May 2, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Multiplying and working

Golden text: Proverbs 31:16*

She considers a field and buys it; From her profits she plants a vineyard.

Genesis 9:1, 20-21

So God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them: “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.

20 And Noah began to be a farmer, and he planted a vineyard. 21 Then he drank of the wine and was drunk, and became uncovered in his tent.  

From 21st Century Science and Health**

Saints make their own heaven by engaging Life, Truth, and Love. Wrongdoers make their own hell by doing things which avoid Life, Truth, and Love. Wrongdoers are self-deceived; they believe they are happier when being slothful or negative, and this is evil aiding evil. They believe they are saints when they are hypocrites, and this is selfishness aiding selfishness. Do not be deceived by twisted human conclusions.

The plant grows not because of seed or soil or bioengineering, but because growth is the eternal rule of Mind. The immortal creative thought is from Mind, not from the ground of mortal thinking.

Isaiah 60:1-3, 19-22

Arise, shine;
For your light has come!
And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.
For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
And deep darkness the people;
But the Lord will arise over you,
And His glory will be seen upon you.
The Gentiles shall come to your light,
And kings to the brightness of your rising.

19“The sun shall no longer be your light by day,
Nor for brightness shall the moon give light to you;
But the Lord will be to you an everlasting light,
And your God your glory.
20 Your sun shall no longer go down,
Nor shall your moon withdraw itself;
For the Lord will be your everlasting light,
And the days of your mourning shall be ended.
21 Also your people shall all be righteous;
They shall inherit the land forever,
The branch of My planting,
The work of My hands,
That I may be glorified.
22 A little one shall become a thousand,
And a small one a strong nation.
I, the Lord, will hasten it in its time.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

When governed by God, the ever-present Mind who understands all things, we know that with God all things are possible.

It is constructive for physicians, therapists, and practitioners to know and act on the truth that Mind is existent. Healers should not take the position that matter is the only cause.

Doctors can take note that it is better not to implant disease in the thoughts of your patients by declaring disease to be a fixed fact, even before you go to work to eradicate the disease through the material faith inspired. Instead of furnishing thought with fear, try to correct the turbulent emotion by the influence of divine Love, which removes fear.

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.

All things are fashioned by, and after, God’s own likeness. Life is reflected in existence, Truth in truthfulness, God in goodness. They impart their own peace and permanence. Love, fragrant with unselfishness, bathes all in beauty and light. The grass beneath our feet silently exclaims, “Happy are those who claim nothing, for the whole earth will belong to them!”[1] The modest lilac sends her sweet breath to heaven. The great rock gives shadow and shelter. The sunlight flows into the church and prison cell, glides into the sick room, brightens the earth, beautifies the landscape and blesses the galaxy. Children of God, made in Soul’s likeness, possesses and reflects God’s dominion to bless the environment. We are coexistent and eternal with God and forever reflect in glorified quality, the infinite Father-Mother God.

Matthew 15: 10-20

When [Jesus] had called the multitude to Himself, He said to them, “Hear and understand: 11 Not what goes into the mouth defiles a man; but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man.”

12 Then His disciples came and said to Him, “Do You know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?”

13 But He answered and said, “Every plant which My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. 14 Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch.”

15 Then Peter answered and said to Him, “Explain this parable to us.”

16 So Jesus said, “Are you also still without understanding? 17 Do you not yet understand that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and is eliminated? 18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. 19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. 20 These are the things which defile a man, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

Holding in mind contrary and illusory intentions makes it impossible to recognize Christ’s relationship to God as God’s offspring. Inhumane minds are hostile toward spirituality. They can’t discern Christ’s spiritual existence. Their thoughts were filled with human error instead of with God’s spiritual idea as presented by Christ Jesus. Through wrong notions we lose sight of God, and the spiritual sense of Truth is eclipsed. We can however, realize God’s likeness when we overcome the unspiritual and prove our spiritual heritage, when we prove the liberty of the children of God.

The divine Science taught in the original language of the Bible came through inspiration and needs inspiration to be understood. Without inspiration, the spiritual meaning of the Bible is misinterpreted and people only repeat what an inspired teacher said. An uninspired expression changes the intent and misstates the Science of Scriptures. We read in the Bible, “God is love.”[2] Inspiration allows us to understand love as more than an attribute of God, but God itself. Love is God. We can know the love of Love. With the use of capitalization, we can speak of the truth of Truth and of the life of Life, for Christ said, “I am the way and the truth and the life.”[3]

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.

Spiritual leaders should pursue the dignity of God’s laws rather than pursue positions of church power. . Inferior motives induce attacks on individuals who share Christ’s teachings by example of Mind’s healing power.[1]

[1] Sentence edited 2018

I Corinthians 3:5-9

Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one? I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor.

For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Earthly experience exposes the relativity of error, indirectly leading to the infinite capacities of Truth. Spiritual beings agree with the absolute and harmonious Principle of being. Immortality does not sin, suffer, or die and our spiritual experiences will multiply instead of diminish as God’s kingdom comes on earth. The spiritual way leads to Life instead of to death and we realize our God-given dominion to overcome temporal limitations.

The astronomer no longer looks up to the stars—but looks out from them upon the universe. The florist finds the flower before its seed. Every cell can be seen before its multiplication. The seasons come and go with changes of time and tide, cold and heat, latitude and longitude. Farmers will find that these changes can’t affect crops. “Like clothing You will change them and they will be changed.”[4] The navigator can have dominion over the weather, over the great deep, over the fish of the sea and the fowls of the air. Time will not affect life.

We welcome the increase of knowledge and the end of error, because even human invention must have its day. We want that day to be prospered by divine Science and Christ-like reality.

Is it true that Christ is always reappearing? Are we believing the wise people of today when they emit the light which heralds Truth’s eternal dawn and describe its radiance?

A vital religion allows us to understand and share the glory of eternal life.

Divine Science can explain differing doctrinal points, cancel disagreements, and settle questions. The aim is not to bring together doctrines and denominations, but to unite on the doctrine that God is One and is present now and forever.

Adversity teaches human beings not to lean on collapsible crutches. Spiritual development doesn’t come from planting seeds in the dirt of materialist views. Those seeds rot whereas Love nurtures the higher joys of Spirit which have no taint of earth.

From Love and from Spirit’s home of light and harmony, only reflections of good can come. All things beautiful and harmless are substantial ideas of Mind. Mind creates and multiplies them, and the product must be mental.

*Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

**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. 5:5 (Phillips NT)

[2] I John 4:8

[3] John 14:6

[4] Ps. 102:26 (NASB)

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April 11, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Go with God

Golden text: Mark 8:35*

[Christ Jesus said] For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it.”

Genesis 24:1-4

Now Abraham was old, well advanced in years. And the Lord had blessed Abraham in all things. And Abraham said to his servant, the oldest of his household, who had charge of all that he had, “Put your hand under my thigh, that I may make you swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and God of the earth, that you will not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I dwell, but will go to my country and to my kindred, and take a wife for my son Isaac.”

