Science, not Sorcery

It is recorded in the eighth chapter of Acts that Philip "went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. And the people with one accord gave heed unto" Philip. The writer continues, "And many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed." Then follows the statement that a man called Simon, in the same city, had previously used sorcery and "bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one." Furthermore, it is recorded that the people said of Simon, "This man is the great power of God." However, it is said that "when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ," they were converted to Christianity, and that "Simon himself believed also."

Doubtless in other ages, before and since the time of Simon, there have been those who bewitched the people with sorcery and other forms of occultism, substituting these for actual divine power. Doubtless, also, some who practiced these arts have arrogated to themselves, or have had attributed to them by others, the power and prerogatives of Deity. Perhaps there have been those in modern times who were self-deceived, and who, intentionally or unitentionally, have deceived others. The fallacy of such methods is usually sufficiently obvious to intelligent people, but there are, at times, instances of this sort that would, "if it were possible, ... deceive the very elect."

Jesus the Christ made it perfectly plain that he did not regard himself as God. He said of his healing work, "The Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works;" and he even rebuked the rich young man who addressed him as "Good Master," thus: "Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God."

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Admission to The Mother Church
June 20, 1936

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