Deficit or Surplus

In considering the question of church finances, one gains much inspiration and help through studying the account of the feeding of the multitude by Christ Jesus, as related in the sixth chapter of Mark. The Scripture here relates that in "a desert place," with but five loaves and two fishes, Jesus fed the five thousand and had remaining a very substantial surplus; for we read that "they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments."

Since supply and surplus are essential and desirable in the orderly conduct of our church affairs, it is of great importance to us to acquire something of the spiritual understanding underlying this demonstration of Christ Jesus. At the very outset he gave no power to the material suggestions of insufficiency or lack; nor was he mesmerized by the fears of his disciples that they were in "a desert place" where no food could be obtained. On the contrary, Jesus saw before him a legitimate need, and knew that God's law and power were available to supply that need; and he proceeded forthwith to utilize this spiritual law of good.

In this incident the Master left us a most valuable lesson and pointed out the path which we should follow. Referring to Jesus' work, Mary Baker Eddy has written in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 51), "His consummate example was for the salvation of us all, but only through doing the works which he did and taught others to do."

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The Everlasting Strain
July 20, 1935

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