From 21st Century Science and Health**

By attributing more and more intelligence to spirituality, and giving less and less power to physical laws and human beings, we promote wisdom and health. The divine Mind which forms the bud and blossom, will care for the human body even as it clothes the lily.[1] Do not let mortals interfere with God’s natural order of existence by thrusting in laws of mistaken human perceptions.

Until it is learned that God is Father-Mother, marriage will continue. Let not mortals permit a disregard of law which might lead to a worse state of society than now exists. Sincerity and virtue ensure the stability of the marriage promise. Spirit will ultimately claim its own, and all that really is, as the voices of physical sense are forever silenced.

Learn from experience. Learn virtue, respect, self-control, patience, and a reliable happiness that comes from spiritual growth. May Christ, Truth, be present at every bridal altar to turn the water into wine[2] and inspire your life with the vision of a serene and immortal existence.

Genesis 24:10-18

 Then the servant took ten of his master’s camels and departed, taking all sorts of choice gifts from his master; and he arose and went to Mesopotamia to the city of Nahor. 11 And he made the camels kneel down outside the city by the well of water at the time of evening, the time when women go out to draw water. 12 And he said, “O Lord, God of my master Abraham, please grant me success today and show steadfast love to my master Abraham. 13 Behold, I am standing by the spring of water, and the daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water. 14 Let the young woman to whom I shall say, ‘Please let down your jar that I may drink,’ and who shall say, ‘Drink, and I will water your camels’—let her be the one whom you have appointed for your servant Isaac. By this I shall know that you have shown steadfast love to my master.”

15 Before he had finished speaking, behold, Rebekah, who was born to Bethuel the son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with her water jar on her shoulder. 16 The young woman was very attractive in appearance, a maiden whom no man had known. She went down to the spring and filled her jar and came up. 17 Then the servant ran to meet her and said, “Please give me a little water to drink from your jar.” 18 She said, “Drink, my lord.” And she quickly let down her jar upon her hand and gave him a drink.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Human minds have not completely outgrown their superstitions. Human mindsets embody ghostly beliefs and time is required before reaching eternity, spirituality, or complete reality. All the real is eternal. Rightness underlies reality. Without rightness, nothing is completely real. Wrongness will continue to be outgrown until spiritual fulfillment appears and reality is reached. Old-wives-tales, even new old-wives-tales, need to become a thing of the past. We must not continue to be impressed by superstitious thinking, but we must be wise and let go of all misdirected reverences. When we learn that error is not real, we are ready for progress, “forgetting what is behind.”[3]

Science reveals infinity and the fatherhood and motherhood of Love, therefore, the ideas of God in universal being are complete and forever expressed. Human ability is slow to perceive and realize God’s creation and the divine power and presence which go with it, demonstrating its spiritual origin. Mortals can never know the infinite until they throw off the old self and reach the spiritual image and likeness. What can fathom infinity! How can we describe God, Life, “Until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ”?[6]

Materialism never helps human beings understand Spirit. Through spiritual sense only, we comprehend and love the Almighty. Physical sense convolutes the Science of Mind, however, the unseen, intact Truth remains unchanged.

Spiritual comfort blesses the human family, feeds the unsatisfied, and gives living water to the thirsty.

Genesis 24:53-58

53 And the servant brought out jewelry of silver and of gold, and garments, and gave them to Rebekah. He also gave to her brother and to her mother costly ornaments. 54 And he and the men who were with him ate and drank, and they spent the night there. When they arose in the morning, he said, “Send me away to my master.” 55 Her brother and her mother said, “Let the young woman remain with us a while, at least ten days; after that she may go.” 56 But he said to them, “Do not delay me, since the Lord has prospered my way. Send me away that I may go to my master.” 57 They said, “Let us call the young woman and ask her.” 58 And they called Rebekah and said to her, “Will you go with this man?” She said, “I will go.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

To reach heaven, the harmony of being, we must understand the Principle of being.

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. God’s being is infinity, freedom, balance, and boundless happiness. “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”[4] Like the archpriests of long ago, we are free “to enter the Most Holy Place”[5]—the realm of God.

Matthew 8:18-22

Now when Jesus saw a crowd around him, he gave orders to go over to the other side. 19 And a scribe came up and said to him, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.” 20 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 21 Another of the disciples said to him, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 22 And Jesus said to him, “Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

A genuine sacrifice of the temporal must precede advanced spiritual understanding. The highest prayer is not just faith, but faith and demonstration. Such prayer heals sickness and overcomes sin and death.

On our spiritual journey, if we sympathize with mortality, we will be at the beck and call of error and follow a zig-zag course getting nowhere. If we travel with the worldly minded, we get sucked into a nasty cycle. A good example of this is randomly walking around the shopping mall, making feel-good purchases and eating junk food with friends. We return home, thinking we had a good time and feeling satisfied. However, when re-thinking the situation, we realize that too much time and money was wasted. So, we repeat the trip to the mall but buy books on time and financial management or on dieting.

As for sickness and unprogressive mindsets, divine Science says in the language of the Teacher, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”[7] In other words, let disorder of every name and nature be heard no more, and let the harmonious and true sense of Life and being occupy human consciousness.

Our moral and spiritual progress is monotonously slow if we constantly bounce back and forth between futile habits and the hope of forgiveness. Selfishness and stupidity cause constant retrogression. We must wake up to Christ’s demand; however, the waking generally causes suffering. We may even feel like we are drowning and struggling to stay above water. Through Christ’s precious love our efforts are rewarded with success.

“Work out your salvation,”[8] is the demand of Life and Love, for to this end God works with you, “Until I come back.”[9] Be patient, and “Let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right.”[10] Don’t go back to error, and don’t become apathetic or offended even though you are trying hard and there are no immediate rewards. The rewards will come.

You will receive according to your efforts. Love is not in a hurry to rescue us from temptation, for Love means that we shall be tested and purified.

Final deliverance from error is not reached by taking the easy way. There are no shortcuts. Deliverance is also not experienced by attaching our faith without works, to someone else’s effort. Whoever believes that violent anger is justified or that divinity is appeased by human suffering, does not understand God. In our deliverance, we rejoice in peaceful honor, immortality, and spiritual freedom.

Although the great Teacher proved his control over sin and disease, he didn’t relieve others from proving their own spiritual power. Jesus worked as a guide, that people might also demonstrate the power of divine Principle. Smothering Jesus with emotional affection, or claiming to be his devoted follower, will never alone make you like him. You must “go and do likewise,”[11] or you are not improving the great blessings that he worked and suffered to offer. The spirituality of the Christ was made manifest in the humanity of Jesus.

We may revere Jesus and our heart may overflow with gratitude for what he did; however, our demonstration of love must be comparable to Jesus’ until all are redeemed through divine Love. Jesus reached his glory alone, in speechless agony. He explored the way and we all have the same cup of poignant effort to drink. We are not spared a single experience if we follow faithfully.

A mindful practice has the ear and right hand of omnipotence and assuredly calls upon infinite blessings. Trustworthiness is the foundation of enlightened faith. Without a fitness for holiness, we can’t receive holiness.

