How Christian Science Reveals Godís Healing Power
Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,
The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts
Arnold H. Exo,
who presented a Christian Science lecture in
"Let the inspired word of God, and not the actions of some mortal, be your guide," he urged.
"David, one of the greatest men the world has ever known, was a teenager when he overcame Goliath," the lecturer noted.
"David's older brothers and even his elders believed Goliath's boasts. They were paralyzed with fear. But not David. He was not 'brainwashed.' He followed the guidance of God, and because he did, he was inspired, protected, and sustained by God."
spoke in the auditorium of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in
"It was not easy for David to stand up and be different. It never is," said Mr. Exo. "It is always easier to follow the 'gang.' ''
"It takes courage to follow God," he declared, and not only courage, but willingness to "open our thought" to let ourselves be spiritually inspired. "We must open the door of our consciousness to the Christ, to the true idea of God."
In this way, he said, we can "feel the touch of God's healing power" - a power that is "just as available today as it was some two thousand years ago."
Mr. Exo was introduced to the audience by Gordon F. Campbell, First Reader of The Mother Church. The title of Mr. Exo's lecture was "How Christian Science Reveals God's Healing Power." The following is a text of the lecture:
Godís Ability to Act Is Infinite
Have you ever wondered if the power of God is as available today to heal you and me as when Christ Jesus and his followers used it to heal? It is, and Christian Science shows us what this power is and how to use it.
The power of God is God's infinite ability and capacity to act, to express His infinite goodness without limitation. This power of God is just as available today to heal you and me as it was some two thousand years ago when it enabled Peter to instantly heal Aeneas who for eight years could not leave his bed because of palsy. Peter said to Aeneas (Acts ), "Aeneas, Jesus Christ maketh thee whole: arise, make thy bed." The Bible tells us that Aeneas "arose immediately."
What must you and I do in order to feel the touch of God's healing power? We must open the door of our consciousness to the Christ, to the true idea of God. That is what Aeneas did.
What is this Christ, Truth, to which we must open our thought in order to feel God's healing power? The Bible tells us that God is Spirit. God shows us that He is Spirit by reflecting His power in spiritual inspiration.
Can you and I receive this spiritual inspiration from God? Yes we can. Christian Science shows us that this healing inspiration from God, this manifestation by God of His presence and power, comes to us as God's inspired angel thoughts. Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, tells us in the textbook "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 581), that angels are "God's thoughts passing to man;
spiritual intuitions, pure and perfect; the inspiration of goodness, purity, and immortality, counteracting all evil, sensuality, and mortality."
Are these angels, these manifestations by God of His presence and power which counteract all evil, are they welcome in your consciousness? Now stop and think for a moment. The natural inclination is to say that they are welcome. But are they? Are God's healing angels really welcome? Are you so willing to have them counteract the lie that God is not All that you will quickly make room for them regardless of how much of a mental housecleaning is required, regardless of how many cherished beliefs must be given up - beliefs such as that God, Spirit, cannot heal you, but that a chunk of matter, such as a pill, can do so?
Man Already Includes All Blessings
How often during the past twenty-four hours have you been tempted into believing that disease germs can have power over you, and that God is powerless to help you overcome these germs unless He creates a drug to help Him heal? How often during the past year have you been tempted to believe that you cannot grasp big ideas and put them into practice? Or that you have to go along, day after day, in a dull routine? Or that you have to endure shabbiness and lack?
Welcome into your thought the angel thought that man does not have to get the power and glory of God, because, as God's reflected evidence, the spiritual man of God's creating - and that means the God-created selfhood of each one of us - always has possessed and always will possess without any limitation or hindrance the infinite power of God, the infinite ability and capacity of God to act rightly at all times and under all circumstances.
Just think of what this means to the sick, to the poor, to the burdened. Just think of what this means to the man or woman looking for a job. Just think of what this means to those seeking congenial companionship, especially our young people; or to the parent seeking God's guidance in bringing up a child so that the child will be a credit to himself and to his community. Just think of what this means to a man or woman about to retire, and confused over the years that lie ahead.
