A critic is quoted in a recent issue as saying that Christian Science...

Colorado Springs (Col.) Telegraph

A critic is quoted in a recent issue as saying that Christian Science denies sin, the atonement, and consequently the teachings of the Scriptures. Perhaps it would be well for this gentleman to find out what Christian Science does teach on these topics before making it the subject of newspaper attacks, because, if he had informed himself before speaking, he would have discovered that Christian Science does not deny either the sense of sin in human experience, the atonement, or the plain teachings of the Scriptures. Doubtless it differs in its view of these important subjects from the view held by this critic; but that does not necessarily imply that the Christian Science view is incorrect, since diverse views of sin, the atonement, and the divinity of Christ are held by members of churches this critic would doubtless consider fully orthodox. I am inclined to think he would have considerable difficulty in drawing up a thesis covering these subjects that would satisfy all the members even of his own denomination; and yet he denounces Christian Science for not subscribing to his view!

Our critic would doubtless assent to the general proposition that the intent of the gospel is to heal and save mankind from sin, disease, and death; but could he show that his concept of Christ, his interpretation of the atonement, or his view that sin is real and therefore God-created, heals the sick as Jesus commanded? Christian Science does heal the sick; it reforms the sinner; and it points to those "signs following" in proof that its interpretation of the Scriptures is correct. Christian Science takes the position that death is not a part of the kingdom of God, and that in the universe of Spirit there is no such thing as death. The whole mission of Jesus on earth was to prove the nothingness of sin, disease, and death, and he proved his mission by his works, "healing all manner of sickness" and raising the dead. If death were of God, Jesus would have been going contrary to the divine will in overcoming it for himself and for Lazarus. His attitude toward sin was exactly the same, and in one instance in particular he pointed out that sin and disease originate in the same manner, and that the power of God was equally applicable to destroying both.

Relative to the atonement, Christian Science teaches the primitive Christian doctrines upon this subject, namely, that atonement is "at-one-ment with God," and that it exemplifies "man's unity with God" (Science and Health, pp. 19, 18). Until the opponents of Christian Science can unite on a working definition of the atonement, it would perhaps be advisable to refrain from attacking the Christian Science view of this subject. A criticism of Christian Science based on dogmatism and scholasticism is utterly unconvincing. Christian Scientists are well aware that their religion differs in many respects from the theology of this critic, but this does not convince them that they are wrong, because they have proofs in their own experiences which are sufficient to convince them that Christian Science is the restatement of primitive Christianity which Jesus and his apostles taught.

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