Become committed, “pray continually,”[12] and go forward with a pure heart to work and watch for wisdom, Truth, and Love. Such prayer is answered insofar as you put your spiritual desires into practice. Christ Jesus’ guidance is that we pray in secret and let our lives confirm our sincerity.

*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. 6:28; Luke 12:27

[2] John 2:9

[3] Phil. 3:13

[4] II Cor. 3:17

[5] Heb. 10:19

[6] Eph. 4:13

[7] Matt. 8:22; Luke 9:60

[8] Phil. 2:12

[9] Luke 19:13

[10] Gal. 6:9 (Amplified)

[11] Luke 10:37

[12] I Thess. 5:17

March 28, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Resurrection

John 11:25-26*

“You don’t have to wait for the End. I am, right now, Resurrection and Life. The one who believes in me, even though he or she dies, will live. And everyone who lives believing in me does not ultimately die at all. Do you believe this?

John 5: 19-20

19-20 So Jesus explained himself at length. “I’m telling you this straight. The Son can’t independently do a thing, only what he sees the Father doing. What the Father does, the Son does. The Father loves the Son and includes him in everything he is doing.

From 21st Century Science and Health**

I think Jesus of Nazareth was the most scientific human being that ever walked the earth. He systematically looked past the symptomatic material causes to discover and put into practice the spiritual cause. Because the people around him had immature ideas of spiritual cause, and his disciples possessed a limited degree of spirituality, Jesus used terms familiar to the people of the time. He spoke of, “flesh and bones.”[1] Jesus himself had to advance past believing in his own separate ego. As his understanding of Spirit increased, Jesus no longer felt attached to the world. The resurrection proved conclusively that his body was raised from dead concepts, and that his substance was Spirit. His body was no more perfect because of death and no less material until his consciousness was further spiritualized in the ascension. Jesus discovered the eternal Ego and proved that he was inseparable from God and God’s reflection. The Teacher gained the solution of being and demonstrated the existence of but one Mind without a second or equal.

Jesus demonstrated Christ. Jesus proved that Christ is the correct impression or interpretation of God—the Holy Spirit or Counselor, revealing the divine Principle, Love, and leading into all truth.

Jesus was born of Mary. Christ is the true idea voicing good; the divine message from God to us, speaking to human consciousness. The Christ is bodiless, spiritual—the holy image and likeness, dispelling the illusions of the senses; the Way, the Truth, and the Life, healing the sick and driving out evils, destroying sin, disease, and dying. Paul said: “There is one God; there is also one mediator between God and humankind, Christ Jesus, himself human.”[2] The physical Jesus was human.

The word Christ is not properly a synonym for Jesus, though it is frequently used as such. Jesus was a human name which belonged to him in common with other Hebrew boys and men, for it is identical with the name Joshua, the renowned Hebrew leader. Christ is not a name so much as the divine title of Jesus. Christ expresses God’s immeasurable, eternal nature. The name is synonymous with Messiah and alludes to the spirituality which is taught, illustrated, and demonstrated in the life of which Christ Jesus embodied. The proper name of the Teacher in the Greek was Jesus the Christ; but Christ Jesus better signifies the Godlike.

John 5:20-24

20-23 “But you haven’t seen the half of it yet, for in the same way that the Father raises the dead and creates life, so does the Son. The Son gives life to anyone he chooses. Neither he nor the Father shuts anyone out. The Father handed all authority to judge over to the Son so that the Son will be honored equally with the Father. Anyone who dishonors the Son, dishonors the Father, for it was the Father’s decision to put the Son in the place of honor.

24 “It’s urgent that you listen carefully to this: Anyone here who believes what I am saying right now and aligns himself with the Father, who has in fact put me in charge, has at this very moment the real, lasting life and is no longer condemned to be an outsider. This person has taken a giant step from the world of the dead to the world of the living.

From 21st Century Science and Health

The carnal human mentality, misnamed mind, is mortal. But the idea of resurrection and ascension, shows that a mortal creature is not our real essence. Our real essence can’t be annihilated because of the indissoluble immortal connection between God and us. In divine Science, mortality disappears in the presence of reality.

The resurrection indicates that mortal mindsets die, while spiritual mindsets live; it indicates full evidence of immortal being and metaphysical science, evidence so important to mortals. The belief that we have an existence or mind separate from God is a dying error—met and corrected by Jesus.

The resurrection advances individual and collective consciousness, it moves thought out of spiritual dullness and blind belief into the perception of infinite possibilities.

Consistent prayer is the will to do right. Prayer means that we desire to walk and will walk in the light so far as we receive it, even if it’s uncomfortable. To wait patiently on the Lord is to let Spirit reward our real intentions

If Jesus had shared the mortal thinking of others, he would have been less sensitive to it. Through the magnitude of his human life, he demonstrated the divine Life. Out of the amplitude of his pure inclinations, he defined Love. With the affluence of Truth, he defeated error. Though the world may not have acknowledged his righteousness—not seen it—earth received the harmony his glorified example introduced.

Who is ready to follow his teaching and example? Sooner or later, we need to position ourselves in the true idea of God. Jesus paid a high price for his spiritual treasure. His intense human sacrifice was motivated by the desire to give generously to the empty or sin-filled storehouses of human beings. In witness of Jesus’ divine commission, he presented the proof that Life, Truth, and Love heal the sinning and triumph over dead-end thinking through Mind, not matter or technology. This was the highest proof he could have offered of divine Love even though his hearers didn’t understand his words or his works, even though they wouldn’t accept his humble interpretation of life and follow his example.

John 5:25-29

25-27 “It’s urgent that you get this right: The time has arrived—I mean right now!—when dead men and women will hear the voice of the Son of God and, hearing, will come alive. Just as the Father has life in himself, he has conferred on the Son life in himself. And he has given him the authority, simply because he is the Son of Man, to decide and carry out matters of Judgment.

28-29 “Don’t act so surprised at all this. The time is coming when everyone dead and buried will hear his voice. Those who have lived the right way will walk out into a resurrection Life; those who have lived the wrong way, into a resurrection Judgment.

From 21st Century Science and Health

What would be better? To beg a human-like God to heal the sick out of free will? Or, would it make more sense to understand the infinite divine Principle which heals? If our thinking is no better than blind faith, the Science of healing is not attained and Soul-existence, in the place of molecular existence, is not comprehended. We understand Life in divine Science only as we let go of limited views and attain spiritual views. The amount of good or of evil admitted determines the harmony of our existence—our health, our longevity, and our spirituality.

Human experience in mortal life starts from a cell and corresponds with that of Job, when he says, “Man born of woman is of few days and full of trouble.”[3] Mortals must break out of this mental cycle of thinking that material life is all-in-all. They must think outside of the box with divine Science and look to the infinite cosmos. Be aware though, that thought which escapes the box and has not yet been instructed by the Science of Truth and Love, may become wild with freedom and so be self-contradictory.

No remedy for depression, sin, and death comes from the bottom-up. The redeeming power is not in a cell, a physical force, chemicals, or human mind. Material energy is a materialization of mortal mind. The process of mortal mind is such that it manifests itself but is eventually urged to its furthest limits, only to return to its original stance. Hybrid plants are a good illustration. A hybrid pushed out of its boundaries, will revert back to the parent plant. Matter will always surrender its claims when the perfect and eternal Mind is understood.

