A TIMELY LESSON

The legendary Scriptural account of evil's first appearing in the form of a serpent "more subtil than any beast of the field" (Gen. 3:1), which tempted Eve to believe that it was advantageous to know both good and evil, holds a timely lesson. Christian Science makes the lesson clear. It explains the symbolism of the serpent and points to the woman's later recognition, under Truth's searching questioning, of error's nature and method. Mary Baker Eddy interprets the allegory in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" and writes of the woman's response to God (p. 533): "She says, 'The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat;' as much as to say in meek penitence, 'Neither man nor God shall father my fault.' She has already learned that corporeal sense is the serpent."

Christian Science brings the exposure of evil close to individual responsibility when it explains the falsity of the corporeal sense of existence and shows that it must be denied and cast out of consciousness on the basis that man's only senses are spiritual. Only through the physical senses, which seem to be one's own, can evil be experienced and material knowledge be acquired; only through the purity of spiritual perception can God and His universe of true concepts be comprehended. No longer need man be thought of as dual, as constituted of warring mental elements which can never be reconciled. Man's unity, his wholeness, his indivisibility, is sealed by the truth that he is the likeness of his Maker, hence spiritual.

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September 30, 1950
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