Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015 Testimony Meeting
Read by Bruce and Elizabeth
Luke 8: 40
40 And it came to pass, that, when Jesus was returned, the people gladly received him: for they were all waiting for him.
Luke 15: 1 – 3, 7(joy), 11 – 32
1 Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him.
2 And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them.
3 And he spake this parable unto them, saying,
7 … joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.
11 And he said, A certain man had two sons:
12 And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.
13 And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.
14 And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.
15 And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.
16 And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.
17 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,
19 And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.
20 And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.
21 And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.
22 But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:
23 And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:
24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.
25 Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing.
26 And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant.
27 And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound.
28 And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him.
29 And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends:
30 But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf.
31 And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine.
32 It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.
It has long been a question of earnest import, How shall mankind worship the most adorable, but most unadored,—and where shall begin that praise that shall never end? Beneath, above, beyond, methinks I hear the soft, sweet sigh of angels answering, “So live, that your lives attest your sincerity and resound His praise.”
107: 4-17; 29-28 (next page)
Christianity is not superfluous. Its redemptive power is seen in sore trials, self-denials, and crucifixions of the flesh. But these come to the rescue of mortals, to admonish them, and plant the feet steadfastly in Christ. As we rise above the seem- ing mists of sense, we behold more clearly that all the heart’s homage belongs to God.
More love is the great need of mankind. A pure affection, concentric, forgetting self, forgiving wrongs and forestalling them, should swell the lyre of human love.
Three cardinal points must be gained before poor humanity is regenerated and Christian Science is demonstrated: (1) A proper sense of sin; (2) repentance; (3) the understanding of good.
Without a knowledge of his sins, and repentance so severe that it destroys them, no person is or can be a Christian Scientist.
Mankind thinks either too much or too little of sin.
The sensitive, sorrowing saint thinks too much of it: the sordid sinner, or the so-called Christian asleep, thinks too little of sin.
To allow sin of any sort is anomalous in Christian Scientists, claiming, as they do, that good is infinite, All. Our Master, in his definition of Satan as a liar from the beginning, attested the absolute powerlessness—yea, nothingness—of evil: since a lie, being without foundation in fact, is merely a falsity; spiritually, literally, it is nothing.
Not to know that a false claim is false, is to be in danger of believing it; hence the utility of knowing evil aright, then reducing its claim to its proper denominator,— nobody and nothing. Sin should be conceived of only as a delusion. This true conception would remove mortals’ ignorance and its consequences, and advance the second stage of human consciousness, repentance. The first state, namely, the knowledge of one’s self, the proper knowledge of evil and its subtle workings wherein evil seems as real as good, is indispensable; since that which is truly conceived of, we can handle; but the misconception of what we need to know of evil,—or the conception of it at all as something real,—costs much. Sin needs only to be known for what it is not; then we are its master, not servant. Remember, and act on, Jesus’ definition of sin as a lie. This cognomen makes it less dangerous; for most of us would not be seen believing in, or adhering to, that which we know to be untrue.
109: 8-17; 26-12 (next page)
Examine yourselves, and see what, and how much, sin claims of you; and how much of this claim you admit as valid, or comply with. The knowledge of evil that brings on repentance is the most hopeful stage of mortal mentality. Even a mild mistake must be seen as a mistake, in order to be corrected; how much more, then, should one’s sins be seen and repented of, before they can be reduced to their native nothingness!
Ignorance is only blest by reason of its nothingness; for seeing the need of somethingness in its stead, blesses mortals.
To understand good, one must discern the nothingness of evil, and consecrate one’s life anew.
Beloved brethren, Christ, Truth, saith unto you, “Be not afraid!”—fear not sin, lest thereby it master you; but only fear to sin. Watch and pray for self-knowledge; since then, and thus, cometh repentance,—and your superiority to a delusion is won.
Repentance is better than sacrifice. The costly balm of Araby, poured on our Master’s feet, had not the value of a single tear.
Beloved children, the world has need of you,—and more as children than as men and women: it needs your innocence, unselfishness, faithful affection, uncontaminated lives. You need also to watch, and pray that you preserve these virtues unstained, and lose them not through contact with the world. What grander ambition is there than to maintain in yourselves what Jesus loved, and to know that your example, more than words, makes morals for mankind!