Resurrection. Spiritualization of thought; a new and higher idea of immortality or spiritual existence; material belief yielding to spiritual understanding.

John 5:39-40

39-40 “You have your heads in your Bibles constantly because you think you’ll find eternal life there. But you miss the forest for the trees. These Scriptures are all about me! And here I am, standing right before you, and you aren’t willing to receive from me the life you say you want.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Although Scripture declares God made all, and it was good, the physical senses define diseases as realities made by another power and that divine Mind can’t or won’t heal. Physical senses originate and support all that is erratic, inadequate, selfish, or despicable. They would put soul into soil, life into limbo, effort into maintaining mortality, and doom all things to decay. We must silence the lies of physical sense with the truth of spiritual sense. We must cause to cease the errors that brought beliefs of sin and dis-ease. We must evict that which attempts to efface the pure sense of omnipotence.

Mortals receive the harmony of health as they forsake disorder, abandon their imperfect thinking, and acknowledge the influence of divine Mind. Eradicate the image of disease from the perturbed thought before it has taken tangible shape in conscious thought, alias the body, and you prevent the development of disease. This practice becomes easy if you understand that every disease is an error and has no identity or symptom, except what’s been assigned to it by human mind. By lifting thought above error or disease and striving persistently for truth, you destroy error.

Instruct the sick that they are not helpless victims. If they will accept Truth, they can resist disease and fight it off as positively as they can the temptation to sin. This fact of divine Science should be explained to invalids when they are in a fit mood to receive it, otherwise, they will turn against the new idea. The fact that Truth overcomes both disease and sin reassures depressed hope. Truth imparts a healthy stimulus to the body and regulates the system. Truth increases or diminishes the action as the case may require, better than any drug or feel-good stimulant.

We acknowledge that the crucifixion of Jesus and his resurrection served to advance faith to the understanding of eternal Life, to the allness of Soul, Spirit, and the nothingness of what we call matter and physical energy.

“Now this is life eternal,” says Jesus—now, not later. Jesus then defined everlasting life as a present knowledge of his God and of himself—the knowledge of Love, Truth, and Life. “Now this is life eternal: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.”[4]

*Scripture taken from The Message. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.

**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] Luke 24:39

[2] I Tim. 2:5 (NRSV)

[3] Job 14:1

[4] John 17:3

March 21, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Crucifixion

Golden text: II Corinthians 13:4*

For [Jesus] was crucified in weakness, but lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but in dealing with you we will live with him by the power of God.

Matthew 20:17-19

 And as Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside, and on the way he said to them, 18 “See, we are going up to Jerusalem. And the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death 19 and deliver him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified, and he will be raised on the third day.”

From 21st Century Science and Health**

The ancient prophets received their foresight from a spiritual, metaphysical position, not by predicting evil and mistaking fiction as fact. Reading the future from the premise of fleshly and human belief is not scientific foresight. When sufficiently advanced in Science to be in agreement with the truth of being, individuals become seers and prophets involuntarily. Prophecy is not controlled by spirits, demons, or quantum entities, but by the one Spirit. It is the prerogative of the ever-present divine Mind, and of thought in alignment with this Mind, to know the past, the present, and the future.

Jesus’ earthly cup of bitterness was drained to the dregs. He had only a few unpretentious friends who stayed by his side and followed a religion that was something more than a name. A vital religion allows us to understand and share the glory of eternal life. Jesus said that those who follow him shall drink of his cup, and history has confirmed the prediction.

As mass consciousness advances to a perception of the invisible God, Mind-healing as instructed by Jesus is liable to misinterpretations; however, misinterpretations don’t affect the invincible facts of Truth.

Truth and error seem to be in conflict. The contention of truth and error is only the mental conflict between the evidence of the spiritual perceptions and the testimony of the human imprints. Through faith in, and the understanding of divine Love, the battle between Spirit and flesh will settle all questions.

Superstition and understanding can never unite. When the final physical and moral effects of divine Science are fully understood, the conflict between truth and error, understanding and belief, spiritual sense and physical sense, will cease and lasting harmony will prevail, as was predicted by the prophets and introduced by Jesus. During the conflict, the lightning and thunderbolts of error burst and flash but the clouds will clear and the tumult will die away in the distance, for the raindrops of divinity to refresh the earth.    

John 18:1-9

When Jesus had spoken these words, he went out with his disciples across the brook Kidron, where there was a garden, which he and his disciples entered. Now Judas, who betrayed him, also knew the place, for Jesus often met there with his disciples. So Judas, having procured a band of soldiers and some officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, went there with lanterns and torches and weapons. Then Jesus, knowing all that would happen to him, came forward and said to them, “Whom do you seek?” They answered him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said to them, “I am he.” Judas, who betrayed him, was standing with them. When Jesus said to them, “I am he,” they drew back and fell to the ground. So he asked them again, “Whom do you seek?” And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. So, if you seek me, let these men go.” This was to fulfill the word that he had spoken: “Of those whom you gave me I have lost not one.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

Jesus could have withdrawn himself from his enemies. He had power to put aside a human sense of life for his spiritual identity in the likeness of the divine, but he allowed people to attempt to destroy the human body so that he might furnish the proof of spirituality. Jesus could give his temporal life into his enemies’ hands because he knew that matter had no life and that real Life is God. He could no more be separated from his spiritual Life than God could be extinguished. When his earth-mission was accomplished, his spiritual life, indestructible and eternal, was found forever the same. Nothing can kill our Life.

Jesus’ example was all-inclusive; not only was his life’s work carried out to the end for himself, but his demonstration also shows us how to work out our own deliverance. We must do what he did and what he taught us to do. His purpose in healing was not just to restore human health, but to demonstrate his divine Principle. He was inspired by God, by Truth and Love, in all that he said and did. His persecutors were motivated by arrogance, envy, cruelty, and vengeance, inflicted on the physical Jesus, but aimed at the divine Principle, Love—the same Love that rebuked their unspiritual mindsets.

When navigating aircraft through a storm the pressure is shifting, the wind is shrieking, and air pockets are hiding in the air currents. We ask the pilot: “Do you know your course? Can you aviate safely among this turbulence?” Though brave, the dauntless aviator is not sure of safety because even aeronautical science is not equal to the Science of Mind. Yet, acting on his or her highest understanding, the pilot doesn’t avoid responsibility but keeps working, ready to act on divine guidance. This example of behavior can be useful in any stressful relationship, including a seething marriage. Be accountable, hope and work, willingly act on divine guidance, not private interests. Divine guidance will either force a graceful change or calm the enraged atmosphere.

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.

John 18:12-14

12 So the band of soldiers and their captain and the officers of the Jews arrested Jesus and bound him. 13 First they led him to Annas, for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. 14 It was Caiaphas who had advised the Jews that it would be expedient that one man should die for the people.

From 21st Century Science and Health

In some way, sooner or later, people must overcome the cycle of mortal life and death, and suffering is often the divine agent. “In all things God works for the good of those who love him,”[1] is the dictum of Scripture.

