"If ... thine eye be single"

The dear Master, Jesus of Nazareth, told the Christian world in his Sermon on the Mount that singleness of purpose is an essential quality in one's individual progress Godward. Singleness of purpose in spiritual affairs, in faithfulness to the one God, in the laying up of spiritual treasure, in the consecration of life to Truth and Love, in the faithful discharge of one's duty for the day without anxiety for tomorrow, all this is placed before the attentive reader of the sixth chapter of Matthew, following closely upon the Lord's Prayer, which Mrs. Eddy says in the textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 16), indicates "the heaven-born aspiration and spiritual consciousness" which "instantaneously heals the sick."

There is beautiful accord running all through the wonderful teaching of the sixth chapter of Matthew, from its opening admonition not to give alms to be seen of men, to the last appeal to the faithful ones—to "take therefore no thought for the morrow;" that "sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." It is a searching analysis of that mental state which sinks self out of sight; and it reveals the footsteps of an unselfed purpose, walking steadily forward in obedience to the rule of universal harmony. It describes the journey from sense to Soul of the consistent Christian Scientist. "If therefore thine eye be single," declares the Master, "thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness;" and then he adds the words, "If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!"

In conformity with the spirit of this teaching, the student finds in Mrs. Eddy's published writings numerous admonitions to those who would follow Christian Science to stand guard constantly over mortal mind, to learn the divine Principle of Christian Science and demonstrate its scientific practice in healing the sick, saving the sinner, comforting and releasing those bound by human misery or lack. In Science and Health (p. 419) she writes, "Observe mind instead of body, lest aught unfit for development enter thought." Other citations of similar import will readily occur to the reader who is familiar with Mrs. Eddy's writings; and especially will one remember the rule laid down in the Church Manual (p. 42), whereby all members of The Mother Church are required daily to defend themselves against the aggressive mental suggestions of mortal mind, which would cause them to falter in the performance of their constant spiritual duty. The admonition of James (Chapter 1, verses 5–8) as to the sad results of double-mindedness and instability, contains a warning that should be heeded by every student of Christian Science; for does not he tell us, "Let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord"? No one would willingly or knowingly enter upon a course of thought and action that would shut him out from the number of those who do receive the blessings of conscious communion with our Father-Mother God; and yet, the constant effort of evil is to lead men and women to adopt that course, often and always, if possible, cloaking its temptations in the appearance of some good.

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True Happiness
January 29, 1927

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