Spiritual Understanding

A Student of Christian Science once said to the writer, "Understanding takes away fear." These words were pondered over, and a little later their truth was made manifest in the experience of a friend who, in her position in a store, was given the work of keeping a new and seemingly complicated set of books which she did not understand. She worked faithfully on these books, but was under the fear for some time that at the end of the month they would not balance, and she was fearful that if they did not, she would not understand how to discover or correct the error. Finally, after some months of faithful work, she declared, "I have not the slightest fear any more about my books not balancing, for now I understand them, and know if they do not balance I can easily discover the error and correct it." So it is with the problems of life. When we understand the all-ness of good and the consequent nothingness of evil, we lose our fear of it.

The Bible is full of references to wisdom and understanding. In Job we read that "to depart from evil is understanding;" in Proverbs, "Knowledge of the holy is understanding," and, "He that is slow to wrath is of great understanding;" also in Psalms, "The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple." From this we see that understanding is not intellectual, that all the material learning of all the schools, colleges, and universities of all the ages cannot give us real understanding; that a man may possess this learning after many years of hard study and labor, and still lack the rich spiritual gifts which some other may possess although deprived of such educational advantages, but who through a simple and sincere desire for good is learning to depart from evil and gaining that knowledge of good which is real understanding.

Now, what are some of the rich blessings which spiritual understanding bestows upon those who possess it? Let us quote from Proverbs again: "Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding;" "He that keepeth understanding shall find good;" "Understanding shall keep thee;" and, "Understanding is a wellspring of life unto him that hath it." Then it brings happiness, it brings good, it preserves and keeps us from harm, and it gives eternal life. Is there anything more that the heart of man could desire?

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The Faith of a Child
January 3, 1920

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