An extract from a sermon by Professor—,published...

Southern Cross

An extract from a sermon by Professor—,published in the Southern Cross, contains a reference to Christian Science in which he speaks of this religion as a fashionable form of racial folly, practising esoteric mysteries, the root of which, according to the professor, is an unspiritual thirst after a sign, after thaumaturgic wonders, and other things on the level of conjuring tricks. The ninth commandment not having been abrogated, it is a little surprising how readily some learned critics use the pulpit and the pen to promulgate representations, which they do not substantiate, of a religion from which they differ, but which, nevertheless, is a religion believed in and practised by a million of their fellow-professing Christians. Opinion is free to all, and Burns, who was a keen observer of his fellow men, clerical and lay, in a few terse words expressed the indisputability of facts. Our critic might therefore be invited to quote specifically his authority for the assertions he makes, by indicating any passage in the Christian Science text-book, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," which would show either sympathy or accord with esoteric mystery and magic or with Pythagorean philosophy.

The study of Christian Science requires no special initiation, unless it be the dropping of prejudice, and there is nothing in Christian Science uncommunicated or unintelligible to the general body of its followers, or to the world at large. Children understand it sufficiently to prove their understanding by its practice. Its thirst is that spiritual thirst for living waters which Christ Jesus commended, and which is quenchable only through obedience to his commands. Its healing may be wonderful, but it makes no claim to the miraculous in any other sense. It regards the miraculous works of Jesus not as supernatural, but as divinely natural, fully accepting the assurance, "He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also." The existence of Christian Science as a religion, and its continuous and uninterrupted progress, are outcomes of that "weariness and despair and breakdown of blank materialism to satisfy the heart of man" to which our critic alludes. Christian Science does not "deceive the carnal heart," as the professor asserts; but on the very best authority it regards the carnal mind as "enmity against God;" that fleshly mind which is a deceiver from the beginning; a negation of the divine Mind, the Mind "which was also in Christ Jesus."

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