Prayer and Fasting

It is recorded in the seventeenth chapter of the Gospel of St. Matthew that a certain man brought his son to Jesus to be healed of lunacy, explaining that the disciples had failed to cure the child. Our Master rebuked the lack of faith and cast out the devil of evil belief, the child being cured from that hour. When his disciples asked him way they could not heal the case, Jesus answered, "Because of your unbelief;" and in further explanation of their failure he said, "Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting." Through the spiritual illumination of the Master's words we understand that he did not refer to prayer and fasting in the generally accepted sense, but that he set forth a specific demand of Spirit.

On page 222 of "The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany" our Leader interprets "prayer and fasting" as "refraining from admitting the claims of the senses;" and again on page 190, referring to these words of Jesus, she writes, "This declaration of our Master, as to the relative value, skill, and certainty of the divine laws of Mind over the human mind and above matter in healing disease, remains beyond questioning a divine decision in behalf of Mind."

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