We Too Can Rebuke Unclean Spirits

What mortal enjoys a rebuke? At the slightest sign of censure or criticism, does not self-love or self-justification usually raise its head? And yet there is a way of rebuke which hath healing in its wings and should be sought after by every follower of the lowly Nazarene. It is the rebuke which Truth ever has for everything that is unlovely, discordant, and erroneous. It is the effortless rebuke which loving, clean living and wholesome, guileless thinking must always give to those immersed in selfishness and sensualism. Speaking of the materialists who confronted Christ Jesus, Mary Baker Eddy writes (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 52): "Their imperfections and impurity felt the ever-present rebuke of his perfection and purity. Hence the world's hatred of the just and perfect Jesus, and the prophet's foresight of the reception error would give him."

But aside from the continual silent rebuke of his Christly thought and deed, the Master's audible challenge to sickness and sin and the resultant healing gave unmistakable evidence to the sons of men that a Saviour was in their midst. The Scriptures tell us that Jesus, when confronted with the sick and suffering, rebuked unclean spirits, fevers, and so-called demons, and the victims thereof were healed. He rebuked a violent storm at sea, "and there was a great calm," and "the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!" (Matt. 8:26, 27.)

There is an interesting point to note in connection with Jesus' healing of the mother of Simon's wife. According to the Bible narrative (Luke 4:39), "He stood over her, and rebuked the fever; and it left her: and immediately she arose and ministered unto them." He rebuked the fever, and not the woman. How comforting is this! What Christian Scientist has not at times felt condemned and deserving of rebuke because of a physical difficulty which has not yielded speedily to treatment. May every Christian Science practitioner be on the alert lest he unwittingly add to any such condemnation by rebuking the patient and not the error. Hear this counsel from Science and Health (pp. 365, 366): "The poor suffering heart needs its rightful nutriment, such as peace, patience in tribulation, and a priceless sense of the dear Father's loving-kindness."

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March 29, 1947

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