Drawing correct conclusions
A GROUP was given a difficult mathematical problem to solve. The answer was supplied at the same time, but the requirement was to start from the proposition and demonstrate every step through to the given conclusion.
Later it was discovered that the stated answer was incorrect. However, in the meantime, this impossible task - to reconcile an erroneous conclusion with the principle governing the proposition - had cost one keen member of the group a lot of wasted time and effort and diminishing confidence in her ability. Exasperation, wounded pride, and finally a feeling of humiliation had taken over. And why? Because she had not questioned the validity of the given conclusion but had been blinded and confused by it; also, she had not trusted sufficiently in the work she had done according to the rules of mathematics.
We are constantly drawing conclusions from evidence the physical senses present to us. But should we accept those conclusions as necessarily correct?
We learn from the Bible, in the third chapter of Mark's Gospel, that Jesus entered a synagogue and healed a man. n1 In spite of the unquestionable material evidence that this man's hand was withered, Jesus told him to stretch it forth. He did so, and it was completely restored. As Jesus had obviously not accepted the outward evidence of imperfection, what evidence was he aware of? It was clearly evidence beyond and above the cognizance of others present there, including the man himself. Wasn't it God-derived spiritual evidence about man, transcending a limited, physical view of things, that brought wholeness to the man's hand? Imperfection faded away before Jesus' understanding of God as man's perfect cause.
n1 See Mark 3:1-5.
At one time, indeed, Jesus advised his opponents, ''Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.'' n2 ''O righteous Father,'' he prayed on another occasion, ''the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these (the disciples) have known that thou hast sent me.'' n3 The Gospels show us how he strove through word and works to make his Father more fully known to people, to prove to them what a right understanding of God could do for them, to touch their lives with healing evidence of the divine nature, order, and love.
n2 John 7:24.
n3 John 17:25.
In the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, writes: ''Harmony is produced by its Principle, is controlled by it and abides with it. Divine Principle is the Life of man. Man's happiness is not, therefore, at the disposal of physical sense. Truth is not contaminated by error. Harmony in man is as beautiful as in music, and discord is unnatural, unreal.'' n4 And she says of Jesus, ''His purpose in healing was not alone to restore health, but to demonstrate his divine Principle.'' n5
n4 Science and Health.
n5 Ibid., p. 51.
When Christian Science came into one young woman's life, she was happy to accept its teaching that God is the Principle of man because the divine nature is totally reliable, steadfast, enduring, undeviating; and she knew that God as divine Principle, Love, would guide her into sure outcomes and right conclusions.
Soon after she began her study of this Science, she was seized with symptoms of influenza. So very strong were the symptoms and the sense of imminent collapse that she was bent right over and struggled mightily to retain her understanding of God as Principle and to keep upright.
She had been learning of man's spiritual, perfect nature and the illusory nature of sickness. So she resisted the sickness with all the spiritual strength she could muster, knowing that it was not, in the final analysis, a reality, however much it seemed to be. She claimed ''righteous judgment'' for herself, insisting on her divinely bestowed harmony. This prayer, this strong spiritual bid for retention of what was right and freedom from what was wrong, was effective. In a few moments she straightened up. Fear of collapse and every symptom of influenza had been eliminated. She felt fine!
Students of Christian Science daily study the Bible together with Science and Health. Many blessings result from companioning with the spiritual truths contained in these volumes. They enable one to draw correct conclusions and to experience healing results. DAILY BIBLE VERSE Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions. Ecclesiastes 7:29