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GLADYS C. FULTON
"A corporeal God, as often defined by lexicographers and scholastic theologians, is only an infinite finite being, an unlimited man, a theory to me inconceivable," our beloved Leader writes on page 102 of "Miscellaneous Writings;" and in the following paragraph she says: "His [God's] infinity precludes the possibility of corporeal personality. His being is individual, but not physical." The error of attempting to limit God, in form or outline, has prevented mankind from understanding and demonstrating His omnipresent availability. Indeed, this misconception of God has opened the portals of human consciousness wide to needless fear, doubt, discouragement, suffering, and disaster. On the other hand, to touch even the hem of the understanding that God is incorporeal and, consequently, ever and everywhere available, makes freedom from the burdens of sense, which have heretofore seemed unavoidable, possible here and now.
That the prophets of the Old Testament understood in some degree the incorporeality of God is evidenced by the fact that the original Hebrew terms used to designate God mean, in part, power and might. Moses, the great Hebrew leader, must have caught gleams of the true nature of God when, in answer to the request that God tell him His name, God answered, "I AM THAT I AM."
Under the leadership of Moses, the Israelites had many wonderful proofs of God's constant availability. When, at their triumphal exodus from Egyptian bondage, they were confronted by the waters of the Red Sea, which seemed to present an impassable obstruction to their escape from the pursuing Egyptians, Moses' understanding was indeed put to the test. The Bible record tells us: "The Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night . . . and the waters were divided. And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground." As they journeyed through the great wilderness toward the promised land, their every need was met whenever and wherever it presented itself. In time of hunger, manna fell from the sky; and when they thirsted, water gushed from the rock striking proofs of God's presence with them.
Toward the conclusion of his leadership Moses called this grand reality of God's incorporeality and limitlessness to the attention of his followers in the following words: "And the Lord spake unto you out of the midst of the fire: ye heard the voice of the words, but saw no similitude; only ye heard a voice." Moses then warned them against making a similitude of God in any figure, against limiting God, knowing full well that such would prevent their demonstration of the availability of God, good.
Jesus of Nazareth proved to a marvelous extent God's omnipresent availability, because, for one reason, he best understood God's incorporeality. Before the Master's clear realization of this truth, while in Cana of Galilee, the son of a nobleman, when at the point of death, was restored to health; at Capernaum, Peter's wife's mother, laid low with a fever, arose and immediately resumed her household duties; Lazarus, of Bethany in Judea, was raised to life; and the five thousand were fed near Bethsaida. In fact, the master Christian demonstrated God's availability in the healing of all manner of discord, regardless of the locality of the needy ones.
A great necessity, then, is to recognize the incorporeality of God, in order that we may understand His universal availability. Christian Science is, in this age, the window through which this fact may be discerned; and its use of the term "Principle" as a synonym for the infinite One is one means by which mankind may more readily understand this comforting reality, and thus be able to turn to God in time of need with serene confidence that each problem will be solved. And why, it may be queried, is the use of the term "Principle" as a synonym for God such a means? To illustrate: It is readily recognized by all who have the least comprehension of the law of mathematics that it is without physical form, is not limited to locality or restricted in operation. It can be demonstrated wherever one is, whether he be on land, underground, or in midair, in exact proportion to his understanding of it. In a word, mathematical law is operative everywhere, all the time, for everybody, by reason of its freedom from physical form. Similarly, to see that God is divine Principle is to see that God is without corporeal outline or limitation, and that His law is everywhere available for everyone at all times. Little by little will this realization erase from human consciousness the belief that God is a manlike potentate in a far-off somewhere to be pleaded with, and with no definite assurance that such pleading will be heard. Instead, He will be seen to be an unfailing presence to be understood and demonstrated.
Thus, Christian Science is again removing the bushel of anthropomorphism with its attendant darkening limitations and the light of God's incorporeality, and therefore His universal availability, is shining abroad. Thousands who are earnestly studying its teachings are today gratefully repeating the song of the Psalmist: "Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me."
Christian Science Sentinel, May 15, 1926
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