"The righteousness which is by faith"

In the illuminating dissertation on faith which appears in the eleventh chapter of Hebrews, many illustrations are given of a happy outcome from the exercise of that quality. Among these examples of faith successfully entertained by the ancient worthies is that of Noah, who "warned of God ... prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith;" or, in the words of an American translator, "and came to possess that uprightness which faith produces." Out of the faith which prompted Noah to obey the Word of God came a deep sense of righteousness, of uprightness, and of assurance that the course which he had chosen pleased God.

The degree of our faith, in a sense, determines the measure of our righteousness; for righteousness without faith in right—that is, without faith in the eternal good, which is God—is an impossibility. Faith thus becomes the basis of righteousness, the state of rectitude growing out of an understanding of the truth about God and man, of His immanence, allness, and availability to destroy every effort of error to circumscribe and afflict mankind. Faith, Mrs. Eddy says in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 297), "is a chrysalis state of human thought, in which spiritual evidence, contradicting the testimony of material sense, begins to appear, and Truth, the ever-present, is becoming understood." Faith, which is higher than belief, is strengthened through the gaining of understanding until it becomes stable, positive, and unyielding. Who can doubt that one's sense of righteousness is enhanced in proportion to the measure of one's faith, until, when faith has become understanding, righteousness is permanent and unchanging?

It must have been in this understanding that James declared that the "effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." The prayer of understanding, which is precisely the prayer of a righteous man, it is being proved in Christian Science, availeth to the result of destroying disease and sin of every name, under every guise. And it may be said that the efficacy of prayer is exactly in proportion to one's righteousness; that is, to one's understanding, and the ability to apply that understanding.

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"What is that to thee? follow thou me"
November 14, 1925

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