When James declared that "every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights," he revealed a truth which, when applied, sets a very high standard for our giving. In the light of his unequivocal statement, it becomes clear that true gifts are spiritual, and represent incorruptible substance. Our giving, then, should partake of the nature of the eternal Giver, divine Love. Loving-kindness, cheerful service, unselfish co-operation, gentleness, patience, tolerance, forbearance, constitute durable gifts. And such gifts are twice blessed, for they inevitably bring to the giver increased happiness, peace, poise, and harmony—in short, improved character and sweetened human relationships.

These satisfying results might tempt us to think that we had reached the goal of true giving. But Christian Science shows something beyond this. It reveals the higher and more sacred gift of spiritual understanding which yields the abiding fruits of healing and rebirth. What is this transcendent bestowal? Is it not to accord to our brother his true spiritual status as the perfect reflection of perfect Being? Could we confer a greater boon upon anyone than to know him as God knows him, possessed of those inalienable qualities which constitute true manhood? What incalculable spiritual blessings would result from holding thought consistently to this true viewpoint! Persisted in, this right giving must ultimately rule out of human consciousness and experience all that would disturb, disquiet, or afflict.

Isaiah foretold of the promised Messiah that he would give "beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;" and this prophecy was amply fulfilled in the life and works of Christ Jesus. His whole mission was to give spiritual substance for shadow, to reveal man's rightful heritage as the son of God. Jesus held steadfastly to the sublime fact that God is forever expressing in man His own unchanging qualities, and this understanding gave purity to the sinner, strength to the infirm, sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf. Jesus gave unstintingly of his rich spiritual treasures, which healed and comforted the hearts that made room for them.

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Reversing Error
February 2, 1935

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