Perusal of the summary of an attack upon the religion of...

The Tribune

Perusal of the summary of an attack upon the religion of a large and growing element of decent citizenship in your community, as appearing in a recent issue, produces twofold astonishment,—first, that so much misinformation could be expressed within so small a space; and secondly, that these familiar old fables, after so many years of service in so many places and at so many hands, in vain endeavor to stop the progress of Christian Science, could still be regarded as capable of dissuading here and there an inquirer from following his natural desire to ascertain whether that which has accomplished so much for others might not be equally beneficial to himself. There is not in the summary, as printed, a single statement that of itself and as presented would convey a correct idea of any phase of the teachings, practice, or aims of Christian Science. Without exception the statements are either the direct opposite of the truth, or they are mere perverting half-truths.

How completely a half-truth may falsify a situation is instanced in the assertion that Christian Science denies the existence of matter. Standing alone, this would appear to be a doctrine of annihilation. Mrs. Eddy takes pains to explain that such terms as existence, reality, etc., are used by her in both an absolute and a relative sense. Matter as a temporal material phenomenon is not denied. The statements quoted by the critic refer to spiritual creation, and it is unfair and misleading to present them otherwise. When Christian Science through its text-book, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" by Mrs. Eddy, urges the consideration of man as spiritual and not material, it is because of the practical benefit to be derived from cultivating a higher concept of man's identity than that of mere bodily existence. Christian Science therefore means neither more nor less than the Bible means when it says that man lives and moves and has his being in God, Spirit, and that "flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God."

The assurance gained in Christian Science that sin is not an element of real manhood, in no sense attempts to ignore the part sin plays in the human drama. It distinctly does not refer to mortals, and this is repeatedly stated in the text-book. There is therefore no justification for trying to make it appear that Christian Scientists are taught to "satisfy their consciences" by merely saying "sin is a false belief." The teaching of Christian Science in this respect is no more capable of such an interpretation than is the Scriptural assertion that "whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin." The meaning in each case is identical.

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