AS A CHRISTIAN SCIENCE PRACTITIONER, and also in my role of providing legislative support for Christian Science Committees on Publication around the world, I frequently have the opportunity to speak with the public about Christian Science. Those who have little or no familiarity with it tend to assume that Christian Science treatment is simply faith healing. This assumption is not only inaccurate, but may be preventing people, who otherwise would be interested, from exploring Christian Science. In order for all those who wish to reliably demonstrate the Christianly scientific method of healing that Jesus taught (on which Christian Science is based), it's important that this false assumption be corrected. And every Christian Scientist has a wonderful opportunity to show the distinction between faith healing and Christian Science healing in their own practice.
The word faith is used repeatedly throughout the Bible in the context of healing—primarily in the New Testament. Consider the familiar story appearing in three of the four Gospels that describes the occasion when Jesus had been approached by a man to heal his son, whose epileptic condition led to frequent, violent reactions. The man explained to Jesus that he had first taken his son to the disciples, but that they could not cure him.
Had the power to heal been something unique to Jesus, he might have simply healed the child and moved on with his day. But that's not what happened. Rather, Jesus had been teaching the disciples to heal, and his response to them evidenced frustration with their failure to do so. In his admonishment of the disciples, Jesus made reference to their faith when he said, "O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me" (Matt. 17:17).