First Church of Christ, Scientist, State College

(Christian Science)

 

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Wednesday, September 15, 2022

Topic: Forming Perfect Models in Thought

Readings from the Bible:

1) Ps. 1:1–6

The Bible: Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper. The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

2) Ps. 19:7, 8

The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.

3) Ex. 32:1–7

And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. And Aaron said unto them, Break off the golden earrings, which are in the ears of your wives, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring them unto me. And all the people brake off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them unto Aaron. And he received them at their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, after he had made it a molten calf: and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. And when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, To-morrow is a feast to the LORD. And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play. ¶ And the LORD said unto Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, which thou broughtest out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves:

4) II Chron. 5:1, 2

Thus all the work that Solomon made for the house of the LORD was finished: and Solomon brought in all the things that David his father had dedicated; and the silver, and the gold, and all the instruments, put he among the treasures of the house of God. ¶ Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel, and all the heads of the tribes, the chief of the fathers of the children of Israel, unto Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of the LORD out of the city of David, which is Zion.

5) II Chron. 6:1, 2, 18

Then said Solomon, The LORD hath said that he would dwell in the thick darkness. But I have built an house of habitation for thee, and a place for thy dwelling for ever. ... But will God in very deed dwell with men on the earth? behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house which I have built!

6) Jer. 18:1–6

The word which came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.

7) Matt. 6:19–21

¶ Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

8) Acts 17:22–29

¶ Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars' hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you. God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.

9) Col. 3:1, 2, 4, 9, 10

If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. ... When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. ... Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:

10) Ps. 37:37

Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace.

11) Eph. 4:13

Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

Readings from Science and Health:

1) SH 86:13 (only), 25–1

S&H: Mortals evolve images of thought. ... Portraits, landscape-paintings, fac-similes of penmanship, peculiarities of expression, recollected sentences, can all be taken from pictorial thought and memory as readily as from objects cognizable by the senses. Mortal mind sees what it believes as certainly as it believes what it sees. It feels, hears, and sees its own thoughts. Pictures are mentally formed before the artist can convey them to canvas. So is it with all material conceptions.

2) SH 239:23

Mortal mind is the acknowledged seat of human motives. It forms material concepts and produces every discordant action of the body. If action proceeds from the divine Mind, action is harmonious. If it comes from erring mortal mind, it is discordant and ends in sin, sickness, death. Those two opposite sources never mingle in fount or stream. The perfect Mind sends forth perfection, for God is Mind. Imperfect mortal mind sends forth its own resemblances, of which the wise man said, “All is vanity.”

3) SH 248:12–29

The sculptor turns from the marble to his model in order to perfect his conception. We are all sculptors, working at various forms, moulding and chiseling thought. What is the model before mortal mind? Is it imperfection, joy, sorrow, sin, suffering? Have you accepted the mortal model? Are you reproducing it? Then you are haunted in your work by vicious sculptors and hideous forms. Do you not hear from all mankind of the imperfect model? The world is holding it before your gaze continually. The result is that you are liable to follow those lower patterns, limit your life-work, and adopt into your experience the angular outline and deformity of matter models. To remedy this, we must first turn our gaze in the right direction, and then walk that way. We must form perfect models in thought and look at them continually, or we shall never carve them out in grand and noble lives.

4) SH 259:6, 32–12

In divine Science, man is the true image of God. The divine nature was best expressed in Christ Jesus, who threw upon mortals the truer reflection of God and lifted their lives higher than their poor thought-models would allow, — thoughts which presented man as fallen, sick, sinning, and dying. 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. ... Deducing one's conclusions as to man from imperfection instead of perfection, one can no more arrive at the true conception or understanding of man, and make himself like it, than the sculptor can perfect his outlines from an imperfect model, or the painter can depict the form and face of Jesus, while holding in thought the character of Judas. The conceptions of mortal, erring thought must give way to the ideal of all that is perfect and eternal. Through many generations human beliefs will be attaining diviner conceptions, and the immortal and perfect model of God's creation will finally be seen as the only true conception of being.

5) SH 359:29–21

A Christian Scientist and an opponent are like two artists. One says: “I have spiritual ideals, indestructible and glorious. When others see them as I do, in their true light and loveliness, — and know that these ideals are real and eternal because drawn from Truth, — they will find that nothing is lost, and all is won, by a right estimate of what is real.” The other artist replies: “You wrong my experience. I have no mind-ideals except those which are both mental and material. It is true that materiality renders these ideals imperfect and destructible; yet I would not exchange mine for thine, for mine give me such personal pleasure, and they are not so shockingly transcendental. They require less self-abnegation, and keep Soul well out of sight. Moreover, I have no notion of losing my old doctrines or human opinions.” Dear reader, which mind-picture or externalized thought shall be real to you, — the material or the spiritual? Both you cannot have. You are bringing out your own ideal. This ideal is either temporal or eternal. Either Spirit or matter is your model. If you try to have two models, then you practically have none. Like a pendulum in a clock, you will be thrown back and forth, striking the ribs of matter and swinging between the real and the unreal.

6) SH 290:19–20

Perfection is gained only by perfection.

7) SH 400:9, 22

Mortals obtain the harmony of health, only as they forsake discord, acknowledge the supremacy of divine Mind, and abandon their material beliefs. Eradicate the image of disease from the perturbed thought before it has taken tangible shape in conscious thought, alias the body, and you prevent the development of disease. This task becomes easy, if you understand that every disease is an error, and has no character nor type, except what mortal mind assigns to it. By lifting thought above error, or disease, and contending persistently for truth, you destroy error. ... Mortal mind rules all that is mortal. We see in the body the images of this mind, even as in optics we see painted on the retina the image which becomes visible to the senses. The action of so-called mortal mind must be destroyed by the divine Mind to bring out the harmony of being. Without divine control there is discord, manifest as sin, sickness, and death.

8) SH 407:24

Let the perfect model be present in your thoughts instead of its demoralized opposite. This spiritualization of thought lets in the light, and brings the divine Mind, Life not death, into your consciousness.

9) SH 414:26

Keep in mind the verity of being, — that man is the image and likeness of God, in whom all being is painless and permanent. Remember that man's perfection is real and unimpeachable, whereas imperfection is blameworthy, unreal, and is not brought about by divine Love.

10) SH 475:11–13

Man is spiritual and perfect; and because he is spiritual and perfect, he must be so understood in Christian Science.

11) SH 476:32–5

Jesus beheld in Science the perfect man, who appeared to him where sinning mortal man appears to mortals. In this perfect man the Saviour saw God's own likeness, and this correct view of man healed the sick. Thus Jesus taught that the kingdom of God is intact, universal, and that man is pure and holy.

12) SH 519:11

Human capacity is slow to discern and to grasp God's creation and the divine power and presence which go with it, demonstrating its spiritual origin. Mortals can never know the infinite, until they throw off the old man and reach the spiritual image and likeness. What can fathom infinity! How shall we declare Him, till, in the language of the apostle, “we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ”?

Hymns: 51, 144, 416

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