The soldier

Originally published in the 1918 pamphlet titled “Courage”

The Bible is preeminently the book of the soldier. He is honored in it from cover to cover. When the patriarch Jacob had wrestled with and overcome a false sense of life in matter he was renamed. "He had conquered material error," Mrs. Eddy says on page 309 of Science and Health, "with the understanding of Spirit and spiritual power. This changed the man. He was no longer called Jacob, but Israel,—a prince of God, or a soldier of God, who had fought a good fight." The name, therefore, of "soldier" is a most fitting one for every Christian, since all true followers of Christ, Truth, are counted as "children of the promise" or of Israel.

This becomes still more obvious when we consider the life of Jesus. Although we may not find the name of "soldier" among his titles, still a moment's reflection will show us that the Master is even today the truest and best type or example of a soldier the world has ever witnessed. Nay, he was more than that,—he was in a marvelous way a great general. His campaign, if such a term may be used to designate the life and ministry of Christ Jesus, was laid down upon eternal laws, upon Principle, well understood, and it was for the salvation of the whole world. The whole world was to be made captive to the Christ, Truth, which dominated the life of Jesus of Nazareth. The Master, of course, realized that the battle would be fierce and the warfare long, because it was mental and not material, and no quarter could be given. For that reason his battle plans, hidden from material sense, were beyond the reach of time, nor could human act subvert or obliterate them, even as he indicated when he said, "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away," a saying that expresses a more than human faith in the all-conquering Truth which he exemplified. Now the Savior's plan for the captivity of every thought to Christ, Truth, was simplicity itself; it was Truth destroying human consciousness, even as he was demonstrating to all mankind the falsity of the belief that there is life, truth, or intelligence in matter. "If ye continue in my word," he said, "then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." It was none other than Christ Jesus, therefore, who inaugurated the true fight for freedom.

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