It means that man does not have to get his heritage of God's blessings. It means that as God's idea man already includes all blessings. It means that as God's idea man can never be separated from the harmony of God who is Love, from the purity of God who is Soul, from the immortality of God who is Life, from the order and law of God who is Principle, from the power of God who is Truth, from the intelligence of God who is Mind, from the inspiration of God who is Spirit, from the limitless supply of God who is infinite substance.
Now let's analyze what I have just said and see how it applies in healing. I said that man does not have to get God's goodness because as God's idea man already includes all goodness. What does this mean? It means that you and I can never be separated from the purity of God who is Soul. Why not? Because as God's idea man is the reflection of God who is Soul. Therefore man cannot be separated from the purity of Soul. This means that in accord with God's law your body cannot lawfully retain any impurity. It means that every organ, gland, and cell in your body is under the control of God's law of purity, and therefore your body must act so perfectly that impurities cannot accumulate to cause sickness, pain, swelling, decay, or blemish.
Someone might ask, "How can God govern a fleshly body, including its organs and glands, when, as the Christ, Truth, reveals, matter is unreal and therefore unknown to God?" The answer to this question is that since God is the only actual power in the whole universe, He is therefore the only governor of the universe, including you and your sense of body. This government of God is as supreme in what appears as the unreal realm of matter as it is supreme in the realm of Spirit. Mrs. Eddy discovered this fact, and wrote (Science and Health, p. 427), "Immortal Mind, governing all, must be acknowledged as supreme in the physical realm, so-called, as well as in the spiritual."
Businessman Need Not Be 'Stumped'
I said that as God's idea man could never be separated from the intelligence of God who is Mind. What does this mean to us right here and now? It means that a businessman, when he is inspired by God, that is when he entertains the angels of God, can never be "stumped" for the right answer in solving a business problem however thorny it may appear to be. It means that students, teachers, and research workers will find that question and answer coexist, and can never be hidden or separated by ignorance. It means that parents will always have the intelligence to guide the child rightly. It means that those whose lot it is to direct the affairs of government will be divinely guided, and therefore will arrive at decisions based on what is right for all.
When we are spiritually inspired, God reveals wonderful things to us; and through these inspired revelations, these angel thoughts from God, we are able to overcome any illness, or find the solution to any problem.
That is how a branch manager friend of mine was healed when death seemed near. For years, because of a serious heart condition, my friend had been a semi-invalid. He had become so sick that the doctor thought my friend was dying. And the sick man thought so too. Then he remembered something he had heard of Christian Science. He turned to it for help. In one brief treatment he was quickly and permanently healed.
Here is how it happened. Just as soon as the branch manager decided to turn to Christian Science for healing, he asked his wife to telephone a Christian Science practitioner. The branch manager was too ill to telephone for himself.
At the time of the call the practitioner was busy in his office with appointments. He only had time to say to the wife: "Tell your husband that man's life is not organic. Therefore it is not dependent upon matter or its conditions. Life is God and is manifested in right action. Tell your husband that this spiritual fact is a law of annihilation to the false belief that the muscles and valves of his heart can in any way govern or limit his life. Tell your husband that every organ of his body, including his heart, is under God's law of right action, and that his heart is never under any mortal law of age, inherited tendencies, or under any penalty from such past experiences as some kind of sickness or overwork."
The wife gave the message to her husband. His healing, like that of Aeneas, was instantaneous. He got up from his sickbed, and dressed and drove to the practitioner's office to express his gratitude and joy. Then he returned to his home and the first thing he did was to throw out all of his drugs, pills, stimulants, and special dietary foods. He did not hang on to a single one of them. Then he went out and worked in his garden which for months he could only look at through the window of his sickroom.
Today this man is able and well. He is an active student of Christian Science. His healing took place about eighteen years ago, and since then there has been no return of the heart trouble.
We never need to be afraid to drop the supposed cures of matter and take the medicine Christ Jesus used. What is this medicine? The power of God, the inspiration of spiritualized thought. Take in God's inspired angel thoughts. In this age they will heal you, protect you, redeem you, just as they healed, protected, and redeemed mankind centuries ago.
Why Evil Canít Be Real
Remember this, that to God no problem is ever too great, no sickness is ever too severe. To God's Christ, Truth, it is never too late. This power of God is supreme because God is supreme. It can and it will heal you just as it healed my branch manager friend.
