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Be free! God has liberated you from all bondage!

Kathy Fitzer, St. Louis, MO & Park City, UT
Posted Monday, April 7th, 2014

Be free! God has liberated you from all bondage!
Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson

“Are Sin, Disease, and Death Real?”

April 7-13, 2014

Prepared by Kathy Fitzer of St. Louis, MO and Park City, UT
kathyfitzer@gmail.com 314-323-4083

[Bracketed italics by CedarS Director Warren Huff. Life-transforming camperships needed!]

Golden Text: What does it mean to be REALLY free? Comparing this translation of Galatians 5:1 to the KJV, both go on to talk about not going back to bondage (or slavery) once we’ve been set free. I think that’s part of it. We can sometimes feel free from some fear or disease or limitation, but as long as the threat of recurrence is there, we’re not REALLY free. Strongs Exhaustive Concordance gives this definition of the Greek word translated “free” in Galatians as “exempt from… mortal liability.” To me, that’s real freedom! The only way to feel that freedom is to recognize it as the gift of Christ… the fullness of God’s goodness pouring out to man … a perpetual gift!

Responsive Reading: The last verse speaks of walking “at liberty.” Looking at the original Hebrew, liberty here means “roomy, in every (or all) direction.” (Strongs) No more getting “swallowed up” or feeling squeezed or smothered by things that seem to be going wrong or could go wrong. How do we maintain this state of liberty or mental roominess? The Psalmist starts by acknowledging God as his salvation. He refuses to “fear what flesh [anything] can do.” He refuses to be afraid of or to honor or respect anything that isn’t from God. He knows that God is with him and is merciful. Then, he asks for God’s help in keeping God’s law. The Sermon on the Mount and the Ten Commandments describe our birthright as God’s beloved son. Acknowledging this -- and identifying ourselves as God’s expression -- frees us to “keep” (obey) God’s law “continually [without interruption] and “walk at liberty” with absolutely no limitations… physically, mentally, emotionally, fiscally, and morally. The more consistently we align ourselves with God -- and His merciful goodness -- the more real freedom we experience!

Section 1: Gods allness assures permanent freedom
The Psalmist tells us that God frees us from the bondage of sin, disease, and death. (B-1) Isaiah assures us that there is no need to fear, because God will “come with a vengeance” to save His people! (B-3) Vengeance includes total destruction of an enemy -- total deliverance! “They that war against thee shall be as nothing.(B-4) So, are sin, disease, and death real? No! They are the enemy that God has destroyed -- made nothing. So, if they are nothing, why do they seem so real? Because, as a counterfeit bill simulates a real bill -- and seems real -- the “human material belief” of sin, sickness, and death “simulates the creations of Truth.” The solution… Stop believing the belief! KNOW what Truth looks like! “Human codes, scholastic theology, material medicine and hygiene” are focused on the counterfeit, trying to keep in check something believed to be real. In contrast, “divine Science” reveals the illusionary nature of sin, disease, and death, and sets us free by revealing the allness of God, or good, and teaching us that we are governed by MIND, rather than body! (S-3, S-4 & S-5) That’s lasting freedom!

Section 2: Believe the testimony of God, rather than of corporeal sense
Moses was given a big job… to free the children of Israel from the captivity of Egypt. (B-6) Isaiah taught appropriate results from fasting (or worship of God) was the freeing of anyone being treated as a slave. (B-8) Mary Baker Eddy (by presenting Christian Science to the world) expanded on this mission to include freeing all mankind from the captivity of the senses -- from sin, disease, and death. God demonstrated to Moses the illusionary nature of disease when leprosy first appeared on Moses’ arm -- and then disappeared -- as a result of simply putting his arm in his shirt. (S-7) That leprosy could occur in this way is no more crazy than to believe that disease occurs as a result of exposure to certain weather conditions or germs, or DNA or breaking a so-called “health law,” etc. We’re given specific instructions about how to respond if we are tempted by the illusion of sickness or sin. (S-8) [S&H p. 495:14-24 is a helpful passage to commit to memory. Its known in our family, and among CedarS staff, as the W.A.L.L. treatment paragraph where the 4 sentences (starting with W, A,L, & L) dispel the illusion that your back is against the wall.] It’s so important to start by realizing we’re not working to free ourselves from a real master… a real disease or real sin. It is the belief of corporeal sense… an illusion. It’s not even our thought, because we are governed by Mind, God. But, like a counterfeit bill, such illusions can seem very real. And, like one who is mesmerized believes he sees and feels things that are not really there, so we must wake up to reality in order to be free from the very real-feeling illusion. CLING to God (as someone who clings to a rock face, or a child to a parent.) Don’t mentally entertain ANYTHING except that which is the expression God, good. Refuse to let fear or doubt shake your assurance that recognizing the eternal harmony of Life will destroy all sense of -- and belief in -- that which isn’t part of Life (God, good.) Trust the truth of Christian Science (the law of God, good), rather than the testimony of corporeal sense, to tell you what’s what. The right understanding of being (God and man as coexistent and eternal) actively replaces error with Truth, the threat of mortality with immortality (impossibility of death) and silences discord with the law of harmony! God does the doing. We just need to side with (cling to) God and reject the illusion. We’re not taken in by any illusions that we understand to be illusions! Let’s know that we DO understand God, so we can’t be fooled by the illusions of corporeal sense.

