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Rejoice in Your Oneness with Love that Continually Preserves You!

Kathy Fitzer, St. Louis, MO & Park City, UT
Posted Monday, December 3rd, 2012

[Rejoice in Your Oneness with Love that Continually Preserves You!]
Metaphysical Application Ideas for Christian Science Bible Lesson
"God, the Preserver of Man"
For December 3-9, 2012
prepared by Kathy Fitzer, C.S. of St. Louis, MO
 
Golden Text:  God preserves us (maintains us in our original state) continually (without intermission, always.)  It is God's lovingkindness and truth that preserves us as nothing else can. Popular belief would suggest we are preserved (kept safe) by such things as a healthy diet, good genes, strong vehicles, our government, or even plain old luck. But, all of those things are subject to reversal... they have neither the integrity of truth nor the consistency of lovingkindness. Mercy and consideration (i.e. lovingkindness) are inherent attributes of Love. Thus, God, being Love, naturally cares for and maintains the integrity of His creation, the very expression of Himself.
 
Responsive Reading: The majority of the Responsive Reading is a rehearsal of the protection and deliverance that God bestowed on the Children of Israel as they were freed from the bondage of the Egyptians, and led through the wilderness into the Promised Land. The rest of the Lesson will elaborate on these events. Here, however, this rehearsal is part of the prayers of the Israelites who have recently returned from exile and, although strengthened by the re-built walls of their city, continue to feel vulnerable. According to the New Interpreter's Bible, "the prayer asks for the cycle of deliverance to resume." The last two verses from Ps. 36 extend such a prayer into the future. But, let's remember from the Golden Text that it isn't a matter of a "cycle of deliverance." God preserves His children, his inseparable IDEAS, continually. As we "know" Him, and reject all false concepts, we feel the effects of that continuous faithfulness, lovingkindness, and blessing; and our lives are preserved.
 
Section 1: An everlasting Love
Joseph had contributed so much to the salvation of Egypt, that as long as those in power felt indebted to him, his descendants (the Hebrews) were safe. But, as may be true whenever we believe the source of our safety is in person, governing body, or matter of any sort, things took a sharp turn for the worse when a shift in authority took place in Egypt. Suddenly, the life of every male Hebrew baby was at risk. (B-2)  But, that law couldn't supersede the divine law of preservation. Moses' life was preserved. The Mother-love proved stronger than the threat of destruction. (B-3) How does this apply to our current experience? I see it as two-fold (and I'm sure there are many other applications, as well.) First, for ourselves, as we recognize only one creative source, one divine parent, we recognize that God is OUR Father/Mother... ever present and always caring for us.  Moses was (as we are) the offspring only of Mother God. It was this Mother that preserved his life, although to human view, this Love was expressed by various individuals. Acknowledging ONLY God, Spirit, as our Mother (and Father) eliminates the elements of hereditary "laws", personal attachment or personal loss (as well as credit or blame for how we've turned out) often associated with human parentage. And, acknowledging God's eternal parentage of us assures us that we are always at one with divine and eternal Principle, Life, Truth, and Love. (S-3 & S-5) The second application comes as we pray for the proper development of every child everywhere... as well as the birth of all the wonderful ideas bringing promise to our world every day. Let's be ever so conscious that non-intelligent matter never conceived anything. Mind is the Mother of all ideas! (S-1)  God, being the source of ALL, every idea truly conceived is pure and undefiled, having not a "single element of error." Understanding this truth of being, removes from experience anything offensive that appears to be part of creation, as surely and naturally as an offensive (or frightening) shadow is removed by shining a bright light directly on the subject. (S-4) No threat or mortal imposition can compete with the strength of the love of our Mother.
 
