Christian Science: The Science

of the Revelation of God's Nature to Man

 

John W. Doorly, C.S.B., of London, England

Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,

The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts

 

God's Protection of His Creation

In one of her poems, Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, has written of God these words, "Thou Love that guards the nestling's faltering flight!" (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 389) Mrs. Eddy undoubtedly knew that if God, divine Love, was not an ever present, ever available entity, every nestling would fall to the ground and perish. The fact that some of the nestlings seemed to perish was only to her an evidence of mortal man's ignorance of the fact that God is Love. It was natural that the individual who recognized so clearly the nearness and dearness of God as Love, even in the smallest affairs of mankind, such as the nestling's flight, should have been still more conscious of the willingness and ability of divine Love to take care of His highest and more important creation, man. On the other hand, the false concepts of mortals about God and about existence have caused them to regard God as a being who either cannot or does not take care of His creation and who does not preserve His creation intact from evil and calamity. Even a little thought on this subject would convince anyone that the God of whom Christ Jesus taught men was the same God of whom Mrs. Eddy was writing in her poem. Did Jesus not say, "Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows?" Did Jesus mean that God either caused or permitted the sparrows to fall to the ground, or did he mean that if even to mortal sense the sparrows seemed to fall and perish, that yet, as that incident was not of the Father, it was not an actual happening from a divine standpoint, but was only a fleeting phenomenon of the human mind; likewise, if any calamity seemed to happen to man, even so small an incident as the loss of one hair, since such an occurrence was unlike God's law of infinite Life and Love, it was not a part of God's eternal law, in which man is held and sustained perfect and eternal, but it was simply a false concept of mortals? Judged by ordinary human sense testimony, Jesus' statements do not seem to be in accord with everyday happenings. Then where is the discrepancy? Are the statements of Christ Jesus with regard to God's infinite protection for His creation, and the later statements of Mrs. Eddy on this subject, incorrect, or are the experiences of mortals unreliable? If the answer to this question be left to Christian Science, it replies without any hesitation that the statements of Christ Jesus and of Mrs. Eddy are not only correct, but that they are essentially demonstrable; also that the experiences and happenings of mortal existence are not only unreliable, but that a knowledge of God as Love will prove them to be false, fleeting, temporal, and avoidable. Christian Science reminds us that the teachings of the Bible are to some extent the record of the effort of spiritually-minded men and women, who were inspired by God, to bring to human consciousness the fact that God is Love, the one producing, sustaining, impelling, and protecting influence; also the fact that God, divine Love, is infinitely available to men, that He is ever present and omnipotent. These teachings show clearly that we do not have to implore God to be God or to make His presence and power available to men, for they are infinitely available: we only have to understand and utilize the fact that God is, that He is Love, and that Love alone governs all being. Ignorance of God as Love, who is forever mindful of His Creation, has caused mankind to regard existence as something unlike God or as a state of being apart from God, in which Love's law seems to play very little part, but in which fear, hate, evil of every kind, and false mortal laws seem to predominate. Christian Science teaches that all the woes of mankind come from ignorance of God, ignorance of divine Love, and that the proper understanding of God as Love will lead mankind out of mortal bondage of every kind. This understanding will also convince men of the eternal unity of God and His creation, and of Love's infinite willingness and ability to care for and to protect His creation.

 

