A recent issue contains a report of a sermon preached not...

Courier and Herald

A recent issue contains a report of a sermon preached not long since by the Rev. Mr.—. We are interested to observe that he took as his text the command of the Master as given in Matthew: "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils; freely ye have received, freely give." As far as we can make out, his audience did not seem to get much guidance for their task, but instead a criticism of Mrs. Eddy and what the preacher thought was Christian Science. Let me say that it is the command just quoted which Christian Scientists are endeavoring to carry out today; and the extent of the Christian Science movement, world-wide as it is, is positive evidence that no inconsiderable success has attended their efforts. One is surely justified in thinking that Gamaliel's remark applies especially to men who have the regeneration of mankind at heart: "If this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to naught: but if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God."

We would like to put before your readers certain points which the critic's address raises. And first, let me say that Mrs. Eddy stands a unique figure in religious history today, as the Founder of a world-wide movement, whose adherents are drawn from all grades of society, among whom is a host of men and women of refinement and culture. Like many another, her pathway was far from being a smooth one; she had more than her share of the world's suffering and sorrow, and for years after her discovery of Christian Science was subjected to almost every form of indignity and persecution conceivable; and, strange to say, much of it came from people who called themselves Christians. If one studies her life (and there is an excellent biography of her by Sibyl Wilbur), one finds her to be possessed of an intensely religious mind, which struggled ever against the sense of injustice, evil, and disease, with, however, wonderful sweetness and endurance. It is true that in her search for Truth she experimented widely and variedly. Not only did she exhaust the skill of the ordinary allopathic medical schools, but she even studied and practised homeopathy for a time. In fact, it was the latter that indicated to her the explanation of the so-called power of a drug in the treatment of disease. She reasoned that if results could be obtained on a patient by a "medicine," the presence of which chemical analysis failed to detect, there must be an explanation of the result outside the generally accepted view.

Mrs. Eddy's association with Quimby, an avowed mesmerist, was of an exactly similar nature. Mrs. Eddy was brought in this case into touch with another "phenomenon of the mortal mind," and for a while she tried hard to find a relationship between these hypnotic results and those healings of Jesus Christ recorded in the New Testament, which so freely testify to the working of spiritual law; but in this she entirely failed. It was later, when she was healed instantaneously from a condition which had been brought about by an accident, and which had been declared incurable by the physician attending her, that the great spiritual truth dawned upon her that sickness had no mandate from God, that it was not created by Him, that therefore there is no law sustaining it, and that consequently it is, inthe absolute sense, false. This spiritual perception healed her.

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