The Divine Method of Forgiveness

Forgiveness! A wonderful and beautiful word when analyzed in the illuminating rays of divine intelligence! And what a vital place it should have in the life of the Christian Scientist! What does it mean to forgive? It means, fundamentally, to refuse to admit error of any kind about any one of God's ideas. This is having that Mind in us "which was also in Christ Jesus;" it is so clearly understanding the real man as the reflection of Spirit, God, that, regardless of the supposititious claims of evil,—impurity, jealousy, falsehood, strife,—we maintain the irrefutable fact that the ideal man, God's likeness, perpetually remains spiritual, sinless, perfect, Godlike, free.

On page 200 of "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" Mrs. Eddy says, "The great truth in the Science of being, that the real man was, is, and ever shall be perfect, is incontrovertible; for if man is the image, reflection, of God, he is neither inverted nor subverted, but upright and Godlike." Thus our Leader explains that the true reflection of God—man in His image and likeness—is always perfect, is always manifesting the pure characteristics of divine Love; that the real spiritual man is never in need of forgiveness, for he never errs. Then, when a false presentation of God's likeness attempts to deceive us, how quickly should we see the perfect idea of God in its stead, and forgive!

Someone has said, "There is a manner of forgiveness so divine that you are ready to embrace the offender for having called it forth." There would also seem to be a manner of forgiveness so lacking in the qualities generally associated with true forgiveness that one perceives it cannot be forgiveness at all. As one retrospectively contemplates the journey of life, with what tenderness does he recall those with understanding hearts who, disregarding the impulsive, unkind word or deed, insisted upon seeing one's true nature and instantly, and apparently without effort, forgave! Forgiveness always expresses the loving-kindness of God. God, divine Love, destroys all sense of transgression. Let us endeavor to forgive and to forget the offense in God's way; for if we cling to a sense of wrong done us, especially when the offender says he is sorry, we are surely more in need of forgiveness than the contrite one.

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Love's Care for His Own
March 9, 1929

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