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CHRISTIAN SCIENCE PRACTICE

What really needs healing?

Seeking the kingdom of God, we grow in grace and find our problems solved.

From the May 1999 issue of The Christian Science Journal


Not Too Long Ago I became aware of sensations and pain in my jaw that reminded me of a tooth problem I used to have. At that time a dentist had said the tooth would have to be extracted. But since I became a student of Christian Science, I have proved the efficacy of Christian Science treatment, of specific healing prayer. Because I now know that this Science heals through the power of God, and that God, spirit, is the only true substance and intelligence, I have learned to resist the aggressive thought that there is life and sensation in matter. As a result, I have been healed of tooth problems solely through prayer.

It was a false
perception of God
and man that had
to be put off.

It does seem that man is made of material elements and is subject to suffering in matter. But actually matter has no sensation of its own, no intelligence or power to inflict pain or suffering. In truth we are spiritual ideas made in God's own image, as we are told in the Bible's opening chapter. What really needs healing, then, is not man, God's perfect likeness, but the false belief that man is mortal and material, a product of "the dust of the ground" spoken of in the second chapter of the Bible. See Gen. 1:27; 2:7 The record of creation beginning in Genesis, chapter two, is just an allegory. God's image is not made of dust, subject to aging, decay, infection, pain, or any form of suffering.

In seeking healing it has helped a lot to remind myself of what man really is. Science and Health by Mary Baker Eddy asks the question "What is man?" The answer begins this way: "Man is not matter; he is not made up of brain, blood, bones, and other material elements. The Scriptures inform us that man is made in the image and likeness of God. Matter is not that likeness. The likeness of Spirit cannot be so unlike Spirit. Man is spiritual and perfect; and because he is spiritual and perfect, he must be so understood in Christian Science." Science and Health, p. 475 What a relief to learn that the man God made is not mortal and material, not subject to sin, disease, and death. Before I began my study of this Science, I more often than not thought of myself and others as descendants of Adam. This statement from Science and Health elevated my thought on the subject: "Life is, always has been, and ever will be independent of matter; for life is God, and man is the idea of God, not formed materially but spiritually, and not subject to decay and dust." Ibid., p. 200

What really needs healing is a false perception of God and man. We don't try through prayer to change a diseased body into a well body. This would be working from a mistaken basis, as though matter were intelligent and substantial. Rather, we need to exchange the belief in sickness for an understanding of what man really is as God's likeness.

In truth, man in God's likeness is never in need of healing. And we have a God-given right to prove this truth in our lives. But we must stand firm in the truth. The lie of materiality must be refuted, and replaced with a perception of the truth of being. In the Bible we read, "Ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you." Rom. 8:9

When faced with this most recent challenge, then, I knew that I could apply the same truths and find healing. I would not spend time trying to heal matter.

It's natural
to deny a lie,
to affirm
what is true.

As we seek to understand God and the truth of our being, we naturally find the healing that's needed in our body and life. Christ Jesus' teaching "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you" Matt. 6:33 is a wonderful directive. Seeking the kingdom through spiritual understanding, we grow in grace and find our problems solved. We more clearly see ourselves and others as never diseased, abused, sinful, suffering, desolate, or downtrodden.

I've learned that as we deny emphatically the belief that man is a mortal, created from the dust of the ground, and affirm with confidence that he is entirely spiritual and without flaw—that Spirit is All and therefore there is no matter in which disease or any evil could develop—healing results. As God's own offspring we can't possibly be under any sentence of disease, limitation, accident, age, or deterioration. Rather, we're under God's law of perfect spiritual life. The carnal, mortal mind, so-called, has no intelligence, no power, no backing, no ability to make or enforce a law. God is the only Mind, the only lawmaker. This truth is the Science of Christ, the law of God, which heals.

Our hearts abound with gratitude when we realize that we don't have to endure pain or other suffering—that we can deny it with authority. It's not that we throw spiritual truths at the problem in an attempt to improve matter; instead, we find quick healing by correcting the belief that we could be a mortal with a problem. It's natural to deny a lie. Because sickness has a mental basis, denying the lie and affirming what's true brings that truth to light in healing.

In the most basic sense, what needs healing is always an erroneous belief that we're mortals, made of matter, that God's man could be less than immortal and perfect. We are spiritual, the perfect, ageless creation of our Father-Mother God. We have dominion over false thoughts of sensation and life in matter. Science and Health assures us: "Become conscious for a single moment that Life and intelligence are purely spiritual,—neither in nor of matter,—and the body will then utter no complaints. If suffering from a belief in sickness, you will find yourself suddenly well." Science and Health, p. 14

The truth is that we are not sinning, suffering mortals. I clearly saw that fact, and that was the end of the tooth problem. □


Acquaint now thyself with him,
and be at peace: thereby
good shall come unto thee.

Job 22:21

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