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The first article in a series that explores Mary Baker Eddy’s vision for the Christian Science Quarterly.

The Bible Lesson

A flexible format that supports ideas

From the June 2013 issue of The Christian Science Journal

For more than a century, the Bible Lessons published in the Christian Science Quarterly have been at the core of Sunday sermons at Christian Science services, of healing in these services, and of individual study and practice of Christian Science. However, when Mary Baker Eddy first organized her Church, she had not yet established these Lessons. As was common in Protestant churches, a pastor was designated to deliver the sermons. But Mrs. Eddy soon grew disenchanted with this practice, feeling that too often the pastor’s personal views and incorrect theology crept into the sermons.

In 1890, Eddy replaced individual preaching with Sunday sermons based on the Bible Lessons in the International Uniform Sunday-School Lessons (often referred to as the International Series). This series, used by various Protestant churches, focused on Bible literacy. A Bible Lesson Committee was established to compile parallel passages from the Bible and her textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures. The citations for these passages were then published in the Christian Science Quarterly, to serve as explanations for the International Series texts.

Then, in 1895, after praying deeply, Eddy ordained the Bible and Science and Health as pastor of her Church. In 1898, she designated 26 subjects for the Bible Lesson Committee to use for future lessons. These new lessons had no connection to the International Series and consisted entirely of passages from the dual pastor.

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More in this issue / June 2013


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