Scientists may call on one another for metaphysical treatment. However, if the callers don’t receive relief or help, they can be confident that God will guide them to use appropriately the temporary and eternal treatments. Step by step, as we trust Spirit, we will find that “God is our shelter, our strength, ever ready to help in time of trouble.”[2]

I advise students to be charitable and kind, not only toward differing forms of religion and medicine, but to the very people who hold these differing opinions. Let us be faithful in pointing the way through Christ as we understand it, but let us also be careful always to “stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgment.”[3] Never condemn rashly. “If anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also,”[4] because if you refrain from retaliation, you will be struck again. If ecclesiastical sects or medical schools turn a deaf ear to the teachings of divine Science, then part from these opponents as did Abraham when he parted from Lot, and say in your heart: “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herdsmen and mine, for we are brothers.”[5] Spiritual beings, or God’s children in divine Science, are one harmonious family; but the children of human beings are discordant and oftentimes fake.

Teachers must make clear to students the Science of healing, especially the moral and ethical principles—that all is Mind and we align to the will of good. Teachers must thoroughly prepare students to defend themselves against sin and the attacks of the would-be mental assassin, who attempts to kill morally and physically. No hypothesis as to the existence of another power should interject a doubt or fear to hinder the demonstration of divine Science. Teachers do not indoctrinate, but shed light on the student’s hidden energies and capabilities for good.

John 18: 19-24

The high priest then questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching. 20 Jesus answered him, “I have spoken openly to the world. I have always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all Jews come together. I have said nothing in secret. 21 Why do you ask me? Ask those who have heard me what I said to them; they know what I said.” 22 When he had said these things, one of the officers standing by struck Jesus with his hand, saying, “Is that how you answer the high priest?” 23 Jesus answered him, “If what I said is wrong, bear witness about the wrong; but if what I said is right, why do you strike me?” 24 Annas then sent him bound to Caiaphas the high priest.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Humanity moves toward good or evil as time passes. If mortals are not progressive, past failures will be repeated until all wrong work is erased or corrected. If there is any satisfaction in wrongdoing, we must learn to loathe it. If we are now content with spiritual idleness, we must become dissatisfied with it. Remember that humankind must sooner or later, either by suffering or by Science, be convinced of the error that is to be overcome.

Error strikes the heel of truth, but cannot kill truth. Truth crushes the head[6] of error—destroys error. Spirituality lays open siege to materialism. On which side are we fighting when material theories cease and Science unveils the mystery and solves the problem of being?

The understanding that the Ego, I AM, is Mind, and that there is but one Mind or intelligence, begins at once to destroy the errors of human sense and to supply the truth of spiritual sense.

John 18:33-36

So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called Jesus and said to him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34 Jesus answered, “Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about me?” 35 Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you over to me. What have you done?” 36 Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

Do you say that the time is not yet here in which to recognize Soul as substantial and able to control the body? Remember Jesus, who over twenty centuries ago demonstrated the power of Spirit? He was accounted to say, “Whoever believes in me will perform the same works as I do myself,”[7] and, “The time is coming, yes, and has already come, when true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in reality.”[8] It is also a privilege to read Paul’s words, “I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.”[9]

Divine reason and revelation coincide. If we believe otherwise, we may be sure that either our logic is a fault or that we have misinterpreted revelation. Good never causes evil and good doesn’t create anything that can cause evil.

Good does not design a mind susceptible of causing evil or of being confused, for evil and confusion contend with creation. Destructive energy is not the outcome of infinite good. Whatever contradicts the real nature of the divine esse, though human faith may cover the contradiction in angelic costumes, is without foundation.

Kingdom of Heaven. The rule of harmony in divine Science; the domain of the unerring, eternal, and omnipotent Mind; the atmosphere of Spirit, where Soul is supreme.

Jesus taught but one God, one Spirit, who makes spiritual being in the image and likeness of Love, of Mind—not in the likeness of human love or mind. Individuals reflect infinite Truth, Life, and Love.

Question. What is the scientific statement of being?

Answer. There is no life, truth, intelligence, nor substance in separate minds. All is infinite Mind and its infinite manifestation, for God is All-in-all. Spirit is divine Truth; divisible matter is human error. Spirit is the real and eternal; matter is the unreal and temporal. Spirit is God, and we are Spirit’s image and likeness. Therefore, individuals are not things, but ideas of one Mind.

*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] Rom. 8:28

[2] Ps. 46:1 (JB)

[3] John 7:24

[4] Matt. 5:39; Luke 6:29 (NRSV)

[5] Gen. 13:8

[6] Gen. 3:15

[7] John 14:12 (JB)

[8] John 4:23 (Phillips NT) (Italics added by Mary Baker Eddy)

[9] II Cor. 6:2 (Italics added by Mary Baker Eddy)

March 14, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Expectations

Golden text: Proverbs 20:28*

The hope of the righteous brings joy, but the expectation of the wicked will perish.

Luke 6:27-36

27 “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. 29 To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either. 30 Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back. 31 And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them.

32 “If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. 34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. 35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. 36 Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.

From 21st Century Science and Health**

If we wish to follow Christ, Truth, it must be in God’s way. Jesus said, “The person who trusts me will not only do what I’m doing but even greater things.”[1] Whoever would reach the source and find the divine remedy for every disorder must not try to climb the hill of Science by some other road. All nature teaches God’s love to us, but we can’t love God supremely and set our whole affections on spiritual things while loving the material or trusting in it more than in the spiritual.

We must continue to wiggle our way out of human systems and theories, whether time-honored or not, if we would gain the Truth as our only Savior. Not in part, but totally, the great healer of human mind is the healer of the body.

The purpose and motive to live spiritually can be achieved now. Getting off to the right start, you have taken the preliminary steps in divine Science and nothing but wrong intention can obstruct your advancement. Working and praying with true motives, your Father will open the way. “Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth?”[2]

Jesus of Nazareth taught and demonstrated oneness with Spirit. Jesus’ accomplishments are worthy of respect. His lifework was done in justice to himself and in mercy to humanity; however, Jesus did not do our work for us. He showed us how to be responsible for our own thoughts and actions. Jesus acted boldly against human perceptions, transitory evidence, and self-righteous dogma and practices. With healing power, Jesus proved the powerlessness of all that opposed goodness.

Jesus brought to humanity’s attention things, “hidden since the creation of the world”[3]—things hidden since material knowledge overstepped the creative divine Principle. We learn from him that we don’t have to buy into knowledge which insists on an earth-bound truth and the anthropomorphism of God.

Luke 12:41-48

41 Peter said, “Lord, are you telling this parable for us or for all?” 42 And the Lord said, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom his master will set over his household, to give them their portion of food at the proper time? 43 Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes. 44 Truly, I say to you, he will set him over all his possessions. 45 But if that servant says to himself, ‘My master is delayed in coming,’ and begins to beat the male and female servants, and to eat and drink and get drunk, 46 the master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know, and will cut him in pieces and put him with the unfaithful. 47 And that servant who knew his master’s will but did not get ready or act according to his will, will receive a severe beating. 48 But the one who did not know, and did what deserved a beating, will receive a light beating. Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Jesus’ reputation differed from his character. Why? Because his divine Principle and practice were misunderstood. Jesus’ words and works were alien to the world’s expectations and contrary to the popular religious views. Mortals believed in God as humanly mighty, rather than as divine infinite Love.

