Followers of Christ

The New Testament tells us that upon several occasions Christ Jesus invited individuals to follow him. To his disciples the Master declared, "If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me." Matt. 16:24; The two requirements laid down for following Jesus show clearly that he did not refer to following his person merely but referred to the divinity he embodied and demonstrated. Nor were his words addressed to his immediate hearers only, but to all mankind.

One definition of "deny" is, "to declare not to be true"; another is, "to reject as a false conception." Christ Jesus would not have commanded us to reject as false and untrue anything God created. The Bible tells us that "God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him." Gen. 1:27; So, it is not man in the likeness of Spirit, the real identity of us all, that we are commanded to deny, but a corporeal sense of selfhood. To get even a foothold in Christian Science, we must learn to deny material sense testimony.

To take up the cross means to obey Truth and Love. We should gladly do this. Obedience to divine law gives us strength and courage, ensures God's blessing, and leads us heavenward.

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The Healing Mission of the Church
July 27, 1968

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