Christian Science

 

By William Miller, Q.C., C.S.B.

Member of the Board of Lectureship of The Mother Church,

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

 

A LECTURE on the above subject was delivered on Monday, June 5, in Queen's Hall, Langham Place, London. The Earl of Dunmore, who presided, introduced the lecturer, who spoke as follows:

Since coming to your shores I have been the recipient of many kinds of welcome, for which I am grateful, because they serve to draw closer the loving bonds of kinship, and enable us to realize that neither time nor distance can interpose barriers between those of the same language and lineage, between those who, however separated, can join in claiming the heritage of the same great deeds and the priceless blessing of liberty. Living under the same flag and bearing allegiance to the same beloved sovereign, I esteem it a privilege to be permitted to address my fellow subjects on this side of the Atlantic, on Christian Science. You, above all others under the sun, have established a reputation for "fair play" "British fair play" a quality looked up to and respected the world over. I know that before me are men and women of intelligence, accustomed to investigate, criticise, and, if needs be, combat with finished skill any new doctrines or propositions that may be laid before them. Christian Scientists do not wish to avoid investigation, criticism, or combat, whenever conducted in a fair spirit. I am convinced I shall receive from you an attentive hearing and careful consideration of what I am about to say.

 

WHY WE BECAME SCIENTISTS.

Before entering on my subject it may not be out of place to state why Mrs. Miller and I became Christian Scientists. About eleven years ago we were deprived by death of a beloved son. Up to within a few hours of his death we were assured by those representing the highest medical skill that he would recover. At this period we were members of an orthodox church, and sought, with broken hearts, such consolation as our religion could afford. It was preeminently unsatisfactory, and to all appearances it then looked as if we too would soon follow our son to the tomb. Fortunately, at this juncture we heard of Christian Science, and were enabled to learn, not theoretically as in the past, but practically, the truth that God is Life, and that death was an enemy to be overcome, not submitted to.

 

ATTITUDE OF CHRISTIAN SCIENTISTS.

The attitude of Christian Scientists towards those who know not the tenets of Christian Science is this: they know they have something to offer worthy of the deepest and most earnest thought; they do not beseech any one to accept their ideas; they are not endeavoring to proselytize, but simply making known what they are convinced are the tenets of the universal religion. They do not ask their hearers to adopt the views they uphold except in so far as they commend themselves to their mature judgment. To mortals what can be more important than to have right ideas of God and themselves? than to emerge from a cave of shadows into the clear daylight? Christian Science supplies the light and dissipates the shadows.

 

WHAT CHRISTIAN SCIENCE IS.

Christian Science is what its name implies the Christ knowledge. It is primitive Christianity revived; the healing and saving power as taught and demonstrated by Jesus. It is more than a mere sect or creed. It is a vast movement which is revolutionizing the theological and medical thought of the world. It excels all other methods of healing, and at this period its practical application has never been surpassed except by its first demonstrator, Christ Jesus.

 

FOUNDED ON THE BIBLE.

At the outset, I would state that Christian Science is founded on the Bible. It deduces from the principles and facts there set forth conclusions that cannot be successfully assailed, exhibits God in His true character, and shows His creation to be absolutely perfect, and His government to be free from even the thought of inharmony; and, moreover, it accomplishes this, not by ignoring questions of difficulty obstinate factors, so to speak, troublesome to handle but by an all-comprehensive system that gives the proper weight and position to every element embraced in it.

 

PROPER IDEAS OF GOD REQUIRED.

To a. proper understanding of Christian Science it is essential that we should begin with correct ideas of God, Who is its centre, and from Whom every idea in Christian Science proceeds. I concede here that no mortal can get absolutely true ideas of God. "Canst thou by searching find out God? Canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection?" The finite cannot fathom the Infinite; but some views approaching correctness must be obtained.

 

WHAT GOD IS NOT.

The ideas generally entertained of God are formed from looking at Him from a human standpoint. In that light He is changeable, He repents Himself of what He has done, He is actuated by revenge. He punishes the innocent as well as the guilty. People generally worship a man-made God possessing in a large degree their own imperfection. Judging by the contradictions and absurdities into which views of this kind lead, there is no course open but to discard them.

 

WHAT GOD IS.

The standard of God as all-powerful, all-wise, and ever-present cannot be lowered. Attributing to Him qualities inexcusable in a man cannot be tolerated even for a moment in Christian Science. The Christian Science God, as already stated, is absolutely perfect. Looking further, it is found that the literal interpretation of the Scriptures must give place to the spiritual. "No man hath seen God at any time," yet there is no place where God is not. A Being that fills all space and yet is invisible to mortal eyes cannot be material but must be spiritual.