If God is the only intelligence, law, and power because He is the only creator, the supreme and only Mind which governs all, what about disease, immorality, dishonesty, sickness, and wars? Where do they come from? Does God know about them? Does He send evil to punish us, or sin to tempt us? Does God send forth as His reflected power, as His reflected evidence, both angels and devils?
Do you know why evil sometimes seems to be real? Here is the answer: It is because human reason incorporates in its premise the false supposition that since the five physical senses see, hear, and feel the effects of evil, then evil must be known by God, that it must be real, and that it must possess enough power, intelligence and reality to be able to overcome God and God's goodness. This reasoning is faulty because it is not in accord with either Scriptural revelation or sound logic, and I will show you why it isn't.
If evil, such as sickness, war, lack, and sorrow, originated in God and were expressed by Him as a part of man's real spiritual selfhood, as part of God's image and likeness, then it would be disobedient and disrespectful to God for us to attempt to heal ourselves and others of pain, sorrow, limitation. Did you ever stop to think of that? If evil were real, then God must have made evil, and it would be contrary to God's plan and purpose for us to attempt to replace sickness with health, lust with chastity, hatred with love, and war with peace.
Evil, in its busy attempt to make us believe that it is real, does not stop with such physical displays as sickness, lack, and burden. In this age evil more and more seeks to deceive us by means of mental suggestions and disturbances, For example evil tries to influence us into doing things we would not otherwise even think of doing such as an exhibition of temperament, idle gossip which sometimes becomes outright slander, neglect of our daily tasks and spiritual duties, unnatural behavior, and unwise handling of our financial affairs. A modern term for mental influences of this kind is "brainwashing."
If you or I should take in the false suggestion that some kind of drug or surgery could heal us, and that God's Christ, Truth, cannot do so - well when we take in that kind of a suggestion we are being ''brainwashed," hypnotized.
If any of us should take in the suggestion of some ad that to smoke a cigarette or drink a cocktail or a glass of beer would make us a more successful man or a more attractive woman, that too would constitute "brainwashing."
Is it all right for us to indulge in loose morals because someone else does so? If we agree, we are being "brainwashed."
You teen-agers, what should be your model, the behavior of another teenager? If you think so, you are being "brainwashed." Let the inspired Word of God, and not the actions of some mortal, be your guide.
Specific Lie Needs Specific Denial
David, one of the greatest men the world has ever known, was a teen-ager when he overcame Goliath, the Philistine. The Bible tells us that Goliath was a giant of a man and whose boasts frightened the Israelites. David's older brothers, and even his elders believed Goliath's boasts. They were paralyzed with fear. But not David. He was not "brain washed." He followed the guidance of God, and because he did, he was inspired, protected, and sustained by God.
It was not easy for David to stand up and be different. It never is. It is always easier to follow the "gang," instead of doing what deep down inside you know that you should do.
David demonstrated God's power over both the physical and mental displays of evil, not by accepting them as powerful and real, but by denying their reality.
Many times people ask questions something like this: If evil is only an illusion and therefore has no power or intelligence, then why bother to deny evil so thoroughly? Why not just say, "God is good, the only power and reality," and let it go at that? Because, as Christ Jesus taught, and as Mrs. Eddy found out, the perverted belief that God is not the only power, this false belief, must be stripped of its imaginary strength, intelligence, and reality.
Every specific lie needs a specific denial. And that is not all it needs. The very flood-tides of the Christ, Truth, must sweep consciousness clean of every lie that God is not the only power, Life, and presence. Then the healing will be quick - often instantaneous. But in order to be effective, our denials of evil must be inspired - you know, inspiration, God's manifestation of His power and presence. A dull repetition of words is of little value in uprooting evil.
Now in order effectively to deny the beliefs associated with any case of sickness, such as the belief in its type, in its symptoms, in its degree, in its cause, and in its effects, where must we start? We must start from the standpoint of what is true. We can never overcome evil if we start our denials of it from the standpoint of evil's lie that it is real, or that its sickness has power and identity. If we started our denials of evil from that standpoint we would not get very far in our healing.
