in the hollow of the hands.”[2] This metaphysical teaching agrees with Science and harmony. In Science, you can have no power opposed to God and the physical senses must give up their false testimony. Your influence for good depends on the weight you throw into the right scale. The good you do and embody gives you the only power obtainable. Evil is not power, but a mockery of strength, which ultimately betrays its weakness and falls, never to rise.

The Scripture declares, “The Lord is God [good]; besides him there is no other.”[3] Even so, harmony is universal, and discord is unreal. Divine Science declares that Mind is substance. It declares that temporal substance neither feels, suffers, nor enjoys. Hold these points strongly in view. Keep in mind the reality of being—that everyone is the image and likeness of God, in whom all being is painless and permanent. Remember that our perfection is real and unimpeachable, whereas imperfection is blameworthy, unreal, and is not brought about by divine Love.

Matter cannot be inflamed. Inflammation is fear, an excited state of human beings which is not normal. Spiritual Mind is the only cause; therefore, disease is neither a cause nor an effect. Mind in every case is the eternal God, good. Sin, disease, and death have no foundations in Truth. As a human belief, inflammation excites the system’s action because minds are contemplating unpleasant things or some dreaded situation. Inflammation never appears in a part of the body which human thought does not reach. That is why narcotics relieve inflammation; quieting the thought by inducing insensibility, resorting to matter instead of relying on Mind. Narcotics do not remove pain in any scientific sense. They only render human mind temporarily less fearful until it can overcome its defensive, excited thinking.

How can we be relaxed, and then all of a sudden break out in a nervous sweat? Because the thought of something frightening can quickly lead to a disturbed body. In the same way thought increases or diminishes blood pressure, mutates the genes, or affects the lungs, bowels, and heart. The muscles, moving quickly or slowly and impelled or palsied by thought, represent the action of all the organs of the human system, including brain and viscera. To remove the error producing disorder, you must calm and instruct human mind with spiritual Truth.

Anesthesia is a state of unawareness, reflex loss, narcosis, and relaxation. General anesthesia is most commonly achieved by inhalation or by intravenous techniques. When first administered, the patient may feel warm or have a feeling of detachment followed by excitement then unconsciousness. Anesthesia produces artificial insensitivity to pain and a loss of consciousness. This process shows that the pain is in the mind, because as soon as the anesthesia (whether local, epidural, or spinal) wears off, the belief of pain will return, unless the mental image occasioning the pain is removed by recognizing the truth of being.

Proverbs 23:23

Buy the truth and do not sell it—wisdom, instruction and insight as well.

21st Century Science and Health

The struggle for Truth makes one strong instead of weak, restful instead of weary.

The miracle of grace is not a miracle to Love. Jesus demonstrated the inability of the human body, as well as the infinite ability of Spirit, thereby helping mistaken human consciousness to abandon its own convictions and seek safety in divine Science. Reason, rightly directed, serves to correct the errors of fleshly sense. Sin, sickness, and death will continue to seem real (even as the experiences of the sleeping dream seem real) until the Science of our harmony breaks their illusion with the unbroken reality of scientific being.

What can we believe and accept concerning our individuality? Can we accept the mortal testimony, vulnerable, dying, and deceptive? Or, can we accept the good and real evidence, bearing Truth’s mark and flourishing with spiritual results?

*Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. www.zondervan.com The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™

**Text from 21st Century Science and Health can’t be reproduced in part or as a whole without the written permission of Healing Science Today


[1] Matt. 2:9

[2] Prov. 30:4

[3] Deut. 4:35; Mark 12:32 (Brackets added by Mary Baker Eddy)

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