 

MAN IS MADE IN GOD'S LIKENESS.

God therefore is Spirit, and the Bible tells us that God made man in His own image and likeness. Man, therefore (the one created in God's own image and likeness, and there is no other if God is the only Creator), must be spiritual and not material. These statements, and the additional ones also taken from the Scriptures that all God made was good, and without Him was not anything made that was made, are the foundations upon which Christian Science is built and established. There is not one conclusion contended for by Christian Scientists that cannot be properly deduced from these statements. At this point I think I can hear some one object, "But I am a man, and I have a body composed of bones, flesh, blood, nerves, etc., and I have a soul or spirit within it." My friend, to mortal eyes you certainly have a material body, and, sometimes, a pretty sick one at that. Your conclusion, however, is based on the evidence of the physical senses the same testimony that I have just shown to be powerless to testify as to God, Spirit.

 

TESTIMONY OF PHYSICAL SENSES

NOT RELIABLE IN SPIRITUAL MATTERS.

It is, moreover, unreliable, and in many instances misleading. Do not the eyes often mislead? Who has not seen the sun go around the earth? and is it not your eyes that deceive you? Looking at a stick thrust into the water, your eyes refuse to tell you that it is straight, although you know it is. Your eyes are again deceiving you. The ears often leave you in doubt as to the direction from which a particular sound is coming. Paul says, The things of Spirit are spiritually discerned; they cannot be understood by the physical senses. "What!" you say, "would you not only deprive me of the evidence of my physical senses, but also take away my reasoning faculties?" No. Reason correctly used is useful, and I would ask you to use it as a stepping-stone to the revelation of God in Christian Science.

 

GOD IS MIND AND MIND

IS ALL-IN-ALL, PROVED BY THE HEALING.

Mrs. Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, in her great text-book, says, "Christian Science reveals incontrovertibly that Mind is All-in-all, that the only realities are the divine Mind and idea. This great fact is not, however, seen to be supported by sensible evidence, until its Principle is demonstrated by healing the sick, and thus found absolute and divine. This proof once seen, no other conclusion can be reached" (Science and Health, p. 3).

 

DISTINCTION BETWEEN SCIENCE AND OTHER RELIGIONS.

The vital distinctions between Christian Science and all other religions are, its insistence on the Allness of God, Good, and the way it looks upon evil. When we affirm that God made "all things," that all that He made was good, and that without Him was not anything made that was made, one naturally inquires what is comprehended in the words "all things," and we know that nothing that is not good can be included in them.

 

EVIL NOT INCLUDED IN THE "ALL THINGS."

Then God, Good, being the only Creator, what place is assigned to evil? "God never made it." Some theologians, recognizing the imputation it would cast on the character of their God to admit that He was the Creator of evil, take this position: they say, in effect, if He didn't make it, He permits it for His own wise purposes. What is this, if not detracting from God's absolute perfection, or power, or both? It is also setting up another creator the creator of evil although the Scriptures deny the existence of any other creator. It assumes that the toleration of evil that which is not good is part of the plan of government of a God who is perfect and all-powerful. Such a theory upholds God's wisdom at the expense of His moral character. What a paltry shift is this! Those who support it say, because He who is all-wise and all-powerful tolerates evil, it must be right to do so. Right to do wrong? Or, if not right, it is excusable under the circumstances, by reason of His wise purposes, which, of course, are not understandable. Can we crave more than pity for such imbecility? Let us go a step further. God, finding evil created it could not have been created without the knowledge of the All-knowing proposes to make use of it in His scheme of government. How thankful He must have been to the creator of this tool! Job says, "Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one." There is yet another theory: It is said that God's creation, which in the beginning was perfect, lost its perfection and became evil. About one-third of the angels revolted and were cast from Heaven, and man, made in God's own image and likeness think of it! was tempted and fell. This view also disputes the perfection of the creation. Nothing can be pronounced perfect that has in it any element that could cause or permit it to become imperfect. If God created an angel of light that could turn into a devil, the devil must have been in the angel when created. God, then, knowing that His creation would be unable to stand the test, deliberately so made it and then pronounced it good perfect. These views drive us to the conclusion that God, Good, could not govern the universe without the aid of evil. He must have a devil to assist Him. If these views prevail, fully justified is Ingersoll in saying that the devil is the keystone in the arch of God's scheme of government, according to the Christian religion, and in asking "If the devil died, would God create another?" Having regard to the inconsistencies and absurdities that necessarily flow from these views, nothing is left but to abandon them.

