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Unwrap & Use the Gift of Grace: the life and love of Christ Jesus

Rick Stewart, C.S., Dresden, Germany
Posted Monday, February 21st, 2011

[Unwrap & Use the Gift of Grace: the life and love of Christ Jesus]
Cedars Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson: "Christ Jesus" for Feb. 21- 27, 2011
by Rick Stewart, CS, of Dresden, Germany  (RickStewartCS@aol.com)
[w/ brackets by Warren Huff]

 [Editor's Note: The following application ideas for this week, and the Possible Sunday School Topics that will follow, are offered primarily to help CEDARS campers and staff (as well as friends) see and demonstrate the great value of daily study and application of the Christian Science Bible lessons year-round, not just at camp! You can sign up to have them emailed to you free -- in English by Monday each week, or by each Wednesday you can get a FREE TRANSLATION in French thanks to Pascal, in German thanks to Helga or in Spanish thanks to a team of Ana, Erick, Claudia and Patricio. YOU CAN SIGN UP at www.cedarscamps.org/newsletters]
 
Would God play favorites? 
 
Have you ever heard someone say, "I will not play favorites here"?  And by this they of course mean that fairness, equitable treatment, and impartiality are going to be the rule they apply.  They are promising to not treat one better than another, all will receive equal and fair treatment. We like to hear that from a teacher so we know everyone is going to be treated the same, no teacher's pet.  But what about God?  Would God play favorites?
 
An interesting idea occurred to me, and it might seem a little disconcerting, a little shocking at first.  This idea is that God does play favorites.  But, and think about this, this favoritism is equitable, impartial, overflowing, and generously bestowed on every single idea in creation.  In other words, a favoritism that is poured forth from infinite, eternal, impartial, divine Love!!  So,  your individual needs receive all the attention of an infinite source of favor, God's favor towards you, but since God is infinite Love, His attention to you does not take away one tiny bit of favor towards me.
 
What started me thinking along these lines is our Bible Lesson this week on the subject, "Christ Jesus," and many verses that refer to "grace."  The word grace in the New Testament is always a translation of the Greek word, "charis," (χαρις).   "Charis" occurs 156 times in the Greek New Testament.  And it is usually translated as "grace," but also a few times as favor, benevolence, pleasure, thanks.
 
So as we dig into our Bible Lesson this week, let's start with a full sense that God's infinite, all-encompassing favor and love is poured forth on all of us impartially and universally.  And the evidence of our Father's love is the priceless gift of His "only begotten son", Christ Jesus.
 
So clearly Christ Jesus was loved of the Father beyond measure, but what we learn in this week's Lesson is that Jesus' life was lived so that we too would know that grace of God's infinite Love.  Yes, Jesus may have been God's favorite, but through this Lesson we will learn that you are too.
 
Golden Text: I John 4:9    
 J. B. Phillips translates: "To us, the greatest demonstration of God's love for us has been his sending his only Son into the world to give us life through him." 
And the New English Bible (NEB): "For God is love; and his love was disclosed to us in this, that he sent his only Son into the world to bring us life. " 
 
Responsive Reading: John :1 1-5,9-14,16
The phrase "in the beginning" is one that is shared with Genesis 1.  Mary Baker Eddy comments on this phrase in Science and Health, Page 502:24 "The infinite has no beginning.  This word beginning is employed to signify the only,--that is, the eternal verity and unity of God and man, including the universe."  So, it is interesting to think of the Word, the Light, and the Life that we see in Jesus' birth and life, as really evidence of the only Life there is, God, Spirit.  And the "only begotten" man is evidence of the only man God makes.  The New English Bible puts it this way, "When all things began, the Word already was.  The Word dwelt with God, and what God was, the Word was.  The Word, then, was with God at the beginning, and through him all things came to be; no single thing was created without him."
 
John 1:4 from THE MESSAGE: "What came into existence was Life, and the Life was Light to live by." 
 
I love the way the Amplified Bible (AB) acknowledges the grace that is shown in Jesus' life and poured forth on us: "For out of His fullness (abundance) we have all received [all had a share and we were all supplied with] one grace after another and spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing and even favor upon favor and gift [heaped] upon gift."  Let's get busy unwrapping our gift!
 