Section 2: Breaking the yoke of bondage
The Bible gives no details of what Moses' life was like as he was growing up, but we discover that he wasn't content to live as an Egyptian, recognizing that the system that brought him physical comfort, brought others misery, pain, and death.  The Mother-Love that had preserved his life in the first place was continuing to guide him. (B-5) Between the verses contained in this Lesson, Moses comes to the aid of a Hebrew being threatened by an Egyptian (Moses ultimately killed the Egyptian) as well as a Hebrew being threatened by another Hebrew. Realizing that his crime was known, he fled to Midian, a pastoral area separated from Egypt by the Sinai Peninsula. As Love had provided a home for Moses as a child, so (S)He provided another home, and a family, for him during his time in the desert. (B-6)  We often don't know what lies ahead of us, but we can be sure that Love forever "inspires, illumines, designates, and leads the way" for every one of Her children. (S-6) We, like Moses, must claim the courage and confidence to respond.  Sometimes we may submit to forms of slavery without even realizing it. For instance, do we accept subtle (or not so subtle) suggestions of limitation due to age, gender, aches and pains from the body, heredity, or even just "what kind of person" we are? These are the Pharaohs of today that would hold us in bondage... reinforced by reports bombarding us from media of all kinds. This is the bondage that Mrs. Eddy saw which impelled her to share her discovery of Christian Science, enabling all mankind to find true freedom. (S-8 & S-9) She, like Moses, wasn't content to keep freedom to herself. Again, this section skips big parts of the "Exodus story" that you may enjoy going back and reading. Verses 23-25 of chapter 2 tell us that there has been a change in leadership in Egypt. The uncertainty that often accompanies change may have prompted the Hebrews to call out for help and deliverance. Commentary in The New Interpreter's Bible suggests that the people may not have been consciously calling out to God for help, but it is reported that God heard their cries and "remembered" the covenant that had been made with their ancestors. It is at this point that Moses responds to the burning bush and is summoned by God to return to Egypt to lead his people out. [Side-by-side, time-traveling zippers on "Ruth's Run" zipline to CedarS Bible Lands Park travel back in time 30 centuries to land at the Horeb Height Burning Bush, to start their Answered Prayer (AP) History Course of the Bible.] Again, in the lesson portion of Moses' story we miss the struggle (internal and external) involved in Moses getting the Pharaoh to agree to his plan, but courage and yielding to God were certainly required. HOW God led the people out demonstrates the lovingkindness of our Mother-Father. The shortest route would have taken them through the lands of the warring Philistines. As challenging as their trip through the wilderness was for them, Bible commentators believe that exposure to the Philistines would have surely sent the people scurrying back to Egypt.  Shade, in the form of a cloud, was provided for their trip during the day, and light, by fire, led them at night. (B-8) We can be sure that Love thoroughly cares for us as we are led through the wilderness of doubt and fear, out of the bondage of mortal belief, into the freedom of spiritual reality. All we have to do is be willing to "accept the ‘glorious liberty of the children of God' and be free!" It IS our divine right! (S-10)
 
Section 3: Love does meet every need - no need to grumble.
After wandering in the life-threatening, disordered environs of the wilderness for three days, water was necessary for survival. But, the only source at Marah appeared to be unfit for consumption. Healing (a restoration to the natural state of health and wholeness) could not be delayed longer. The people complained to Moses and Moses, in turn, complained to God. Certainly not the highest sense of prayer, but it didn't matter. Love was there to meet the human need, as it always is. (S-11) Perhaps a key is that Moses was willing to be obedient to God's instruction. He threw the wood (or tree) into the water (even though that may have made no sense to him at all) and the water became "sweet." (B-10) Although this part isn't included in the Lesson, the next stop for the group was Elim, where the water was pure and abundant. Mother-God was caring for every need... and still does. Do we expect "miracles", which are truly the natural demonstration of the supremacy of ever-present, spiritual order? It is good to often remember the answer to the question, "What cannot God do?" Nothing! God can, AND DOES, do all things rightly! (S-14)  But, sometimes struggle seems to be part of leaning on God. Even though they had already experienced a "miraculous" provision of water, when hunger and thirst again set in, the "comforts" of bondage seemed awfully appealing to the Israelites. They again complained to Moses, but there is no record of Moses grumbling this time. Instead, he heard God's promise that quail and manna would be provided and passed the good news on to the people. They were indeed sustained by this unexpected, but very satisfying, source of food for the duration of their journey. (B-11) Might we be tempted to outline our source of supply (whether of funds, health, intelligence, ability...) or be satisfied with material sources that are familiar, but limited, when we would be better served to really trust the leading of divine Principle and understand that Love does  meet our needs, even if not always as we expected? (S-15) Love loves to give and preserve Her creation. Let's be ready to acknowledge Spirit as the source of all good -- the only source -- and eagerly accept our daily manna.
 
