Fighting Evil

THE active Christian life is a continuous warfare, and if we are not active, then we are going backward. It is impossible to stand still or mark time. We have either to go forward spiritually or to risk being carried backward by the ever moving current of materialism. Some people may seem to be standing still, but this is not so. In religious things, as in everything else, there is no middle course without danger. Life is action, and if we are truly reflecting the all-acting God we must be up and doing something, not necessarily for ourselves only, but for the world. We cannot get unless we give; we cannot be blessed unless we bless others. The beautiful thing about Christian Science is that every victory won over sin and sickness claiming to be our own mentality is a victory gained for all, because it lessens the sum total of error in the world.

Jesus' life was a constant fight against materiality. It is noticeable how often during his recorded ministry he retired for prayer, evidently to gain spiritual strength in order to meet some difficult situation as its master. If we imitate him in this we, too, shall never fail to demonstrate the allpower of good over evil, for we shall be able to utilize wisely the sword of divine Truth which destroys error. When fighting against our belief in evil we must hit it quickly and keep on hitting; it is folly to dally with it.

Mrs. Eddy says, "Emerge gently from matter into Spirit" (Science and Health, p. 485). But "gently" is not a synonym for slowly. Gently means softly, meekly, mildly, according to one dictionary; it never means slowly. If we do not get our blow in first, depend upon it, the belief we entertain of evil will hit us again. The more quickly we resist, the sooner we win. James writes in his epistle, "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." We have also Jesus' example given us in the fourth chapter of Matthew. His replies to each temptation were instant and decisive. He did not argue or beat about the bush. He simply hit evil with each mighty utterance of the truth, until the error was utterly vanquished, and we read that the devil (or evil), baffled and beaten, left him, and angels came to minister unto him. The fighting ground is what claims to be one's own mentality; once we have got complete victory there we are unassailable. Mrs. Eddy explains this very clearly on page 323 of Science and Health, where she says: "This strife consists in the endeavor to forsake error of every kind and to possess no other consciousness but good."

The Awakening
April 9, 1921

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