Errors Uncovered as Nonentities
Jacob found this out, and we can profit by his experience. After a long struggle with such ugly traits of character as greed, self-interest, deceitfulness, and sensualism, an angel thought from God, a manifestation of God's power, enlightened Jacob's thought. Then Jacob saw how wrong it was to struggle with error as something. He began to see the truth of God and of himself. He saw that the errors which had bound him for so many years were not entities to be struggled against, but that they were nonentities to be dropped and left behind.
This spiritual illumination so
thoroughly redeemed Jacob that he was even given the new name of
You, too, can have power with God. Christian Science shows us that evil must be dealt with, but always dealt with as nothing, and never struggled against as something. That is why a physical diagnosis of a sick body can neither start nor speed up Christly healing. Plainly the Master said (John ), "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." He did not say, "Ye shall know the error, and the error shall make you free."
To look at and probe a sick body, and then to mentally dwell on the pictures impressed upon one's thought by the diagnosis, only adds to the bewilderment - do you know what bewilderment means? A dictionary definition goes something like this: a state of mental confusion that prevents clear thinking.
So when you look at and probe a sick body, and then mentally dwell on the pictures impressed upon your thought by your diagnosis, you only add to instead of take away the confusion with which evil cloaks itself in order to make us believe that the sickness is real, that it has a certain course to run, and that possibly the outcome is doubtful. Based on her long experience with the Christly method of spiritual healing Mrs. Eddy writes (Science and Health p. 370), "A physical diagnosis of disease - since† mortal† mind must be the cause of disease - tends to induce disease."
Christian Science, following the methods of the Master, neither prescribes a medical diagnosis of a sick body, nor its medical treatment. But Christian Science does not leave us high and dry. Christian Science supplies us with a wonderful healing diagnosis, and a wonderful healing medicine. They are wonderful because they are the same as Christ Jesus used so successfully. This diagnosis and healing medicine are to know oneself as God knows man - as the evidence of the Supreme Being who never errs, who is never sick, limited, burdened, sorrowful, or a failure. This redeems mortals, heals them.
The Christ, Truth, is the only Saviour. This Christ, Truth, understood and demonstrated in its perfection by the human Jesus, the son of the Virgin Mary, is just as available to you and to me as it was to the Master. This Christly understanding, this power of God, enabled the Master always to do the right thing at the right time, and in the right way. He was never tricked by evil's hidden mental ways. And neither shall we be if we follow the rules of God as did the Master.
Only a Few Understood
Because of the materialism of his time only a few of the many hundreds who heard the Master's teachings and witnessed the proofs of his teachings were able to understand what they heard and saw. Most of those who saw and heard the Master during his three years' ministry confused the corporeal Jesus and the incorporeal, healing Christ, Truth, which flows from God. They mistakenly believe that God's healing power originated in a person instead of in God. Because of this mistake the Master said that it would be necessary for (John ) "Another Comforter'' to come and present the Christ, Truth, impersonally.
This Comforter was discovered by Mary Baker Eddy in 1866. She named her discovery Christian Science.
Sometimes the question is asked. Why was Mrs. Eddy the one to discover Christian Science? Why not someone else?
Mary Baker Eddy was the Discoverer
of Christian Science for the same reason that†††
But Mrs. Eddy's discovery of Christian Science far surpasses any discovery ever made by anyone else. Why? Because it reinstated the Principle of metaphysical healing brought to mankind by Christ Jesus. Doesn't that make Christian Science the greatest discovery ever made?
For about three centuries after the crucifixion the Master's followers healed as he healed. But more was needed, the more being the rules and laws necessary to make the Principle of Christ Jesus' healing method so practical that it would not again be lost to mankind, would not again be hidden from suffering humanity by awesome ritual and intellectual dogma.
Mrs. Eddy's discovery and work complemented that of Christ Jesus because her discovery brought to humanity the Comforter it needed, that is, the rules and laws of healing promised by the Master.
Mrs. Eddy didn't make Christian Science. She discovered Christian Science, and wrote the textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," and organized the Christian Science Church to protect and promote God's gift to humanity.
In the century since Mrs. Eddy's discovery thinking people are more and more acknowledging the greatness of Mrs. Eddy's work and of Mrs. Eddy herself. Christian Scientists do not worship Mrs. Eddy, nor did she want them to. As Mrs. Eddy did, Christian Scientists worship God who, as Christian Science teaches, is not only the sole creator and sustainer of the universe, but is also the sole source of the healing Christ, Truth, whether it appeared to humanity in the works of the corporeal Jesus, or in this age as the incorporeal Christ, Truth, named Christian Science.
