Some of the Indisputable Facts About Christian Science
Edward A. Kimball
Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,
The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts
The Christian Scientists of Kalamazoo have invited you here in order that they may bear witness, not to a blind or fantastic faith, but rather to achieved results which have bettered their lives and turned the currents thereof into channels of health and peace.
You are here, dear friends, to give some heed to that which by the momentum of its own boundless good is forcing itself upon the affections of men and impressing humanity with the tangible fact that some supreme influence is working out a transforming deliverance for the people of this generation.
And what is the reason for this?
It is because Christian Science is healing the sick, giving sight to the blind, reclaiming drunkards, saving sinners, and abolishing countless ills.
Again it is because multitudes of people who have been thus benefited are insistently bearing witness thereof to the world. Their righteous clamor besets the ear of a suffering people, and points to new hope through this gospel of health and healing. And this same suffering world is heeding the testimony and turning weary footsteps toward the promise of deliverance, there to find fulfilment.
I submit to you that this subject may well enlist your respectful and even reverent attention because you are involved in the weal and woe of this race and deeply concerned as to its escape from evil. Also because Christian Science is manifesting in behalf of humanity a larger measure and scope of salvation than has touched its experience since the time of Christ and primitive Christianity.
All of this is because the Reverend Mary Baker Eddy has written the textbook of Christian Science, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," which contains a complete exposition of this Science and its Principle, the rules for demonstrating it, and the entire modus operandi of its practical application. Also because the people who study this book persistently and in good faith learn that they can prove its verity and reap the vast benefits thereof.
The Christian Science propaganda has for its sole object the moral and physical transformation of mankind, and in furtherance of this endeavor its followers command the attention of the world by reason of the accomplished results in human behalf which are now crowding themselves into the history of a stricken people.
Christian Science has appeared to an age wherein men who are involved in the tragic maelstrom of evil are baffled by its mystery, agonized by its pain, and submissive to its doom without the most remote supposition that they have or should have dominion over it.
This Science unveils this so-called mystery and strips evil of its power to dominate man. Evil is not an entity, nor does it proceed from an immortal Satan. It is the paraphernalia of the carnal mind and is the result of an utterly erroneous sense of life and its necessities.
To this same humanity, sorely afflicted, Christian Science is revealing an abundant salvation, and the fruition of its promises of deliverance constitutes the most profound fact of the centuries.
Christian Science has appeared in the midst of a philosophical and religio-scientific evolution wherein nearly every man holds to an individual and unique opinion on every subject that engages thought.
Someone has said that "every man is the creator of his own god," and it is an indisputable phenomenon of the human mind to-day that every man has his own individual and finite conception of Deity, which he calls God, and in behalf of which he argues, quarrels, and fights.
The philosophy, Science, and theology of Christian Science is based on the spiritual foundation of the Allness of God. Bishop Morrison, of Iowa, recently said, that while he did not endorse Christian Science, he believed that one reason for the rapid growth of the denomination was this insistent recognition of God.
The entire Christian Science structure is consistent with the oft declared and divine promise that God is all in all, and it shows that all philosophy and religious systems which are not consistent therewith are defective, and why they are defective.
It is easy to say that God is infinite, but to comprehend infinity, or to know God, means much. God is either infinite good, or infinite evil. He cannot possibly be both.
Christian Science declares that He is infinite good and is consistent at every point with this basis. Other systems of philosophy and religious thought include the assumption that all-knowledge or all-consciousness, — that is, God, — includes the consciousness of evil, and all of their theories converge at this premise.
I trust that I an without giving offense make this statement of palpable fact. If the world were to live up to the highest teachings of these different religious systems, there would not even then be harmony on earth. Why? Because agony, tears, disease, and death would remain and the millennium or reign of God on earth would be impossible. On the other hand, if the highest teachings of Christian Science should govern the world, there would be harmony, for sin would be abolished, and the "last enemy, death," which we are told is because of sin and must be destroyed, would be destroyed. The ultimate of its teachings establishes "the kingdom of heaven within."
Christian Science is correcting, purifying, and enlarging the human sense of infinite God, and, in revealing Him aright and as He is, it conversely upsets many of the grotesque and inconsistent conceits of Deity which have propagated a gloomy philosophy of life that has nothing in it for man but sickness and death.
This Science teaches men to live, move, and have their being in God, and encourages them to gain this life by teaching them that God is actually an ever-present help in every moment of need, and the "healer of all thy diseases."
Mankind has not lived, moved, and had its being in God, but has sinned, sickened, and died. In this very hour humanity as a whole is submerged in sin, and entailing upon itself the penalty thereof in accordance with the inevitable evolution of evil which has been indicated in the words of Scripture, "Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap."
Christian Science shows the unreal and fatal basis of sin; it entreats the sinner to turn from evil ways, and finally reconciles him to a total and rational abandonment of wickedness, not through fear or threat, but by gaining a natural and dominant affection for good.
Christian Science does not sugar-coat the sinner, but makes upon him larger demands for reformation. Indeed, it shows him that the only possible way to escape the sure penalty of sin is to stop sinning.
