Sunday, June 11th, 2023 Roundtable

God is our Refuge and Strength, a Very Present Help in Trouble

This week’s Lesson Sermon Subject: God The Preserver Of Man

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Morning Prayers

“Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” (Exodus xx. 3.) The First Commandment is my favorite text. It demonstrates Christian Science. It inculcates the triunity of God, Spirit, Mind; it signifies that man shall have no other spirit or mind but God, eternal good, and that all men shall have one Mind. The divine Principle of the First Commandment bases the Science of being, by which man demonstrates health, holiness, and life eternal. One infinite God, good, unifies men and nations; constitutes the brotherhood of man; ends wars; fulfils the Scripture, “Love thy neighbor as thyself;” annihilates pagan and Christian idolatry, — whatever is wrong in social, civil, criminal, political, and religious codes; equalizes the sexes; annuls the curse on man, and leaves nothing that can sin, suffer, be punished or destroyed.

— from Science and Health, by Mary Baker Eddy, page 340

May the allness of God, Love, and the nothingness of aught else serve to cover the question of your protection, and the allness of good, and the powerlessness and non-existence of evil be the reality of your thought.

— from Divinity Course and General Collectanea, (the “Blue Book”), by Mary Baker Eddy, page 79

Discussion points

304 — WATCH lest, after you come into Christian Science, you retain the old concept of a destiny that is subject to chance and change. The destiny of a flower is subject to every wind and storm that comes, until it is transplanted into a hothouse. There it develops under ideal conditions, and is safe from depredation. When we become Christian Scientists, we are transplanted into God’s hothouse. There we are under His perpetual care and no longer subject to chance and change. We are governed by the law that all things work together for good, because we love God.

— from 500 Watching Points by Gilbert Carpenter

GOLDEN TEXT: Psalm 46 : 1

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

The Science of mind uncovers to Scientists secret sin, even more distinctly than so-called physical crimes are visible to the personal senses; crime is always veiled in obscurity, but Science fastens guilt upon its author through mind, with the certainty and directness of the eye of God himself.

— from Divinity Course and General Collectanea, (the “Blue Book”), by Mary Baker Eddy, page 150

There is no law against you. If you mourn, if you have been cast down because of disease, know this: there positively is no law against you; and moreover, know this still further that you are entitle to enforce the law of your own life; you are entitled to enforce the law of your own health, of your own prosperity. You can do it. You can learn to do it. It is within the confines, within the divine provision concerning your very life, your daily needs. Be not afraid. You may be a law unto yourself, a law to your recovery from disease, a law to your business, a law of harmony to your welfare and your own household, and all things of your life, because God gave man dominion and you are entitled to it. In this very hour, you are entitled to be a law of recovery to your own self.

— from Lectures and Articles on Christian Sciences by Edward kimball, page 250

Israel’s journey through the wilderness teaches numerous lessons to those who are beginning their journey out of materiality. One sees plainly how unnecessarily long and weary they made their journey by their discontent, impatience, idolatry, and lack of faith in God. They were willing to leave Egypt because of their misery there, but then they expected to be brought straight into the promised land without in any way fitting themselves for it, not understanding that in their state of consciousness harmony was impossible for them, and that their needs must be purified and thus made ready to receive the fulfillment of the promised blessings.

How many of us to-day are willing to leave our misery, sin, and sickness behind us, just because it is misery, and expect, because of this willingness, to be lifted at once above our troubles, not seeing that we are doing just as the children of Israel did in their day, prolonging our journey by impatience, discontent, selfishness, and lack of faith.

There is a seeming wilderness for each one of us to go through while we are breaking the bands of selfishness and reversing our false beliefs concerning God and man; and we can go through this wilderness either as Moses did, overcoming and forgetting self, and cheering and urging others on, or as the children of Israel, discontented, selfish, lazy, and impatient. The promise is to him that overcometh, he shall inherit all things. Let us remember that the clouds are his chariots. The trials and temptations that sometimes seem hard may be mastered so that they shall draw us nearer to God “who is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

“Perseverance” from Christian Science Sentinel, April 18, 1903 by C. A.

Final Readings

We take the following clipping from the Boston Sunday American of June 28:

Mrs. Howe’s own statement as to what was revealed to her in her vision, impressively told by the venerable woman to a Boston American reporter at Oak Glen, Portsmouth, R. I., yesterday, is here given:—

One night recently I experienced a sudden awakening. I had a vision of a new era which is to dawn for mankind and in which men and women are battling, equally, unitedly, for the uplifting and emancipating of the race from evil. I saw men and women of every clime, working like bees to unwrap the evils of society, and to discover the whole web of vice and misery, and to apply the remedies and also to find the influences that should best counteract evil and its attending suffering.

There seemed to be a new, a wondrous, ever-permeating light, the glory of which I cannot attempt to put in human words—the light of the new-born hope and sympathy blazing. The source of this light was born of human endeavor, immortal purpose of countless thousands of men and women who were equally doing their part in the world-wide battle with evil, and whose energy was bended to tear the mask from error, crime, superstition, greed, and to discover and apply the remedy.

I saw the men and the women, standing side by side, shoulder to shoulder, a common, lofty, and indomitable purpose lighting every face with a glory not of this earth. All, all were advancing with one end in view, one foe to trample, one everlasting good to gain. I saw them advancing like a mighty army, laden with the fruits of their research, their study, their endeavor, in this battle with the powers of darkness and ready to tear vice from the earth, to strip away all of selfishness, of greed, of rapine. Then I seemed to see them stoop down to their fellows and to lift them higher, higher, and yet higher. Men and women, a vast host whom none could number, working unitedly, equally, with superhuman energy, all for the extirpation of the blackness of vice and for the weal of the race.

And then I saw the victory!

All, all of evil was gone from the earth. Misery was blotted out. Mankind was emancipated and ready to march forward in a new era of human understanding, all-encompassing sympathy, and ever-present help. The era of perfect love, of peace passing understanding.

“But Their Eyes Were Holden” from Christian Science Sentinel, July 18, 1908 by Julia Ward Howe

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