"You're a Christian Scientist?" an acquaintance asked incredulously. "Mary Baker Eddy, Jesus, faith and no doctors, the whole thing?" Thus began a short discussion on the benefits of medicine versus prayer for healing.
Many wonder what the difference is between Christian Science healing and medical treatment of sickness.
There are a number of dissimilarities, but an important one is regeneration.m
To simply fix up the body is not enough. The mental cause of each problem -- basically, belief in a destructive power outside God -- must be dealt with. Otherwise the cause hasn't been healed, and the same effect could return, or another like it.
Mrs. Eddy discovered how Jesus healed. He dealt with the cause of every ill not as matter but as evil, the belief that there is an opposite to intelligent good, or God, that is powerful, real, and a creator of frail, fallible mortals. Mrs. Eddy found in her own healing work that when Truth is applied to error, when Christ comes face to face with belief, Truth, Christ, wins. And this victory brings healing for the patient.
The emphasis in Christian Science is not on changing bad material action to good but on replacing the individual's conception of life as physical with a deep awareness of God as divine Life and of himself as the reflection of Life -- as the child of God.
Paul writes in Romans, "Sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace." n1 We are not subject to fictitious laws of inherited or contagious disease, to accident and chance, which deny God's perfect control of His creation. Believing we are is a form of sin. When we accept the fact of God's unchanging spiritual government -- the law of Truth's healing power -- our belief in material law is destroyed. And we are healed.
n1 Romans 6:14;
Mrs. Eddy writes, "That mortal mind claims to govern every organ of the mortal body, we have overwhelming proof. But this so-called mind is a myth, and must by its own consent yield to Truth. . . . The immortal divine Mind takes away all its supposed sovereignty, and saves mortal mind from itself." n2
n2 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,m pp. 151-152;
But how do we yield? How do we have faith and understanding?
Last year the writer had some painful growths in her foot. Although she was told these could be surgically removed, she called a Christian Science practitioner to pray with her for spiritual healing and regeneration.
They studied one sentence from the chapter entitled "Prayer" in Mrs. Eddy's book Science and Health:m "What we most need is the prayer of fervent desire for growth in grace, expressed in patience, meekness, love, and good deeds." n3
n3 ibid,m p. 4.
For at least a week, whenever the writer noticed the discomfort in her foot, she sincerely prayed for this spiritual kind of growth -- growth in receptivity, in trust and reliance on God. Then she forgot about the problem.
Sometime later she happened to notice that the condition was healed. This meant that the cause of the problem was also healed -- her lack of understanding of God, her insufficient receptivity to Him. This meant she had grown in grace and lost some materiality, some of her faith in the so-called material laws outside God's allness.
She had experienced regeneration as well as health. DAILY BIBLE VERSE Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? Hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God. Psalms 43:5