The Nature of God and His Creation

Let us see, then, what Christian Science teaches about God and about His creation: let us also consider the healing and redeeming nature of such facts. Christian Science teaches that God is divine Love, the creator and sustainer of all being; it further teaches that God is Spirit, as the Scriptures state, and it declares that Spirit is divine Mind. Christian Science, therefore, teaches logically that Love, Spirit, and Mind are synonymous names for God. Christian Science likewise explains that God's creation is never separated from God, but that it is forever included in God, and that it is entirely like Him; also that it is through His creation God expresses and reveals Himself. Christian Science, consequently, declares that true being is composed of God, and of God's manifestation or creation, which is forever expressing and revealing Him. Now what kind of expression or creation would God, the creator, have? He could have only one kind of creation or expression: that is a creation or expression which is exactly like Him. Consequently, Christian Science teaches that God who is Love, Spirit, Mind, must have a creation or expression which is infinitely like Love, infinitely like Spirit, infinitely like Mind; in fact, He must have a creation which is always loving and beloved, always spiritual and always divinely mental. This creation, moreover, must be inseparable from God, the creator, for it is His manifestation or reflection; and creation, consequently, can have no life, being, activity, or initiative that is not derived from God, since He alone is cause and creator. Here, then, from the Christian Scientist's point of view, we have one infinite cause or creator, God, who is Love, Spirit, Mind, and one infinite creation or manifestation, which is wholly spiritual or divinely mental and which always expresses the nature of Love, of Spirit, and of Mind; also the creator and His creation are inseparable as cause and effect. If men would only cease from thinking of God's creation as something apart from God and would begin to understand it as God's own reflection or manifestation, they would recognize at once how impossible it is for God's creation to lapse into sin, disease, or death.

 

Nature of Mortal Existence

"Well," someone says, "what, then, is mortal existence and where does mortality come from?" Christian Science replies that mortality is but a false sense of creation, that it is but mortal or material thinking and the result of mortal thinking, mortal so-called existence. Christian Science points out that in this so-called material existence, God is believed to be separated from His creation and His creation is supposed to be quite unlike the creator, and to have life and being apart from the creator. Christian Science declares that the only logical explanation of mortality, or the false sense of existence, is to explain it away by the understanding and the demonstration of God and His creation as the only reality. This is the way Jesus of Nazareth explained the dream of mortality, including sin, disease and death; he explained it away with his demonstrable understanding of God and of God's creation. Let us see, then, how God, divine Love, has throughout the ages, manifested Himself through spiritually-minded men and women or through His creation, to deliver mankind from its dream of mortality or from a wrong mental condition; also how God is today impelling men and women to express the nature of Love, of Spirit, and of Mind, in order that humanity may be made free from mortality.

 

God, the Only Source and Cause

It is always the purpose of Christian Science to show that every activity that is for the good of mankind originates in God, in divine Love, that such activities forever abide in God and that they are always of the Father; also that they express the power and the presence of God. The Christian Scientist, in fact, knows that all good, however expressed, or by whomsoever expressed, is but a manifestation or expression of God's nature; he consequently understands that it is the Father that doeth the works. Students of the Scripture will recognize at once that holy men and women of old always attributed every good thing to God; whatever was accomplished for the good of mankind they always recognized as the operation and activity of God, divine Love, expressing Himself through spiritually-minded men and women in proportion as they had perceived somewhat of His true nature and of the nature of true existence. Because of this right mental condition these men and women were able to deliver mankind from some of its sins, some of its diseases, some of its sorrows, from its fear of death and sometimes from death itself. Is it not, then, logical to believe that a clearer and more universal understanding of God's true nature and of His creation as being like Him would provide an even greater occasion for God to manifest Himself in human experience and so to deliver humanity from all of its sins, all of its diseases, all of its fear, ignorance, and worry, and eventually from all of its belief in death? When mankind recognizes that every good thought and deed, or every right mental condition, is born of God, then mankind will understand that every true thought or every right mental activity must express the power and the healing and redeeming ability of divine Love. What the world needs to recognize is that God is all, and does all; also that anything which is not of Him, or anything that is material and that is unlike Love, Spirit, or Mind, has no reality, presence, nor power. Then, in our glace backward at what we call history, or the progress of civilization, let us remember that we are really beholding how God has revealed Himself through His creation in a clearer and clearer way in proportion as men were willing to understand Him and to give up the false or mortal sense of existence, but it was always God revealing or manifesting Himself, because all right activity starts with and is forever included in God, Love, Spirit, Mind, the one and only cause or creator, and is only expressed or reflected by His creation.