Section 4: No plagues in God's kingdom
If they had paid attention, the Israelites would have seen how completely God had cared for them, led them out of bondage in Egypt, and met all of their needs; although they may not have felt a sense of material ease. Some Bible scholars compare the journey through the wilderness to a journey from dependence on a personal king to dependence on Yahweh (or God.) The "flight out of Egypt" on "eagle's wings" wasn't to a place, but to recognition of power. (B-13, New Interpreter's Bible) God promises to send an angel (His messenger) to preserve them and bring them into the "place" prepared for them. [I know recent college applicants who relied heavily on this promise of being divinely led to the place angelically prepared especially for them.] A covenant is established that they [and we] are to serve Him and He will feed and keep them [and us] healthy. (B-14)  Grumbling continued... why couldn't life just be comfortable? Reading between the lines, it seems to me that the people continued to turn away from God and question Moses' leadership. A contagious plague struck, as it had struck the Egyptians before the release of the Hebrews. Moses' role was changing from just being a civic leader to being a priestly one. And, in this role, he turned to God for deliverance from the plague. Aaron made an offering for the people, to bring them into favor with God, and the plague immediately stopped. (B-15) Later, the Psalmist assures those that have made God their habitation and refuge that no plague will come near this safe dwelling place. (B-16) Christian Science teaches that this "dwelling place" is the consciousness of God's ever-present kingdom, the infinitude of Life, Love, Truth, and Mind... in which we "live, move, and have our being." (S-17) Only good dwells in this allness of God, thus evil, disease, and death are nothing, no matter how real they seem.  Understanding the allness of God and the nothingness of evil enables us to overcome whatever "plague" might be assaulting us with its "aggressive, mental suggestion". (S-22 and Manual 42:8) Fear arises when thought wanders away from the divine habitation... when we forget to recognize God's perpetual omnipotence... when we believe what our physical senses are telling us more than what the angels are telling us... when we're tempted to believe matter to be more satisfying than Spirit. The Science and Health part of this section gives clear direction in how to combat the belief of disease of every sort. No need to be impressed by its description. Nothing is nothing is nothing. All we need to be concerned with is where thought is dwelling... and not be caught up in popular belief. God's lovingkindness preserves us as surely as it preserved the faithful Israelites long ago.
 
Section 5: You never journey alone
Moses seems to always be turning to God for reassurance that He will be with His children. Although he has certainly seen plenty of evidence of God's presence and care, he seems to want more.  He wants to see God's "glory"... to draw even closer to the very light or essence of God. And, again, he is assured that God's "presence" will go with him. (B-19)  Just as God assured Moses that he had never been alone, and never would be alone, the Psalmist recognizes that same ever-present preserving power as being with us always... as we go out and come in [whether on our daily commutes and holiday travels]. (B-20) Christian Science reveals why we can be sure of this presence... because it is impossible to be separated from it [as Jon Benson affirmed in his "Daily Lift" on 11-27-12 called "Going Somewhere vs. Being There" with the kingdom within already where we want to go.] Man is (we are) God's expression, His reflection, His output, His ray. "All that God imparts (that's all of God's creation) moves in accord with Him..." (S-24) Could a ray of light be separated from the sun, or a drop of ocean water be separated from the components of ocean water? We are inseparable from the completeness of God's presence, causing us to be, guiding us, caring for us... always!
 
