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

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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)

 

March 7, 2018

Subject: More than superficial

Golden text: John 7:18*

 The one who speaks on his own authority seeks his own glory; but the one who seeks the glory of him who sent him is true, and in him there is no falsehood.

Ezekiel 13: 1-7

The word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel, who are prophesying, and say to those who prophesy from their own hearts: ‘Hear the word of the Lord!’ Thus says the Lord God, Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! Your prophets have been like jackals among ruins, O Israel. You have not gone up into the breaches, or built up a wall for the house of Israel, that it might stand in battle in the day of the Lord. They have seen false visions and lying divinations. They say, ‘Declares the Lord,’ when the Lord has not sent them, and yet they expect him to fulfill their word. Have you not seen a false vision and uttered a lying divination, whenever you have said, ‘Declares the Lord,’ although I have not spoken?”

From 21st Century Science and Health**

Human beings have methods of their own, not directed and not sustained by God.

The disabled, the deaf, the dumb, the depressed, the visually impaired, the sick, the sensualist, the sinner, can be saved from the terrors of their own beliefs. Don’t waste your years away by serving an unreal master telling you that the body governs you rather than Mind.

Because all the methods of divine Mind are not understood our conclusions are inconclusive.

Sinful desires can never unite in action with Spirit, just as good never meets at some point with evil. It is foolish to take a hesitant position or sit on the fence when it comes to our spirituality.

We can earnestly seek the immortal status of person, which is outside the illusion of mortal human men and women. “Men and women don’t live very long; like wildflowers they spring up and blossom, but a storm snuffs them out just as quickly.”[1]

Ezekiel 13:8-12

 Therefore thus says the Lord God: “Because you have uttered falsehood and seen lying visions, therefore behold, I am against you, declares the Lord God. My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and who give lying divinations. They shall not be in the council of my people, nor be enrolled in the register of the house of Israel, nor shall they enter the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord God. 10 Precisely because they have misled my people, saying, ‘Peace,’ when there is no peace, and because, when the people build a wall, these prophets smear it with whitewash, 11 say to those who smear it with whitewash that it shall fall! There will be a deluge of rain, and you, O great hailstones, will fall, and a stormy wind break out. 12 And when the wall falls, will it not be said to you, ‘Where is the coating with which you smeared it?’

From 21st Century Science and Health

Effort spent living in the past, pursuing superficial goals, or showing off, is effort wasted.

Listen and be wise. You can escape from error. You can also detect the unfaithful people who saw the danger and gave no warning.

The human self must be evangelized. This task God demands us to accept gracefully as we abandon as fast as practical the temporal, and work out the spiritual which determines the outward and actual.

Study metaphysics and look deep into realism, instead of only accepting the superficial, illusive sense of things. Be elevated in thought in every situation. Can we gather peaches from a pine tree or learn from disorder the order of being? Continue to recognize the nothingness of illusions—stay on the path Science is walking—and the ingrained illusions of human beings will be replaced with reality.

Self-worship is denser than a solid body. In patient obedience to a patient God, let us labor to dissolve with the universal solvent of Love the clotted mass of error. Let us work to bankrupt self-will, self-justification, and self-worship. Don’t invest in mortality with its errors that compete against spirituality.

If you float on the quiet surface of error and are in sympathy with error, what is there to disturb the waters? What is there to strip off error’s disguise?

If you dare to launch your ship on the ever-agitated but healthful waters of truth, you will encounter storms. The good you do will be spoken of as evil. This is the responsibility. Be accountable. For in answering to Spirit you will win and feel the honor.

Psalms 63:5-11

My soul will be satisfied as with fat and rich food,
and my mouth will praise you with joyful lips,
when I remember you upon my bed,
and meditate on you in the watches of the night;
for you have been my help,
and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.
My soul clings to you;
your right hand upholds me.