Section 3: Use your liberty to serve God and reject sin
God has made us free (liberated and unconfined.) But we need to be sure we’re not confusing the liberty God has given us with a human sense of being free to do whatever we want without consequence. As Paul’s letter to the Romans suggests, each choice we make -- each thought we think -- determines what we are complying with or submitting to (death -- belief of separation from God, or righteousness -- right relationship with God.) Paul’s letter to the Galatians makes it clear that the purpose of being free is not to satisfy the cravings of the flesh (or serve the body and matter) but to be free to glorify God and serve our fellow man. We’re then given a long list of the tendencies of the flesh that will hide the Kingdom from us -- prevent us from experiencing it. It’s not a matter of God denying residence in His kingdom. God’s man -- the genuine, indestructible selfhood of each of us) has never left the Kingdom of God. But, indulging in the “works of the flesh” (sin) imprisons human thought in the belief of a “fleshy” material realm and closes our eyes to God’s goodness. On the other hand, as we accept (and eat freely) of the fruits of the Spirit, we are indeed free to see reality, and nothing can intrude on that freedom. (B-10) To be subject to, or submit to, is to be under the control of something. So as we yield control to God and resist all that is unGodlike (the devil), we let ourselves be lifted up to the heights of Spirit where the goodness of God becomes clear. (B-11) As Science and Health goes on to clarify, it’s not enough to blithely declare there is not sin because God is all. There is a claim of sin that can be very persistent. And, to overcome that claim (and the consequences of it) we have to identify its presence (detect it), see it for what it is (remove the mask), see it as illusion (so nothing to fear, but something to correct), master it (get the victory) and so prove that sin is unreal (because only God is real.) (S-12) Let’s do this, thought by thought. A big pile of rocks is taken down one at a time until the whole pile gone. But, try to move the whole thing (worry only about the “BIG” sins,) and it’s not going to budge!

Section 4: Jesusmission fulfill the law by destroying what God didnt make
Jesus’ mission was to demonstrate the freedom that God has given to ALL. Isaiah spoke of the liberating power of the timeless Christ in chapter 61 (v. 1&2) and Jesus appeared in a human form to reveal the fulfillment of this promise in a totally practical way! (B-12) The healing power of Christ neither began nor ended with the appearance of Jesus. Although many in his time (and ours) didn’t/don’t understand the full impact of his teachings and example, Christian Science explains how Jesus destroyed sin, disease, and death while fulfilling God’s law of good. (S-15) This triad of errors is NOT true, so the antidote for them is in omnipotent Truth. (S-16 & S-18) It can be really scary and overwhelming to think we somehow have to change a real material situation (turn a moving sun into a stationary one.) But, “the so-called material body is a mental concept…” Watching the sun move in the sky, it sure looks like the earth is still and the sun moves. Thus, to the uneducated, a solar eclipse would indicate impending doom. But, give up the false concept, all kinds of astronomical phenomenon become clear, and the fear disappears. No human analogy is perfect, but the point is… we’re not dealing with a solid object made of matter. We’re dealing with correcting false concepts and seeing the harmony of man and the universe already made and maintained by God. Jesus was our example. Science and Health explains how we can follow this example! Truth corrects error. Healing results!