Section 1 - The grace in Jesus' birth
We often are touched by the grace of a young teenage girl, Mary, as she opens her heart and life to the great fact that God is Father.  Her conception of Emmanuel literally fulfilled the promise of "God with us."  But what about the compatible nature of Joseph's gracious acceptance?  I love how the New Living Translation interprets these verses: (B-2) "This is how Jesus the Messiah was born. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph.  But before the marriage took place, while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant through the power of the Holy Spirit.  Joseph, her fiancé, was a good man and did not want to disgrace her publicly, so he decided to break the engagement quietly.  As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream.  'Joseph, son of David,' the angel said, 'do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife.  For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit.' "
 
We have the perfect example here of how faith, trust, love, and the highest sense of grace lifted a family from what at first appeared a reason for disgrace, to the saving grace of God's love for all.  Because of their choices and actions the world not only got to know the best man that ever walked the globe, but also the eternal Christ that he lived so fully.  See (S-1, S-2)
 
Couldn't that be a lesson to those who while struggling with a belief of disgrace or dishonor are tempted to judge or even kill those they love?  Perhaps local culture or tradition demands or seems to allow such actions.  But the grace of God's tender, compassionate Love can lift us beyond the limits of mortal belief and into the understanding of "Emmanuel" - "God with us."
 
Section 2 - Jesus, a demanding teacher
(B-5, B-6) Here we have interesting examples of both Jesus and his disciples teaching and preaching with power.  But did you notice that both Mark 1 and Mark 6 include indications of Jesus, the Master teacher, recognizing the need for getting out of the hubbub and praying?  "...he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed." And "Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while:..."  Powerful teaching took place, but there was a quiet preparation. And inevitably the results were a teaching session that resounded with powerful demonstrations.    It reminds me of Mrs. Eddy quoting Horatius Bonar in Miscellaneous Writings, page 338,

"Thou must be true thyself,
If thou the truth wouldst teach;
Thy soul must overflow, if thou
Another's soul would'st reach!
It needs the overflow of heart
To give the lips full speech.
 
Think truly, and thy thoughts
Shall the world's famine feed;
Speak truly, and each word of thine
Shall be a fruitful seed;
Live truly, and thy life shall be
A great and noble creed."
        "Be True," from Hymns of Faith and Hope (1867)
 
The Science and Health citations of this section are a step by step explanation of Jesus' teaching methods.  And two factors stand out, Jesus taught by demonstration, and he required others to also let demonstration be the foundation of their teaching.
 
Section 3 - The healing Christ, no untouchables.
(B-9) We read of the woman sick for 12 years with a chronic loss of blood.  According to Jewish law she would have been viewed as unclean and untouchable.  She would not have been allowed to even be in that crowd.  And she definitely would not be allowed to touch Jesus.  There is also an aspect of the story regarding our relations to others.  In her condition she would not have been allowed to have contact with anyone but family.  As she reached out to Jesus (in the middle of a huge crowd) she touched him.  He felt that reaching out and acknowledged it.  He was not embarrassed by it, he was not afraid of it, as a matter of fact he asked, "Who touched me?"  If he was afraid of what people thought wouldn't he have kept his mouth shut?  Instead he asked and the woman knowing what had happened told him all the truth.  What did Jesus say, "Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague."  There was no ritualistic condemnation.  There was no fearful attempt to hide the event.  And the Master even spoke to the woman as family, "Daughter" [--and affirm that what healed her was her faith, not his robe].
 
A few months back I looked from my kitchen window and saw a very disheveled and obviously drunk man go into the bakery across the street.  He was a very tall black man, which is not a common scene here in Dresden.  I saw the bakery sales woman was alone and so I decided it would be right to go over to the bakery.  When I got there the man was just coming out with some cake that he had purchased.  As I took in the scene I was really praying as to what was the appropriate action.  I was led to say, "Hey brother, I bet you speak English."  He replied with a big smile, "I sure do."  Then I spoke with him asking if I could be of any help, did he have a place to stay, anything he needed?  "No man I'm okay."  To outward appearance that seemed to be far from the fact.  But then I just said, "Well, I know you know that you are God's beloved son and you are blessed."  And then he wrapped me up in the biggest hug you can imagine, then he held my head in his hands and proceeded to kiss both my eyes.  Then he simply said, "God bless you," and walked away just as straight as an arrow, no more wobbling. I noticed some workers across the street with their eyes almost bugging out of their heads.  So I just kept praying knowing that God's man is always beloved, upright, whole and free and there is no human condition that is unclean, contagious, or dangerous.  And to top it all off, the bakery sales lady affirmed that he was absolutely respectful and grateful for the cake she had sold him.  Appearances do not have to be deceiving in the presence of the Christ.  And this section makes it clear, (S-7), "Christians are under as direct orders now, as they were then, to be Christlike, to possess the Christ-spirit, to follow the Christ-example, and to heal the sick as well as the sinning."
 
