Rebuking Sin with Love

The rebuking of sin has for ages been a subject of much concern to multitudes of earnest thinkers. Sin's apparent dominion over those indulging it, and the awful consequences seemingly resulting therefrom, have caused the loving-hearted to long to rebuke sin in such a way that men might be delivered from its tormenting thralldom. As a result of this desire, unselfish men and women have resorted to all sorts of methods for overcoming evil. There have been punishments devised; sin has been preached against, prayed about, wept over. In all this there has been the endeavor to see how sin might be so rebuked that its reign over mankind might at the same time be destroyed; and still how meager the results!

Jesus proved that he understood how to rebuke sin, since he demonstrated his complete dominion over it in his own thinking and living; for the Bible tells us he "was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin," while it also says of him that he "did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth." He was also able so to rebuke sin for others that their sin was destroyed; as witness the sinners who came to him and went away healed, not only of sin but of its effects. There were comparatively few who understood just how Jesus rebuked sin, as the world was not then ready to accept fully the Christianity which he lived to establish. It was not until Christian Science was discovered that his method of rebuke was fully and satisfactorily explained.

In "A Rule for Motives and Acts" (Manual, p. 40) Mrs. Eddy tells us, "In Science, divine Love alone governs man; and a Christian Scientist reflects the sweet amenities of Love, in rebuking sin, in true brotherliness, charitableness, and forgiveness." Here she presents the foundation stone of Jesus' method of rebuke. "The sweet amenities of Love"! His rebukes were not, then, administered from the basis of personal opinion, personal judgment, personal sense, but from the basis of divine Love itself. And then our Leader goes on to explain that it is sin which is to be rebuked: note she does not say rebuking person, but sin!

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Spirit is Substance
May 2, 1925

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