The human mind must struggle to interpret correctly the discomfort that Jesus inspired and the spiritual blessings that might flow from this type of discomfort that oftentimes produces a shock. Science shows the shock is produced because of a great distance between the individual and Truth.

The path of divine Science is less difficult to follow when the high goal is always before the thoughts. It’s bothersome to count every single little footstep while endeavoring to reach the better goal. When the destination is desirable, expectation speeds our progress.

God is more to an individual than the individual’s belief, and the less we acknowledge human mind and its laws, the more spirituality we possess. Consciousness constructs a better body when faith in limited perceptions is conquered. Correct human mortal convictions by spiritual understanding and Spirit will form you anew. You will never fear again except to offend God, and you will never believe that hormones, cells, the heart, central nervous system, or any portion of the body can destroy you.

If you want your colon, uterus, lymphatic system, or lungs to stay healthy, with excellent capacity, be always ready mentally to protest against unhealthy beliefs. Dismiss all notions about tumors, inherited diseases, weak lungs, or suffering, arising from any circumstance. You will find that human mind, when instructed by Truth, allows the body to be guided into health by means of divine power.

II Corinthians 8:1-5

We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints— and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Critics who attack faith should be careful not to confuse spiritual faith with blind faith. Faith is necessary in science, medicine, and religion. Consider the researcher or scientist who is trying to find a cure for cancer; they obviously have faith that a cure exists; otherwise they would not even try. People who cannot distinguish between blind (ritualistic) faith and that of spiritual faith are easily misinformed. They can make unfortunate statements such as: “If your beliefs are those of a Christian Scientist, obliging you to forgo all medical interventions, you may even have collaborated with God by refusing to give your child antibiotics.”[4] Christian Science does not “oblige” any particular human action as if people are androids.  A student of Christian Science does not collaborate with God as if God is a separate mind. In Science, there is no attitude of give-and-take; there is no human element that says, “If you do this, I’ll do that.” Do physicists collaborate with the law of gravity in order to go to the moon? No. Scientists study the principles of physics, they have the faith those rules will work, they apply the principles, and they go to the moon. Comments and criticisms based on a lack of research obscure any good points being made.

Opponents should consider that the mortal human being is not the reality of God’s child, and this consideration will allow the mind to receive new ideas that lead to progress and well-being. We can expect to receive enlightenment as a result of Christ in action. The Christ-spirit comes now as of old, preaching the good news to receptive minds, healing the sick, and destroying that which violates our dignity. Can materiality, human intellect, or any human invention, restore the essential element of spirituality—namely, apostolic, divine healing? No, the Science of Christ is restoring it and is the light shining in darkness, a darkness that does not overcome the light.

A germ of infinite Truth, though least in the realm of heaven, is the higher hope on earth, but it will be rejected and hated until God prepares the soil for the seed.

Psalms 33:22

Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us, even as we hope in you.

From 21st Century Science and Health

God is Love. Can we ask the Infinite to be more? Love is intelligence, Mind. So, what could we possibly tell the all-knowing infinite Mind? Do we expect to change perfection? Will we plead for more at the open fountain which is pouring forth more than we accept? Unspoken heartfelt desires bring us closer to the source of all existence and blessedness.

Common opinion admits that a human being may catch a cold in the act of doing a good deed. Some people even fear and expect the cold to develop into a fatal pulmonary disease. Evil cannot overpower the law of Love and stop the reward for doing good deeds. In the Science of spirituality, Mind—omnipotence—has all-power. Divine Mind, God assigns sure rewards to spiritual righteousness and shows that changeable matter cannot heal or make sick, create or destroy.

We lend our self to limited assumptions and entertain restricted thoughts of God the same way unbelievers lend themselves to their expectations and authorities. Human beings are inclined to fear and to obey what they consider a material body more than they cherish and obey a spiritual God. All knowledge based on illusive substance, like the original “tree of knowledge,”[5] multiplies our pains. Material knowledge and mortal illusions would rob God, kill us, and meanwhile set their tables with cannibal tidbits and give thanks.

When the curse of sickness or sin tempts you, cling steadfastly to God and Spirit’s idea. Allow nothing but Soul’s likeness to prevail in your thought. Do not let fear or doubt eclipse your clear sense and calm trust in Truth. The recognition of life harmonious—as Life eternally is—can destroy any painful sense of, or belief in, that which Life is not. Let divine Science instead of fleshly sense support your understanding of being and this understanding will exchange error for Truth, replace physicality with spirituality, and silence complaint with harmony.

In divine Science, where prayers are mental, all may profit from God, as “ready to help when we need him.”[6] Love is impartial and universal in its spiritualization and generosity.

*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] John 14:12 (The Message)

[2] Gal. 5:7

[3] Matt. 13:35

[4] Harris, Sam. The End of Faith. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 2005.

[5] Gen. 2:9

[6] Ps. 46:1 (NASB)

 

February 21, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Advantages

Golden text: Isaiah 1:31*

The mighty man will become tinder and his work a spark; both will burn together, with no one to quench the fire.”

II Kings 10:18-28

 Then Jehu brought all the people together and said to them, “Ahab served Baal a little; Jehu will serve him much. 19 Now summon all the prophets of Baal, all his servants and all his priests. See that no one is missing, because I am going to hold a great sacrifice for Baal. Anyone who fails to come will no longer live.” But Jehu was acting deceptively in order to destroy the servants of Baal.

20 Jehu said, “Call an assembly in honor of Baal.” So they proclaimed it. 21 Then he sent word throughout Israel, and all the servants of Baal came; not one stayed away. They crowded into the temple of Baal until it was full from one end to the other. 22 And Jehu said to the keeper of the wardrobe, “Bring robes for all the servants of Baal.” So he brought out robes for them.

23 Then Jehu and Jehonadab son of Rekab went into the temple of Baal. Jehu said to the servants of Baal, “Look around and see that no one who serves the Lord is here with you—only servants of Baal.” 24 So they went in to make sacrifices and burnt offerings. Now Jehu had posted eighty men outside with this warning: “If one of you lets any of the men I am placing in your hands escape, it will be your life for his life.”

25 As soon as Jehu had finished making the burnt offering, he ordered the guards and officers: “Go in and kill them; let no one escape.” So they cut them down with the sword. The guards and officers threw the bodies out and then entered the inner shrine of the temple of Baal. 26 They brought the sacred stone out of the temple of Baal and burned it. 27 They demolished the sacred stone of Baal and tore down the temple of Baal, and people have used it for a latrine to this day.

28 So Jehu destroyed Baal worship in Israel.

From 21st Century Science and Health**

We have no authority in divine Science and no moral right to attempt to influence the thoughts of others except to benefit them. In mental practice, you must not forget that erring human opinions, conflicting selfish motives, and ignorant attempts to do good may render you incapable of knowing or judging accurately the real need of those who you are helping. Therefore, the rule is to heal the sick when called on and save the victims of the mental assassins.

