IT is well for us to recall ofttimes the words spoken by Paul at Lystra, when the priest of Jupiter essayed to offer him divine honors because of the healing of a man lame from his birth. He reminded these Greeks that God, as known to the apostles, was always doing good, and that he had never left Himself "without witness," a statement in accord with that of Christ Jesus, who said that our Father in heaven "maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust;" or, to quote the words of our text-book, "Love is impartial and universal in its adaptation and bestowals" (Science and Health, p. 13). In view of these and many similar statements in the Bible, it is interesting to consider the widely prevailing belief in the divine intervention in human affairs, a belief based upon the supposition that mankind are usually left to their own devices, but that in the crises of human experience God exercises His power to prevent the catastrophes which are impending.
It cannot be denied that the tendency of the carnal mind is evil, and that it knows not how to guard mankind against the miseries and misfortunes of mortal existence, because, as the Scriptures declare, "it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be." Under this blinding influence the unwary are led to do that which the enlightened human sense would condemn, even to the commission of crimes from which the innocent seem to suffer; all of which is explained in the words of Christ Jesus: "O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee." This would indeed seem a hopeless outlook for the race, were it not for the fact that when all earthly supports fail, when every avenue of escape seems closed, then men turn to God for help; and never do any fail to find it, if they seek in sincerity and with the grain of faith demanded by Christ Jesus.
One of the most deeply instructive stories in the Bible is that of Joseph, who was sent away into cruel and, as it must have seemed, hopeless bondage, through the envy and jealousy of his brethren. His was a rarely strong and beautiful nature, however, and this because of his deep spirituality, which not only preserved him from sin and suffering, but lifted him to a most exalted station,—made him prime minister of Egypt, one of the greatest nations of antiquity. If we regard his experience, as given in Genesis, from the ordinary standpoint, it would scarcely be possible to think of any situation more menacing to unfolding goodness of character than the one in which he was placed in his youth,-— separated from his loved and loving father and thrown among strangers alien to his religion and ideals. But God had not left Himself "without witness" in Potiphar's household, for even there Joseph found favor because of his intelligence and integrity,—sure proof that God was with him. Then came a terrible temptation, but hatred and lust assailed his purity in vain, and though he went to prison on a false charge, and remained there for several years, yet all the time he was learning the deeper lessons of life; learning, too, how to interpret the dream of mortal existence in its varied phases; and all this because of his acquaintance with the Mind that governs man and the universe.
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