First Church of Christ, Scientist

Sharing Christian Science in Laguna Beach, CA

Readings from Wednesday Testimony Meeting

Seeking and saving that which was lost

November 25, 2020

Hymns: 350, 19, 386

The Bible

1. John 3:17 God

God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

2. II Pet. 3:9

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

3. Rom. 8:1, 2, 5 they, 9 (to 1st .)

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. ...they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.

4. Luke 4:14 Jesus, 15

Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about. And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all.

5. Luke 15:1-24

Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him. And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.

And he spake this parable unto them, saying, What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost. I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

Either what woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece, doth not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she find it? And when she hath found it, she calleth her friends and her neighbours together, saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which I had lost. Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.

And he said, A certain man had two sons: And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living. And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.

And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father's have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

6. Isa. 51:11 (to 2nd ;)

Therefore the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head: they shall obtain gladness and joy;

7. Rev. 12:10 (to 5th ,), 12 (to 1st .)

And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, ...
Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them.

8. Zeph. 3:17

The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.

 

Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures

1. SH 240:18

Mortals move onward towards good or evil as time glides on. If mortals are not progressive, past failures will be repeated until all wrong work is effaced or rectified. If at present satisfied with wrong-doing, we must learn to loathe it. If at present content with idleness, we must become dissatisfied with it. Remember that mankind must sooner or later, either by suffering or by Science, be convinced of the error that is to be overcome.

 

2. SH 405:26-29

If sin is not regretted and is not lessening, then it is hastening on to physical and moral doom. You are conquered by the moral penalties you incur and the ills they bring.

 

3. SH 253:18-19

If you believe in and practice wrong knowingly, you can at once change your course and do right.

 

4. SH 327:23-24

Moral courage is requisite to meet the wrong and to proclaim the right.

 

5. SH 5:3-11

Sorrow for wrong-doing is but one step towards reform and the very easiest step. The next and great step required by wisdom is the test of our sincerity, — namely, reformation. To this end we are placed under the stress of circumstances. Temptation bids us repeat the offence, and woe comes in return for what is done. So it will ever be, till we learn that there is no discount in the law of justice and that we must pay “the uttermost farthing.”

 

6. SH 327:12-13 (to 2nd .)

The way to escape the misery of sin is to cease sinning. There is no other way.

7. SH 22:3-6, 11-22

Vibrating like a pendulum between sin and the hope of forgiveness, — selfishness and sensuality causing constant retrogression, — our moral progress will be slow. “Work out your own salvation,” is the demand of Life and Love, for to this end God worketh with you. “Occupy till I come!” Wait for your reward, and “be not weary in well doing.” If your endeavors are beset by fearful odds, and you receive no present reward, go not back to error, nor become a sluggard in the race.

When the smoke of battle clears away, you will discern the good you have done, and receive according to your deserving. Love is not hasty to deliver us from temptation, for Love means that we shall be tried and purified.

 

8. SH 6:3-5

Divine Love corrects and governs man. Men may pardon, but this divine Principle alone reforms the sinner.

9. SH 327:1

Reform comes by understanding that there is no abiding pleasure in evil, and also by gaining an affection for good according to Science, which reveals the immortal fact that neither pleasure nor pain, appetite nor passion, can exist in or of matter, while divine Mind can and does destroy the false beliefs of pleasure, pain, or fear and all the sinful appetites of the human mind.

10. SH 407:6

Man's enslavement to the most relentless masters — passion, selfishness, envy, hatred, and revenge — is conquered only by a mighty struggle. Every hour of delay makes the struggle more severe. If man is not victorious over the passions, they crush out happiness, health, and manhood. Here Christian Science is the sovereign panacea, giving strength to the weakness of mortal mind, — strength from the immortal and omnipotent Mind, — and lifting humanity above itself into purer desires, even into spiritual power and good-will to man.

 

11. SH 458:25 The

The Christian Scientist wisely shapes his course, and is honest and consistent in following the leadings of divine Mind. He must prove, through living as well as healing and teaching, that Christ's way is the only one by which mortals are radically saved from sin and sickness.

12. SH 324:13 The

The way is straight and narrow, which leads to the understanding that God is the only Life. It is a warfare with the flesh, in which we must conquer sin, sickness, and death, either here or hereafter, — certainly before we can reach the goal of Spirit, or life in God.

13. SH 130:26-32

If thought is startled at the strong claim of Science for the supremacy of God, or Truth, and doubts the supremacy of good, ought we not, contrariwise, to be astounded at the vigorous claims of evil and doubt them, and no longer think it natural to love sin and unnatural to forsake it, — no longer imagine evil to be ever-present and good absent?

 

14. SH 406:19-25

Resist evil — error of every sort — and it will flee from you. Error is opposed to Life. We can, and ultimately shall, so rise as to avail ourselves in every direction of the supremacy of Truth over error, Life over death, and good over evil, and this growth will go on until we arrive at the fulness of God's idea, and no more fear that we shall be sick and die.

 

15. SH 327:23

Moral courage is requisite to meet the wrong and to proclaim the right. But how shall we reform 

the man who has more animal than moral courage, and who has not the true idea of good? Through human consciousness, convince the mortal of his mistake in seeking material means for gaining happiness. Reason is the most active human faculty. Let that inform the sentiments and awaken the man's dormant sense of moral obligation, and by degrees he will learn the nothingness of the pleasures of human sense and the grandeur and bliss of a spiritual sense, which silences the material or corporeal. Then he not only will be saved, but is saved.

16. SH 405:5

Christian Science commands man to master the propensities, — to hold hatred in abeyance with kindness, to conquer lust with chastity, revenge with charity, and to overcome deceit with honesty. Choke these errors in their early stages, if you would not cherish an army of conspirators against health, happiness, and success. They will deliver you to the judge, the arbiter of truth against error. The judge will deliver you to justice, and the sentence of the moral law will be executed upon mortal mind and body. Both will be manacled until the last farthing is paid, — until you have balanced your account with God. “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” The good man finally can overcome his fear of sin. This is sin's necessity, — to destroy itself. Immortal man demonstrates the government of God, good, in which is no power to sin.

 

17. SH 393:12

Rise in the strength of Spirit to resist all that is unlike good. God has made man capable of this, and nothing can vitiate the ability and power divinely bestowed on man.

18. SH 21:1-4, 9-12

If Truth is overcoming error in your daily walk and conversation, you can finally say, “I have fought a good fight . . . I have kept the faith,” because you are a better man. If the disciple is advancing spiritually, he is striving to enter in. He constantly turns away from material sense, and looks towards the imperishable things of Spirit.

 

19. SH 249:6-9

Let us feel the divine energy of Spirit, bringing us into newness of life and recognizing no mortal nor material power as able to destroy. Let us rejoice that we are subject to the divine “powers that be.”