Human mind, acting from the basis of sensation in matter, is susceptible to suggestions. This so-called mind from which comes all evil, contradicts itself and must finally yield to eternal Truth as expressed in Science. In proportion to our understanding of Christian Science, we are freed from the suggestions of physical inheritance or mind in illusive matter. We disarm sin of its imaginary power as we scientifically understand the status of spiritual being.

Unaware of the methods and the basis of metaphysical healing, you may attempt to unite it with hypnotism, brain manipulation, or psychics. However, none of these methods benefit metaphysical healing.

Outside of divine Science all is relative. Earthly experience exposes the relativity of error, indirectly leading to the infinite capacities of Truth. Spiritual beings agree with the absolute and harmonious Principle of being. Immortality does not sin, suffer, or die and our spiritual experiences will multiply instead of diminish as God’s kingdom comes on earth. The spiritual way leads to Life instead of to death and we realize our God-given dominion to overcome temporal limitations.

Whatever guides thought spiritually, benefits mind and body. We need to understand the affirmations of divine Science, dismiss superstition, and demonstrate truth according to Christ.

John 12:42-50

42 Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in [Jesus Christ]. But because of the Pharisees they would not openly acknowledge their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved human praise more than praise from God.

44 Then Jesus cried out, “Whoever believes in me does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. 45 The one who looks at me is seeing the one who sent me. 46 I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.

47 “If anyone hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge that person. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. 48 There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day. 49 For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. 50 I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

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.

Question. Are doctrines and creeds a benefit to human beings?

Answer. I subscribed to an orthodox creed when young, and tried to adhere to it until I caught the first view of that which interprets God as above human mortal perceptions. The new view rebuked human beliefs and gave the spiritual interpretation, expressed through Science, of all that proceeds from the divine Mind. Since then my highest creed has been divine Science, which, reduced to human comprehension, I named Christian Science. This Science teaches us that God is the only Life, and that this Life is truth and love; that God is to be understood, compassionately respected, and demonstrated; and that divine Truth drives out supposed errors and heals the sick.

The way which leads to Christian Science is straight and narrow. God’s mark has been put on Science, making it equal to all that is real and related only to that which is harmonious and eternal. Sickness, sin, and death, being inharmonious, do not originate in God nor belong to Truth’s government. God’s law, rightly understood, destroys all that contradicts Life, Truth, and Love.

Surely, we need to do more than preserve unreliable and useless dogmas, derived from religious traditions and stamped with human approval or authorization.

Inconsistency is shown by words without deeds, which is like a car without an engine, a cell-phone without a charge. If our words fail to express our deeds, God will redeem that weakness and out of the mouth of babes Soul will perfect praise. Consistency is seen in example more than in precept. The night of materiality is burning out and Truth’s glow wakens human beings spiritually to hear and to speak the new tongue.

Wrongdoing should become unreal to everyone. Sin is inconsistent, a divided kingdom with a realism that has no divine authority, and I rejoice in the understanding of this grand truth.

Philippians 1:10-22

10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.

12 Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. 13 As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. 14 And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.

15 It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. 16 The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17 The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. 18 But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.

Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, 19 for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. 20 I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know!

From 21st Century Science and Health

Who will decide what truth and love are?

The point to decide is whether human mind or spiritual Mind acts as the cause.

The action of human mind on the body was not so injurious before curiosity took up medical study and distracted thought away from spiritual healing. “Where ignorance is bliss, tis folly to be wise,”[1] and there is truth in this sentiment.

Permit the stomach and bowels to act in obedience to nature. Give the gospel a chance to be seen in its glorious effects upon the body. Dismiss the ghastly collection of diseases paraded before your imagination. Keep to “sermons in stones, and good in everything.”[2] When the mechanism of the human mind gives place to the divine Mind, selfishness and sin, disease and death, will lose their grip.

The apostles who were Jesus’ students, as well as Paul who was not his student, healed the sick and reformed the sinner by their religion. Hence the mistake which allows words, rather than works, to follow such examples! Whoever is first to press along the line of gospel-healing humbly and conscientiously, is considered a heretic.

Christian Science is sometimes disapproved of because it claims God as the only absolute Life and Soul, and person to be God’s idea—that is, Spirit’s image. However, Scriptures confirm the claim, saying that God created “man” (a generic term for person given in many Bible versions), “in our image, in our likeness.”[3] Is it sacrilegious to theorize that God’s likeness is not found in fleshly beings, sinful, sick, and dying? In reality, the person referred to as God’s image represents the normal, healthful, and sinless condition of individuals in divine Science.

One moment of divine consciousness, or the spiritual understanding of Life and Love, is a foretaste of eternity. This exalted view, obtained and retained when the Science of being is understood, would bridge over with life discerned spiritually the interval of death, and humanity would be in the full consciousness of our spirituality and eternal harmony, where sin, sickness, and death are unknown.

Unspoken thoughts are not unknown to divine Mind. Prayer is desire. No loss can come from trusting God to form and exalt our desires before they are put into words and action.

Exalted thoughts lead us to new and glorified trusts, to higher ideals of life and joys.

*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] Thomas Gray, (1716–1771) English poet. Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College.

[2] Shakespeare, William, (1564–1616) As You Like It, Act 2, Scene 1.

[3] Gen. 1:26

February 14, 2018

Updated at 3 p.m. February 14, 2018bible study image

Subject: guilt destroyed

Golden text: Matthew 12:37*

For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

Daniel 5: 1-4

King Belshazzar gave a great banquet for a thousand of his nobles and drank wine with them. While Belshazzar was drinking his wine, he gave orders to bring in the gold and silver goblets that Nebuchadnezzar his father had taken from the temple in Jerusalem, so that the king and his nobles, his wives and his concubines might drink from them. So they brought in the gold goblets that had been taken from the temple of God in Jerusalem, and the king and his nobles, his wives and his concubines drank from them. As they drank the wine, they praised the gods of gold and silver, of bronze, iron, wood and stone.

From 21st Century Science and Health**

Physical sense lifts its voice with the arrogance of reality and boasts: I am completely dishonest and people don’t know it. I can commit adultery, cheat, lie, steal, and murder. I evade detection by pretending to be a victim. My tendency is irrational, my feelings are deceitful, and my purpose is fraudulent, but I aim to make my short span of life one big fling. Resistance to spirituality is fantastic!

The inebriate believes that there is pleasure in intoxication. The thief believes something is gained by stealing, and the hypocrite thinks no one notices their deceit. The Science of Mind corrects such mistakes, for Truth proves the fallacy of error.

We can’t escape the consequences for wrongdoing.

Daniel 5: 5-10

Suddenly the fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall, near the lampstand in the royal palace. The king watched the hand as it wrote. His face turned pale and he was so frightened that his legs became weak and his knees were knocking.

The king summoned the enchanters, astrologers and diviners. Then he said to these wise men of Babylon, “Whoever reads this writing and tells me what it means will be clothed in purple and have a gold chain placed around his neck, and he will be made the third highest ruler in the kingdom.”

