As Obedient Children

In his first general epistle addressed to the strangers in divers countries, Peter exhorted all believers to be sober, and hope for the divine grace which would be revealed to them through the inspired words and example of Christ Jesus. He called upon them as obedient children to abstain from their former lustful practices; to be "holy in all manner of conversation; because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy." To give authority to this stirring appeal to holiness, the apostle sets before his readers the words of Moses interpreting the command of the Lord. Moreover, Peter made clear the type of obedience most conducive to the gaining of this exalted state of holiness, namely, the obedience of children, that obedience which never doubts, is without mental reservation, whole-hearted in its loyalty and devotion. To what or to whom did Peter urge this obedience? To the divine revelation which Christ Jesus had brought to a world sunk deep in the mire of materiality; to the law of God as revealed in the teachings of the Master, teachings which had powerfully influenced him.

After the resurrection of Jesus, Peter, no longer doubtful, became one of the most devoted adherents to the precepts of the Nazarene. His impetuosity had, in a degree, departed, and now the significance of that holy life came upon him with compelling force; besides, from his own experience in demonstrating God's power to destroy the claims of evil, Peter could speak with authority. Had he not healed disease, cast out evil belief, even raised the dead by means of the heavenly inspiration imparted to him by his beloved Master? And now, from out the depths of his holy experience, he called upon all with eyes to see and ears to hear to lend full and unquestioning obedience to the heavenly message.

That this is the type of conformity which brings the greatest spiritual blessing, Christian Science makes very clear. Mrs. Eddy also emphasizes the fact that, to be effective, obedience must be willing and full. Her words are convincing. In "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 183) she writes: "Divine Mind rightly demands man's entire obedience, affection, and strength. No reservation is made for any lesser loyalty. Obedience to Truth gives man power and strength. Submission to error superinduces loss of power." There can be no doubt as to the course which she laid for every Christian Scientist to follow. In our answer to the demand for submission to the divine will is found the secret of our success or failure in gaining the spiritual light. The key is obedience which willingly withdraws from the sensuous, exchanging it for spiritual truth. The importance of such conformity cannot be overestimated, for upon it depends our progress toward salvation. While man as the idea of God has always been beyond the need of saving, mortals are under the necessity of gaining that exalted state through their abandonment of every erroneous concept of life, of every experience which is based upon the acceptance of materiality.

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Binding up the Broken-hearted
April 2, 1927

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