Section 4 - Obligations met with ideas, even taxes.
I love this section. In citation B-12 we read about some tax collectors asking Peter a tricky question, "Doth not your master pay tribute?"  Now this concerned the "temple tax" and not tribute to Caesar.  It was the standard half a shekel that each adult male was supposed to pay.  And Jesus knew what had taken place without Peter even telling him. ("Jesus prevented him...") Then Jesus spoke with Peter some about taxes and then instructed him to go to the sea, catch a fish, and find a piece of money.  He did.  The amount of money was the exact tax for two.  Now remember, Peter was a fisherman.  He had a fishing rod handy.  He knew how to fish.  And he knew where to go. 
 
We have got to remember as in (B-13) 2 Cor. 9:8 and (S-10) Page 494:10 that the grace of divine Love is always meeting our need.  And it meets the need right where we are and with the tools and talents we have at hand.  We can declare, "I have exactly what I need right now." ["Through God I have everything I need and I know it.]
 
Here is an example.  A few years ago I had been praying for my two brothers.  At the time both of them were looking for work.  My oldest brother, Gary, lived with me.  And my other brother, Scott, lived with our mom.
 
At that time I was still living in Florida, not too far from the beach and I loved to surf.  Kenny, one of my surfing buddies called and asked if I wanted to head over to St. Augustine for an afternoon surf session.  I accepted.  And I invited my oldest brother, Gary, to join us. He wasn't working at the time, but he was a class-taught Christian Scientist and was praying and listening for God's guidance.  He decided to join us and packed his large cast net ( a round fishing net that you throw).   As Kenny and I were surfing Gary took a few casts with his net but after little success he gave up.  He stopped throwing the net and instead started to pray for our surfing.  After he had been praying for a little while he looked out into the surf and saw a very large fish in the breaking waves.  He decided to try to reach it with his net and so he waded out as far as he could, and with all his might threw the net.  It settled over what turned out to be a huge black drum (one of the best eating fish there is).  As Gary pulled the fish out of the water, onto the sand, he was wondering if the fish would be edible, maybe it had been dead too long? Just then a truck pulled up and a fellow walked over, "Man what a fish!  You know he must have gotten caught in the shallow water and drowned when he got sand in his gills."  Gary asked, "How would you know that?"  "Well, sir; I'm a vet (veterinarian) and you can tell by the color of his gills."  We loaded the fish onto Kenny's Jeep and began the 30-minute drive back home.  Kenny decided he needed to get some gas and pulled into a gas station.  While there Gary sold the fish to someone for $35.  He paid for Kenny's gas and still had $20 in his pocket.  He had left home without a cent.
 
When we got home the telephone was ringing.  I answered; it was my other brother, Scott (also a class-taught Christian Scientist).   I could hardly wait to tell him what had happened.  He wouldn't let me tell the story because he wanted to share something that had just happened to him.  So I shut up and listened.  Scott had been driving through the Ocala National Forest in our mom's convertible.  As he drove he noticed a piece of paper fly out of a car somewhat ahead of him.  He continued driving when all of a sudden the idea came to him that that paper actually looked like money.  He turned his car around and drove back to where he had seen the paper in the air.  The road was a two-lane highway bordered by pine trees and cabbage palms and with high grass.  Scott parked the car, and started to walk around when he looked at his feet and saw a $50 bill.  He could hardly contain himself as he picked it up.  He got back in the car and pulled away as happy as can be.  And then it occurred to him that there had been two pieces of paper.  He drove back to the same place and started walking around again.  And he found another $50 bill.  He had left home with empty pockets and now look what he had.
 
I listened in awe as Scott told me his story.  And as I listened I knew beyond a single doubt that the two events had occurred simultaneously.  I knew that Love had met both my brothers' needs.  And with absolute certainty I knew that God would always meet their needs.
 
