September 22, 2019
From the Christian Science Quarterly, September 19, 1920


Originally published in the early years of the Christian Science movement, these lessons are composed of citations from the Bible (King James Version) and the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy.


EXPLANATORY NOTE:


Friends: The Bible and the Christian Science textbook are our only preachers. We shall now read Scriptural texts, and their correlative passages from our denominational textbook; these comprise our sermon.

The canonical writings, together with the word of our textbook, corroborating and explaining the Bible texts in their spiritual import and application to all ages, past, present, and future, constitute a sermon undivorced from truth, uncontaminated and unfettered by human hypotheses, and divinely authorized.

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Subject: MATTER


Golden Text: Isaiah 58:1. Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.

Responsive Reading: — Isaiah 40:3-6, 8, 21-25.
3 The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain:
5 And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.
6 The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field:
8 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.
21 Have ye not known? have ye not heard? hath it not been told you from the beginning? have ye not understood from the foundations of the earth?
22 It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:
23 That bringeth the princes to nothing; he maketh the judges of the earth as vanity.
24 Yea, they shall not be planted; yea, they shall not be sown: yea, their stock shall not take root in the earth: and he shall also blow upon them, and they shall wither, and the whirlwind shall take them away as stubble.
25 To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One.

The following Citations comprise our Sermon.

Section One     Section Two     Section Three     Section Four     Section Five     Section Six

Study Guide

This lesson was prepared by early students of Christian Science to reinforce the class teaching given by Mary Baker Eddy in the Massachusetts Metaphysical College in the 1880s and 1890s. Consistent with the outline used in her teaching, the six sections of the early lessons usually followed a general outline:

Section One: The relation of the subject to God. Section Two: The relation of the subject to man or Christ Jesus. Section Three: The presentation of Christian Science through a relative law, as related to the subject. Section Four: The application of the relative law presented in section three. Section Five: The demonstration of the relative law from section three. Section Six: The triumph or victory of the relative law, leaving the student in the kingdom of God. For more information, visit our Bible Lessons information page.

Section One


The Holy Bible
King James Version



(1) Gen 1:1-5
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.

(2) Ps 104:1-5, 24, 30, 31
Bless the Lord, O my soul. O Lord my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty. Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain: Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters: who maketh the clouds his chariot: who walketh upon the wings of the wind: Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire: Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed for ever. O Lord, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches. Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth. The glory of the Lord shall endure for ever: the Lord shall rejoice in his works.


Science and Health
with Key to the Scriptures
by Mary Baker Eddy


(1) 504:27
Did infinite Mind create matter, and call it light? Spirit is light, and the contradiction of Spirit is matter, darkness, and darkness obscures light. Material sense is nothing but a supposition of the absence of Spirit. No solar rays nor planetary revolutions form the day of Spirit. Immortal Mind makes its own record, but mortal mind, sleep, dreams, sin, disease, and death have no record in the first chapter of Genesis.

(2) 544:3
In God's creation ideas became productive, obedient to Mind. There was no rain and "not a man to till the ground." Mind, instead of matter, being the producer, Life was self-sustained. Birth, decay, and death arise from the material sense of things, not from the spiritual, for in the latter Life consisteth not of the things which a man eateth. Matter cannot change the eternal fact that man exists because God exists. Nothing is new to the infinite Mind.

(3) 519:11-14
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.

(4) 521:21-22, 29
Genesis ii. 6. But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.

The history of error or matter, if veritable, would set aside the omnipotence of Spirit; but it is the false history in contradistinction to the true.

(5) 523:6
Although presenting the exact opposite of Truth, the lie claims to be truth. The creations of matter arise from a mist or false claim, or from mystification, and not from the firmament, or understanding, which God erects between the true and false. In error everything comes from beneath, not from above. All is material myth, instead of the reflection of Spirit.

Section Two


(3) Ps 8:1, 3-6, 9
O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens. When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet: O Lord our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!


(6) 428:22

The great spiritual fact must be brought out that man is, not shall be, perfect and immortal. We must hold forever the consciousness of existence, and sooner or later, through Christ and Christian Science, we must master sin and death. The evidence of man's immortality will become more apparent, as material beliefs are given up and the immortal facts of being are admitted.

(7) 171:17
Mistaking his origin and nature, man believes himself to be combined matter and Spirit. He believes that Spirit is sifted through matter, carried on a nerve, exposed to ejection by the operation of matter. The intellectual, the moral, the spiritual, — yea, the image of infinite Mind, — subject to non-intelligence!

(8) 172:3, 15
Theorizing about man's development from mushrooms to monkeys and from monkeys into men amounts to nothing in the right direction and very much in the wrong. If man was first a material being, he must have passed through all the forms of matter in order to become man. If the material body is man, he is a portion of matter, or dust. On the contrary, man is the image and likeness of Spirit; and the belief that there is Soul in sense or Life in matter obtains in mortals, alias mortal mind, to which the apostle refers when he says that we must "put off the old man."

(9) 476:18-22
Sin, sickness, and death must disappear to give place to the facts which belong to immortal man. Learn this, O mortal, and earnestly seek the spiritual status of man, which is outside of all material selfhood.

Section Three


(4) I Sam 16:1, 6, 7
And the Lord said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Beth-lehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons. And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the Lord's anointed is before him. But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.

(5) Matt 23:13, 25, 26, 28
But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

(6) Rom 8:12, 13
Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.