Then all the king’s wise men came in, but they could not read the writing or tell the king what it meant. So King Belshazzar became even more terrified and his face grew more pale. His nobles were baffled.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Knowledge and pleasure evolved through physical and personal senses, produce the immediate mindset of fear and shame. Uncomfortable in the presence of Truth, human knowledge becomes confused and people cower and hide when they hear the divine voice calling for their attention.

Though error hides behind a lie and excuses guilt, error can’t forever be concealed. Truth, through her eternal laws, causes error and sin to betray itself, and sets upon error the mark of the beast. Even the disposition to justify or conceal guilt is punished. The avoidance of justice and the denial of truth tend to perpetuate sin, invoke crime, jeopardize self-control, and mock divine mercy.

Daniel 5:10-12

10 The queen, hearing the voices of the king and his nobles, came into the banquet hall. “May the king live forever!” she said. “Don’t be alarmed! Don’t look so pale! 11 There is a man in your kingdom who has the spirit of the holy gods in him. In the time of your father he was found to have insight and intelligence and wisdom like that of the gods. Your father, King Nebuchadnezzar, appointed him chief of the magicians, enchanters, astrologers and diviners. 12 He did this because Daniel, whom the king called Belteshazzar, was found to have a keen mind and knowledge and understanding, and also the ability to interpret dreams, explain riddles and solve difficult problems. Call for Daniel, and he will tell you what the writing means.”

From 21st Century Science and Health

Voices of solemn import are heard in the sacred sanctuary of Truth. Are we heeding these voices? If so, we are burying error and resurrecting to spiritual life. These signs are seen when the temporary pleasures and pains pass away from our lives.

There is neither place nor opportunity in Science for error of any sort. Every day makes its demands upon us for better proofs rather than verbal claims of Christian power. These proofs replace sin, sickness, and death with the power of Spirit, as Jesus destroyed them. This is an element of progress and progress is the law of God whose law demands of us only what we can certainly fulfill.

The fleshly senses can’t cognize Spirit. The knowledge filter of human mind—filtering out what doesn’t fit into its personal paradigm—can’t come into the presence of God, and must live in fantasyland until mortals arrive at the understanding that limited life, with all its sin, sickness, and death, is an illusion against which divine Science is engaged in a warfare of extermination. The great verities of existence are never excluded by falsity.

Divine Science interprets the Principle of heavenly harmony. The great miracle to human sense is divine Love, and the grand purpose of life is to gain the true idea of what constitutes the kingdom of heaven in us.

Daniel 5: 13, 16-17, 23-31

13 So Daniel was brought before the king, and the king said to him, “Are you Daniel, one of the exiles my father the king brought from Judah?

16 Now I have heard that you are able to give interpretations and to solve difficult problems. If you can read this writing and tell me what it means, you will be clothed in purple and have a gold chain placed around your neck, and you will be made the third highest ruler in the kingdom.”

17 Then Daniel answered the king, “You may keep your gifts for yourself and give your rewards to someone else. Nevertheless, I will read the writing for the king and tell him what it means.

23you have set yourself up against the Lord of heaven. You had the goblets from his temple brought to you, and you and your nobles, your wives and your concubines drank wine from them. You praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood and stone, which cannot see or hear or understand. But you did not honor the God who holds in his hand your life and all your ways. 24 Therefore he sent the hand that wrote the inscription.

25 “This is the inscription that was written: mene, mene, tekel, parsin 26 “Here is what these words mean: Mene God has numbered the days of your reign and brought it to an end. 27 Tekel: You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting. 28 Peres: Your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” 29 Then at Belshazzar’s command, Daniel was clothed in purple, a gold chain was placed around his neck, and he was proclaimed the third highest ruler in the kingdom. 30 That very night Belshazzar, king of the Babylonians, was slain, 31 and Darius the Mede took over the kingdom, at the age of sixty-two.

From 21st Century Science and Health

The misperception of Life as something less than God, with no truth to support it, collapses upon itself. This misperception will reach the climax of suffering, yield to Truth and return to dust. However, it is only a mortal person and not the real person who dies. The image of Spirit can’t be effaced, since it is the idea of Truth. The image of Truth doesn’t change, but becomes more beautifully apparent at error’s demise.

We have overwhelming proof that the human mind claims to control every organ of the mortal body. But this mind is a myth and must by its own consent yield to Truth. Although the human mind throws its weight around, it is powerless. The immortal divine Mind takes away the human minds assumed identities and saves human mind from itself. I have endeavored to make the ideas in this book the medicine of mind and body, to give hope and healing to the needy, even if they don’t know how the work is done. Truth has a healing effect even when not fully understood.

If the balance is evenly adjusted, the removal of a single weight from either scale offsets the other side. Whatever influence you put on the side of human mind, you take away from divine Mind, which would otherwise outweigh all else. Your thinking can work against your health, so it is better to employ your thinking on the side of health. You make yourself sick through the false belief of sickness even before you rush after drugs, get blood tests, and avoid society for fear of germs.

Fear weighs down humanity with superimposed and conjectural evils. Human mind is the worst enemy of the body, while divine Mind is its best friend.

Hebrews 10:22

let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.

From 21st Century Science and Health

It would be better to be exposed to every plague on earth than to endure the amassed effects of a guilty conscience. The persistent consciousness of wrongdoing tends to destroy the ability to do right. If sin is not regretted and is not lessening, then it is hurrying on to physical and moral doom. You are conquered by the moral penalties you accrue and the ills they bring. The pains of sinful sense are less harmful than its pleasures. When human beings realize they no longer want to believe in physical suffering, they turn from the body to Spirit and call on divine sources outside themselves.

We cannot be mesmerized by the flesh or hypnotized by human mind while practicing the Science of Truth. Truth cannot be reversed, but the reverse of error is true. An improved conviction cannot retrograde. When Christ, Truth, changes a human mortal conviction of sin or sickness into a better conviction, then thought melts into spiritual understanding and sin, disease, and fear disappear. Truth, Love, gives human beings temporary food and clothing until the temporal, transformed with the ideal, disappears, and we are clothed and fed spiritually. St. Paul says, “Work out (cultivate, carry out to the goal, and fully complete) your salvation with reverence and awe and trembling (self-distrust, with serious caution, tenderness of conscience, watchfulness against temptation, timidly shrinking from whatever might offend God and discredit the name of Christ).”[1] Jesus said, “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.”[2] This truth is divine Science.

Christian Scientists, be a law to yourselves that mental malpractice cannot harm you either when asleep or when awake.

The moral law, which has the right to acquit or condemn, always demands restitution before human beings can “move up to a better place.”[3] Penalties compel progress.

As the crude footprints of the past disappear from the dissolving paths of the present, we shall better understand the Science which governs these changes and stand on firmer ground. Every sensuous pleasure or pain is self-destroyed through suffering. There can be painless progress, attended by life and peace instead of disorder and death.

 

*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] Phil. 2:12 (Amplified)

[2] Luke 12:32

[3] Luke 14:10