As it says in citation S-11, "There is today danger of repeating the offence of the Jews by limiting the Holy One of Israel and asking: 'Can God furnish a table in the wilderness?' What cannot God do?"
 
Section 5 - Jesus' example, defying material law.
B-14: "After these things..." - The introductory  phrase here does not show the passage of time that probably took place between John 5 and John 6.  And the bridge between John 6:1 until John 6:16 included an interesting little event, the feeding of the five thousand.  At the end of this event in John 6:15 it says, "Jesus, knowing that they intended to come and make him king by force, withdrew again to a mountain by himself" (New International Version).  So before the events that led to him walking on water, and bringing the ship "immediately" to shore (instant transport of a boat and the disciples), Jesus was alone, probably praying, right?  Remember in Section 2, (B-5) Mark 1:35, that Jesus also "went into a solitary place, and prayed."  So what happened after this retreat and prayer?  Incredible events overcoming physical laws of matter, such as gravity.  The people had wanted to make him a king to fulfill the long-time national interest of the restoration of Solomon's throne (see John 6:15).  But was Jesus destined to reign over a political kingdom or to reign over all material law?  The restoration of a spiritual kingdom, where man claimed God-given dominion over all was the mission of our Master.  The restoration of "Immanuel" or "God with us" seen in demonstration, not just words.
 
Citations S-14 through S-18 explore the possibilities and abilities of the man who was "God's own likeness," "mastering" the infinite idea (S-15).  If even Jesus sought a "solitary place" and prayed, isn't that a good indicator to us of the great value of quiet "prayer time"?
 
An experience I had that gave me just a little hint of this was after I had spent an entire night in a hospital waiting room in prayer.  The next day I returned home in hopes of catching up on some rest.  And instead I had the busiest day to that point in my healing practice.  There was no time for catching up on sleep, there were too many calls asking for help, and too many quick healings. 
 
It is this retreat in prayer to the infinite truth of the Christ, that actually allows each and every one of us the right to rise above the material so-called laws, and embrace the healing Christ.
 
Section 6 - Who is this man, Jesus?
The proper identification of someone is important.  I remember one afternoon during my university days.  I was on my way home after classes and I passed by the running track at the University of Florida.  I glanced up and caught site of a runner.  I have to say I have never experienced anything quite like that moment.  Watching this guy run was like watching the most beautiful cheetah, you know one of those National Geographic films of graceful, powerful animals in full stride.  It was awe inspiring, beautiful.  I couldn't take my eyes off him.  Another track athlete happened to walk by and I asked, "Do you know who that guy is?"  "Yeah man, he's visiting from Africa, he's a world record holder!"  And he sure looked like it.
 
(B-15) Jesus asked, "Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?" The disciples shared the common reports of the people, so he repeated, "But whom say ye that I am?"  Peter answered, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God."
 
Section 7 - Willingness to gracefully follow our Master
 (B-19) John 1:16 in the Amplified Bible: "For out of His fullness (abundance) we have all received [all had a share and we were all supplied with] one grace after another and spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing and even favor upon favor and gift [heaped] upon gift."
 
A dear friend, David Pickersgill from Leeds, England was talking with me about this week's lesson and shared his favorite definition of "grace": "The divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the life."
 
How wonderful to know that we have all received, all had a share, and were all supplied with God's grace.  And what a glorious example of grace we have been given in the life of our Savior, Christ Jesus.  The divine source of Jesus life and the divine influence continually seen in his life are certainly the greatest of gifts.  But the question might be, what are we going to do with that gift?  Will it be like the wedding gift that sits in its original box in a cabinet never opened for 20 years?  Or will you unwrap the gift, use it daily, and let your gratitude for the gift be seen in its use?
 
Mrs. Eddy asks, "When will Jesus' professed followers learn to emulate him in all his ways and to imitate his mighty works?" (S-22)
 
I have often found that it is the practice of something that matters the most.  After a mildly successful competitive swimming career, I had the joy of doing some coaching.  A couple different times I was coach of the youngest swimmers on a competitive swim team.  And I observed something that has been an abiding lesson.  There were often some very talented swimmers that won race after race with little effort. And then there were swimmers with just a little bit of natural talent, and a great deal of heart and drive that achieved far more success.  Perhaps it is like the quote my mom had framed in her office:
 
"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent...."
                                       ~ Calvin Coolidge
 
Certainly we have all received the gift of grace in the life and the love of our Savior, Christ Jesus.  Mrs. Eddy asks us, "Who is ready to follow his teaching and example?" (S-23)
 
If we follow the example of our Master we are assured of success.
 