 

EVIL NOT INCLUDED IN GOD'S CREATION.

Despite the evidence of the physical senses, let us assume that evil is not included in the "all things" that God created, and find out to what conclusions it will lead us. God did not create it and its supposed reality is but our belief in it. A lie is not credited when it is known to be a lie. Its power is gone when its falsity is exposed. The position taken, that its reality is only in our belief, may and no doubt will appear to some of you a very startling one. It is the testimony of Christian Science, and Christian Scientists undertake to prove it by the healing.

 

INSTANCES OF HEALING IN CHRISTIAN SCIENCE.

Numerous instances of healing in this way have come under my notice, among them, the epidemic, the grip, which I have known to yield to a single treatment. A man I know very well came one morning to a Scientist's house, his head aching and his limbs hardly able to carry him there. He received an audible treatment, and when leaving asked the Scientist whether it would be wise for him to go down town he really ought to go, but it was so cold and stormy. The reply was that nothing could hurt him in the way of duty, and he went away pondering on these words. After he had walked about a couple of blocks, he found that he had left something behind he was sure he had left it, for his head had become perfectly clear, and he had with him no symptom of grip. He reported this at a testimony meeting, where the Scientist assured him that nothing had been left. Where had it gone? Science alone can answer this question. It never had any real existence, and the understanding of this (all being Mind) had dissipated the sick thought in this man's mind and sent it to its native nothingness. I know a lady who a year ago was afflicted with a disease pronounced by medical law to be incurable. Having only a few months, at the outside, to live, she made all her arrangements and even went so far as to purchase a plot in the cemetery. Before she put one foot in the grave, however, she was persuaded to try Science "as a last resort." Almost immediately she was made whole, and is to-day rejoicing in the Truth as it is in Christian Science. I presume that any one who, after hearing this, prefers to continue in the old thought, as we call it, can purchase that plot in the cemetery, cheap. I know of more than one man who has been cured of the tobacco and whiskey habit by Christian Science. Possibly some one may be thinking, "Any resolute man can give up smoking and drinking if he so decides; but I would like to know of a cure, not of an internal disease, but of one that could be seen on the body with the eyes." I can give particulars of just such a case, one that has come under my own observation. It is that of a little girl eleven years old, who for three years had been cased in an iron frame-work for hip disease. She had indeed suffered much from many physicians, for it was a bad case; but the more that was done for her the worse she grew, until at last the child's mother, with tears streaming down her face, came to the Scientist who had offered to help her three years before and promised to trust her little girl to the Christ healing. After the first treatment the child had no more pain, and soon the terrible ulcers ceased running and the child was made whole. The emaciated little form is now almost robust, and her healthy color and bright eye attest the happiness that this cure has wrought. Her faith is unbounded, and with it she helps to heal and teach some of the younger ones, for she is one of a large family. I might go on giving instance after instance, for the healing in Christian Science is wonderful both in respect of the number and the nature of the cases healed; but after giving one more I will close this part of my subject. I refer to one of deafness. The man became deaf, just as his father did at his age, and mortal mind told him he "was going just like his father," who had become almost stone deaf. The afflicted one being somewhat of a Scientist took his own case in hand, fought the claim of false heredity as he would a temptation to sin, and overcame it. The cases I have referred to I can vouch for. The last one is "assurance doubly sure," for the deaf man was, not is, myself. Having more faith than the old woman who, after praying that the mountain might be removed, said, when she saw it looming up as large as ever in the morning, "I just thought so," I was not very much surprised when one morning I awakened to hear my watch tick under the pillow; and yet the uplifting of thought that followed the physical healing made true to me Isaiah's words, "His name shall be called Wonderful." Every time a case of healing occurs in Christian Science it is the result of this wondrous light of divine Love shining upon darkened mortal sense, and showing the grotesque shadows of sickness and sin to be false creations, imperfect, unlovely, and untrue. It is time the world were awake to the great fact of what Christian Science is and what it is doing. It is the second coming of Christ, and is, consequently, doing the works that he did.

 

OTHER SYSTEMS OF RELIGION NOT UNDERSTANDABLE.

Other systems of religion ask you to believe in a God you cannot understand; for example, in a Trinity that is unexplainable three persons in one person; and in the reality of a devil, evil, you think you understand, the human mind being so much more ready to understand evil than good. And those systems of religion that admit the existence of the healing power ask you to believe that God heals you without any one knowing how or why.

