The Character of the Christ

The character of the Christ may be defined as the perfect reflection of divine Principle, expressed in conscious living in accord with the ideals of God, good. On page 313 of "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" Mrs. Eddy says, "It is noteworthy that the phrase 'express image' in the Common Version is, in the Greek Testament, character." With the light which this understanding gives, we see in the earth life of Jesus, the anointed, a continuous upward unfolding from glory to glory, as the Messiah, Redeemer, Way-shower, through demonstration overcoming all the evils of false belief in order to show mortals the way out of discord, disease, and sin. The definition of Christ as "the divine manifestation of God, which comes to the flesh to destroy incarnate error" (Science and Health, p. 583), enables the Bible student to discern the spiritual meaning of the Christ. All through the Scriptures we find vividly portrayed this spiritual import of Him who was before Abraham,—the leadership, the guidance, the power that draws not only all men but all creation, even from the remotest parts of the earth, making it one in heart, purpose, and language, causing it to hear the one voice and to realize only the divine presence.

In Science and Health (p. 107) we read, "This apodictical Principle points to the revelation of Immanuel, 'God with us,'" and this Principle led the Wisemen to follow the star. In the fullness of time, heralded by a call to repentance and purity, the perfect man appeared unto the sons and daughters of earth, to begin his visible work. He went about on foot regardless of wind or storm, teaching humbly, patiently, by the wayside, of the things pertaining to his spiritual kingdom, telling of the power which belongs to God alone, and proving the truth of his teachings by doing many mighty works. Not acceptable to many was this humble king, who helped all alike, the only requirement being a manifest sense of need and a desire and willingness to be helped. Except by a small number, a king was desired who would establish a material kingdom of unexampled earthly power and splendor, and this only for the few. Jesus demonstrated that he had dominion over all things, yet he never forgot that his kingdom was not of earth. It was hard for ambition, despotism, self-love, to yield their claims, and because of this the gentle Jesus was delivered to be crucified, even then performing one of his greatest works,—greatest in illustration of the loving forbearance he taught, in blessing and healing an enemy.

Christ Jesus and Man
December 20, 1919

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