 [CEDARS weekly "Mets" or Metaphysical Newsletters are provided at no charge to the 1,200 campers and staff blessed each summer at CEDARS--as well as to thousands of CEDARS alumni, families, Sunday School teachers and friends who request it, or who find it weekly on our website or through CS Directory. But, current and planned gifts are needed: to cover the costs of running this "free" service; to provide camperships to make inspirational opportunities possible for deserving youth; and to help our facilities keep pace with our mission.]
 
 [Thanks to a matching pledge, if CedarS can raise $50,000 by next summer for our "Adopt the Herd" Riding Fund, a donor will match those gifts to cover the needs of feeding, shoeing and caring for our large and cherished herd of horses!  OF COURSE, donations are always needed and welcome for camperships -especially for the "uncamped"--because without campers there would be no camp!  Funds are also being gratefully realized and spent to complete parts of CedarS Bible Lands Park (BLP) including our new Mediterranean Sea!  We're happy to share more details if you wish to help these divine ideas come to fruition!] 

[However it comes, your support is always very welcome and tax-deductible --but during the economic downturn, your generous, unrestricted gifts have been--and continue to be--more needed and appreciated than you will ever know!  You can give charitable gifts to our 501C-3 tax-exempt, charitable organization in many ways.
1)   Thanks in advance for GIVING ONLINE! Just click here to use a credit or debit card (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, or Discover card) or a virtual check to make monthly and one-time donations to CedarS' Camperships, "Maintenance Musts", "Mets", Bible Lands Park, "Mediterranean Sea", Unrestricted or Endowment Funds.  Our international supporters can give to CedarS via PayPal using built-in currency exchange rates by filling in an amount under International Donors and clicking on the "Donate Online" button.
2)   Checks are also great--and especially appreciated on a monthly basis! Please make them payable to "CedarS Camps" and mail them to: CedarS Camps Office, 1314 Parkview Valley, Ballwin, MO 63011;
3)   Please call Warren or Gay Huff at (636) 394-6162 to discuss gifts of IRAs, stocks, other securities or property you are considering giving in order to help underwrite the spiritual growth and progress of hundreds of campers and staff.
4)   CedarS can almost always use late-model mini-vans, Suburbans and trucks, with lower mileage, in good condition, either 4-wheel or 2-wheel drive. Please email office@cedarscamps.org or call 636-394-6162 to discuss your vehicle, its transfer and tax-deductible gift acknowledgement. 
5)  Many friends and churches have already made a profound impact on CedarS past, present and future by choosing to fund ongoing legacies of love and support. Tax-saving strategies for planned gifts and enabling wording for bequests, life income gifts, and beneficiary designations can be set up by CedarS
Trustee Emeritus Bill Merrittwho is a planned giving professional.]
 
[You can also help CedarS keep a 50th season New Year's resolution to reach out to all the "un-camped" students enrolled in Christian Science Sunday Schools across the world.  In the United States they apparently outnumber Sunday School students who attend 1 of the 6 camps for Christian Scientists in North America by more than 2 to 1. Experience shows that "CS-camped" children who are given the laboratory experience of putting their training from their homes and Sunday Schools into joyous practice in a "24-7" Christian-Science-laboratory experience at camp want to continue to make Christian Science their own. Therefore, please tell all the "un-camped" families you know about our work; and if possible let us know about them and their email and/or other contact information. We will gladly send them--and you--a DVD, plus show host info for over 40 CedarS shows being scheduled and everything needed to help get "un-camped" students to camp -- from info on our programs for all ages; to session dates and rates; to online enrollment info; to transportation;  to financial aid forms; and more as needed.]
 
