Practice not Profession

"What I say unto you I say unto all, Watch," was the warning of Jesus to his followers. Nineteen hundred years later one of his most humble followers, Mary Baker Eddy, in her Message to The Mother Church (Message for 1900, p. 2), made this vital statement: "The song of Christian Science is, 'Work—work—work—watch and pray.'" This counsel is of utmost importance to all Christian Scientists, to-day and always, because the ways are subtle and hidden that lure one from a demonstrable to a theoretical religion. How much easier it is to preach than to practice! What a comfortable sense of self-righteousness and self-gratification preaching brings, and what watchfulness, self-immolation, and sacrifice are involved in the actual practice of Christian Science!

Even a slight study of the earthly career of Jesus will convince one that in every instance he proved his words by his works. For three hundred years his disciples followed his example, proving their religion by healing sickness and sin, and even by raising the dead. Then Christianity became popular. It was accepted by the court and, in consequence, thoughtlessly by the populace, so that as time went on neither the letter nor the spirit of primitive Christianity was understood by the majority of believers. Gradually a personal, material, even idolatrous element crept into the Christian religion, robbing it of its vitality. Symbols and ceremony took the place of the simplicity of Jesus' teachings. Men were separated from God by artificial mediators, by man-made doctrines and creeds, and it followed that only the outside of the platter was made clean. Truth, however, is immortal. In every age there have been clear thinkers who have found in the Bible, with its records of Christianity, inspiration to come out from the world of man-made theology and be separate, who have tried to acquaint themselves with God and be at peace. Luther, Wycliffe, Calvin, Wesley, and the Puritans, groped for the pure religion of Jesus; but it was Mary Baker Eddy who found it, and called her discovery Christian Science. The lost element of Christianity—healing the sick through the understanding of God—has been restored through this Science.

April 17, 1920

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