 

God's Revelation of His True Nature

In the first chapter of Genesis, where some revelator has recorded how he had perceived the truth about God and about His creation, by seven progressive revelations or visions of spiritual sense, which he describes as seven days, he begins his record with these words, "And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep." If the revelator had spoken in present-day language he would probably have said something to this effect, "And the whole of existence seemed to be material, and ignorance of God and spiritual reality seemed to predominate everywhere." Then he gives the keynote of his revelation in these words, "And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." In our present-day language he would probably have said, "Truth operated to dispel this ignorance." The important fact to be noticed here is that the revelator did not say that he had perceived the truth, although that would have been true from one point of view, but he traced the revelation back to the original source, God, and he declared that "the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." In like manner, throughout this whole chapter, every activity of Truth is traced back to its original source, God, and is described thus, "And God said . . ." Evidently the revelator realized that whatever he perceived which was true, the fact itself and the ability to perceive it, had both originated in God; indeed, he realized that God is all and does all. He therefore recognized the important fact that all truth is of God. A little later the Scriptures state, "And the Lord said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark." Here again was the recognition of the fact that all right activity starts with God and this incident was another proof of Love "that guards the nestling's faltering flight" (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 389).

In the twelfth chapter of Genesis we read, "Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee." Undoubtedly Abraham recognized that his impulse to go out to a place where his understanding of God could be developed, had originated in God, even before he was conscious of it. Abraham, in fact, was a willing mental condition expressing something that had been forever in the divine Mind, God, and that something was the eternal purpose of Love to heal and to redeem. Would it not be true, then, to say that what men knew as Abraham, or what the world called Abraham, was really in a degree God's manifestation of His own nature through one of His creations, or one of His ideas? Would mankind not be able to see more clearly the absolute unity of God and His creation if it would begin to recognize in true existence the manifestation or expression of God, and to reason logically from God or from cause instead of drawing its conclusions from mortal existence? In her textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 467), Mrs. Eddy has made a vital statement on this point when she writes, "Reasoning from cause to effect in the Science of Mind, we begin with Mind, which must be understood through the idea which expresses it and cannot be learned from its opposite, matter."

The purpose of this lecture is, as I have before explained, to show that all right activity, every good thought and deed, originates in God, forever abides in Him, and wherever or by whomsoever manifested, is always to some extent God expressing His nature, through some one of His ideas. Every right mental activity therefore expresses the nature of God: it consequently expresses infinite power and ability to dispel human illusions or mortal beliefs. This is the Science of Christianity, revealing one infinite cause or creator, God, divine Love, Spirit, Mind, and His creation, spiritual reality, which is forever manifesting the divine nature. This Science of Christianity has nothing in common with blind human belief, but is based on spiritual understanding or on exact scientific knowledge. Is not this Science of the Christ divine Love's infinite provision and plan of salvation? Christian Science teaches that no good can ever be separated from the one infinite good, God, and if men would only recognize this they would not only grasp the fact that all good has forever proceeded from God alone, but they would grasp the even more important fact of the availability and power of any and of all good as forever inseparable from God and always proceeding from Him.

In the twenty-eighth chapter of Genesis, it is recorded of Jacob that he "dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And, behold, the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed. . . . And behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of." In this incident it is clearly shown that not only had God, divine Love, provided for Jacob and his seed, but that Jacob's very perception of this provision originated in God. When will men perceive that it is the privilege of all of us as the sons of God to express God's nature, and that as we are willing to lay down or give up the mortal or false sense of existence, and to understand our true selfhood, we shall express the divine nature to some extent, even here and now? The fact is that each and every one of us, not as mortals but as God's man, that is, as the spiritual image and likeness of God, forever abode as an eternal fact in the Mind which is God, and whenever we express somewhat of the divine nature we are actually expressing somewhat of our true spiritual selfhood. Whatever good Abraham or Jacob seemed to express in human experience, or whatever good you or I or anyone may seem to express, we can only manifest that good because to some extent, this is the individual way in which we, as the sons of God, have always expressed God. Therefore, whenever you or I or anyone accomplishes anything that is good, let us recognize that we are only expressing somewhat of God's nature in the way that Love had eternally ordained that we should express it, and this true expression increases in proportion as we give up mortal or false thinking and understand God and the true man, in God's likeness. Christian Science therefore teaches that every appearing of good in human experience, whether it seemed to be through Noah, through Abraham, through Jacob, or through anyone, is always, to some extent, God expressing His eternal nature, through some one of His ideas as His nature has been expressed through that individuality from everlasting to everlasting. This appearing of God's nature and man's true individuality always occurs in human experience in proportion as we let God's will be manifested through us. Were we willing and able to lay down the false or mortal sense entirely we should express the divine nature perfectly in the way that God has eternally ordained that we shall express it. Jesus once explained this great fact in these words, "The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do; for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise." In fact, every right activity is a manifestation or expression of God's nature, and as we awaken from the dream of mortality we shall recognize that God's creation can never express anything but God's own nature, or the nature of Love, of Spirit, and of Mind. This process of awakening from the mortal to our true being as God's expression or creation is what constitutes the healing and redeeming work of Christian Science.