 

CHRISTIAN SCIENCE RECONCILES REASON AND REVELATION.

To the infidel it says, with Isaiah, "Come, let us reason together." Although, judging as you do by the physical senses, you cannot conscientiously believe that a great and good God governs the universe, yet you admit you could, but for such evidence, believe such a thing to be possible. Now I tell you that this testimony is false when applied to spiritual matters, and this can be proved. By persistently holding in your thought that health and holiness are the realities, you will prove to yourself that they are, and you will see the untruth of the testimony of the physical senses.

 

TO THE CHRISTIAN.

To the Christian, Science says, "Come, let us reason together." You admit as a fact that God made man perfect and in the image and likeness of His own perfection. Hold your thought persistently to that spiritual, perfect creation, and you will find that there is no other; and the proof will be that sickness will disappear from your body and sin from your mind. The proof of Christian Science is that it heals the body and purifies the thought. It cures by change of thought, not only nervous diseases, but those of an organic nature, including many pronounced by materia medica to be fatal. These cures are all effected in the same way, by the realization of the power and presence of Good and Good alone, which destroys in the human mind the belief in the power of evil, of which sickness is but a phase. It is urged that healing is not confined to Christian Science. No; medicine heals, sometimes yes, often; but it as often or oftener fails to heal, because the healing is not based on any fixed principle. Christian Science heals always in the same way, through the understanding of the "all" and the "nothing," God being "all" and evil "nothing." Medicine may heal the body, but it always leaves the mind untouched. Christian Science heals the body by the destruction of the thought that makes the body sick. Which of these two is the better way? Surely that which gives the understanding of why and how it heals. The medicine of Christian Science is Mind; that of doctors, matter. The latter, being material requires many aids, such as drug stores, apothecaries, etc.; but Mind needs no help; it is everywhere available without any adjuncts, and when faithfully applied cannot fail to cure. I pause here for a moment to contemplate the significance of the statement that the healing of sickness and the destruction of sin are both caused by the change of the mortal mind or thought. Nothing can produce this effect but the Divine Mind the All-Good. We thus see the truth of the statement made in Science and Health, "All is Mind."

 

OBJECTIONS TO CHRISTIAN SCIENCE.

In considering the objections to and adverse criticisms of Christian Science, it is interesting and instructive to notice from whence they principally come. The chief attacks come from those supporting the prevailing systems of medicine and theology; from those whose material interests might be supposed to be injuriously affected by the propagation of new views on these subjects. It is not so many years ago that homoeopathists could not recover in a court of justice anything for their professional services, owing to the law not recognizing practitioners of homoeopathy as "regular practitioners," and these gentlemen were compelled to add to the price of their pellets what they wished to get for their services. Quite recently, on asking a lady doctor to whom I was introduced as a Christian Scientist, as to whether she knew anything about Christian Science, she curtly replied that all she knew was that it interfered with her practice, and that was all she wanted to know. Notwithstanding that admission of ignorance, she proceeded to denounce it, and show its injurious effects. A clergyman borrowed from me our text-book, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures." Two weeks later he returned it with a note saying that he had not read the part that dealt with the healing, as it was only the theological aspect of the subject that he wished to consider. Only the theological aspect! How he could have separated the theology from the healing in Science and Health is more than a Christian Scientist can understand. As well attempt to separate Jesus from the Christ, or the sun from its rays. At the next meeting of the Ministerial Association he read to his mind a complete refutation of Christian Science, in which he, of course, said it was "neither Christian nor Scientific." God bless the man who invented that phrase! It is a cover for ignorance and a refuge for vanity and lies. What fairness can be expected from those who have the assurance to pronounce upon a subject of which they are wholly ignorant? What would be thought of any one giving an opinion on a subject, the elements even of which he had not mastered? Would a blacksmith be competent to do a silversmith's work? Could a banker prepare a legal argument? Before giving an opinion on Christian Science, let clergymen and doctors study honestly and earnestly the writings of the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, or at least the text-book. In its teaching the clergymen would find the living Christ, and the doctors a high system of therapeutics, higher than was ever dreamed of in their philosophy. I am personally acquainted with clergymen who, recognizing that the Church has lost the healing power of Christianity, have made the three days' journey backward and found it in Christian Science, as the parents of Jesus found him in the Temple. Without this backward journey, no spiritual progress can be made. I know a doctor, liberal-minded and of high standing in his profession, who said, "I have heard of wonderful cures in Christian Science, and, with reference to it, take Gamaliel's stand, and say to my medical brethren, 'Let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to naught: but if it be of God, you cannot overthrow it.'" This doctor at this time was in a house in which the Christian Scientist addressed was treating a case of diphtheria. Handing his card to the Scientist, he said, "Good-bye. I hope your patient will recover, and I will be ready to come any time if sent for." I need hardly say that the doctor was not called in professionally. I know another doctor healed by Christian Science after being given up by his fellow practitioners, who left the profession and is now a student of Christian Science.

