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God Alone Exalts
ELLA W. HOAG, CSD


         Exaltation is a good word and brings to men the thought of something very desirable. There are few who do not hope sometime to attain the state which it implies. Indeed, multitudes are struggling to reach its lofty heights. Many, however, wonder why so much of disappointment attends their efforts. The difficulty is that the greater part attempt the ascent in the belief that it may be gained through self-seeking, while the truth is that no true exaltation can be won without absolute self-abnegation. All true exaltation belongs to God; consequently, there can be no exaltation for man except as his unity with God is demonstrated. Any belief of exaltation as apart from God, Spirit, is therefore but a false concept, which has neither entity nor substance, neither power nor law supporting it.

         It, however, seems to take mankind a long time to learn that self-exaltation is not exaltation at all and always ends finally in abasement; that the pushing of one's self forward inevitably results at last in discomfiture and disaster. Because mistaken purposes and methods often appear to meet with temporary success, it seems necessary to have the lessons multiplied again and again before men awaken to see that all selfishness is totally undesirable and unsatisfactory, tending invariably to the final overthrow of the faulty temples erected on such unstable foundations.

         Christian Science has come revealing God's immutable law that all that does not originate in and belong to Him must be brought to naught. Whatever does not redound to His glory, and His glory alone, must be seen as false, and consequently as insecure and in the last analysis as unreal. In other words, God alone exalts; and such exaltation can follow only as divine qualities are won and all that is unGodlike is relinquished.

         As the Christian Scientist discovers that he must understand God before he can reach the spiritual heights where true exaltation is realized, he begins to see that Peter pointed the only way to such attainment when he wrote: "Humble yourselves . . . under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time." Now this humbling one's self "under the mighty hand of God" is alone made possible through the teaching of Christian Science. It is there that the rule of true humility is made perfectly plain; for these teachings show that only that which can pass the test of unity with God, divine Mind, only that which is in and of God, Spirit, has anything to do with the true humility which can know aught of true exaltation.

         In "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 313) Mrs. Eddy tells us that "the cause given for the exaltation of Jesus, Mary's son, was that he 'loved righteousness and hated iniquity.'" And in "Miscellaneous Writings" (p. 162) she writes: "Materiality, worldliness, human pride, or self-will, by demoralizing his motives and Christlikeness, would have dethroned his power as the Christ." Then it is clear to be seen that whatever has the least taint of personal sense can never know true exaltation, can never be exalted of God.

         To the one who is constantly turning from "materiality, worldliness, human pride, or self-will," there can be no possible place or time for self-seeking. To such a one there can be no indulgence of desire for place or power, for personal recognition or personal aggrandizement. Indeed, only through a willingness to see every least claim of self-seeking as false and wrong, and with the constant prayer to be delivered therefrom, can one come so to love righteousness and hate iniquity that he too shall be exalted of God.

         It sometimes takes many a disappointed effort, many an apparently fruitless struggle, before the student of Christian Science learns that as our Leader says in "Miscellaneous Writings" (p. 356), "One can never go up, until one has gone down in his own esteem." It is well always to remember this, since it often supplies the key to many a difficulty, to many a protracted demonstration. We can never be too willing to let the truth pour into our consciousness in such full measure that it shall reveal and rebuke every belief in selfishness — in self-seeking, self-glorification, self-exaltation.

         As we thus welcome the operation of Truth in our thinking we shall enjoy the unutterable bliss of recognizing the presence of our God, who exalts! For self thus relinquished makes way for the divine realization that man is here and now the exalted child of God!

 

"God Alone Exalts" by Ella W. Hoag, CSD
Christian Science Sentinel, October 24, 1925
 

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