  
 [Camp Director's Note: This sharing is the latest in an ongoing, 10-year series of CedarS Bible Lesson "Mets" (Metaphysical application ideas) contributed weekly by a rotation of CedarS Resident Practitioners and occasionally by other metaphysicians. (To keep the flow of the practitioner's ideas intact and to allow for more selective printing "Possible Sunday School Topics" come in a subsequent email.) These weekly offerings are intended to encourage further study and application of ideas in the lesson and to invigorate Sunday School participation by students and by the budding teachers on our staff. Originally sent JUST to my Sunday School students and to campers, staff and CedarS families who wanted to continue at home and in their home Sunday Schools the same type of focused Lesson study, application and inspiration they had felt at camp, CedarS lesson "mets" are in no way meant to be definitive or conclusive or in any way a substitute for daily study of the lesson. The thoughts presented are the inspiration of the moment and are offered to give a bit more dimension and background as well as new angles (and angels) on the daily applicability of some of the ideas and passages being studied. The weekly Bible Lessons are copyrighted by the Christian Science Publishing Society and are printed in the Christian Science Quarterly as available at Christian Science Reading Rooms or online at eBibleLesson.com or myBibleLesson.com. The citations referenced (i.e.B-1 and S-28) from this week's Bible Lesson in the "Met" (Metaphysical application ideas) are taken from the Bible (B-1 thru B-24) and the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy (S-1 thru S-30). The Bible and Science and Health are the ordained pastor of the Churches of Christ, Scientist. The Bible Lesson is the sermon read in Christian Science church services throughout the world. The Lesson-Sermon speaks individually through the Christ to everyone, providing unique insights and tailor-made applications for each one. We are glad you requested this metaphysical sharing and hope that you find some of the ideas helpful in your daily spiritual journey, in your deeper digging in the books and in closer bonding with your Comforter and Pastor.]
 
 [Enjoy!    Warren Huff, Executive Director   director@cedarscamps.org]

[PSST-- See the closeness of the Christ, available now!]
Possible Sunday School Topics for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on
Christ Jesus for February 27, 2011
By Steve Henn, St. Louis, MO
 
PSST for Golden Text (GT): The entire chapter surrounding this citation is wonderful to look at. It discusses love through a variety of relationships and gives students a clear understanding of why love is so important.  Anchored in the center of this chapter we have our Golden Text.  Point out to your students that the first move has been already made by God, we do not need to do anything to deserve God's love.  Why does God's love matter? What difference does it make to be loved by God? Do your students feel God's love? How?
This text also establishes Jesus' import in our experience.  In order to really get what he has done for the world, we must acknowledge the true place of Jesus as the son of God.
 
PSST for Responsive Reading (RR): Towards the end of the Responsive Reading, we see clearly stated why it is so important to recognize as the son of God, as the Golden Text asserts. If we see and acknowledge him as he is, then are we also raised to that consciousness of ourselves as children of God, able to demonstrate God's power in our own lives for the benefit of others.
Mrs. Eddy states that the beginning is "the only." This interpretation removes all sense of time from the conversation. How does that change our feeling about creation?
What do your students think the word was? Is there any single word that expresses creation in its entirety?
 
PSST Section 1
SH1: Christ is not a synonym for Jesus.  What does this imply?  Look at what the next citation has to offer...do we put the "Christ" off in our lives as a distant reference to Jesus, a man who died thousands of years ago?  Or do we see the closeness of the Christ to us, the availability of the Christ to today and now?
 
PSST Section 2
B7: "preach the gospel to every creature"--what does that look like?  Are we to proselytize our religion?  What does it take to preach to every creature?  It takes confidence in what you believe...but doesn't it also take a great love?  What does it mean to preach the gospel?  We must first know the gospel.  Begin by defining gospel for your students.
 
SH3:  "Jesus taught no form of religion or system of worship."  What then did he teach?  Why then are there so many churches based on his teachings?  Why did he state that his Church would be founded upon a rock, or Peter?  Look closely at the definition of Church in the Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.  It doesn't suggest a particular religion, but it does discuss the utility, or usefulness and value of church.   What is the utility of Church today?  Do your students see this value?  What part do they have to play in it?  Are they doing their part to carry the message of Christ, Truth into the 21st Century?
 
This idea continues in citation SH6.   You can point out both citations to your students and ask why the same idea appears twice in one lesson.
 
SH4 - "...that we may understand how this divine Principle heals the sick, casts out error, and triumphs over death."  Mrs. Eddy states that Jesus' healings help us understand...then we should look more closely at his healings.  What can your students and you learn from studying his healing work; what does it teach us about how Principle heals, casts out, and triumphs?  Look at the rest of this citation for some of Mrs. Eddy's ideas on the subject.  Then apply those ideas to your further study of Jesus' healing work.
 