Section 6: God's preserving presence continues
Moses desired to see God's glory... His light. (B-19) That glory, or light, is the Christ which fully appeared to human consciousness in the man Jesus. Moses did see it. Certainly this Christ was with the early prophets, and has forever preserved man as human consciousness has been led out of material bondage into spiritual freedom. Just as the Israelites saw Moses' face "shine" when he came down from Mount Sinai after receiving the Commandments from God (see Ex. 34: 29-35), the disciples saw Jesus' face shine in what we know as the "transfiguration." The author of Acts references Moses' promise that God would bring another prophet to lead the people and they should "hear" or obey him. (B-22, see Deut. 18: 15) As part of the transfiguration, the disciples heard the voice of God identifying Jesus as His Son (the one who would follow Moses) and instructs them to "hear" (obey) him. In desiring to build three tabernacles, Peter may have revealed his misunderstanding that Jesus was just "one of the prophets." But, God corrects that misunderstanding, revealing Jesus as distinct from the others. Moses and Elijah disappeared to sight, and Jesus was left alone, representing the forever presence of God with man in the oneness of Father and Son, Immanuel, or "God with us"... fulfilling the work of the law (Moses) and the prophets (Elijah). (B-23) Christian Science, or divine Science, reveals the Christ-like nature of all of God's children. The light of Christ that led the children of Israel through the wilderness, and was seen in the healing ministry of Jesus, is today revealing the indestructible nature of man, created, constituted and governed by Spirit alone... never in bondage to any form of mortal or material "law." (S-27) The continuity of God's preserving power is unbroken. What could be more liberating that the activity of Christ in Divine Science which "rolls back the clouds of error with the light of Truth, and lifts the curtain on man as never born and as never dying, but as coexistent with his creator." (S-29)  The appearance of Moses and Elijah (who had lived centuries before) with Jesus is evidence of the eternal nature of man. The same Love... the same Truth... that preserved the ancients is preserving ALL of us. Let's turn to the light, and rejoice in our inseparable oneness with God... the ONLY cause and preserver of man!
 

 [The application ideas above are from a Christian Science Practitioner who has served as a Resident Practitioner at CedarS Camps. They are provided primarily to help CedarS campers and staff (as well as friends) see and demonstrate daily the great value of study and application of the Christian Science Bible lessons throughout the year, not just at camp!  YOU CAN ALSO SIGN UP for weekly emails from past CedarS staff of possible ways to share Bible Lesson applications with older, as well as younger, Sunday School classes at www.cedarscamps.org/newsletters   Warren Huff, CedarS Director & editor of these notes & bracketed, italic additions.]
 
[YOUR QUICK SUPPORT IS DOUBLY NEEDED!!
1st "Emerge ‘n See" Response:  Based on wonderful responses to our recent pleas for help to buy hay to make up for a significant shortage caused by unexpected, dry conditions in the Midwest this summer, we were able to buy quite a bit of good hay to feed our horses!  Thank you SO much!! We still need to raise over $3,000 to cover the unbudgeted expense of being unable to grow all of our own hay this year.  (http://www.cedarscamps.org/giving/adopt-the-herd-fund.htm shares details.)  Fortunately, MATCHING FUNDS DONORS FOR "ADOPT THE HERD" have committed to match your gifts up to $50,000 to buy hay and to underwrite the excellence of CedarS' popular and effective Riding Program.  Here's a sample of fruitage: "I am getting to know about horses and how to ride them. ... I am very grateful to know that God is at my side all the time." Camper
 
2nd "Emerge ‘n See" Response: We recently discovered that several of CedarS' original cabins and structures whose electrical wiring was not in metal conduits, have become fire hazards due to critters gnawing through the wire insulation. Running new wire inside conduit (plus fixing our backhoe and doing other needed -- but more routine -- maintenance throughout camp) will cost $50,000.  The good news is that work has been able to be started thanks to about $6,000 received in recent phoned-in and mailed-in donations as well as e-gifts to http://www.cedarscamps.org/giving/maintenance-fund.htm .
Also. MATCHING FUNDS DONORS FOR "MAINTENANCE MUSTS" will match your gifts up to $25,000 till year-end!  
"What a wonderful experience it was to be at CedarS... I will keep it in my heart forever: the beautiful surroundings, the embracing architecture, the loving and selfless staff. CedarS and all who love it and serve it is... a very special and holy place." College Summit Participant
 
[We also have an inspiring, non-partisan gift for anyone wanting it during our U.S. post-election season. You can click http://www.cedarscamps.org/metaphysical/founding/ to hear now via that link (or to order a free CD by this link), two inspiring, non-partisan talks, designed to rally us together around the U.S. Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights.  Thanks for e-giving, calling or mailing to our winter office (address below) your greatly-appreciated & needed gifts to help support CedarS horses, buildings, and programs that all support Christian Science youth and their appreciation and application of the Commandments, Beatitudes and Scientific Statement of Being. "I will carry with me always the lessons learned, friendships made, and spiritual understanding gained." Counselor
 
[CedarS Camps Office, 1314 Parkview Valley Dr., Manchester, MO 63011
or to make a monthly pledge or a single, credit or debit card gift over the phone, 
call us at 636-394-6162.]
 