(10) 489:8-29
Any hypothesis which supposes life to be in matter is an educated belief. In infancy this belief is not equal to guiding the hand to the mouth; and as consciousness develops, this belief goes out, — yields to the reality of everlasting Life. Corporeal sense defrauds and lies; it breaks all the commands of the Mosaic Decalogue to meet its own demands. How then can this sense be the God-given channel to man of divine blessings or understanding? How can man, reflecting God, be dependent on material means for knowing, hearing, seeing? Who dares to say that the senses of man can be at one time the medium for sinning against God, at another the medium for obeying God? An affirmative reply would contradict the Scripture, for the same fountain sendeth not forth sweet waters and bitter. The corporeal senses are the only source of evil or error. Christian Science shows them to be false, because matter has no sensation, and no organic construction can give it hearing and sight nor make it the medium of Mind. Outside the material sense of things, all is harmony.

(11) 563:1-9
Human sense may well marvel at discord, while, to a diviner sense, harmony is the real and discord the unreal. We may well be astonished at sin, sickness, and death. We may well be perplexed at human fear; and still more astounded at hatred, which lifts its hydra head, showing its horns in the many inventions of evil. But why should we stand aghast at nothingness? The great red dragon symbolizes a lie, — the belief that substance, life, and intelligence can be material.

(12) 407:22 In
In Science, all being is eternal, spiritual, perfect, harmonious in every action. 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.

Section Four


(7) John 1:43-51

The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow me. Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph. And Nathanael said unto him, Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth? Philip saith unto him, Come and see. Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile! Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee. Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel. Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these. And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.


(13) 84:19
To understand that Mind is infinite, not bounded by corporeality, not dependent upon the ear and eye for sound or sight nor upon muscles and bones for locomotion, is a step towards the Mindscience by which we discern man's nature and existence. This true conception of being destroys the belief of spiritualism at its very inception, for without the concession of material personalities called spirits, spiritualism has no basis upon which to build.

(14) 86:13-17, 20, 29-1
Mortals evolve images of thought. These may appear to the ignorant to be apparitions; but they are mysterious only because it is unusual to see thoughts, though we can always feel their influence. Seeing is no less a quality of physical sense than feeling. Then why is it more difficult to see a thought than to feel one? Education alone determines the difference. In reality there is none. 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.

(15) 310:2-8
The human belief fancies that it delineates thought on matter, but what is matter? Did it exist prior to thought? Matter is made up of supposititious mortal mind-force; but all might is divine Mind. Thought will finally be understood and seen in all form, substance, and color, but without material accompaniments.

(16) 203:13
Spiritual perception brings out the possibilities of being, destroys reliance on aught but God, and so makes man the image of his Maker in deed and in truth.

Section Five


(8) Luke 7:1, 11-16
Now when he had ended all his sayings in the audience of the people, he entered into Capernaum. And it came to pass the day after, that he went into a city called Nain; and many of his disciples went with him, and much people. Now when he came nigh to the gate of the city, behold, there was a dead man carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow: and much people of the city was with her. And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her, and said unto her, Weep not. And he came and touched the bier: and they that bare him stood still. And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak. And he delivered him to his mother. And there came a fear on all: and they glorified God, saying, That a great prophet is risen up among us; and, That God hath visited his people.


(17) 289:14
The fact that the Christ, or Truth, overcame and still overcomes death proves the "king of terrors" to be but a mortal belief, or error, which Truth destroys with the spiritual evidences of Life; and this shows that what appears to the senses to be death is but a mortal illusion, for to the real man and the real universe there is no death-process.

(18) 251:8
In the illusion of death, mortals wake to the knowledge of two facts: (1) that they are not dead; (2) that they have but passed the portals of a new belief. Truth works out the nothingness of error in just these ways. Sickness, as well as sin, is an error that Christ, Truth, alone can destroy.

(19) 202:25-6
Error abounds where Truth should "much more abound." We admit that God has almighty power, is "a very present help in trouble;" and yet we rely on a drug or hypnotism to heal disease, as if senseless matter or erring mortal mind had more power than omnipotent Spirit. Common opinion admits that a man may take cold in the act of doing good, and that this cold may produce fatal pulmonary disease; as though evil could overbear the law of Love, and check the reward for doing good. In the Science of Christianity, Mind — omnipotence — has all-power, assigns sure rewards to righteousness, and shows that matter can neither heal nor make sick, create nor destroy.

(20) 303:30
When the evidence before the material senses yielded to spiritual sense, the apostle declared that nothing could alienate him from God, from the sweet sense and presence of Life and Truth.

Section Six


(9) Heb 10:16, 17, 19-24
This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:


(21) 239:13-22
The watchword of Christian Science is Scriptural: "Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts." To ascertain our progress, we must learn where our affections are placed and whom we acknowledge and obey as God. If divine Love is becoming nearer, dearer, and more real to us, matter is then submitting to Spirit. The objects we pursue and the spirit we manifest reveal our standpoint, and show what we are winning.

(22) 306:21
The myriad forms of mortal thought, made manifest as matter, are not more distinct nor real to the material senses than are the Soul-created forms to spiritual sense, which cognizes Life as permanent. Undisturbed amid the jarring testimony of the material senses, Science, still enthroned, is unfolding to mortals the immutable, harmonious, divine Principle, — is unfolding Life and the universe, ever present and eternal.

(23) 205:32
When we fully understand our relation to the Divine, we can have no other Mind but His, — no other Love, wisdom, or Truth, no other sense of Life, and no consciousness of the existence of matter or error.