Section 5: Liberation from the grave
This Sunday (April 13) is Palm Sunday – the week before Easter. In our lesson we have the story of Jesus returning to Bethany (where he had raised Lazarus.) Crowds gathered to see both Jesus and Lazarus. Jesus knew that he was facing a death sentence… it was only a matter of time. His opponents couldn’t continue to watch his popularity increase amongst the people. The next day, Jesus continued to Jerusalem, where more crowds met him, greeting him with palm branches. These were national symbols of triumph and victory. Remember, to many, the coming of the Messiah represented the coming of a new political King of Israel. Following this part of the story, we find Jesus riding in on a donkey, fulfilling the prophecy of Zech 9:9, as referenced in John 12:15. (B-14) John changed Zechariah’s “Rejoice” to “Fear Not.” Isaiah often told the Jews being held captive not to be afraid, as he announced the beginning of the reign of God and fulfillment of God’s promises of salvation. The account of the donkey is included in all of the gospels, but John includes it after, rather than before, the palms. It’s as if John is correcting the false sense of king with the true. Thus, Jesus is seen as fulfilling his true mission as spiritual Savior (liberator) of the world. Little did his enemies know that killing Jesus could do nothing to stop – and in fact, would further – that mission. (B-14) Jesus understood the powerlessness of death to interrupt Life. What we call death is but another mortal concept… a false belief… an illusion. (S-19) It SEEMS very real. But, the fact that Jesus overcame it — for himself as well as others — by understanding its unreality, proves that the real man, the intact idea of God – man’s only identity – “is not subject to material conditions.” (S-23) Death is darkness. So, to overcome it – and the grief attending it – we have to stay in the light of Truth – day by day, moment for moment. (S-22) God and man are one as Principle, Life, and idea. And, we can – and must – stick to that reality regardless of what the material senses say. Refuse to anticipate death or ever accept it. Nothing can shake our conviction or steal our joy as we look at life through the lens that Jesus revealed.

Section 6 Stay on tip toeFollow Truth and WALK at liberty!
We’ve spoken about the fact that matter and all limitations are false concepts that we must – and can – see through as we stay focused on the Truth that Christ reveals. J.B. Philips translates Romans 8:19 as "The whole creation is on tiptoe to see the wonderful sight of the sons of God coming into their own.” (B-15) How many times have we seen children straining on tiptoe to look over a counter that would otherwise obstruct their view? It takes effort to stand on tiptoe… we have to stretch! But, it’s worth the effort to see what’s going on. So, let’s take our stand and make the mental effort every moment to see through the lies of mortal sense — see through the false concepts of sin, disease, and death — and find the liberty that is ours. (B-16) Let’s say with the Psalmist, “I will walk at liberty.” (B-17) Nothing can stop our thought from choosing liberty. We are tenderly addressed as “dear reader” as our textbook tells us of our “divine rights.” There is no power or cause that can make us sick or sinful. It’s just an “erring, mortal, material sense which is not power” that would hide reality from us. (S-25) Jesus gave us a glimpse of the divine possibilities. Now it’s our right to stay on our mental tip-toes and keep stretching to see beyond the barrier that would try to hide Truth from us. God made us free! (S-27) We’re not going to let anyone or anything tell us otherwise!!!


The Met application ideas above are provided primarily to help CedarS campers and staff (as well as friends) see and daily demonstrate the great value of studying and applying 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 by clicking the "Subscribe Now" button (lower left) at http://www.cedarscamps.org/metaphysical/ ]

[THANK YOU in advance for MAKING A TAX-DEDUCTIBLE GIFT ONLINE,
BY PHONE at 636-394-6162,
OR BY MAIL at:
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[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 Manfred and Jeanette; or in Spanish, thanks to a team of Ana, Erick, Claudia and Patricio, or in Portuguese, thanks to helpers of Orlando Trentini in Brazil. A voluntary French translation by Rodger Glokpor, a Christian Scientist from Togo (West Africa) has been contributed. Thank you, Rodger and all translators! Go to http://www.cedarscamps.org/ and click "Newsletters" to sign-up for a free translation into these languages. This sharing is the latest in an ongoing, 13-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 emails to follow.) 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 serve as 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 and in a variety of useful formats 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-26) and the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy (S-1 thru S-32). 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.]

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