But those who seek to destroy my life
shall go down into the depths of the earth;
10 they shall be given over to the power of the sword;
they shall be a portion for jackals.
11 But the king shall rejoice in God;
all who swear by him shall exult,
for the mouths of liars will be stopped.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Can material wave/particles commit a crime and be punished? Can you separate the mentality from the body over which courts hold jurisdiction? Human mortal mind, not matter, is the criminal in every case; and human law rightly estimates crime, and courts reasonably pass sentence according to motive. Courts and juries judge and sentence human beings to restrain crime, prevent violence, or punish the wrongdoer. To say that these courts have no jurisdiction over the human or mortal mind would be to contradict precedent. It doesn’t make sense to admit that law is restricted to physical forces and bodies, while the real outlaw, human mortal mind, defies justice and is recommended to mercy.

Our civil laws take cognizance of mental crimes and no longer apply legal rulings entirely too physical offences, and it will go down in history that how we think or what we think, directly or indirectly affects actions, including the actions of what we call physical bodies.

Words and actions breathing the omnipotence of divine justice and wisdom, are powerful to break the barriers of human ideologies, fear, and caustic practices.

The fact that truth corresponds to reality is not rejected in Christian Science. Instead, Christian Science reveals that much of the reality before the human perceptions is not actually true, for example the earth isn’t a motionless solid mass, but consists of forces in constant motion. Truth, reality, has no unreality, no error; therefore, disbelief in error destroys error and leads to discernment of Truth. Our own realities aren’t always true.

Mark 13:21-27

21 And then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. 23 But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand. 24 “But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, 25 and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. 26 And then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. 27 And then he will send out the angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Jesus warned his disciples to “be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.”[2] He defined this yeast as human doctrines or teachings.

Guard against religious teachings that lead to beliefs in a breakable relationship with God. If Life or Soul and its representative person, unite for a period and then are separated as if divorced by law, to be brought together again at some uncertain future time and in manner unknown, we are left without a rational proof of immortality. We can’t be separated for an instant from God when reflecting God. Divine Science shows spiritual being intact.

In mathematics, we do not multiply when we need to subtract and then say the answer is correct. No more can we say in Science that muscles give strength, that nerves give pain or pleasure, that genes and chemicals govern, and then expect the result will be harmony. Material muscles, nerves, DNA, or bones are nothing without mind, but human mind keeps beating its head “against brick walls,”[3] trying to heal with incorrect premises. Divine Mind heals.

[The following is a statement by Timothy B. McCall, M.D.]

“We know from history that much of what doctors do at any particular time is ineffective or even dangerous when viewed in retrospect. Years ago a famous professor warned his graduating medical students that half of what he’d taught them was wrong, but the trouble was he didn’t know which half. Medical practice has evolved significantly since then, but the principle still applies: we don’t know which of the well-intentioned therapies of the present will end up looking like the leeches and bloodletting of ancient time or like the thalidomide, Dalkon shields, and routine tonsillectomies of a more recent era gone by. Accordingly, the pronouncements of doctors should be viewed with healthy skepticism.”[4] —Timothy B. McCall, M.D. a practicing physician in Boston.

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

We treat error through the understanding of Truth, because Truth is error’s antidote.

Mind is the source of perpetual and harmonious movement, of which there is no inertia to stop it. Mind is the same Life, Love, and wisdom “yesterday and today and forever.”[5]

[1] Ps. 103:15–16 (The Message)

[2] Mark 8:15; Luke 12:1

[3] Isa. 1:5 (The Message)

[4] McCall, Timothy B., Examining Your Doctor, A Patient’s Guide to Avoiding Harmful Medical Care. New York: Carol Publishing, 1995

[5] Heb. 13:8

*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.

February 28, 2018

bible study imageSubject: Church and state

Golden text: Proverbs 19:6*

Many curry favor with a ruler, and everyone is the friend of one who gives gifts.