Furthermore, we are counseled to "do likewise"; help your students understand their role in demonstrating Christian Science.  You are never too young to be a healer. Do your students realize that Mrs. Eddy expected us that follow in her footsteps to improve upon her work and the work of Jesus?  We so often revere and uphold these two people as ones to be emulated, but how many of us think about improving the work they have already done?  And yet isn't it natural to think so?  We expect progress in almost every other aspect of life from generation to generation, why not here?
 
PSST Section 3
B9 Get excited. This story has so much in it that your students can really latch on to. On the very surface, you can discuss with your students why it is that Jesus stopped in the midst of a thronging crowd to ask who touched him.  The disciples make it clear that people were bumping against Jesus all the time.  Why did Jesus stop?  What does it mean that "virtue had gone out" of him?
Dig deeper into this story with your students. Why was she trembling? Tell them what it meant to be a woman in her state, how she was considered unclean and therefore had to go without human contact for eighteen years. She was in a desperate state, having spent all that she had. And she was breaking the law not only by touching Jesus' garments, but by pushing her way through the press everyone else she touched would then be considered unclean...and yet Jesus annulled that curse on her...he raised her from the low level of unclean, untouchable, to the level of daughter...ask your students to think of that...going from the lowest of the low to being [the highest of the high]--a daughter in the court of the greatest man who ever lived.  What was Jesus teaching the multitude there?  What qualities did he express?  What was the woman teaching those around her?  What qualities was she expressing?  How can we, as students of Christian Science, bring this type of experience into our lives today?
 
One last note before leaving this rich story.  Consider the following from Adam Clark's bible commentary (http://www.godrules.net/library/clarke/clarkemar5.htm)
Verse 31. Thou seest the multitude thronging then, &c.] Many touch Jesus who are not healed by him: the reason is, they do it not by faith, through a sense of their wants, and a conviction of his ability and willingness to save them. Faith conveys the virtue of Christ into the soul, and spiritual health is the immediate consequence of this received virtue.
 
SH7 - "direct orders": how do your students respond to these orders?  Do they view healing as an order they must follow?  What does it say about healing that we are expected to effect it?  Recognize also that Mrs. Eddy does not separate us from the rest of Christianity. All Christians are under these same orders.  Do your students feel connected to the rest of Christianity?  Can they feel a sense of community with other Christians?  Often we focus on what sets us apart as Christian Scientists...but are we not Christians first?
 
SH9 - Given the direct orders from citation 7, citation 9 comforts students by stating that we have help in our pursuit of healing.  The question that follows is, how do we remain close to Truth?
 
PSST Section 4
B12 Could this have really happened?  "What cannot God do?" (SH11) Is not anything possible to the Almighty?  It is interesting and important to push against the limits of our faith/understanding.  Is there a place where we begin to doubt God's ability and rely more on our own? 
Rather than looking at this as a testimony of supply, which is a very valid view of this story, given the current suggestions about supply in the world economy, think of this story as one of humility and peace.  At this point in Jesus' career, he was well known and respected.  Matthew Henry, author of a popular bible commentary (http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/matthew-henry-complete/matthew/17.html), points out that those asking for Jesus' tribute approached Peter, suggesting they respected Jesus enough to not trouble him with this question.  Henry further presents the idea that Jesus could have avoided paying since his kingdom is not governed by man.  That, however, he did not do.  Akin to another place where Jesus commands his followers to render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, Jesus respects the laws and customs of his time.  Rather than putting himself above the law, he proves that his trust in God truly can do all things and this faith leaves him free to follow even rules and laws of other humans.  Speak with your students about humility, about what it takes to follow rules that you might not like or agree with.  What sort of humility do they express on a daily basis?  What sort of grace do they have the opportunity to learn about in their own daily lives
 
B13 - Since God is capable of bringing all good into our lives, is it not worth our while to humbly submit to his will and glory?
 
SH11 - How can we avoid the danger identified in this citation?
 
SH12 - What do your students picture as metaphysical reality? Is it formless in their thought?  Mrs. Eddy suggests here that spiritual reality is clearly formed and tangible to spiritual sense. Spend some time with your students building a concept of spiritual reality.  Turn things into thoughts and discuss the spiritual tangibility of those thoughts.  Have they ever truly felt inspiration, love, grace?  While they cannot touch those spiritual realities with their material fingers, is there not tangibility to them when they are felt truly?  What other ways can the ideas of Soul be tangible?
 
