Viewed in the light of Christian Science, understanding is a very big word. Someone may say that it is so regarded by those who know nothing of Christian Science, but this would not alter the fact that the understanding of God and His law, as presented in Christian Science, makes it possible to work out every human problem in a way which will not only bless all directly concerned, but reach beyond these to benefit all mankind. In Proverbs we read that understanding "is more precious than rubies," and that "all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her."

         The wise man also says that this priceless possession comes from God, who Himself established by it the earth and heavens, which surely makes it clear that man can do nothing of real value save as he reflects this quality of the divine Mind. Need we wonder, then, when we are admonished to seek it as men seek for gold and silver, and yet how many are there who actually do this? As to the practical results to be attained from understanding, we are told in Proverbs of health and wealth, the "barns filled with plenty," and "length of days" wherein to enjoy the good things rightly gained, the enslaving beliefs of sensuous animal magnetism, which lead down to death, being proved powerless by the one who comes to understand divine Truth and to find his pleasure in obedience to God's law.

         Mrs. Eddy's discovery of the Science of being brings us face to face with the fact that there never was a time when divine law was not operative, but that an understanding of this law is needed in order that its blessings may reach mankind. The law which healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, and raised the dead was no less operative, even before Abraham's day, than in the time of Christ Jesus, but there were none who understood it as did the Master, although in all the ages there were gleams of light that foretold the dawn of an understanding which would reveal and demonstrate the eternal harmony.

         On page 506 of Science and Health we read that "understanding is a quality of God," and this explains Jesus' so-called miracles, lifting them far above the plane of superstition or even that of mere belief or faith. Reverently be it said, it was the Master's understanding of God which enabled him to triumph over sin, disease, and death, and to open up the way for the full salvation of all who accept the truth revealed by him. In Luke's gospel we are told (chap. xxiv. 45) that after his resurrection he "opened" the understanding of his disciples, and as we read in the Acts of the Apostles we can see what this meant to them. Up to that time they had believed on him, had some measure of faith in his work; but when understanding came, they healed the sick and raised the dead, as their Master had said they should.

         Our revered Leader tells us that "the understanding of Truth gives full faith in Truth" (Science and Health, p.286), and this we all most urgently need. As the understanding of Jesus' teachings faded out of the world's consciousness, his demonstrations were lost sight of and were finally denied as being no longer possible. But since no cloud can ever be dense enough to shut out forever the light of Truth and Love, the understanding of God and of spiritual law came to the one best fitted to receive it, and this understanding enabled Mrs. Eddy to heal the sick as Christ Jesus commanded, and to teach others how to do the same, while she stood guard night and day over the dawning idea of the kingdom of God on earth. Unless the early disciples had understood in large measure the omnipotence of Truth, they could not have met and mastered "the wiles of the devil," and today an even fuller understanding is required to overcome the greater subtleties of mortal mind, but all we need is supplied in richest measure by infinite Love and wisdom.

         What we most need is a better understanding with which to appropriate the riches of Christ, and if Solomon knew enough to pray for this above all else, what are Christian Scientists doing in this respect? Are they seeking for understanding as for "hid treasure," and with the full assurance given in the words of Christ Jesus, "Every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth"?


Editorial by Annie M. Knott, CSD
Christian Science Sentinel, November 29, 1913

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