[Additional Director's Note: You can sign up to have these application ideas emailed to you free -- by Monday each week in English; or by each Wednesday you can get a FREE TRANSLATION: in German, thanks to Helga and Manfred; or in Spanish, thanks to a team of Ana, Erick, Claudia and Patricio.  A voluntary French translation by Pascal or Denise cannot be guaranteed due to their busy schedules. An "official" version of the weekly Portuguese translation should be coming soon on a new webpage for CedarS Mets, but in the meantime you can email Orlando Trentini to be added to the list.  
 This sharing is the latest in an ongoing, 11-year series of CedarS Bible Lesson "Mets" (Metaphysical application ideas) contributed weekly by a rotation of CedarS Resident Practitioners and occasionally by other metaphysicians.  (Ask and look for "Possible Sunday School Topics "and "Possible Younger Class Lessons" in subsequent emails.) 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 "and Sunday School ideas 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.]

[PYCL: Keep your Christly affection burning in your own Festival of Lights! (See PS)]
CedarS PYCLs--Possible Younger Class Lessons for:  
"
God the Preserver of Man"
The Christian Science Bible Lesson for December 9, 2012
by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO (314) 406-0041 [Bracketed inserts by Warren Huff]
 
 [PYCL:  Capture your pupils' attention; put the story of Moses in your own words.]
This is a great opportunity to really spend some time on the story of Moses and the children of Israel. Everyone loves a good story so feel free to tell it in your own words!  I've found that if you sometimes pause to get into detail about something, this will often capture kid's attention. I've mentioned it before, but one successful Sunday School class that I had was when I paused over the passage about how Moses' ark was created.  I had looked it up, and so we talked about how it was constructed, how leaky it might have been, and so on.  What was slime?  What did the reeds look like and so on.  For some reason that really intrigued one of the students who often made a show of putting his face head down on the desk during class.  From there we could talk a bit about the idea of safety that the ark represented and in what ways was God providing that same safety today.  You never know.  I didn't go into that class planning to talk about that, but after that I was able to come up with many more detailed ideas to look at and class was more fun to teach and evidently more engaging for the kids as well.
 
 [PYCL:  Discuss how the story of Moses prepares us for Jesus' coming & Christly affection.]
If kids are thinking about Christmas and you want to go in that direction, you can touch on it each week as Christmas day approaches through the Bible lesson at hand.  How did the story of Moses prepare us for Jesus' coming?  [See Warren's PS about Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas.] What kind of faith did it take for Moses when he was asked to free the Children of Israel from Egyptian slavery?  Was it similar to how Mary felt when the angel told her that she would give birth to Jesus?  What do you think Jesus felt like about his mission?  Do you think that he was ever reluctant to take on the job that was before him the way that Moses was?  Do you see a theme here of innocence and child-likeness that receives these Christ messages of hope and freedom?  Look at the definition of Moses with the kids that are maybe third grade and up, and talk about what MBE says here about Moses' accomplishments in terms of "...the proof that, without the gospel,--the union of justice and affection,--there is something spiritually lacking, since justice demands penalties under the law."  It is an interesting idea, the idea that justice, without Christly affection, demands penalties/punishments.  Think of Jesus with the woman who was taken in adultery.  Did Jesus recommend the penalty of the law for her?  There are many ways in which Jesus showed that what is most needed is this "affection" and a better sense of divine Love, rather than punishment in order to experience reformation.  That is what Christmas represents even to children... that sense of Christly affection, warmth, sweetness, even if they can't articulate it that way.  Of course, there are always presents too....
 
