Simplicity of the Gospel

People who begin their acquaintance with Christian Science by attending the church services, are usually impressed first with their simplicity and dignity. From the opening hymn to the pronouncement of the benediction every detail is in accordance with the apostolic injunction "Let all things be done decently and in order." A sense of fitness pervades the entire order of service provided for The Mother Church and its wide-spread branches, as outlined on pages 120, 121 of the Manual. It is even specified that the instrumental music which precedes and follows the service shall be "of an appropriate character." Nothing is left to chance or the vagaries of mortal sense.

Nevertheless this very simplicity is a strong factor in reaching the consciousness of the individual. He sees there is no striving for effect, no obtrusion of personality or of personal opinion. The one aim and object is to present to the congregation the simple truths of the gospel which Jesus taught and exemplified,—to sow the good seed, knowing it is "God that giveth the increase." It is this broader view, this elimination of the individual, which is made prominent in the by-law respecting "Prayer in Church." Section 5 of Article VIII of the Manual reads: "The prayers in Christian Science churches shall be offered for the congregations collectively and exclusively."

Here we have the key-note. The Lesson-Sermon itself represents a consensus of conception. It is not prepared for some particular group of individuals or some special field, but for every one who is ready to hear the truth and make it his own, since "Love," Mrs. Eddy tells us, "is impartial and universal in its adaptation and bestowals" (Science and Health, p. 13). All over the civilized world the truth in its purity and simplicity is read in the Christian Science churches each Sunday, and if it is read in the spirit of that purity and simplicity it cannot fail to bring help and comfort to each member of the congregation in the measure of his apprehension.

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Unceasing Progress
January 22, 1916

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