There is a litmus test in this citation. The way to test if something is truly an idea of Soul - is it good and eternal?  This is also the definition of Substance found on p. 468 of Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.
 
PSST Section 5
B14 - Point out to your students what happened when Jesus' disciples willingly received him into the ship.  The life of a Christian, or any person's material, human life is not guaranteed in any way to be perfect or easy.  But when we willingly accept Christ, Truth into our hearts, the rough waters instantly calm.  When we humbly submit to a will above our own, that which was troubled instantly is a place of peace.
 
An online commentary states the following concerning John 6:19
"...the distance the apostles had rowed was between 2.75 miles and 3.3 miles, or, with reference to the size of the lake, about halfway across." (http://www.searchgodsword.org/com/bcc/view.cgi?book=joh&chapter=006)
It strikes me as particularly interesting that the disciples were roughly in the middle of the lake when the weather got nasty; and they then were visited by Christ.  What does this say to you and your students about the availability of Christ, Mind, or God?
 
SH14 - Are Jesus' miracles within the realm of our latent abilities?
 
SH16 - To say that Jesus is the most "scientific man" who ever lived...what does that mean?  One thought is that he was the most law-abiding; he, above all others, followed the laws of Science.  If Jesus followed laws more closely than anyone else, what does that say about his miracles?  What else can be inferred from this statement of Jesus' scientific nature?
 
PSST Section 6
B15 - Such a passage may strike your students as mundane, for if you were to ask them who Jesus was/is, the answer that he is the Christ is not very radical.  We have the advantage of history here, and hindsight is always 20/20.   So why did Jesus respond so positively to Peter?  What "stone" or firm foundation is Jesus building his church on?   Consider with your students that it is the receptive thought that can identify the Christ, not in a story from over 2000 years ago, but here and now, today in the midst of all the noise and distractions of our modern world.  Do we recognize the Christ in action today?  How do we stay alert to it? What are the key signs we can follow?  How do we know for real that we are in the presence of the Christ? And are we bold enough to declare it publicly?
 
SH19/20 - Look through the Science and Health side of this section for ways to identify the Christ today.  What does Mrs. Eddy say we should be looking for?  What made Peter so perceptive? What was he sensitive to or aware of in Jesus that we need to take into account today?  Can we see the Christ, not only in others, but in ourselves?
 
PSST Section 7
B16 - What sorts of things does Christ strengthen us to do?  Is there any limit to the help we get from Christ?  Is there any type of activity that gets more help than another?  How do we avail ourselves of this help?
 
Look at this website for a very detailed account of what is happening in Ephesians.  There is much more to capture than I can possibly relate here.  This is one instance when knowing the context of the citation is so valuable, and not just the scriptural context, but also the historical.  Paul wrote this letter to the Ephesians basically to advocate for unity between very disparate factions; and the section we have in the lesson not only encourages us to be unified, but according to the site, it lays down the specific role of the church today.   Look it over and see if any ideas come to the front, particularly concerning a response to the question about why we should go to church.
 
B18 & B19 - Such great short lines.  You might encourage your students to memorize them.  Quality and unity, God's work is good, and it can be trusted; we are all recipients of God's, Christ's goodness.
 
SH21 - Are your students ever focused too much on the science of Christian Science?  It is a helpful reminder that we are to be genuine Christians and from our Christianity arises our ability to demonstrate Science.  Consider how this is proven through the statement of Jesus' humanity and divinity.  Then, towards the end of this citation, why did Mrs. Eddy say "all" rather than "each"?  Are we not all expected to demonstrate divine Love until not only we, but all others, are redeemed as well?
 
SH22 - Mrs. Eddy asks a great question here, when will we follow Christ more truly?  A further question may be: why will we follow Christ more truly?  If our motives are self-centered, we may need to reevaluate our approach.  Do we hear these commands as commands, or as suggestions?
 
For each of the last two citations, point your students toward the fuller context in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures.  What is Mrs. Eddy teaching us?  Where can we as students go from here?  How do these citations launch us into next week's lesson?

Metaphysical

GEMS to wash away blame-game feelings and their bodily results with floodtides of Love! - GEMS...
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