The Bible says, "Through sin came death into the world." This scientific statement is amplified by Christian Science which shows that sin, vice, fear, worry, grief, ignorance, superstition, and hundreds of other mutual evils procure disease. The world has formulated a belief that in some way God has arranged to cure the sin, or cause, and that it must look to matter to cure the sickness or effect. Notwithstanding the well ascertained fact that sin causes physical disease, no one ever thinks of taking medicine for the sin or cause, but hopes in vain to cancel the penalty with drugs.
If we consider this subject from the standpoint of cause and effect, we find that the prevalent theory assumes that God will forgive or cure the sin or cause, and refuse to cancel or cure the effect.
Why should not God heal the sick? Why should He not destroy sickness as well as to destroy the sin or fear which causes it? Who can possibly conceive of a reason that is consistent with the statement that God is infinite good and with the promises of the Bible and works and mission of Jesus Christ?
My friends, we have no quarrel with those who have a different sense of Deity from that taught by Christian Science, but we, who have been practically raised from the dead, do know that our Redeemer liveth and that our God heals the sick.
I know that it is customary for people to say that they think God will sometimes heal the sick in answer to prayer, but that when He does so He does it by blessing the natural means employed, meaning thereby that He would, in answer to a prayer, bless the action of a drug, which He might not otherwise bless.
I have known consumptives who were being dosed with whiskey while they were being prayed for, and the whole logic of the prayer based on this theory was that God might in consequence of the prayer induce a more blessed activity on the part of the whiskey than He would otherwise have permitted.
Apply this theory of healing and prayer to morphine, cocaine, chloral, and other so-called natural means, and witness the hopeless chaos of such reasoning. No wonder we stand dismayed and stunned because of unanswered prayers. The mere fact that countless billions of prayers for the sick on this false basis have utterly failed should have warned Christendom that the prayers have been amiss.
The grace and might of omnipotent God have no need of pills and plasters through which to filter His will and the action of spiritual law which dominates disease. When He equipped our Saviour for the "destruction of the works of the devil" — sin and disease — the only natural means He bestowed was "the spirit without measure." It was the Mind which was also in Christ which healed the sick according to God. Although reluctant to attempt a fragmentary and incomplete exposition of the technicalities of this Science, I can with much propriety and gladness presume to speak of the vast benefits which are accruing to mankind because of its discovery and of its demonstrable ability. Having been rescued, as it were, from the grave by Christian Science, after all else had failed me, with deep gratitude I bear witness in behalf of thousands, once dying but now in health and happiness, whose praises are encircling the earth and revivifying the hopes of despairing, dying men.
People who have been afraid of God and heaven and whose greatest dread was that they might die and go to heaven, have lost their gloomy and portentous fear of God and His will and law, and found a heavenly Father whose dear love is ever present to turn aside the woes of life and save unto the uttermost from all evil.
At the altars of Christian Science, men have found the light in our textbook which sheds the luminous beams of revelation on the Bible, and reveals the word of God and the "way of life." To this book the Christian Scientist clings steadfastly without fear of criticism, changing creeds, or the clamor of the hour.
At these altars they learn to love the life of the divine Christ and to strive for the life that is in imitation of his purity and goodness. Herein do they learn to pray without ceasing, the prayer that is answered by God. Christian Science inculcates the highest conceivable morality and has the highest possible standard of friendship and manhood as well as social and individual purity. It enables mortals to master fear, worry, care, grief, and all kindred forms of evil.
It leads its followers to a spiritual height where true Christianity, logic, reason, and Science coincide. It relieves them from the intolerable demand that in order to be saved they must have blind faith in an unknowable God, a mysterious and supernatural Saviour, and an impenetrable plan of salvation after death.
The infidel and agnostic who have been amazed and repelled by the myriads of fabulous conceptions of Deity have learned through Christian Science to know God aright, to worship and love him.
Thousands of drunkards in the bondage of hereditary and acquired vice have found that Christian Science does two things that neither drugs nor resistance have ever done. It destroys appetite and reinstates lost will and control. No drunkard is ever safe until transformed by the renewing of Spirit.
Christian Science has healed thousands of instances of disease that have been pronounced incurable by eminent medical authority. It is making people happier, better, and healthier.
It enables them to cope more successfully with fear, pain, sickness, and all the vicissitudes of life. It adds impulse and energy to all righteous endeavor. It increases the capacity to do business and to control circumstances, and is of assistance and help in every department and circumstance of life.
The man who is touched by its influence finds himself more devout, but less gloomy; more confident and self-reliant, but less conceited and vainglorious. He loses the supposed pleasure of sin to find the satisfaction of right living. He becomes more tolerant, just, upright, and pure. He learns the art of loving his neighbor and learns to be merciful and forgiving. Life seems fairer, peace more secure, and righteousness more desirable and satisfying.
These are some of the fruits, the indisputable facts, of Christian Science. I submit to the consideration of every well-ordered mind the proposition that they are like unto the results of Christ's ministry and in keeping with the Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount and the highest conceivable ideals of Christian life, the welfare of man, and the reign of God on earth.
[Delivered at Kalamazoo, Michigan. Delivered at Third Church of Christ Scientist, Chicago, and published in part, in The Chicago Evening Post, November 15, 1907. This is the eleventh of 18 lectures featured in the book Lectures and Articles on Christian Science by Edward A. Kimball.]