In the thirty-ninth chapter of Genesis it is recorded of Joseph, "And the Lord was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man . . . And his master saw that the Lord was with him, and that the Lord made all that he did to prosper in his hand." Here again the fact is clearly recognized that Joseph was accomplishing something of value to humanity, because he was in that mental condition through which divine Love could manifest Himself to bless mankind. God, in fact, was expressing His nature through the character or the mental condition which men called Joseph, but which was actually the appearing to some extent, in human experience, of one of God's own ideas. The story of Moses is a striking illustration of God's care for all of His children, and of the infinite impulsion of the divine Mind to lead mankind out of mortality. This story shows clearly that even before the mortal Moses was able to think, divine Love was caring for him in every detail; in fact, the character or the mental condition which men called Moses was but the human sense of one of God's ideas and was therefore in a degree God expressing His own nature to some extent, through one of His ideas. In the second chapter of Exodus, we have the touching story of the hiding of Moses in the bulrushes by his mother, and of his adoption by Pharoah's daughter. Both of these incidents are proofs of the infinite protection and provision of divine Love, not only to save Moses, but also for the greater purpose of later expressing God's own nature through Moses' thinking and living, in order that mankind might be delivered from materiality. Christian Science shows us that God was manifesting Himself in this case, both through the mother of Moses, and even through the tender impulse of Pharoah's daughter, and this whole incident was in some measure a proof of the fact that God is, that He is Love and that He alone governs. In the third chapter of Exodus, we read, "And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you." In this statement is shown the fact that God impelled Moses not only to understand His nature, but to explain that nature to the children of Israel. Is it not perfectly clear that the same divine Love which protected and sustained Moses when he was an unthinking babe was now operating to impel him to so express the divine nature that his fellow-men would thereby be brought out of bondage? It is of this infinite Love that Mrs. Eddy is speaking to mankind, and of whose healing, saving, and redeeming nature, Christian Science has given such striking proofs.

Hear Mrs. Eddy's tender yet forcible portrayal of God's nature and of His willingness and ability to protect and to preserve every right human activity, as given in the poem we have already quoted from: —

 

O gentle presence, peace and joy and power;

O Life divine, that owns each waiting hour,

Thou Love that guards the nestling's faltering flight!

Keep Thou my child on upward wing to-night.

 

Love is our refuge; only with mine eye

Can I behold the snare, the pit, the fall:

His habitation high is here, and nigh,

His arm encircles me, and mine, and all.

 

(Miscellaneous Writings, p. 389.)

 

Hear also Isaiah's graphic description of God's eternal care for His creation: "I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou has not known me: that they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else."