 

DOCTORS' OBJECTIONS.

Doctors object that Christian Scientists undertake to heal the body without knowing anything about the body, its functions or anatomy. Christian Scientists reply that every disease has a mental cause which is detected and destroyed by the understanding of Christian Science. When there is no cause there is no effect. In Science, the process of healing is entirely mental and spiritual, while in medicine it is wholly physical and material. The doctor endeavors to destroy the effect sickness leaving the cause mind untouched, whereas the Christian Scientist corrects the mind and thereby governs the body. From this it will be seen that healing in Christian Science is permanent, while that effected by medicine is temporary; the one purifies the body by purifying the thought; the other cleanses the outside of "the cup and platter." If you were sick, which method of healing (cleansing) would you prefer?

 

JESUS' METHOD.

"We never read," says Mrs. Eddy, "that Jesus made a diagnosis of a disease, in order to discover some means of healing it. He never asked if it were acute or chronic. He never recommended attention to laws of health, never gave drugs, never prayed to know if God were willing a man should live. He understood man to be immortal, whose life is God, and not that man has two lives, one to be destroyed, and the other to be made indestructible" (Science and Health, p. 368).

 

THEOLOGIANS OBJECT.

The objections to Christian Science by theologians are much more numerous than those of the doctors. Those Christians who know least of Christian Science insist that Scientists do not believe in the Bible or prayer, and deny Jesus and the atonement. Christian Scientists strenuously deny these charges, and draw attention to the fact that those making them do not attempt to prove them. Christian Scientists are not content with the mere letter of the Bible, but strive earnestly to understand its spirit; and they confidently assert that this understanding cannot be reached except by the light afforded by Christian Science.

 

PRAYER IN CHRISTIAN SCIENCE.

In Science, the idea of prayer is not to beg God for that which He is more willing to give than we to receive; not to pray to a far-off God, for God is omnipresent. The understanding, through Christian Science, of what God is, teaches us that prayer is not mere importunity, but a strong conviction that right is in accordance with Divine will. "Not my will, but Thine, be done," is the basis of every Christian Scientist's prayer. The understanding of what God's will is the realization that Good's will is always good is the effectual, fervent prayer that availeth much. We cannot ask or expect too much from Him who is more willing to give than we to receive. Our asking must be believing that our requests are already granted long before we consciously receive them. When we pray desire that we may be lifted out of sickness or sin, we must believe that we already are the children of God, good, pure, and perfect. Prayer is an uplifted thought, the reaching out for that which we long to have and to be; the answer is the realization that we have all we long for, and are all that we desire to be. If these views conflict with the objector's idea of prayer, it is hoped, for his own sake, he will study the subject, and learn through Christian Science that "the highest prayer is not one of faith merely; it is demonstration. Such prayer heals sickness, and must destroy sin and death" (Science and Health, p. 321).

 

JESUS AND HIS WORK.

What is the difference between the orthodox view of Jesus and his work, and that of Christian Science? Does the former regard Jesus as the wayshower? So does Christian Science, and proves the path in Mind to be far higher and better than any material way, for the understanding of this heals the sick and the sinful. Does the former hold that Jesus died for sinners? So also does Christian Science, but in a higher and more practical way. The orthodox view is that the sinner gets the full benefit of the death of Jesus by simply believing that he died for him; while the Christian Scientist believes that Jesus passed through death to show mortals how to overcome it. Jesus proved, by presenting to his disciples the same body that had lain in the grave, that it was his understanding of God as Life that enabled him to overcome death not yield to it. Thus he abolished death, and "brought life and immortality to light."

 

THE BLOOD OF JESUS.

Does orthodoxy attribute great efficacy to the blood of Jesus? So also does Christian Science, but again in a higher and more practical way. Blood signifies life. It was his life so freely given for the benefit of mortals that enables them to overcome sin, sickness, and even what Paul called the last enemy, death. Jesus said, "Whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?" Do his professed followers believe this any more now than they did then? Furthermore, do Christians believe Jesus' statement, "These signs shall follow"?

