The Demands of Spirit

In freeing sufferers from the baneful effects of sin, not infrequently Christ Jesus impressed upon them the lesson that freedom from pain and misery could be maintained permanently only by ceasing to sin. "Sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee," left the choice with the man healed of infirmity to go back to his former sinful pursuits, with their inevitable results expressed in terms of sickness and misery; or, freed from the bondage of sinful living, to follow the light which had illumined his thought to its source, divine Life, essentially spiritual, pure, and holy. Christ Jesus clearly implied that the penalty for sinning could not be escaped so long as one continues to sin. Mrs. Eddy, in speaking of sin's pardon, says in the textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 11), "The moral law, which has the right to acquit or condemn, always demands restitution before mortals can 'go up higher.'"

Not infrequently, a misinformed critic of Christian Science asserts that since this religion teaches the unreality of evil, it encourages the indulgence of sinful practices, its adherents, it is claimed, excusing themselves for wrongdoing on the ground that the whole round of experience which constitutes human life, including sensuous desires and their gratification, being unreal, mortals therefore are absolved from responsibility. These critics fail to understand that Christian Science, founded upon the facts of being, holding strictly to the demands of Spirit to overcome in every particular the claims of the flesh, destroys material sense with its accompanying beliefs of pleasure and pain in matter. And, moreover, the sinner would make a reality of sin; else, manifestly, since something can by no means result from nothing—a lie claiming to be something—he could derive no pleasure from it. Christian Science clearly teaches that only as one repents of sin and abandons it can he understand evil's unreality.

The Simplicity of Christian Science
May 27, 1922

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