 

God Manifesting Himself Through Christ Jesus

There never lived a being who understood more clearly the allness of God than did Christ Jesus. Even although he recognized in himself the highest expression of God that humanity had known, he was ever turning the thoughts of man to the fact that "the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works." A close study of the birth of Christ Jesus, and of the incidents connected with it, will at once convince anyone that infinite Love, that Love which is divine Mind, was taking care of every circumstance in connection with this wonderful manifestation of God's nature through one of His ideas. The appearing of the angel Gabriel to Zechariah, and the birth of John the Baptist, the later appearing of the same angel to Joseph, the appearing of the star to the Virgin, the advice and warning to the Wisemen, were all provisions of divine Love, even when the man Jesus was not apparent to human sense, or when he seemed to be but an unthinking babe. The fact is, that God's manifestation of His own nature, through one of His ideas, as it had existed from everlasting to everlasting, was being made known to human thought through the spiritual thinking of certain men and women, and through the subjugation of mortal belief in the thinking of these individuals, and this spiritual thinking and the consequent subjugation of mortal belief could only occur because of the great fact that God is and that He is forever expressing Himself. Jesus' constant desire to turn the thoughts of men to God, as the source and cause of every condition, including every condition in connection with himself, is shown in such statements as "My Father is greater than I." "Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God." Again he prayed, "Father, . . . glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee." His life was one constant struggle to manifest the nature of God as Love, as Spirit, and as divine Mind, and this in spite of every argument and suggestion of the carnal mind that material existence seemed to be very real. He made it perfectly clear that what was impelling him to this great demonstration of God's nature was the Father Himself. Mortals might count themselves as small units operating apart from God, but Jesus never did. He stated explicitly that "I and my Father are one," and he made it perfectly plain that the one was always God, and not himself, but that he was an emanation or expression of that One. The climax of his realization, that every right act, thought, and impulse must originate in God, was reached when he prayed "not my will but thine be done." When we submit our every thought and desire to God, and recognize in Him alone the source and cause of all right activity, we shall put on somewhat of the Mind of Christ, and we shall accomplish the works which Christ Jesus accomplished, for by this process we shall be laying down the mortal and we shall be taking up our true selfhood as the sons of God, forever expressing His nature, and His alone.

 

God Forever Manifesting Himself

God is All. He is therefore infinite cause, expressing Himself through His effect or His creation, but this creation can never be considered as operating on its own basis and apart from God. Since God is Love, He is also the protector, the sustainer, and the supporter of His creation, for this is the nature of Love. A knowledge of these facts will deliver mankind from its belief in a God who forgets His creation or who helps to destroy it; it will also deliver from the penalties of mortal thinking, such as sin, disease and death. Paul, in the first chapter of Ephesians, makes a vital statement on this subject, as follows: "Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God . . . : Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love." Paul evidently understood that all spiritual activity was impelled by God and was indeed God expressing His own nature according to His eternal plan, through His creation. The Scriptures teach a perfect God who is Love and a perfect creation which is the expression of divine Love, therefore an imperfect God and an imperfect creation are but the myths of mortal thought, or ignorance. The understanding of God and of God's creation will dispel mortal thought and its mythological materialism and will reveal the God who is Love and also Love's creation. What we call salvation or human progress is the record of periods when this mist of mortal sense has been dispersed to some extent, and God as Love, and a creation sustained and protected by Love, has been understood in some degree by mankind. In the Book of Revelation, that wonderful exposé of the working of evil in human thought and systems, and also the prophecy of the ultimate triumph of the spiritual idea, John begins by declaring that the revelation itself was impelled by God. He speaks of "the Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to show unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass." In the final chapter of Revelation, he states even more clearly the necessity for tracing all effect back to God or to cause, when he writes, "And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellow-servant . . . : worship God." Truly was John a follower of the lowly Nazarene, who declared, "The Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works." A study of the progress of the human race, or the disappearance of some measure of mortal thinking and mortal ignorance before spiritual facts, will show that in every case the individuals through whom God expressed Himself always declared that God had accomplished whatever had been done. Such a colossal character as Abraham Lincoln was forever turning to God for support and direction and he always acknowledged that God sustained and directed him, or that God had expressed somewhat of His true nature through his exalted thinking. John Wesley always attributed anything he accomplished to God, and this was why his activities contributed so much toward the salvation of humanity. Realizing that his spiritual activity was of God, he naturally knew that it was with power to dispel evil. A striking example of the impelling influence of God and the recognition of God as the only redeeming power is recorded in the framing of the Constitution of the United States, which has certainly accomplished much for mankind. It is recorded that the framers of the Constitution met for some weeks without accomplishing anything, except that at the end of that time they were hopelessly divided. At this point Benjamin Franklin rallied them with the declaration that they should turn to God instead of turning to human systems and theories of government, which had brought so much troubled to mankind. From that moment, it is stated, the meetings of that assembly were started with prayer and they turned to God for guidance. The net result of this willingness to give up human beliefs and to acknowledge God in all things was that wonderful piece of spiritual idealism called the Constitution of the United States. God had expressed Himself in His eternal nature, because there was that right mental condition through which He could express Himself.

