"The everlasting gospel"

It is agreed by many religious writers that those who are striving for more spirituality find greater help in the study of Gospels than in any other part of the Bible. The reason for this is very clear to Christian Scientists, who know the supreme value of demonstrations of the truth. In the Gospels we find not only the wonderful teachings of the Master, but the proof of their practicality in the healing which he accomplished; indeed he did not ask for faith in his words alone, but said, "If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not." In characterizing the Gospel narratives our revered Leader says, "Jesus illumines them, showing the poverty of mortal existence, but richly recompensing human want and woe with spiritual gain" (Science and Health, p. 501). The pity is that any should deny or doubt the Christ-power to do all this to-day as surely as in Jesus' time, for the need is as great now as then, and in the darkest hours the troubled heart turns instinctively to the imperishable record of his mighty deeds, when all else fails. Only those who have had the experience can know how terrible it is to be told in such an hour that the "hope in Christ," awakened by the Gospel stories, must also fail, fail, because "the day of miracles is past." Well is it that to this enlightened age has come "the bringing in of a better hope," by which "we draw nigh unto God" and thus find all the help we need.

The naturalness of the Christ-healing is beautifully illustrated in the restoration of the nobleman's son, as recorded by John. From the Gospel narratives we learn that Jesus was ever at work, preaching, teaching, and healing. He was then in Cana, and this nobleman came from Capernaum, some sixteen miles distant, to ask help for his son, who "was at the point of death." We can easily imagine his interruption of the Master's teaching, with his almost despairing appeal. Then came the calm response, "Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe." The pride of place and power must have bowed before those searching words, for the father cried, "Sir, come down ere my child die." This humble, trustful entreaty brought the cheering answer, "Go thy way; thy son liveth;" and the record adds, "The man believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him." How great was the faith thus enkindled may be gathered from the statement that the father did not even go home to learn the child's condition, but remained, presumably to learn more of this truth which heals the sick. The next day he was met on his way home by his servants, who told him that his child had been healed at the very hour in which Jesus had declared the truth for him.

It is interesting to know that this nobleman and his household accepted the truth in consequence of the child's healing, as many do to-day because of the healing of some loved one. This case is of special interest to Christian Scientists, because the healer was not with the patient; the healing thus proving the omnipresence of the divine Life—which is the basic teaching of Christian Science.

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August 4, 1906

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