Observance and Obedience

A FOOT traveler, asleep by the roadside, was awakened by a passing vehicle and inquired the way to a certain village. After being shown the road, he prepared to resume his slumbers. Thereupon his informant asked why he did not walk the road upon being shown the way. "I do not wish to walk it; I simply wish to see it," was the sleepy rejoinder.

How many in the study of God's law say, "Yes, I see it," as some truth is unfolded; and stop there? It is necessary to see the truth; but that vision calls for obedience thereto. We may through spiritual sense see that man is the perfect idea of God; but does our living correspond to that truth? In other words, obedience must always follow the perception of the truth; or we are like the wanderer by the wayside, content with seeing the way, but with no intention of walking therein.

Moses in his exhortation to the children of Israel recognized the necessity of obedience following recognition of spiritual law. "Ye shall observe to do therefore as the Lord your God hath commanded you," he declared; "ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. Ye shall walk in all the ways which the Lord your God hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you." Just as surely did Mrs. Eddy also observe this requirement of obedience when she wrote in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 248), "We must first turn our gaze in the right direction, and then walk that way." To see the truth, talk it with high-sounding phrases, but without living those beautiful thoughts, will bring the result of which the Bible speaks when it declares that "the letter killeth."

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Elijah on Mount Horeb
March 15, 1924

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