"As a lamp that burneth"

In his teaching that God is Love, the Master spoke not only for the essential nature of Deity, but, since love is revealed and discerned only in loving deeds, he spoke for the fact that this nature is disclosed in its activities. Thus he made his own life a continuous illustration of the attractive and redemptive power of compassion. He preached by practising, and thus he became "the light of the world." As he apprehended and lived it, life is not only potential, but dynamic. It is a self-giving, Spirit-revealing activity. St. John seems to have apprehended this as did none other of the disciples. For him life's first privilege and duty was the radiation of the light of Love, and in his ever-reiterated counsel, "Little children, ... love one another," he commended his followers to the realization of the efficiency as well as the need of affection.

Again, in the call of Master, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see," the truth was practically phrased that love lives and has its being in manifestation. The unlighted lamp is darkness itself. Neither the receptacle nor the oil that fills it counts for anything if there be no flame. Following the beatitudes, this is the first truth which is enlarged upon in the Sermon on the Mount; and how striking is the parallelism thus presented to the great initial assertions of Scripture, "In the beginning God," who "moved upon" the deep of darkness, and said, "Let there be light"!

Christian Science enables us to see a further parallelism in the statement, "There was a man sent from God." Man, a divine idea, the projection of infinite Mind, must radiate the light of "the knowledge of the glory of the Lord." Divine intelligence naturally expresses itself in love as the oil expresses itself in light. This is the philosophy of being as apprehended in Christian Science, and we obey the Master's command, "Let your light ... shine," when we accept the fact of man's "spiritual identity in the likeness of the divine" (Science and Health, p. 51), his spiritual equipment or capacity to love God's way and thus do His work, so that whatever he looses on earth is loosed in heaven.

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Thought and Thinking
May 30, 1914

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