Christian Scientists: scientific Christian healers

As a child growing up in a family of Christian Scientists, I remember being perplexed on hearing many acquaintances refer to Christian Scientists as "those people who don't believe in doctors." Such a description made me feel uncomfortable. Except for my church friends, everyone I came into contact with seemed convinced that normal human beings rely on medical doctors for their health care. They assumed that if you did not go to a doctor when you were sick, you were acting irresponsibly.

I have come to realize that this negative way of regarding Christian Scientists is not very useful and is even unintentionally misleading. Let me explain why.

Christian Scientists do respect the humanitarian motives of medical doctors. And when a physical examination is required by state law and no legal exemption has been granted the individual on religious grounds, the Christian Scientist obeys this law in accordance with Christ Jesus' instruction, "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's." Mark 12:17. Yet legal exemption from medical examination is not uncommon today and is considered by Christian Scientists to be an important guarantee of religious liberty, especially in all cases where there is no question of contagion.

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The platform of Christian Science
August 22, 1983

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