"Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." - John 8:32

Thought for the Week - last week's message 

SUBSTANCE

The word “substance” means literally (from the Latin) to stand under, or (in Christian Science) the “ultimate reality which underlies all outward manifestations.” (as given in Webster’s).   This “ultimate    reality” was experienced on the day of Pentecost, when Jesus’ disciples, following his ascension, were found to be “filled with the Holy Ghost” and to be speaking in “other tongues.” 

The outcome was that they were lifted out of their grief and began to accomplish many “signs and wonders” with the result that many were “added to the church daily.”  (Acts 1:46-47)   Today, we too must “rise above the testimony of the physical senses” and, by reversing the “material fable,” discover and demonstrate the spiritual fact.  

Mary Baker Eddy puts it this way:  ”The Christlike understanding of scientific being and divine healing includes a perfect Principle and idea,--perfect God and perfect man,--as the basis of thought and demonstration.” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, 259:11-14)     She points out that man, as God’s image, has only “the substance of Spirit, not matter” and any belief to the contrary breaks the First Commandment.  (S&H 301:17-24)  She insists that “…all causation is Mind, acting through spiritual law,” and that holding to this spiritual fact will always give us the victory over any false belief to the contrary.  (S&H 417:10-16)
 
The lesson includes the account in Luke of Jesus entering into the synagogue on the sabbath day and, despite the antagonism of the scribes and Pharisees, healing a man whose hand was withered.   When they accused him of violating the sabbath, he responded:  “…I will ask you one thing;  Is it lawful on the sabbath days to do good, or to do evil?  To save life, or to destroy it?” (Luke 6:6-10)  

Mrs. Eddy defines temple as “Body…the superstructure of Truth, the shrine of Love,” and she points out that: “Jesus established his church and maintained his mission of a spiritual foundation of Christ-healing.”  As his followers, isn’t that our mission as well?   As Mrs. Eddy puts it:  “The substance of all devotion is the reflection and demonstration of divine Love, healing sickness and destroying sin.” (S&H 241:19-21)  

She continues:  “Our church is built on the divine Principle Love.  We can unite with t his church only as we are new-born of Spirit, as we reach the Life which  is Truth and the Truth which is Life by bringing forth the fruits of Love,--casting out error and healing the sick.” (S&H 35:19 -25)   She insists that we “Stick to the truth of being in contradistinction to the error that life, substance, or intelligence can be in matter.”   She continues: “Plead  with an honest conviction of truth and a clear perception of the unchanging, unerring, and certain effect of divine Science.  Then, if your fidelity is half equal to the truth of your plea, you will heal the sick.”  (S&H 418:5-11) 

She insists that “Soul, or Spirit, is God, unchangeable and eternal;  and man coexists with and reflects Soul, God, for man is God’s image.”  (S&H 120:4)    How wonderful to know that each of us “reflects the infinite understanding” that is God, and that God gives “immortality to man” and “includes and imparts all bliss” as well as Life “without beginning and without end.”  God is also “the substance of all, because I AM THAT I AM.”  (S&H 252:32)   Isn’t it comforting to know that matter isn’t the substance of being and that our spiritual substance can never be lost or damaged because it is immortal.  

Christ Jesus proved this and so did Mary Baker Eddy.   And so can we in the measure of our understanding that all true identity and its substance is spiritual and therefore imperishable.  Then we can experience the everlasting “covenant of peace” promised by Ezekiel and can feel the comfort and assurance of peace always  present din God’s sanctuary.

Jamae van Eck