The People's Idea of God, by Mary Baker Eddy
Books by Mary Baker Eddy

Its Effect on Health and Christianity
page 542


thought like a promise upon the cloud, while it inscribes
on the thoughts of men at this period a more metaphysical
religion founded upon Christian Science.  A personal
God is based on finite premises, where thought begins
wrongly to apprehend the infinite, even the quality or the
quantity of eternal good.  This limited sense of God as
good limits human thought and action in their goodness,
and assigns them mortal fetters in the outset.  It has implanted
in our religions certain unspiritual shifts, such as
dependence on personal pardon for salvation, rather than
obedience to our Father's demands, whereby we grow out
of sin in the way that our Lord has appointed; namely,


PEO 4


by working out our own salvation.  It has given to all
systems of materia medica nothing but materialism, -
more faith in hygiene and drugs than in God.  Idolatry
sprang from the belief that God is a form, more than an
infinite and divine Mind; sin, sickness, and death originated
in the belief that Spirit materialized into a body,
infinity became finity, or man, and the eternal entered the
temporal.  Mythology, or the myth of ologies, said that
Life, which is infinite and eternal, could enter finite man
through his nostrils, and matter become intelligent of
good and evil, because a serpent said it.  When first good,
God, was named a person, and evil another person, the
error that a personal God and a personal devil entered
into partnership and would form a third person, called
material man, obtained expression.  But these unspiritual
and mysterious ideas of God and man are far from
correct.
   The glorious Godhead is Life, Truth, and Love, and
these three terms for one divine Principle are the three in
one that can be understood, and that find no reflection in
sinning, sick, and dying mortals.  No miracle of grace can
make a spiritual mind out of beliefs that are as material as
the heathen deities.  The pagan priests appointed Apollo
and Esculapius the gods of medicine, and they inquired of
these heathen deities what drugs to prescribe.  Systems
of religion and of medicine grown out of such false ideals
of the Supreme Being cannot heal the sick and cast out
devils, error.  Eschewing a materialistic and idolatrous

PEO 5


theory and practice of medicine and religion, the apostle
devoutly recommends the more spiritual Christianity, -
"one Lord, one faith, one baptism."  The prophets and
apostles, whose lives are the embodiment of a living faith,
have not taken away our Lord, that we know not where they
have laid him; they have resurrected a deathless life of
love; and into the cold materialisms of dogma and doctrine
we look in vain for their more spiritual ideal, the risen
Christ, whose materia medica and theology were one.
   The ideals of primitive Christianity are nigh, even at
our door.  Truth is not lost in the mists of remoteness or
the barbarisms of spiritless codes.  The right ideal is not
buried, but has risen higher to our mortal sense, and
having overcome death and the grave, wrapped in a pure
winding-sheet, it sitteth beside the sepulchre in angel
form, saying unto us, "Life is God; and our ideal of God
has risen above the sod to declare His omnipotence."  This
white-robed thought points away from matter and doctrine,
or dogma, to the diviner sense of Life and Love, -
yea, to the Principle that is God, and to the demonstration
thereof in healing the sick.  Let us then heed this heavenly
visitant, and not entertain the angel unawares.
   The ego is not self-existent matter animated by mind,
but in itself is mind; therefore a Truth-filled mind makes
a pure Christianity and a healthy mind and body.  Oliver

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