The epistle to the Hebrews is read with deep interest by students of Christian Science, who discern in its teachings an effort to lift thought above a theology expressed in forms and ceremonies, up to a vital religion which makes known "the power of an endless life." The writer of this epistle deals reverentially with the beliefs of the fathers, the symbolism of the temple at Jerusalem and its sacrificial services, but he at the same time shows the inadequacy of all these to meet human need,—"the weakness and unprofitableness thereof." Then he tells of "the bringing in of a better hope," by which we "draw nigh unto God." Here, too, we find clear evidence that the Christ-teaching had not been wholly obscured by the mists of mortal belief, as in after years, when Christian people came to believe that death was at least a part of God's plan for taking men to Himself.

In the second chapter of this epistle the purpose of Jesus' life-work is boldly defined where we read that he took upon himself human conditions, even to the extent of tasting death "for every man," that by the overcoming of this last enemy he "might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage,"—the mightiest task ever undertaken on behalf of humanity, a task which could never be carried to completion apart from the renewing, life-giving influence of divine Truth. In simple yet forceful language, Mrs. Eddy tells us of the unfoldment of the idea of immortality in human consciousness, when she says, "Sin brought death, and death will disappear with the disappearance of sin" (Science and Health, p. 426). Mortal man can never rise above sin or its consequent, namely, death. This "old man" must be put off by knowing the unreality of the belief which constitutes the dream of mortal existence, and by the ceaseless realization of what man as God's likeness is and must of necessity be,—that he must at every moment reflect and express Truth and Love, and so realize the meaning of eternal Life.

August 10, 1912

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