II Kings 4:8-17

One day Elisha went to Shunem. And a well-to-do woman was there, who urged him to stay for a meal. So whenever he came by, he stopped there to eat. She said to her husband, “I know that this man who often comes our way is a holy man of God. 10 Let’s make a small room on the roof and put in it a bed and a table, a chair and a lamp for him. Then he can stay there whenever he comes to us.”

11 One day when Elisha came, he went up to his room and lay down there. 12 He said to his servant Gehazi, “Call the Shunammite.” So he called her, and she stood before him. 13 Elisha said to him, “Tell her, ‘You have gone to all this trouble for us. Now what can be done for you? Can we speak on your behalf to the king or the commander of the army?’”

She replied, “I have a home among my own people.”

14 “What can be done for her?” Elisha asked.

Gehazi said, “She has no son, and her husband is old.”

15 Then Elisha said, “Call her.” So he called her, and she stood in the doorway. 16 “About this time next year,” Elisha said, “you will hold a son in your arms.”

“No, my lord!” she objected. “Please, man of God, don’t mislead your servant!”

17 But the woman became pregnant, and the next year about that same time she gave birth to a son, just as Elisha had told her.

From 21st Century Science and Health**

As Roman and Greek mythology has yielded to a more spiritual idea of God, so will our human theories yield to spiritual ideas until the finite gives place to the infinite, sickness gives way to health, sin to holiness, and God’s kingdom comes “on earth as it is in heaven.”[1] The basis of all health, purity, and spirituality is the great fact that God is the only Mind; and this Mind must not merely be believed but it must be understood. To get rid of anything that opposes Love is to deprive the opposition of any supposed mind or reality, and never to admit the competitor can have intelligence or power, pain or pleasure. You conquer error by denying it validity. Our various theories will never lose their imaginary power for good or evil until we lose our faith in them and make life its own proof of harmony and God.

The legacy of the tribe of Judah shows that beliefs engendering a national theology or political religion are the antithesis of true Christianity. Narrow systems and theories concerning God, human beings, health, and a religious society, are restrictive.

Meet the initial stages of disease with as powerful mental opposition as a legislator would employ to defeat the passage of an inhuman law. Rise in the conscious strength of the spirit of Truth to overthrow the petition of human mind, alias mortal conditions lobbying against the supremacy of Spirit. Exclude the images of finite human mind and its beliefs in sickness and sin.

When overstepping some supposed mortal law, you say that there is danger. This fear is the danger and induces the physical effects. We cannot in reality suffer from breaking anything except a moral or spiritual law. The supposed laws of mortal knowledge are destroyed by the understanding that the law of Soul is immortal. The human mind cannot legislate the times, conditions, and types of disease with which humans die. God is the lawmaker, but God is not the author of ruthless rules. In infinite Life and Love there is no sickness, no twisted good, no fatality.

Luke 20:19-26

19 The teachers of the law and the chief priests looked for a way to arrest [Jesus] immediately, because they knew he had spoken this parable against them. But they were afraid of the people.

20 Keeping a close watch on him, they sent spies, who pretended to be sincere. They hoped to catch Jesus in something he said, so that they might hand him over to the power and authority of the governor. 21 So the spies questioned him: “Teacher, we know that you speak and teach what is right, and that you do not show partiality but teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. 22 Is it right for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?”

23 He saw through their duplicity and said to them, 24 “Show me a denarius. Whose image and inscription are on it?”

“Caesar’s,” they replied.

25 He said to them, “Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

26 They were unable to trap him in what he had said there in public. And astonished by his answer, they became silent.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Jesus’ impersonation of the spiritual idea had a brief human history, however, “his kingdom will never end.”[2] God’s idea, Christ, will ultimately rule all nations and peoples—imperatively, absolutely, finally—with divine Science.

Keep clearly in thought that we are the offspring of God, not of human beings; that we are spiritual, not defined by limitations; that Soul is Spirit, never trapped inside anything. Neither Quantum energy nor matter gives the body sensation and life. It breaks the dream of disease to understand that sickness is formed by the human mind, not by viruses, physiological malfunctions, time, or divine Mind.