 [PYCL:  Discuss the best gift your pupils can share with families, the presence of Christ.]
If they have presents on their mind, why not discuss this over the next few weeks.  What gifts can they share with their family?  What might they actually work to express or see in themselves over the next few weeks as the "presence" as opposed to presents, of Christ.  They could even write qualities down on some pretty seasonal paper and put these ideas under the Christmas tree as a present from themselves for family members.  It would need to be sincere, not just a "resolution" to be forgotten or burdened by.  But if they come up with the ideas themselves it could be fun.  This would be good to put on record at Sunday School so that it could be revisited in a positive way from time to time.  How are your Christmas "presence" going these days?  What can we do to help ourselves prosper?  It would need to be something that wasn't an opportunity to "guilt trip" anyone, but to bring hope and inspiration to our work.  You could also make small wrapped boxes with the smaller kids and talk about what they "contain" (innocence, kindness, unselfishness, cheerfulness and so on).  Bring them out each week before Christmas and talk about what each gift represents.  Let them help with wrapping and bows while you talk together, they will probably absorb more than you think of the discussion.  They can take turns sharing the "gifts" with each other each week.  Maybe you can share an instance of healing for each quality and then maybe they will start to share their own healings associated with these qualities.  If you keep your healings "smaller" in scale, they will be able to recognize more easily the healing or the Christly qualities they are expressing in their own daily lives.  They may recall that they expressed unselfishness when they gave over a coveted toy that they were enjoying, just to be nice one day, things like that.  (One small suggestion, if the boxes are empty, make sure they know that ahead, so they aren't tempted all the time to see what's inside, since a wrapped present can be a real source of curiosity for a small person).
 
 [PYCL:  Discuss how showing up with Christly affection & hope makes life better, not bitter.]
In section three
there is the story about the "bitter" water.  Ask them the obvious: did the tree make the water better?  Why did God have him throw in the tree if it wasn't a healing power?  Don't we sometimes need to see something change before we are ready to accept God's goodness?  Do you think the people would have taken Moses' word for it if he'd said, "okay, now you can drink, God says it's good."  Maybe we sometimes need to have that human reassurance. Jesus certainly did that when he would touch someone physically when he was healing them.  The power to heal wasn't in his hands, but the love he expressed was part of that healing power and they felt it through his touch.  This is why we sometimes bring people a meal, or read to them and visit them in their homes when they are housebound.  We may pray with them and know what is true, but they might feel it in a more tangible way if we show up in person.  All that said, the point is, we can trust God to provide us with safety and supply, we don't need to and should not rely on material sense to tell us if we are cared for.  See citation S15 [about "to calculate one's life prospects from a material basis, would... misguide human hope..."]  I love this passage because you can think of it as applying to health, but also to success and financial well being.  If we look at our "life prospects" outside of spiritual law, then whether we have great hope or despair of all hope, we are looking at matter in either case.  Always, always, God is providing for our well being, and we can see this as we turn only to Spirit for our sense of hope.
 
[PYCL:  Discuss the transfiguration's lessons for us from individuals supposedly long gone.]
Why do we have the story of Jesus' transformation on the mountain in this lesson on God preserving man?  In part it illustrates that our identities are truly eternally preserved, as Jesus shows up with Moses and Elias who were supposedly long gone.  But are there other reasons?  I don't know if I have the answers to that, but I like to think that the lesson illustrates the path from Moses to Jesus as a path of greater and greater spiritual understanding and insight into the nature of God and man.  Certainly the God revealed to us by Jesus was an unequivocally loving God, one devoted to man's preservation and goodness.  Where the God of Moses had times of great wrath and punishment.  Of course, this is a change in our understanding of God, not an actual change in the nature of God.  What is preserved and revealed in this story is not physique, though they were recognizable for some reason to the disciples present, but the spiritual nature of these great prophets!  Think about it, how did the disciples know that it was Moses and Elias?  Obviously, they didn't have photos.  It is interesting to think about how they knew with such certainty that they were in the presence of these men.  There seems no doubt.  What does that say about our spiritual senses?  What does that say about our ability to discern and understand how it is that our Father-Mother cares for us today?
Wikipedia
Have fun, as always!
 
[Warren's P.S.: The Bible Lesson Committee with this "God the Preserver of Man" lesson built around Moses may have also wanted to share with us a deeper appreciation of our Hebrew heritage just as our Jewish brethren are kicking off their Hanukkah celebration on December 8th at sundown through December 16th at nightfall. According to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanukkah: Hanukkah is also called the "Festival of Lights" to celebrate when "The Maccabees successfully rebelled against Antiochus IV Epiphanes. According to the Talmud, a late text, the Temple was purified and the wicks of the menorah miraculously burned for eight days, even though there was only enough sacred oil for one day's lighting." The center branch of the 9-candle, Hanukkah Menorah stays lit and lights each of the other 8 branches, one a day, to commemorate each day the temple menorah stayed miraculously burning on one day's oil supply. Now, that's a great example of God's preserving power that makes both the best Hanukah gifts and the most meaningful "presence" of the Christ.]