 

God Manifested Himself Through Mary Baker Eddy

The greatest reformer in human history since the Christian era is undoubtedly Mary Baker Eddy. What does she say of her mission, which has caused millions of men and women to turn from material reasoning and darkness of material existence to the reality of spiritual being? She declares, "God had been graciously preparing me during many years for the reception of this final revelation of the absolute divine Principle of scientific mental healing" (Science and Health, p. 107). Mrs. Eddy also writes, "Whence came to me this heavenly conviction, — a conviction antagonistic to the testimony of the physical senses? According to St. Paul, it was 'the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of His power." (Science and Health, p. 108). Again Mrs. Eddy writes, "The divine hand led me into a new world of light and Life, a fresh universe — old to God, but new to His 'little one'." (Retrospection and Introspection, p. 27). The fact is that God was expressing His nature in a wonderful way through one of His ideas as His nature had been expressed through that idea from everlasting to everlasting, but Mrs. Eddy's longing to know God and to be like Him enabled her to perceive this manifestation or expression of God's nature. The net result of her spiritual attainment was that great healing and redeeming mission which the world knows as Christian Science. No one who has studied Mrs. Eddy's writings can for one moment doubt that she recognized clearly the fact that God had spoken. She regarded herself as a humble disciple, but she also knew that she was God's messenger and that as God's messenger she must act as one having authority. Through her acquaintance with God she has built up a church that has insisted, more than any church since Christ Jesus' ministry, upon the reality of spiritual things and upon the temporal nature of material existence. No one has ever taught more definitely than has Mrs. Eddy the fact that God is all, that He does all, and that the only realities of being are God and His creation, or expression, spiritual existence. Her teachings iterate and reiterate the fact that God is Love, that He is therefore the Mother as well as the Father of the universe; consequently that He is forever sustaining, protecting, and supporting His creation in eternal perfection. In fact, Mrs. Eddy has made her spiritual discovery of God's allness practical in human experience, and the Word of God has been made flesh. One of the results of the healing and redeeming work of Christian Science is that humanity is no longer questioning Mrs. Eddy's right as God's messenger, but it is accepting both the message and the messenger as of God, impersonal good. Christian Science, then, teaches that every right activity is God, divine Love, operating through His creation, to express His nature and also to support and sustain His creation in its eternal perfection; thus to redeem mankind from all that is unlovely, that is, from mortality, sin, disease, and death. The appearing of this revelation is naturally in the age when men can understand and appreciate not only the Fatherhood of God, but His tender Motherhood as well. As a result of her consecrated thinking and living, God has expressed Himself to this age through Mary Baker Eddy, and all mankind should recognize its debt to her and be glad to pay that debt by consecrating their own lives and thoughts so that God may likewise express His nature through their thinking. This is the only acknowledgment Mrs. Eddy asked of any man.

