The teaching of Christian Science concerning evil is sometimes criticized by those who fail to see the distinction which it makes between the spiritual and the material. While Christian Science, following Scriptural precedent, declares that evil, from the spiritual standpoint, is unreal, it does not deny that a belief in a power besides God obtains in the human consciousness, and that this belief must be destroyed before the kingdom of heaven can fully come to that consciousness. There is no question but that, to finite sense, evil seems to be real, else that sense would feel no need of a savior; and it is equally certain that if evil were what it seems to be, there could be no savior from it. Christian Science does not belittle the problem of the belief in evil with which awakened humanity is grappling, but it does deny that evil is something intrinsically real, a God-known and God-permitted power, and it does this to the point of its disappearance.

Throughout her published writings on Christian Science, Mrs. Eddy teaches the necessity of a discriminating knowledge of the nature of evil and of its modus operandi in human consciousness,—not as something to be feared, but as something to be denied and mastered as a falsity. Because of their understanding that God is the only power, Christian Scientists are working to overcome evil, not as power, but as a false belief of power; not as something besides God, but as the false sense of something besides God. Mankind have believed evil to be as real and powerful as good, and have battled with it on that basis, but the conflict has naturally been a losing one. Mankind have been defeated because, although ostensibly fighting the enemy, they have in reality been arrayed on its side; that is, they have themselves assigned to evil all the power it needed to overcome them. Since it is not possible that evil should obtain in divine Mind, it is only in the so-called human mind that evil seems to exist; and how can this mind possibly hope to overcome evil, after having arrayed itself on evil's side?

February 22, 1913

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