When thrilled with a new idea, the tendency of human nature is to talk about it. It has, however, been said, that "the less men think, the more they talk." This is especially true when it comes to religion. People will even pass over the weather to engage in a controversy upon religious topics.

The Cause of Christian Science has not wholly escaped the "talking-much-and-saying-nothing" habit. Many people who have become interested in Christian Science had for years allowed themselves to be prejudiced as the result of senseless or careless statements by some who called themselves Christian Scientists. Idle talk upon such subjects as the unreality of evil and the nothingness of matter is not calculated to attract to the teachings of the Master people who allow themselves to judge by what seems patent to the outward senses. The best time to talk upon such subjects is after some tangible proof of healing has been given to these people that their thinking is along wrong lines, and even then the premature declarations of absolute scientific truths are not conducive to favorable results. The neophyte in Science is too apt to be possessed with a zeal which is "not according to knowledge." His intentions are humane, but he lacks the wisdom and discretion necessary to convey the right thought at the right time to those whom he would bless. Without these virtues he is very liable to fall an unconscious victim to the talking habit.

A very earnest young student was once invited to spend an evening with a minister of his acquaintance to discuss Christian Science. The invitation was accepted. Passages of Scripture were of course freely quoted, some of which the minister assented to, while others he vehemently opposed. This student had proven very little of the teachings of Science and Health, having read the book through once or twice only, and was none too familiar with the Bible. His was a zeal without knowledge. During the course of the argument,—for that is really what it was,—the student cited this quotation from the Bible: "They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God;" which was immediately contradicted, upon the ground that no such passage occurred in the Bible. The Bible was called for, and the quotation found and read aloud to the minister. He still doubted, and asked to see for himself. He found the text just as it had been quoted, and became so confounded and apparently angered that he literally threatened to dismiss in a very forcible manner the student whom he had invited to his house, if he persisted in explaining any such "pernicious doctrine." The student knew just enough to keep calm, and this saved him, but did not convert his host. The conversation continued until after midnight, and the visitor departed. The lesson was a valuable one to the student; but some eighteen years have passed and there is still no evidence of his preacher friend having become interested in Christian Science.

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December 25, 1909

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