Sunday, February 26th, 2023 Roundtable

That Prayer Which Covers All Human Needs

This week’s Lesson Sermon Subject: Christ Jesus

Click here to play the audio as you read:

Also available on YouTube

Click here for the Roundtable archive

Morning Prayers

PRAYER FOR ONESELF – I thank Thee, Father-Mother God, that neither ignorant, fraudulent, nor malicious mortal mind can reach me, affect me mentally, physically, financially, or otherwise; and I know it, for God is the only power; that I am not the victim of aggressive mental suggestion, nor the target of M.A.M. claiming to operate through any channel whatever, but I am the blessed legal child of God, spiritual, immortal, all-harmonious, perfect, happy, healthy, pure, sinless, free, and fearless and diseaseless, and deathless, expressing the substance of all good. Hold yourself constantly and consciously under God’s eternal law of blessing, of happiness, harmony, health, peace, joy, power, progress, protection, abundance; there is no other law, – only a contrary mortal mind lie which you are awake and alert to, and not under.

— from Divinity Course and General Collectanea, (the “Blue Book”), by Mary Baker Eddy, page 128-129

Discussion points

18 — WATCH lest false theology, which is constantly at one’s heels to tempt one on his heavenly journey, cause you to continue to conceive of prayer as merely petition, rather than desire, realization and affirmation; as a means of getting something you do not now possess and perhaps do not really need; rather than the scientific process which opens man’s eyes to the knowledge that he now possesses all good in reflection. This difference might be illustrated by one waiting for a postman to deliver an expected package, instead of discovering that it has long since been delivered. True prayer is the right desire which leads man to make a scientific effort to banish from thought all sense of the reality of material testimony, as evidence of a limited and mortal status for man, that he may gain the realization that, since he is God’s reflection, the allness of all good is his present possession now. Moreover it is his privilege and obligation to reflect this good to all mankind.

Mrs. Eddy once said, “After making your affirmations of good and denials of error, until your thought is clear and true, go farther and give thanks that while you did wait, you did receive what you asked. Go not back to asking, but continue to give thanks that you have received.”

Since God is both Father and Mother, one might say that we approach Him from the masculine as well as the feminine standpoint. One is the head, the other the heart, one reason and the other revelation. One utilizes the power of God with authority; the other kneels humbly at the throne of God, yearning and asking for more of His grace. Those who confine their prayers to the head are apt to take too much to themselves, and feel that they are accomplishing the works; those who pray wholly with the heart are apt to leave the entire work to God. But the right proportion causes God and man to work in unison. As Mrs. Eddy once said, “God’s business is to heal and man’s business is to let Him.”

— from 500 Watching Points by Gilbert Carpenter

GOLDEN TEXT: John 5 : 30

“I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.” — Christ Jesus

Article If We Say, “I Want” Collected Writings by Bicknell Young

Article “Oneness” Collected Writings by Bicknell Young

Once a story appeared in the Christian Science Monitor that illustrates this point. A group of ministers were discussing the text, “pray without ceasing.” The maid in the home overheard the talk and said to her employer, that to her, that text was one of the easiest and best in the Bible.

The old minister said, “Well, well. What can you say about it, Mary? Can you pray all the time, when you have so many things to do?” “Yes,” said the girl, “when I begin to work, I pray that I may have strength equal to my day; when I kindle the fire, I pray that God’s work may revive in my heart; as I begin to sweep out the house, I pray that my heart may be cleansed from all its impurities; when I am preparing and partaking of the breakfast, I desire to be fed with the manna and the sincere milk of the Word.” “Go on,” said the minister, “Pray without ceasing.”

— from Mary Baker Eddy, Her Spiritual Precepts by Gilbert Carpenter

Did not Jesus speak of himself both as the Son of man and as the Son of God, and is it not clear that it is the Son of God who is the Saviour? How plainly Jesus states that on the human side he possessed no saving quality. He says: “I can of mine own self do nothing” (John, 5:30). Again he insists: “The word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me” (John, 14:24). Every instance of reformation, every case of healing, every good work accomplished, in fact every demonstration which he made he ascribed not to himself, but to his Father, for, said he: “The Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works” (John 14:10).

“The Saviour” (excerpt) from Christian Science Journal, April 1898, By Rev. Irving C. Tomlinson

When Mary Beecher Longyear moved to Brookline, she asked Mrs. Eddy to recommend a student near at hand to whom she might turn in time of need. Our Leader declined to do so, telling her to select one who knew Christian Science history. The deduction is that a knowledge of how error attacked Mrs. Eddy and the Cause down through the years, would give a worker an advantage in handling error for another, beyond what an understanding of Science gained through a mere study of the textbook would give. He would be one who knew the more subtle modes of error’s activities, and be aware of its claims, as it had been apparently successful for a time in dogging Mrs. Eddy’s footsteps, until she was able to see its nothingness.

