"Nearer to thee."

As the years pass, material theories of God and man prove their inadequacy; the heart of humanity cries out after "the living and true God" and can be satisfied with nothing less. When in the depths of distress, Job said, "O that I knew where I might find him!" and many another in the long years since then has uttered the same cry. When mortals once understand that to draw near to God means to approach good, though the way may seem long it cannot be devious.

A great change has come to human thought in recent years. In spite of the seeming irreverence of much public discussion, a profound conviction of the divine goodness is displacing the belief so long held, that God is in some way responsible for evil. The trenchant statements of Science and Health which declare God to be eternal Principle and unchanging good, have challenged the hoary opinion held in theology and out of it, that good and evil are about equally balanced, with the chances on the side of evil. In contradistinction to this belief Christian Science teaches that God, good, is supreme, and that those who ally themselves with divine Principle, eternal right, are on the winning side, whatever be the opposing evidence,—whether it be sickness, sin, sorrow, or wrong of any kind.

To the outsider this may seem an easy optimism, but the student of Christian Science knows that the call to draw near to God demands the surrender of everything that is unlike God, and that as he approaches the infinite light and purity revealed by Science, sin becomes intolerable to him, even as it is to God. As the human consciousness is largely a state of self-ignorance, evil ofttimes remains hidden until the awakened spiritual sense cries out against it; then comes a struggle like that experienced by Paul when he said, "O wretched man that I am!" One thing is sure, —that evil cannot abide in the divine presence, nor can it remain with the one who acknowledges God as his Father and who seeks daily to prove his likeness to the all-good. We learn in Christian Science that in good alone is harmony, and great is the delusion which claims that either health or happiness can exist without goodness.

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"Go in to possess the land."
February 10, 1906

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