Not Will Power

Some of those who have not carefully investigated Christian Science seem sometimes to get the impression that the healing which comes through its ministrations is the result of action of the human mind in some form. In view of all that may be read in current publications regarding so-called "concentration" and kindred subjects bearing upon what is commonly termed "modern psychology" or "mind over matter," it is, possibly, not strange that this very erroneous impression is obtained by the casual or even interested observer of Christian Science healing. One will not, however, have to read very far in the Christian Science textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" by Mrs. Eddy, before he finds what Christian Science teaches on this subject.

Jesus, pointing always to his works in proof of his words, showed by demonstration the way of salvation from all conditions to or unlike God, good, and he laid particular stress upon the fact that it was not his will but the will of the Father that did the works, and these works consisted of healing all manner of sin and disease and of overcoming even death. He came to bear witness of the truth about God, and he was particular to declare that "if I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true," and "I can of mine own self do nothing," plainly implying that the healing activity he expressed did not originate in him, but was the activity of God.

In the eighth chapter of Romans a very clear line has been drawn between the Mind "which was also in Christ Jesus," and the carnal or human mind. Here we read that "the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be." If, then, this carnal mind be not even subject to the law of God, omnipotent good, the All-power, it must be apparent that it can possess no element of good, and is not power, and therefore is incapable of accomplishing any good or true result. Results seem sometimes to follow so-called action of the carnal mind, or human will, but these are simply the absorbing of one false belief by another false belief; as Mrs. Eddy has said in Science and Health (p. 104): "It is a case of the greater error overcoming the lesser. This greater error thereafter occupies the ground, leaving the case worse than before it was grasped by the stronger error." In the effort to heal by will power one error covers up another error; whereas spiritual healing, as taught and practiced in Christian Science, is Truth uncovering and destroying error—quite a different method. In other words, the former endeavors to create or to bring about a new or changed condition, whereas the latter, in the destruction of error, reveals as already existent the state of perfection created by God, and shows the erroneous condition to be illusion and falsity. To endeavor to believe something to be untrue which one really believes is true, will not profit anything, whatever process of of mental gymnastics one may employ; but a calm knowing of the truth, based upon a correct understanding of God and man's relationship to Him, is the "effectual fervent prayer" which characterizes "a righteous man," and indeed "availeth much."

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The Face of God
February 14, 1920

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