The Real Meaning of the Sabbath

We usually think of the Sabbath as a day which comes once a week, and not different from other days so far as the physical conditions of weather, number of hours, and the like, are concerned. It is, however, different from the others, because it has been set aside for religious observance. It has become customary for us to stop certain business activities on that day and go to church. That the observance of the Sabbath and the holding of church services is beneficial is a foregone conclusion. Even its outward observance helps to bring thought to bear on spiritual things and thus to replace mortal beliefs with the ideas of divine Mind. There is no doubt that unnumbered millions of men have seen the light who might have remained behind in the shadows were it not for the setting aside of a specified day for worshiping God. This observance is therefore salutary because it periodically reminds us and reshapes our thought so that we may perceive man's true destiny. It is a means to the end of understanding. It is a medium for the accomplishment of righteous work among men.

God's work is done, however, and the observance of the Sabbath in no way benefits Him. Jesus declared that "the sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath." It is the purpose of this day to bring thought into harmony with God, to vanquish evil with truth, and to plant the divine standard where it rightfully belongs, the achievement of which is, indeed, man's real and only mission upon this earth. It is said that the name Sunday was originally used because that day was set aside for the worship of the sun, but now is the time to look to the spiritual source whose light gives life to all men. It is the time for opening our windows toward Jerusalem so that this light may dispel the shadows in all the nooks and crannies of human belief.

The term Sunday is merely the name applied by mortal man to a certain day of the week; but, like many other words, it has a spiritual signification wholly separate from any worldly connotation. Thus the Sabbath, in Christian Science, is not so much a day of the week as a mental state in which one renounces material belief and so mounts through the realms of thought into a clearer discernment and fuller understanding of divine Principle. This statement does not forbid the observance of Sunday as the Sabbath day, but it points to that exalted spiritual state which exists as God's thought.

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"Our Father-Mother God"
March 8, 1919

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