[PSST: Expose lies that would void or limit your lifetime, sustainability warranty from God. -PS]
Possible Sunday School Topics for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on;
"God the Preserver of Man"  for Sunday, 12-9-12
By Steve Henn, C.S. St. Louis, Missouri steven.henn@gmail.com

[Steve's been a CedarS Program Director & teaches English at The Principia School. Bracketed  italics are by Warren Huff, CedarS Director & Met/PSST editor.]
 
PSST Golden Text:
Where does our faith lie? A wise man once told me that we never need to ask for 'more faith' -- because we always have 100% of our own faith (and Jesus tells us that faith the size of a mustard seed is enough, right?) -- what we need is to be putting our faith in the right place. This Golden Text certainly gives us a clear idea of where we can put our faith, and even what happens when we put it there.
 
PSST Responsive Reading (RR):
The Bible is a great record of human history. In this RR, what historical events are recorded? For what purpose?  Can your students record their historical connection with God?  Why is that a valuable thing to do?  Do your students see themselves as connected to this Biblical history?  What connects us to the accounts in the RR of this week's lesson? [See Warren P.S. #1 on today's renewed focus on sustainability with Moses' model in the RR where for 40 years the Children of Israel's "clothes waxed not old" (Neh. 9:21)[
 
PSST Section 1: [No child killing or abuse allowed by our Mother-Father God]
Why did Moses' mother hide him for three months before sending him along?  Besides the obvious practical reasons, what might this symbolize in our lives? How should we treat a new and important idea in our lives?
 
How great is God?  If you ever need a story to debunk the value of human planning, isn't this a perfect one?  What personal planning could have ever resulted in the storyline told in this section? How willing are your students to put their plans on the altar in deference to God's plans? What happens when we trust God to guide our lives?
 
Why is it so important to recognize that God is Father/Mother?
 
PSST Section 2: [No handcuffs or fetter(s) (mentioned 4 times) are permanent! See P.S.#2]
Are your students willing to follow God's paths?  [B9] How do we find them?  How do we know we're on them?  Why would we want to follow God's path?  What is the promise of following God?
 
What is the might of Mind?  [S8, 225:15] What is Mind capable of?
 
What bonds enslave [or handcuff] man today?  What limitations or temptations are facing man in the world economy, in education, in the Christmas season? How does God, Love help us to respond to those fetters? [See Warren's P.S. #2 for a handcuffs illustration.] What are 'all forms of oppression' that will be doomed when the full rights of man are realized?
 
PSST Section 3:  [Nothing bitter cannot be made better!]
What needs do your students have? What needs did the children of Israel have in the wilderness?  [food & water that was not bitter] How did God respond to those needs? How can we expect Him to respond to ours?
 
What is the danger of asking the question stated in citation S14?
 
What should be the basis of our estimations of the possibilities of existence? Why would we ever look to matter as the basis of our potential?  What joy and freedom comes from looking to Spirit, or Life as the predictor of our abilities and possibilities!! [See PS]
 
PSST Section 4: [God's angels ward off all beliefs of contagious evil happening to you.]
What qualities does Moses express that we can work to embody? What aspects of his story [including the contagion healed in this section] can we apply to our lives today?
 
Where do we live, move, and have our being?  [S17] What does this really mean?
 
What is disease?  What gives us power in the face of disease? How do we pray about disease?
 
PSST Section 5: [No accidents can mar your travels!]
What is the relationship between Moses and God like?  [B19, a friendly, face-to-face conversation] How did Moses cultivate that relationship in his many travels and adventures?
 
What does Mrs. Eddy have to say about God and power in this section?
 
PSST Section 6: [Not even "passing on" can keep one from being sustained by God! See P.S.1]
What image does man reflect truly?  [S26, "the true image of God"... " perfect God and perfect man"] How does the transfiguration help to illustrate this? 
 