Standing Steadfast Is Key to Victory
If you will find out what are the rules of God which Mrs. Eddy discovered, and then stick by these rules, never letting evil discourage you into quitting, you will win. Stand steadfast.
I know a man, a building contractor, who stood steadfast even though he seemed to be on the point of death from internal hemorrhaging. He had doctored for years. Finally he became a student of Christian Science. In an acute attack he became very low because of excessive blood loss. But he had already learned that God does not share His power and life with any kind of matter, including blood. The man stood steadfast. With the help of a Christian Science practitioner the condition was healed in about two weeks solely through Christian Science absent treatment.
I see this man frequently. His healing took place about twelve years ago. There never has been a return of the pain or hemorrhaging.
I know a manufacturer who from his early boyhood had a severe skin ailment. This condition caused him much suffering and trouble, He was a very successful manufacturer, and was able to spend thousands of dollars traveling all over the world trying to find medical healing. Finally, after fifty years of suffering he turned to Christian Science, which on more than one occasion he had ridiculed. He was quickly and permanently healed. Today this man has great respect for Mrs. Eddy and for Christian Science.
For many of the fifty years that this man suffered, I should say about twenty-five of them, he knew of the healing power of Christian Science. In fact he had seen members of his own family healed. But he stubbornly refused to accept the blessings which†† Christian Science brings. Do you know what held this man back? You will hardly believe it when I tell you! He could not bring himself to accept anything which a woman had discovered - as if that made any difference. He foolishly thought that the sex of the Discoverer had more to do with the discovery than the spiritual inspiration of the Discoverer.
'You Do Not Have to Be Sick'
With his healing my manufacturer friend began to understand what a great woman Mrs. Eddy is - that she is great because her lifetime work revealed to mankind that the incorporeal coming of the Christ was complementary to the Master's corporeal presentation of the Christ, Truth.
I do not mean to convey the thought that Mary Baker Eddy was the Christ. I mean to say that Mary Baker Eddy's discovery and work, which are based on the teachings of Christ Jesus, make Christian healing as the Master demonstrated it as practical and effective in this age as it was when the Master was on earth.
When he was no longer critical of Mrs. Eddy, my manufacturer friend began to see how natural it was that the motherhood of God, typifying the unreality of evil, should be revealed to mankind by a spiritually-minded woman; just as it was natural that the fatherhood of God, typifying the allness and supremacy of Spirit, God, should be revealed to mankind by Elias, and later exemplified in all its glory by Christ Jesus, (See Science and Health, p. 562:3-7 to 2nd period; p. 268:11.)
The first words of the Lord's Prayer, "Our Father which art in heaven," (Matt. 6:9), are spiritually interpreted by Mrs. Eddy (Science and Health, p. 16), "Our Father-Mother God, all harmonious."
In order to demonstrate here on earth the ever-present harmony of heaven, it is of great help not only to understand the fatherhood of God, typifying the supremacy and allness of God, Spirit; but it is also necessary to follow through in this line of reasoning and see the nothingness of evil, a nothingness typified by the motherhood of God.
The manufacturer, the branch manager, the contractor, these three businessmen, like Aeneas, were healed by the Christ, Truth. And so are housewives, craftsmen, farmers, teachers, students, workers, anyone, anywhere, healed by the Christly angels of God's presence and power.
These angels come to us when we silence human desires and fears, when we erase the outlines of human planning. Then these angels of God whisper into our receptive thought messages like this: "You do not have to be sick or limited. You do not have to be poor, or sorrowful, or burdened. You do not have to be confused, or mistaken, or a failure. You do not have to accept these or any other shortcomings. God's plan and purpose for man is that God's image and likeness eternally shall be God's unrestricted evidence of all godliness and of nothing else. Therefore as God's idea you do not have to get. You need only accept what man really is - not a mortal with a matter body, but God's image and likeness, God's reflection of His goodness, purpose, power, perfection, wholeness, and law."
So listen, and be free!
© 1963 Arnold H. Exo
All rights reserved
[Published in The Christian Science Monitor, Dec. 4, 1964.]