— from Mary Baker Eddy, Her Spiritual Precepts by Gilbert Carpenter

Possession by Mary Baker Eddy

“Healing as Practised by Jesus”, from Christian Science Journal, February 1906 by Samuel Greenwood

I feel that many Jews and many Christians are at risk right now of unduly positive thinking — of thinking that everything is ok; that we will all be automatically be redeemed — when it manifestly isn’t ok.

My point being that our forefathers for both faith traditions, Jewish and Christian, understood that a Covenant — involving God’s blessing and protection — took action from both the Lord and from His people, to be in effect.

It was not an eternal hall pass.

We in this generation have forgotten this.

But I think it is possible that for four thousand plus years — and then for two thousand — God’s covenant has in fact largely protected the West, and that we have had His blessing for so long that we have taken it for granted; and that in the last few years, we have released our hold of God’s covenant – and that God has simply, as He warned us in the Old Testament that he could — withdrawn; and left us to our own devices — so we can see for ourselves how we will do when we depend on human alone. In the absence of God’s covenant and protection in the West, great evil is flourishing.

It feels again like the ancient world that continually tempted the Hebrews away from the hard, rigorous, daily, demanding practice of morality and of adherence to the Ten Commandments. It feels again like the ancient world felt, being as it was under Baal’s, Moloch’s and Asherah’s dark, inexorable, complex and antihuman rule.

The great genius of America was not that it was consecrated to a specific religion — the genius of our nation included freedom of religion — but our distinction was that we were founded as a City on a Hill; spiritually; we were consecrated, via our ultimate organizational manifestation of human freedom, with its basis in free will — to God.

— from The Ancient Gods Have Returned to Earth, by Naomi Wolf

Thoughts Submitted

John 10 : 30 “I and my Father are one.”

In thinking about this statement and about oneness, I found In Bicknell Young’s 1937 College, “Jesus was the man; Christ was what he knew” … “You cannot separate Christ from God, and you cannot separate Christ from man … All the way, the Redeemer is the Christ, is the oneness, the unity, the revelation of the perfection of man.”

In his article on Oneness, Bicknell Young writes, “When Jesus said, ‘I and my Father are one’ (John 10:30), he made a statement which is the basis of existence … The question is, where and how was he one with the Father? Because God is Mind, the answer is: It is Mind as Mind, or consciousness that man is; that God is our Mind; this is how and where this oneness takes place.”

Mrs Eddys writes about this citation in Science and Health Page 26, “The Christ was the Spirit which Jesus implied in his own statements: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life;’ ‘I and my Father are one.’ This Christ, or divinity of the man Jesus, was his divine nature, the godliness which animated him.” She also writes, “’I and my Father are one,’ — that is, one in quality, not in quantity. As a drop of water is one with the ocean, a ray of light one with the sun, even so God and man, Father and son, are one in being.”(S&H page 361)

— from Nancy in NJ.

Final Readings

In the fourteenth chapter of Mark’s gospel we have the most detailed account of Jesus’ last hours with his disciples before his crucifixion. In graphic words we find portrayed his struggle in the garden of Gethsemane, his prayer for deliverance, his touching appeal to Peter, “Simon, sleepest thou? Couldest not thou watch one hour?” Then comes the command, “Watch ye and pray,” which was given more than once; but we are told that when he came the third time and found them “asleep again,” he said, “Sleep on now, and take your rest.”

What pathos lies within these few words! What might have been the outcome had there never been occasion for Jesus to have uttered them! O that the disciples had overcome the inclination to yield to the senses, and that they had watched with him who never gave a useless command! Would the cup then have passed from him, or would that grand, mighty victory over the grave have been more wonderful still? It seems a dreadful thing to be asleep at so vital a time. Even though no event of this tragedy were altered, had the disciples seen the importance of obedient work at this time might it not have added much to Jesus’ joy to have known that those whom he had been so faithfully teaching had been loyal to the end? Who of us does not think he would have done better than did these disciples that he would have watched, and have given all of self to have lessened if only by one drop Jesus’ cup of sorrow?

But do not the opportunities of our own day give us every needed chance to show how faithful we would have been? Have we not the eternal Christ ever with us, and is not error ever seeking to betray and crucify the God-idea? Are we awake to the need of watching and praying that we enter not into temptation? Are we guarding the idea of Truth in all its activities? The Christ-idea is being unfolded to us through the church services, the Christian Science literature, the lectures, and in many other ways. Are we seeing to it that nothing is neglected which may help us or our fellow men to a better understanding of God? Until we are sure that we are awake along all these lines, we are giving the world no proof that we, too, would not have slept in the garden of Gethsemane.

“Watch And Pray” (excerpt) from Christian Science Journal, March 1913, by L. Emogene Moore

Print this page

Share via email