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The healing word of God—quick, powerful, sharp

From the June 1998 issue of The Christian Science Journal


Here's a woman's personal testimony: "A friend of mine was taking treatment for physical troubles, and was reading the textbook of Christian Science, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures. ... I said to my friend, 'If that is a Key to the Scriptures, I must have it.'

"... I wish I could express in words what that book brought me. It illumined the Bible with a glorious light and I began to understand some of the Master's [Christ Jesus'] sayings, and tried to apply them.

"I had had a longing to live a better Christian life for many years, and often wondered why I failed so utterly to understand the Bible. Now I knew; it was lack of spiritual apprehension.

"I did not know at first that people were healed of disease and sin by simply reading Science and Health, but found after a while that such was the case. At that time I had many physical troubles, and one after another of these ills simply disappeared and I found that I had no disease,—I was perfectly free." Science and Health, pp. 642-643

This is just one of numerous accounts of healing and regeneration offered in the final one hundred pages of Science and Health, the book authored by Mary Baker Eddy. It is not an uncommon testimony of Bible students of many faiths, in fact, that Science and Health has opened to them the deeper, spiritual meaning and truths of the Scriptures, and that this genuine "spiritual apprehension" of God's word has healed them, transformed them, redeemed them. This has proved true since 1875, when Science and Health was first published, to the present day. And this growing record of Christian healing and regeneration has been a vital demonstration, confirming the New Testament's own promise: "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Heb. 4:12

Quick

"For the word of God is quick..." God's word is alive. That's the original meaning of quick in the New Testament. It is living truth. Nothing about the expression of divine Truth can ever be out of date, a relic of the past, extinct or cold. As one Bible commentary concludes: God's word "does not die when uttered, but continues vital and operative, and, like a sharp sword, penetrates to the inmost recesses of the heart and life." J.R. Dummelow, A Commentary on the Holy Bible (New York: Macmillan Co., 1936), p. 1019

This was surely evident in Jesus' own healing ministry. On one occasion, as on many, Jesus was approached by someone seeking healing. See Mark 1:40-42 A man with leprosy came to the Saviour,"... beseeching him, and kneeling down to him, and saying unto him, If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean." The Bible tells us that Jesus was "moved with compassion." He readily embraced the man in God's love. He "put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean." The man was healed—immediately.

Jesus' spiritual apprehension of divine Truth, of God's tender message of every individual's spiritual purity and wholeness, demonstrated the instant, healing result of Truth. Truth's healing message and its healing outcome are immediate, quick, vital, and we can prove this. In any circumstance, at any time, we can know God's specific message of truth, apprehend it, exactly when and as we need to. Science and Health offers this perspective: "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

Powerful

"For the word of God is quick and powerful..." God's truth is operative, effectual. Again, that is the original sense of the word powerful, as translated in this verse from the New Testament. God's truth never fails to fulfill its holy purpose. The divine expression never falters, is never timid or weak, never ineffectual, never inadequate.

When we turn to God humbly, His truth comes to human consciousness in a form that is always comprehensible and that always has its comforting, healing, transforming effect. In prayer, our spiritual sense is awakened by Christ, Truth, and it is this spiritual sense that enables us to understand God's messages of love and life.

Christian Science is the ever-operative, healing law of God, divine Love, demonstrating the nature of divine reality and our individual purpose in that reality as God's man, His spiritual image and likeness. The practice of Christian Science in daily life, healing disease and redeeming hearts, offers proof positive that God's word is operative here and now and that it is consistently effectual in the most practical of ways. At one point in Science and Health, Mrs. Eddy concludes: "The power of Christian Science and divine Love is omnipotent. It is indeed adequate to unclasp the hold and to destroy disease, sin, and death." Ibid., p. 412

God 's truth
never fails to
fulfill its holy
purpose. The
divine expression
never falters,
is never timid
or weak, never
ineffectual, never
inadequate.

Sharp

God's healing word is sharp, keen—"sharper than any two-edged sword." As J. B. Phillips translates this verse, he tells us that God's word "... cuts more keenly than any two-edged sword: it strikes through to the place where soul and spirit meet, to the innermost intimacies of a man's being: it examines the very thoughts and motives of a man's heart." J. B. Phillips, The New Testament in Modem English (New York: Macmillan Co., 1972), p. 459

Anyone who has experienced healing through Christian Science, and learned the lessons of healing, will readily admit that the healing of sickness is at the same time a powerful, regenerating experience. There is an essential element of spiritual redemption that always accompanies Christian healing. The two are actually inseparable.

When we are healed, we come closer to God. We drop away some false belief of mortality. We let go of some limited sense of who we are and what our purpose is. We release some fear, or ignorance, or anger, or resentment, or hate, or prejudice. If there is sin we've been struggling with, it loses its hold. The message of God's truth liberates us from wrong thinking. We are made genuinely whole. Science and Health offers this important observation: "Mortals must change their ideals in order to improve their models. A sick body is evolved from sick thoughts." Science and Health, p. 260

God's healing word, sharper than any sword, cuts keenly, straight through "to the innermost intimacies of a man's being." Our beliefs, our thoughts, our motives, are exposed. God's word shines a healing, redeeming light on those thoughts and motives, and where there may have been "sick thoughts" or darkness or fear or selfishness, something pure and fresh is revealed. The new man or woman is shown to us ever more clearly as the old, false beliefs are stripped away. We are made a new creature in God's truth. We are healed. We are "perfectly free."

In our lives day to day, we can be confident, and rejoice, in the realization that God's healing truth is so alive, so effectual, so keen, that it will never fail us. The Apostle Paul knew from his own experience exactly what he was writing in that New Testament letter to the Hebrews nearly two thousand years ago. He believed it. He had proved it. "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword ...."

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