Throughout her writings Mary Baker Eddy links the words evil and error, often in the same sentence. These words identify materiality in all its forms, and I had always accepted that they were synonymous. However, as I was pondering these terms I began to question this assumption.
Mrs. Eddy’s profound understanding of the English language and her prayerful consideration of the placement of individual words throughout her writings is an attribute I have always honored. There was nothing haphazard about it. Also, considering her insistence that the works of the devil must be detected and destroyed, it seemed important to seek a deeper understanding of the words evil and error.
My edition of Webster’s Dictionary appears to support a difference between evil and error by defining evil as something “morally wrong; mischief; trouble; harmful” but it identifies error as “a mistake; the belief in what is not true; a false belief.” However, it is Mrs. Eddy’s interpretation of Revelation 12:4 from the chapter titled “The Apocalypse” in Science and Health with Key the Scriptures that to me reveals a distinct and important difference between the modus operandi of evil and error.