 

SIGNS FOLLOWING.

Do the signs follow their belief in the words and works of Jesus? In Christian Science they do. The sinner is reformed, the sick are healed, and the dead raised. Christian Science has breathed upon the slain and they live and are becoming a great army. Why do not our brethren in the churches, our fellow-Christians, in place of opposing Christian Science, inquire into it? All we ask is thorough investigation and calm judgment. Condemnation founded on imperfect knowledge is what we have no right to expect. Why do our brethren in the churches obey only in part the commands of Jesus? He said not only "preach the Gospel," but "heal the sick." "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give." "And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach, and to have power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils." "And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; And they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover." "Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases. And he sent them to preach the Kingdom of God, and to heal the sick." Those who contend that these signs shall follow only those who may have believed within a certain limited period must, to uphold their contention, alter the sacred narrative and substitute the word "you" for the words "them" and "they" in verse 17 of the 16th chapter of Mark just cited.

 

IF SIGNS DO NOT FOLLOW, THEN NOT BELIEVERS.

In the absence of such unwarranted interference the conclusion is inevitable that those who fail to do the works are not believers.

 

PRESENT POSITION OF CHRISTIAN SCIENCE.

Christian Science has been discovered for over thirty years. Its growth is phenomenal. It has three hundred and fifty worshiping congregations, and over a million believers, and is rapidly spreading into all parts of the civilized world. Its text-book, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," has passed through one hundred and sixty-five editions of one thousand copies each, and the demand for it is increasing daily.

 

MRS. EDDY.

All that is here stated, and all that is known about Christian Science, is derived from the Scriptures through the spiritual consciousness of Mary Baker Eddy, to whom the world owes a debt of gratitude it can never repay. In 1866 Mrs. Eddy, taking the Bible as her only guide, re-discovered the Science by which Jesus performed his miracles, and explained it fully in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures." Since then she has indeed given her life to the spread of this glorious Truth. This gentle, loving woman, standing in the "meekness and might of Mind," has braved reproach and misrepresentation, to benefit humanity. She is teaching the world the grand truths of Christian Science that God is not only Spirit, but, from His very nature and omnipresence, can be nothing less than Mind; and that from the right understanding of God flows health and holiness. The question is sometimes asked: Why should this discovery come through Mrs. Eddy? Well, it had to come through some one, had it not? If no one had voiced this Truth, would you or I have ever heard it? If Jesus had not preached and healed, would the Gospels ever have been written? Evidently this Truth, in order to reach humanity, had again to pass through some human consciousness; and I will tell you why it came through hers. By devoting many years of constant study to the Scriptures, with the earnest desire to get at their spiritual meaning and to make them practical, her mind became qualified for the re-discovery of the spiritual healing, the method adopted by Jesus the Christ in the destruction of sin and sickness. This knowledge therefore came through her as being the one best fitted to receive and impart it. If you or I had been fitted for this great work, it would have come through one of us; but we were not. While rejoicing over this great discovery, our thoughts naturally go out in love and gratitude to its Discoverer. What earthly honor are we not willing to give to any great benefactor? It is but right and reasonable that we should regard with love and reverence her who has opened up to us, by her Key, the Scriptures, and thus made clearer the knowledge of eternal Life. In this lecture I have not attempted to give more than an outline of Christian Science, which I would ask each of you to fill in for him or herself. In this outline you will see that the understanding of Christian Science depends upon the acceptance of God as perfect Good, as divine Intelligence, eternal Mind, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Life, Truth, and Love. From a perfect Creator follows naturally a perfect creation, incapable of discord or decay, in which is included man, made in God's spiritual image and likeness, not subject to sickness, sin, or death, not dwelling in the fogs or mists of a false creation, but in the clear, pure atmosphere of a spiritual consciousness that heals the sick, and gives him dominion over every thought that opposes itself to the good and the true. The supposition that God made a perfect man and then placed him within the influence of evil to strengthen his moral fibre and keep him perfect is, in the blazing light of Christian Science, childish nonsense. Good is divine, the real and the true; evil is a human concept, unreal and untrue. We must learn to know Good as the only fact, and evil as only a falsity; to know Good by experience and evil by negation. This is the Christ teaching Christian Science.

 

[Delivered June 5, 1899, in Queen's Hall, Langham Place, London, England, and published in The Christian Science Journal, December, 1899.]

 

 

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