Sunday, July 14th, 2019 Roundtable
Excuses are Intolerable
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Set your affections on things above; love one another; commune at the table of our Lord in one spirit; worship in spirit and in truth; and if daily adoring, imploring, and living the divine Life, Truth, Love, thou shalt partake of the bread that cometh down from heaven, drink of the cup of salvation, and be baptized in Spirit.
— from “Exhortation” in Christian Science verses Pantheism by Mary Baker Eddy, page 14
Golden Text — “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart.” — Psalm 51 : 17
“Break” (broken) – to subdue the passions; to train to obedience; to make tractable, as to break a horse.
— from Webster’s 1828 Dictionary
14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
— from Hebrews 9 : 14 in the Responsive Reading portion of this week’s Lesson
Just now, the darkest spot on the horizon of mortal mind that Christian Science can illumine is envy, and the strife for “who shall be greatest.” It pushes Christianity aside to elbow in a crowd of robbers, that enter not in by the door, Truth, but would climb up some other way. Obscure, unlettered, unprincipled people are filling the field as Mind-Healers, who are mind-killers, building their only superstructure on false foundations – the power of evil and substance of matter. They are working out, through mortal mind, the claim of total depravity, in all its forms of animal magnetism. They rise on the merits of the true healer, to fall at length from their own demerits. The above qualities, entering so largely into their work, engender the most difficult forms of disease. Twenty years ago, when I first brought this subject to the consideration of the race, to be a Christian Science Mind-healer was no bid for respectability, popularity, wealth. It was a sharp appeal to conscience, spiritual growth, moral courage. The question then was, “Can you drink the cup?” On this basis there was no danger of injuring oneself or one’s neighbor. The pioneer work has been done faithfully. Now comes the inquiry, Shall this work be overthrown by charlatans of the baser sort? Naught but the unselfish purpose, the higher understanding of God and the love of man, are incentives to real Mind-healing. Once in this direction, and persecution, hardship, sacrifice, only “lead into green pastures, and beside the still waters.”
— from Mary Baker Eddy’s Six Days of Revelation, compiled by Richard Oakes page 200
God selects for the highest service one who has grown into such a fitness for it as renders any abuse of the mission an impossibility. The All-wise does not bestow His highest trusts upon the unworthy. When He commissions a messenger, it is one who is spiritually near Himself. No person can misuse this mental power, if he is taught of God to discern it.
This strong point in Christian Science is not to be overlooked, — that the same fountain cannot send forth both sweet waters and bitter. The higher your attainment in the Science of mental healing and teaching, the more impossible it will become for you intentionally to influence mankind adverse to its highest hope and achievement.
— Citation 11 from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, page 455 : 20-2
22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.
— Mathew 4 : 22 from citation 2 in the Bible portion of this week’s Lesson
57 And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto him, Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.
58 And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.
59 And he said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.
60 Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God.
61 And another also said, Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house.
62 And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.
— Luke 9 : 57-62 from citation 3 in the Bible portion of this week’s Lesson
Rule in Mrs. Eddy’s household: ‘Simplicity, accuracy, and economy. Excuses are intolerable.’
— from “Prayers” in Divinity Course and General Collectanea, (the “Blue Book”), by Mary Baker Eddy, page 261
The Harmful Effects of Alibis and Excuses
The harmful effect of alibis and excuses on the individual is far more serious than we realize. Many persons are in hospitals, even in insane hospitals, because they have hidden behind an alibi or an excuse until their socalled human intellect is enfeebled and impaired. They permitted their headaches, their indigestion, their nerves, their belief in persons and circumstances, to be an alibi or excuse for something that was hard to do, or that they did not want to do, until they literally lost their power to decide things intelligently. An alibi or excuse is a form of deceit that is used to hide the facts in the case, and the results are most disastrous to the one who indulges in them.
— from Addresses, by Martha Wilcox, page 160
The generous liver may object to the author’s small estimate of the pleasures of the table. The sinner sees, in the system taught in this book, that the demands of God must be met. The petty intellect is alarmed by constant appeals to Mind. The licentious disposition is discouraged over its slight spiritual prospects. When all men are bidden to the feast, the excuses come. One has a farm, another has merchandise, and therefore they cannot accept.
— Citation 9 from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, page 129 : 30-6
7 And he put forth a parable…
16 A certain man made a great supper, and bade many:
17 And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready.
18 And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused.
19 And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused.
20 And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.
21 So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind.
22 And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room.
23 And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.
24 For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper.
25 And there went great multitudes with him: and he turned, and said unto them,
26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
27 And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.
33 So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple.
— from Luke 14 : 7, 1-27, 33 citation 5 in the Bible portion of this week’s Lesson
Forum post — “Is My Relationship with God MOST Important?” by Florence Roberts
What is it that argues to people, ‘You do not want to practice; it is too uphill work and you can get along without it?’ What is it that sends people out of town when they are needed at home; that sends them to Europe or some out of the way place when they might be better employed? What says to people, ‘Confine your work entirely to the poor and uninfluential?’ What sends a lady, who is in a position to do well in Science, to the child bed? What unites an unmarried Scientist, who is promising as such, to one who can destroy such usefulness and blight such prospects?
— from Divinity Course and General Collectanea, (the “Blue Book”), by Mary Baker Eddy, page 60
Forum posts — for Lesson on “Sacrament – July 14th, 2019” by various participents