"But one thing is needful"

[Original article in German]

In civilized countries there has never been a lack of endeavor to ennoble human existence. As far back as history is recorded, we find this endeavor manifested in some degree in human organizations, in families, and in the individual himself; and this endeavor has been carried on sometimes with all available means. And yet, in spite of it all, poverty and distress still claim their right to existence. On page 344 of the Christian Science textbook, "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures," in speaking of "various methods of treating disease," Mrs. Eddy writes, "There is only one [method] which should be presented to the whole world, and that is the Christian Science which Jesus preached and practised and left to us as his rich legacy."

In Luke's Gospel we find the record of Jesus as guest of Mary and Martha; and it was to Martha that Jesus spoke the momentous words, "But one thing is needful." Thanks to Christian Science, we know that the words of Jesus are applicable to all men in all ages, and that in them the whole world can find healing.

Martha, we read, was "careful and troubled about many things." She expected Jesus to support her in her supposed sisterly rights. The great Master did not do as she expected; but with tender words, words fraught with profound understanding, he reminded Martha to think of the one thing needful, and to forget her petty material troubles. This Martha-thought in its numerous forms represents anxious and troubled humanity. Through ignorance as to the real purport of life, its freedom and its joy, care and trouble are still honored with the name of duty, and the truly justified yearning of the heart, "not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life," is often pressed into the background.

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April 2, 1932

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