“Approximation” is an interesting word. It indicates a close similarity—something so near to the original that it might even work as a substitute. And in some areas of life that might be just fine.
But what about it in relation to Christian Science?
Well—Mary Baker Eddy published a prediction in her Pulpit and Press (p. 22) dealing with approximations:
If the lives of Christian Scientists attest their fidelity to Truth, I predict that in the twentieth century every Christian church in our land, and a few in far-off lands, will approximate the understanding of Christian Science sufficiently to heal the sick in his name. Christ will give to Christianity his new name, and Christendom will be classified as Christian Scientists.
So, let’s take a moment and examine what she’s declared.
Her statement that other churches will approximate Christian Science is very specific. Notice that she doesn’t include any type of church or religious system or philosophy other than Christian. Buddhism, Hinduism, New Age Thought, Mindfulness, reikism, yoga, and all of the other et cetera of Eastern and Western esoterica are nowhere to be found. Nor is there an inclusion of any of the systems of material-based medicine or psychology/psychiatry and all of their permutations.
Mrs. Eddy is speaking specifically of Christian churches primarily in the United States.
But there’s an important qualifier to all of this. And it’s the opening phrase that states her prediction will take place if our lives as Christian Scientists attest our fidelity to Truth. In other words, have we been and are we presently healing the public as she did and as Jesus did—a requirement that is part and parcel of living the life of a Christian Scientist?
If we’re honest, we might not be able to answer that question fully in the affirmative.
And we need to ask ourselves another essential question as we reach out to other denominations: Are we doing so to lift their thought to a deeper understanding of God and His image and likeness—an understanding that heals the sick and reforms the sinner—or are we doing it to blend in, or learn from them, or perhaps even for a sense of validation?
If our answer is the former and if we’re demonstrating our claims by the healing work we’re doing, then even though we’re now in the 21st century there will be a transformation of thought that causes others to gain a more profound grasp of the truth of being—of the healing and saving presence of the Comforter.
If, however, it’s the latter then we might find ourselves inadvertently taking in ideas and practices that are not conducive to our individual and collective spiritual progress and proof of Mrs. Eddy’s revelation and establishment of the Science of Christ—a revelation that is for the salvation of humanity from all the ills that the “flesh is heir to.”
As she wrote in Science and Health, (p. 464):
Adulterating Christian Science, makes it void.
And that’s something that I’m sure none of us would want to approximate!
Ken, this was outstanding. I couldn’t agree more. Thank you!
You’re welcome, Glory–thanks so much!
Thanks, Ken. I understand that when Jesus said to follow him because he is The Way, that The Way is living according to his example of unceasing prayer to God, Our Father, in childlike humility and trust and with unwavering obedience, continuing to follow-through, as Love leads, until we “get it” – the sooner the better! 😉 God is love and we, in that image and likeness, are proving our “oneship” under God’s laws of divine love as set forth under the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule – lived! That’s Church – alive!!! Living in The Way, we model for all – Christ’s Christianity! … and there’s no “approximation,” as we go forward with Christianly-scientific certainty. I’m glad and rejoice that Mrs. Eddy consecrated her life to find and share the healing power of Love by following The Way of the Christ, in which healing happens as a natural expression of the Truth of being revealed. We have a great gift in Christian Science. We owe it to God, Jesus et al, Mrs. Eddy, ourselves, and each other – all of God’s children, to claim each day in the name of all-Good, Love-itself!!! unfolding and uninterrupted. In this way Love rules through the Christian perspective of The Way. God knows and loves each of us. We are always in Love.
Thanks so much for your thoughts! 🙂 And we need to be demonstrating our on-going understanding by healing the sick (the public) and reforming the sinner–as she and Jesus did.
Yes!!! I agree. Beholding the perfect man like Jesus did – right through mortal mind’s belief in sickness and sin, disease and death!!! There is only ONE reality. Thanks again!!!