 

Practical Application of Christian Science

This individual who begins to understand God as Love and God's creation as spiritual and perfect and forever sustained and governed by Love will soon find in his daily life that fear, hate, jealousy, greed, and other qualities of the so-called human mind are passing out of his thinking. He will also find that material theories of every kind, and their results, disease, poverty, division, accident, and other ills of the flesh, are likewise going out of his experience. The fact is that this individual is recognizing the allness of divine Love, and God is manifesting Himself through this spiritual thinking or through one of His ideas, to deliver from evil of every kind. This individual's life and experience are bound to become more loving, more Godlike, more compassionate, healthier, holier, and happier, more spiritual and less material, for his spiritual reality or his true individuality, through which God is forever expressing Himself, is becoming known to this individual and his mortality is consequently disappearing. The understanding of his true selfhood as divine Love's expression will also enable such a one to help and to heal his fellow-man and to bring to him a knowledge of man's reality as God's likeness, and not a mortal. This is indeed preaching the gospel, and this gospel of God's allness and of His true nature as divine Love, who is forever manifesting Himself to heal the sick and to redeem the sinner, is what constitutes salvation in Christian Science. The right understanding of God as Love and of man as Love's image and likeness, combined with the desire to know and to do the will of God is the highest form of prayer. Mrs. Eddy has given us a wonderful definition of prayer in her statement: "True prayer is not asking God for love; it is learning to love, and to include all mankind in one affection. Prayer is the utilization of the love wherewith He loves us. Prayer begets an awakened desire to be and do good. It makes new and scientific discoveries of God, of His goodness and power. It shows us more clearly than we saw before, what we already have and are: and most of all, it shows us what God is" (No and Yes, p. 39). When men learn to pray after this manner, the sick must be healed, the sinner reformed, and the dead raised, for such prayer will bring mankind into that right mental condition through which God will manifest Himself mightily. Mankind can only be saved through God, but God, divine Love, expresses himself through His creation, or through the consecrated thinking of men and women. Whenever therefore any one of us is willing and able to give up somewhat of his false mortal thinking and to gain somewhat of the Mind of Christ or somewhat of his true spiritual selfhood, then God will manifest His nature through that thinking and thus even through improved human consciousness, to help and to heal mankind. The unfolding to human thought of the eternal truth about God and about His creation is therefore what constitutes salvation and this unfolding is "Immanuel," or "God with us." This forever manifestation of God's true nature, protecting and sustaining His creation even in human affairs, is known to us as spiritual understanding and living. Christian Science is therefore blessing humanity overwhelmingly by declaring a perfect God who is Love and a perfect man in God's likeness. It is this revelation of God as Love, Spirit, Mind, and of man in His likeness which is delivering mankind from the beliefs of a cruel or incapable God and of a poor, sick, sinning, and dying mortal who is uncared for and unprotected by God. As this false sense of God and of man passes away from the individual's thought, the results of this false thinking, sin, disease, and death, will also pass away, and this individual will be proving that God is, that He is Love, and that His creation forever lives, moves, and has its being in divine Love. For over fifty years Christian Science has proved to mankind that the spiritual understanding of God and of the true man does deliver from sin and disease, and today thinking men and women everywhere are accepting and proving this fact. The time is even now approaching when Christian Science is going to prove that this understanding likewise raises the dead; for since spiritual understanding originates in God and is actually God expressing His own nature through the spiritual thinking of men and women, it can know no limits. Nineteen hundred years ago, Paul asked, "Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead?" In proportion as Christian Scientists understand that God alone is all, the dead must be raised, for God will express himself through that understanding, to accomplish even this proof of His allness. Also as men recognize that God does manifest himself through consecrated thinking and living to deliver from evil of every kind, from sin, disease, poverty, war, and even from death, it will be a pretty poor individual who will not strive to put on the Mind of Christ, so that God may work mightily through his consecrated thinking. Christian Science is demonstrating even now that divine Love is impelling millions of men and women to consecrate their thoughts and lives that He may express Himself through them to heal and to save mankind; and this growth in God's vineyard must continue indefinitely, until all mankind is redeemed, and God, divine Love, and His creation, supported, sustained, and protected by Love, is found to be the only reality. As a man, then, grasps even a little of the nature of God as divine Love, he can truly say (Christian Science Hymnal, p. 21): —

 

"Father, my all in all Thou art,

My rest in toil, my ease in pain;

The healing of my broken heart;

In strife my peace; in loss, my gain;

 

In bonds my perfect liberty;

My light in evil's darkest hour;

In want, my plentiful supply;

In weakness, my almighty power."

 

[1924.]

 

 

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