Points of view

Your point of view, my point of view, this point of view, that point of view: there are as many as there are people. But it could be said that choosing between two in particular is of supreme importance to humanity - the material and the spiritual. Completely opposite as they are, which is the more rewarding to explore?

The five physical senses tell us we're vulnerable, fleshly beings living in a material universe. But are they accurate in their view of what reality is? Invention has allowed us to look farther into the infinity of space than ever before. And peering at the infinitesimal, we've discovered atoms and quarks. But does any of this show us what unalterable truth really is? Does it confer upon us a positive answer to the question ''Is life eternal?'' Perhaps, in view of appearances, we feel a positive answer is illogical.

We are told, according to certain theories, that matter gathered itself together and bit by bit erected a construction we call man. Doomed to die, this man then looked at his own construction and asked: ''Where did it come from? How did I begin?'' But is that really all we are - mortals subject to death? Did protoplasmic slime really confer intelligence on us? If so, why was it not much more intelligent, confering not mortality but immortality?

Exploration within the material or physical clearly gives us no hope. Strangely enough, a great many people do not give a fraction of the time they spend contemplating matter, or merely accepting it, to the findings of the world's great spiritual thinkers. Only in that direction is there hope of finding a way of escape. The one acknowledged as by far the greatest of them all is Christ Jesus. Short though his earthly life was, he upset all the norms. He healed diseases of all kinds totally without material means. He experienced resurrection and ascension following crucifixion. If we believed only 1 percent of the gospel record as true, wouldn't we be wise to research the why and the how?

What was Jesus talking about when he said, ''It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing''? n1 Why dismiss as impossible Jesus' words ''Whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die''? n2 That is what the Bible is all about - the recognition and demonstration of life in God, in Spirit, exemplified by Jesus.

n1 John 6:63.

n2 John 11:26.

Why not explore further? No one has anything but mortality to lose. The Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, n3 turns us with eyes wider open again and again to the Bible. In the textbook we find the eternal laws of life, the demonstrable Science of real being, which enables us to follow Christ Jesus' example of healing. The material, earthly point of view, though possessing a certain beauty, is more and more seen as a parody, or counterfeit, over which the spiritual reality, when understood, gives us dominion. What is this reality? Simply stated, it's the absolute goodness and perfection of the one supreme God, and the consequent perfection of His spiritual image, man. This is a reality we can begin to demonstrate in practical ways.

n3 The Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science.

The first sentence in the Preface to Science and Health reads, ''To those leaning on the sustaining infinite, to-day is big with blessings.'' n4 The remainder of the book explains in depth what that means, how the infinite sustains, and how we lean on it.

n4 Science and Health, P. vii.

Down the centuries come the inspired words of Moses ''I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life.'' n5 One point of view curses, the other blesses. Choosing the right viewpoint gives force to these words of an Old Testament writer: ''Acquaint now thyself with him (God), and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee.'' n6

n5 Deuteronomy 30:19

n6 Job 22:21.

The spiritual nature of reality is still largely misunderstood by humanity, but its promise everlastingly remains for anyone willing to explore and accept it. DAILY BIBLE VERSE 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. . . . To be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Romans 8:1, 2, 6

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