Chapter 1 – Introductory – The New Birth | Plainfield Christian Science Church, Independent

Chapter 1 – Introductory – The New Birth

From Miscellaneous Writings by

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         St. Paul speaks of the new birth as “waiting for the

6     adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.” The

         great Nazarene Prophet said, “Blessed are the pure in

         heart: for they shall see God.” Nothing aside from the

9     spiritualization — yea, the highest Christianization — of

         thought and desire, can give the true perception of God

         and divine Science, that results in health, happiness, and

12    holiness.

         The new birth is not the work of a moment. It begins

         with moments, and goes on with years; moments of sur-

15    render to God, of childlike trust and joyful adoption

         of good; moments of self-abnegation, self-consecration,

         heaven-born hope, and spiritual love.

18    Time may commence, but it cannot complete, the

         new birth: eternity does this; for progress is the law

         of infinity. Only through the sore travail of mortal mind

21    shall soul as sense be satisfied, and man awake in His

         likeness. What a faith-lighted thought is this! that

         mortals can lay off the “old man,” until man is found

24    to be the image of the infinite good that we name God,

         and the fulness of the stature of man in Christ appears.

         In mortal and material man, goodness seems in em-

27    bryo. By suffering for sin, and the gradual fading out

         of the mortal and material sense of man, thought is de-

         veloped into an infant Christianity; and, feeding at first

30    on the milk of the Word, it drinks in the sweet revealings

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1     of a new and more spiritual Life and Love. These nourish

         the hungry hope, satisfy more the cravings for immor-

3     tality, and so comfort, cheer, and bless one, that he saith:

         In mine infancy, this is enough of heaven to come down

         to earth.

6     But, as one grows into the manhood or womanhood

         of Christianity, one finds so much lacking, and so very

         much requisite to become wholly Christlike, that one

9     saith: The Principle of Christianity is infinite: it is

         indeed God; and this infinite Principle hath infinite

         claims on man, and these claims are divine, not human;

12    and man’s ability to meet them is from God; for, being

         His likeness and image, man must reflect the full

         dominion of Spirit — even its supremacy over sin, sick-

15    ness, and death.

         Here, then, is the awakening from the dream of life

         in matter, to the great fact that God is the only Life;

18    that, therefore, we must entertain a higher sense of both

         God and man. We must learn that God is infinitely

         more than a person, or finite form, can contain; that

21    God is a divine Whole, and All, an all-pervading in-

         telligence and Love, a divine, infinite Principle; and

         that Christianity is a divine Science. This newly

24    awakened consciousness is wholly spiritual; it emanates

         from Soul instead of body, and is the new birth begun

         in Christian Science.

27    Now, dear reader, pause for a moment with me, earn-

         estly to contemplate this new-born spiritual altitude; for

         this statement demands demonstration.

30    Here you stand face to face with the laws of infinite

         Spirit, and behold for the first time the irresistible con-

         flict between the flesh and Spirit. You stand before the

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1     awful detonations of Sinai. You hear and record the

         thunderings of the spiritual law of Life, as opposed to

3     the material law of death; the spiritual law of Love, as

         opposed to the material sense of love; the law of om-

         nipotent harmony and good, as opposed to any supposi-

6     titious law of sin, sickness, or death. And, before the

         flames have died away on this mount of revelation, like

         the patriarch of old, you take off your shoes—lay aside

9     your material appendages, human opinions and doc-

         trines, give up your more material religion with its rites

         and ceremonies, put off your materia medica and hygiene

12    as worse than useless — to sit at the feet of Jesus. Then,

         you meekly bow before the Christ, the spiritual idea

         that our great Master gave of the power of God to heal

15    and to save. Then it is that you behold for the first

         time the divine Principle that redeems man from under

         the curse of materialism, — sin, disease, and death.

18    This spiritual birth opens to the enraptured understand-

         ing a much higher and holier conception of the supremacy

         of Spirit, and of man as His likeness, whereby man reflects

21    the divine power to heal the sick.

         A material or human birth is the appearing of a mor-

         tal, not the immortal man. This birth is more or less

24    prolonged and painful, according to the timely or un-

         timely circumstances, the normal or abnormal material

         conditions attending it.

27    With the spiritual birth, man’s primitive, sinless,

         spiritual existence dawns on human thought, — through

         the travail of mortal mind, hope deferred, the perishing

30    pleasure and accumulating pains of sense, — by which

         one loses himself as matter, and gains a truer sense of

         Spirit and spiritual man.

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1     The purification or baptismals that come from Spirit,

         develop, step by step, the original likeness of perfect man,

3     and efface the mark of the beast. “Whom the Lord

         loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom

         He receiveth;” therefore rejoice in tribulation, and wel-

6     come these spiritual signs of the new birth under the law

         and gospel of Christ, Truth.

         The prominent laws which forward birth in the divine

9     order of Science, are these: “Thou shalt have no other

         gods before me;” “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”

         These commands of infinite wisdom, translated into

12    the new tongue, their spiritual meaning, signify: Thou

         shalt love Spirit only, not its opposite, in every God-

         quality, even in substance; thou shalt recognize thy-

15    self as God’s spiritual child only, and the true man

         and true woman, the all-harmonious “male and female,”

         as of spiritual origin, God’s reflection, — thus as chil-

18    dren of one common Parent, — wherein and whereby

         Father, Mother, and child are the divine Principle and

         divine idea, even the divine “Us” — one in good, and

21    good in One.

         With this recognition man could never separate him-

         self from good, God; and he would necessarily entertain

24    habitual love for his fellow-man. Only by admitting

         evil as a reality, and entering into a state of evil

         thoughts, can we in belief separate one man’s interests

27    from those of the whole human family, or thus attempt

         to separate Life from God. This is the mistake that

         causes much that must be repented of and overcome.

30    Not to know what is blessing you, but to believe that

         aught that God sends is unjust, — or that those whom

         He commissions bring to you at His demand that which

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1     is unjust, — is wrong and cruel. Envy, evil thinking,

         evil speaking, covetousness, lust, hatred, malice, are

3     always wrong, and will break the rule of Christian

         Science and prevent its demonstration; but the rod of

         God, and the obedience demanded of His servants in

6     carrying out what He teaches them, — these are never

         unmerciful, never unwise.

         The task of healing the sick is far lighter than that

9     of so teaching the divine Principle and rules of Chris-

         tian Science as to lift the affections and motives of men

         to adopt them and bring them out in human lives. He

12    who has named the name of Christ, who has virtually

         accepted the divine claims of Truth and Love in divine

         Science, is daily departing from evil; and all the wicked

15    endeavors of suppositional demons can never change the

         current of that life from steadfastly flowing on to God,

         its divine source.

18    But, taking the livery of heaven wherewith to cover

         iniquity, is the most fearful sin that mortals can commit.

         I should have more faith in an honest drugging-doctor,

21    one who abides by his statements and works upon as

         high a basis as he understands, healing me, than I could

         or would have in a smooth-tongued hypocrite or mental

24    malpractitioner.

         Between the centripetal and centrifugal mental forces

         of material and spiritual gravitations, we go into or we

27    go out of materialism or sin, and choose our course and

         its results. Which, then, shall be our choice, — the sin-

         ful, material, and perishable, or the spiritual, joy-giving,

30    and eternal?

         The spiritual sense of Life and its grand pursuits is

         of itself a bliss, health-giving and joy-inspiring. This

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1     sense of Life illumes our pathway with the radiance of

         divine Love; heals man spontaneously, morally and

3     physically, — exhaling the aroma of Jesus’ own words,

         “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden,

         and I will give you rest.”

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