The Undivided Garment

From time to time critics rise to find fault with Christian Science, and especially to demur to the use of the word Christian in connection with it. Happily these critics have grown fewer in number, and their words receive less notice than formerly.

Webster's definition of Christianity is: "The religion of Christians; the system of doctrines and precepts taught by Christ. Practical conformity of one's inward and outward life to the spirit of the Christian religion." The Century Dictionary gives as one definition of the same word: "Conformity to the teachings of Christ in life and conduct," and as the definition of the word Christian, "Specifically, one who possesses the spiritual character proper to a follower of Christ; one who exemplifies in his life the teachings of Christ."

When it is remembered that a great part of the record of Jesus' ministry is a record of healing, it would seem that the position taken by Christian Scientists is, in this regard, consistent with at least one essential of Christianity, yet it is on this point that Christian Science differs in practice from other Christian denominations. Few critics have made this difference in practice so plain as has the New Jersey clergyman who recently said in a sermon, "Such attempts as that of Christian Science to claim for religion the work of healing are but a harking back to a discarded arrangement of things, an arrangement that kept men in bondage to superstition and ignorance, whose casting aside was a triumph for knowledge and for the welfare of man."

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The Fostering of Fear
February 20, 1904

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