It is a subject of never-failing interest to the student of Christian Science to observe in his study of the gospels how very slowly those who followed Jesus, and saw his works and heard his words, awoke to the realization of the fact that questions of far deeper import than the healing of a few sick people were being unfolded to them, and through them to the world. Those who were closest to him seemed to have understood very little of the vast spiritual truths which he was bringing to light, and even after his resurrection it is probable that the majority of those who followed him still saw in him only a man who had drawn them with an ineffable sense of God's love, and who did marvelous works, the spiritual signification of which still remained dark to them. Even the marvelous works in themselves were not sufficient to awaken a spiritual understanding, for the people were accustomed to wonder-workers of many kinds, and on one occasion they exclaimed, "We never saw it on this fashion," implying that although they had seen many extraordinary things accomplished by exorcists and magicians, they certainly had never seen anything so striking as this latest wonder. But there the majority were content to leave it, merely "glorifying God" without searching further into the cause of these wonderful events.

When Jesus put that tremendous question to his immediate disciples, "Whom say ye that I am?" it was a moment fraught with incalculable issues. A profound student of the gospels has pointed out that this question was put to them at a time when in all likelihood they had been touched by the doubt and unrest which surged up in the mind of the multitude after John the Baptist had been beheaded. It is evident that popular thought had wavered at times in its allegiance to John, or to Jesus as being the greater prophet, and no doubt had looked to Jesus to rescue the Baptist in some miraculous manner; but when he went about his own work and did not turn aside on John's account, it is probable that the faith of many was shaken.

November 4, 1911

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