“Know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32)—the immortal utterance of Jesus, the Master Metaphysician—is familiar to most Christians as well as many others. It is profound to its core. Yet are we equally familiar with the requirement—yes, requirement—that precedes it in this gospel?
31 Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
Suddenly, his statement takes on a new meaning—not just one of ‘simply’ knowing the truth, but that the knowing, the understanding, of the truth is the outcome of becoming one of Jesus’ disciples which can only be arrived at by continuing in his word.
And continuing in his word can be summed up in the Master’s own direct command to each of us:
Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils. (Matthew 10:8)
Really, can any conclusion be reached other than to be a Christian means that we must strive to achieve each of these demands?
Mary Baker Eddy wrote in her Church Manual (p. 92):
I recommend that each member of this Church shall strive to demonstrate by his or her practice, that Christian Science heals the sick quickly and wholly, thus proving this Science to be all that we claim for it.
Notice that she states “the sick,” not only our own illnesses.
“But,” you may be saying, “I don’t have enough experience.” Or “I don’t have enough time given my family and career.” Or “I have my own problems to take care of first!” Or “It’s only for those who have a ‘calling’!”
Ah—how mortal mind tries to find escape routes!
In referring to Jesus’ parable of a man inviting guests to a great supper (Luke 14:16-24), Mrs. Eddy stated:
When all men are bidden to the feast, the excuses come. One has a farm, another has merchandise, and therefore they cannot accept. (Science and Health, p. 130)
So, does this mean that in order to be obedient every Christian Scientist must become a Journal-listed practitioner? Not necessarily, though it does mean that we all have to be ready and willing to heal others—not just our family and fellow church members, but the public.
You may be wondering, “Well if that’s the case, what should I do?”
The first step and most basic step is that we each need to embrace in our thought Jesus’ requirement, as well as our God-given abilities as students of Christian Science, to be the healers that he and Mrs. Eddy expected us to be. This simple act will open the door for us—a door that God tells us “behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it.” (Revelation 3:8)
And that door opens to blessings for humanity—beyond any mortal conception—that we dare not resist walking through!
Thanks. Excellent points, you make, Ken! Got me to thinking that unless we continue in Jesus’ words, as his disciples, we are at risk of not even being able to recognize the Truth that can set us free!
You/re welcome, Nela. And a good point you make! 🙂