Joyce Meyer wrote in her book The Battlefield of the Mind, “The mind is the leader or forerunner of all actions.”[3]  Statements such as this are as a “voice of one calling in the desert,”[4] preparing humanity for the real and eternal. Our thoughts are being led to look past the superficial. We can know the way of divine Science. Let us prepare for the supremacy of Spirit, the kingdom of heaven—the government and law of universal harmony, which cannot be lost or remain forever unseen.

Mind, not mechanical energy, is causation. A material body only expresses a temporal and human mind. Human beings possess this body and make it harmonious or discordant according to the images of thoughts imprinted upon it. You embrace your body in your thought. Be sure to outline on the body thoughts of health, not of sickness. Make the effort to banish all thoughts of disease and sin and of other beliefs connected to mortality. Our spirituality has an indestructible life. It is the mortal thinking which makes the body disordered and diseased in proportion as spiritual unawareness, fear, or human-will governs us.

Mind, supreme over all its formations and governing them all, is the central sun of its own system of ideas. God is the life and light of its own incalculable creation. We acknowledge divine Mind. The measurable human body or mind is not God’s child.

The world would collapse without Mind, without the intelligence which holds the “winds”[5] in its grasp. Neither philosophy nor skepticism can hinder the movement of Science which is ever revealing the supremacy of Mind. The intuitive sense of Mind-power reinforces the glory of Mind. Nearness, not distance, lends delight to this view.

Quantum mechanics; molecular reactions; electronic bionics; the patterns and relationships between masses and forces; and so on, are of no real importance when we remember that they all must give place to spiritual truths by the translation of the universe and us back into Spirit. As this transformation occurs, our true selfhood and the universe will be found harmonious and spiritual.

There is great danger in teaching Mind-healing indiscriminately, thus disregarding the morals of the student and caring only for the payments. Recall words that have been credited to Thomas Jefferson concerning slavery, “I tremble, when I remember that God is just.”[6] I tremble whenever I see a person, for the petty reward of money, teaching his or her slight knowledge of Mind-power—increasing the probability of communicating the teacher’s own bad morals. This sad state deals pitilessly with a community unprepared for self-defense.

Divine Science silences human will, disables fear with Truth and Love, and illustrates the unlabored motion of the divine energy in healing the sick. Self-indulgence, envy, emotionalism, arrogance, hatred, and revenge are dissolved by divine Mind which heals disease. The human will which makes and works a lie, hiding the divine Principle of harmony, is destructive to health and is the cause of disease rather than its cure.

Matthew 27:1-2, 11-14

Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people made their plans how to have Jesus executed. So they bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pilate the governor.

11 Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“You have said so,” Jesus replied.

12 When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. 13 Then Pilate asked him, “Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?” 14 But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.

From 21st Century Science and Health

Jesus was mocked by the religious authorities, the same authorities before whom he humbly and courageously walked. Contempt was thrown in Jesus’ face by the people to whom he had given clear-cut proof of divine power.

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.

Some Bible versions include an extra line at the end of the Lord’s Prayer. Bible scholars think that a later copyist may have added it. However, it doesn’t affect the meaning of the prayer itself and has been included here along with what I understand to be—in italics—the spiritual sense of the Lord’s Prayer:

Our Father in heaven,
Our Father-Mother God, all-harmonious,
Hallowed be Your name,
One sacred nature,
Your kingdom come,
Your government is come; You are ever-present,
Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

*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. 6:10

[2] Luke 1:33

[3] Meyer, Joyce. Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle in Your Mind.  New York: Warner, 1995.

[4] Isa. 40:3; Matt. 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4

[5] Rev. 7:1

[6] Jefferson, Thomas (1743–1826) Political philosopher. Founding Father. Principal author of Declaration of Independence. The third President of the United States.

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