What man does Christ present? [S27, "the indestructible man" with immortal sustainability! See P.S.#1]
 
How is man truly preserved? What does it mean to be preserved by God? Are your students comforted by the thought of God preserving them? How do we get closer to God so that we can truly see Him and feel Her presence?
 
[Warren's P.S.#1 on your lifetime, sustainability warranty from God: 
With the Jewish "Festival of Lights" (or Hanukkah) starting tonight (12-8-12) at sundown and continuing for 8 days, it is especially fitting and proper that we look to the sustainability demonstrations of Moses {like clothes not wearing out for 40 years (RR); the bush that burned, but was not consumed (B7+, Ex. 3:13); Moses' return to the Mount of Transfiguration (with Elias) to chat with Jesus 1200 years after his supposed passing (B23)} as perfect examples for this week's lesson on God the Preserver of Man. In a section on the symbolism of the menorah Wikipedia sheds interesting light on the origin of the menorah 3,000 years ago when Moses encountered the burning bush on Mt. Sinai/Horeb in Exodus 3:13 (beyond citation B7). "The menorah symbolized the ideal of universal enlightenment.[12] The seven lamps allude to the branches of human knowledge, represented by the six lamps inclined inwards towards, and symbolically guided by, the light of God represented by the central lamp. The menorah also symbolizes the creation in seven days, with the center light representing the Sabbath.[1] It is also said to symbolize the burning bush as seen by Moses on Mount Horeb (Exodus 3).[13] The word 'menorah' has seven letters representing the seven lamps.[14]. ...The Menorah is also a symbol closely associated with the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah (Chanukah). According to the Talmud, after the Seleucid desecration of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, there was only enough sealed (and therefore not desecrated) consecrated olive oil left to fuel the eternal flame in the Temple for one day. Miraculously, the oil burned for eight days which was enough time to make new pure oil.... The Talmud (Menahot 28b) states that it is prohibited to use a seven-lamp menorah outside of the Temple. The Hanukkah menorah therefore has eight main branches, plus the middle ninth lamp set apart as the shamash (servant) light which is used to kindle the other lights. This type of menorah is called a hanukiah in Modern Hebrew.[1] ]
 
[Warren's P.S.#2  for the "Handcuffs" (2nd) Section where fetter(s) are mentioned 4 times: 
If you ever want to have your pupils be a "captive audience" while experiencing "first-hand" some memorable lessons, consider bringing to class a pair of handcuffs (or, on short notice, a short piece of soft rope). Written on the handcuffs that I got from a friend (to use as a symbolic teaching tool for "my" 7th-8th grade boys) is:"The handcuffs of your limitations are created by the illusion that you live in body instead of in Spirit." (This is a direct paraphrase of a line Mrs. Eddy wrote on page 223 of Science & Health: "
the fetters of man's finite capacity are forged by the illusion that he lives in body instead of in Soul, in matter instead of in Spirit.Before each pupil willingly tries the cuffs on (or gets tied up), have them write down on their own piece of paper (ideally a piece prepared for them with the above quote on it and maybe your sketch or theirs of a pair of cuffs) a list of everything that is arguing limitation, inability or the suppression of freedom in their day-to-day experiences at home, at school, in sporting venues, in social situations, in their gift giving, goal setting...). Then, have another pupils cuff them (or tie them up), at first in front, and later behind them if they wish. After they feel how limited they are with their hands held together, let them work to free themselves with a key. While the cuffs can be opened solo (by a Secret Agent MacGyver-type) if the key holes face inward, release is much easier with another's help in sharing the key (or the key to the Scriptures!) (Make sure not to lose the key, or the opportunity to share key to the Scripture's applications to set them free from all their listed limits and bonds.) Don't forget to mention how much easier it is to live one's life not focused on a struggle to overcome limitations that are self-imposed by the unthinking acceptance of the pervasive suggestion that is frequently presented to us, usually subtly and sometimes aggressively, that we live in body instead of in Spirit. Discuss the Scientific Statement of Being (not Becoming) with them (S&H 468) and point out how it alternates between denials of matter's power and affirmations of the allness of "infinite Mind and its infinite manifestation." The repetition of this at the close of Sunbday School will send them home with the key to a free week fresh in thought.]

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