Rejoicing in Protection Adequate

From the Christian Science Journal, February 1918, by

Joy is the great antagonist of that mental malpractice by which the overserious may be threatened at times, with which the wicked may agree, and to which the fearful may yield. The glad heart always has splendid resisting power against its assaults. To be full of joy is to have a defense impregnable. At the rebuilding of Jerusalem this was brought out by Nehemiah, who besought the people not to mourn, “neither be ye sorry,” he said; “for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” At the institution of Christianity, its Founder said to his disciples, “Your joy no man taketh from you.”

The basis of this joy is the assurance we have as to the being and character of God, and the settled peace and certainty as to His goodness. Christian Science develops in man the joy of this certainty, and our Leader says (Science and Health, p. 419), “Never fear the mental malpractitioner, the mental assassin, who, in attempting to rule mankind, tramples upon the divine Principle of metaphysics, for God is the only power.”

The mental manipulator referred to may be anyone who for the time being is actuated by a determination to “rule or ruin” others, and his influence is measured by the favor or fear with which his efforts are regarded. He may gather into a band those who are like-minded, and make them cooperative in his evil plot or scheme, but over every such effort hangs the verdict of the law, “Though hand join in hand, the wicked shall not be unpunished.” If the evil worker cannot influence another into confederacy in evil by persuasion, he will try to produce acquiescence through fear; and emboldened by his belief that there is no God, he will claim to be an evil power able to produce suffering and death. It is clear enough, however, that darkness has no power over light, since even a little candle shineth far. So likewise even a momentary vision of the light of God brings illumination, and with it assurance that the works of darkness are not to be feared,—from which enlightenment and assurance comes a secret and sacred joy, an exultance in the omnipotence of good. It is the business of the Christian Scientist to increase and maintain this joy; then obedience becomes spontaneous to the admonition of our Leader (Science and Health, p. 442), “Christian Scientists, be a law to yourselves that mental malpractice cannot harm you either when asleep or when awake.”

Christ Jesus, in that most loving address wherein he set forth the safety of the branches which abide in the vine, said, “These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.” It was the characteristic of the Son to attribute all power to the Father and to do nothing of himself. When man gains the Christ-spirit he then ascribes all power to God, that is to good—hence his joy, which cannot be invaded or destroyed. His peace of mind enables him to say, “I will fear no evil: for thou art with me.” Mrs. Eddy says clearly that “Christian Science translates Mind, God, to mortals” (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 22). She continues, “It shows the impossibility of transmitting human ills, or evil, from one individual to another; that all true thoughts revolve in God’s orbits: they come from God and return to Him,—and untruths belong not to His creation, therefore these are null and void.”

The conclusion then is that we do well if we “rejoice evermore;” also that it is unwise to whisper and wonder, to imagine and guess what occult evil may be able to do, just as if we thought there was no God. Let us be wise, for it is the fool who “hath said in his heart, There is no God.” Real joy is the cure for such folly; for the joyous heart finds cause for thanking and loving God hour by hour. This gladness brings companionship with the Christ, the divine Truth which overcomes the world. Spiritual joy unfolding divine Life, overcomes the flesh and the ills to which it is heir. Joy revealing God as Love shows how “the accuser of our brethren is cast down,” and enables us to hear the “loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ.”

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