Sunday, January 14th, 2024 Roundtable

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Morning Prayers

We are bidden, as members of this church, to partake of the silent sacrament, to come to this table of His preparing with thanksgiving. To us is spoken the command, ‘My child, give me thy heart’; while it is ours to answer:

Search me, oh God, and know my heart; Try me and know my thoughts; And see if there be any wicked way in me. We are called to lay ourselves daily, hourly, upon the altar of self-sacrifice, of utter dependence upon God, glorying in each awful trial, rejoicing in each draught from that cup which fits us to become participants with Jesus of his martyrdom and victory. This power is given us in the same extent as we entertain the sense of the Spirit which enriched him, and we come into the fulness of demonstration as we have the same Mind which was in Christ Jesus.

Abide in the 91st Psalm and know that such abiding is treatment and protection.

— from Divinity Course and General Collectanea, (the “Blue Book”), by Mary Baker Eddy, page 143, 222

Discussion points

69 — WATCH lest you believe your problems, or those of others, are personal. There is no such thing as a personal problem, or error. The rain is never personal although it may come into your house through a leak.

In Luke 22:10 the Master gives the rule to antidote the belief that one has a personal problem. We are to follow the man with the pitcher who will lead us to the large upper room where we will find the passover, or communion with God. The pitcher is symbolic of the need to pour out to all humanity the river of water of Life, in order to give them a cup of cold water in Christ’s name. This is accomplished through the effort to see all mankind as already being God’s children, hence already being in this upper room of God, or in perfect oneness with Him. Through such a demonstration, whatever personal problem one may seem to have, will be swallowed up in universal Love.

— from 500 Watching Points by Gilbert Carpenter


“For the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”

When Samuel was sent by God to choose a king to reign over Israel, his first impulse was to select one of imposing and pleasing physical stature. God, however, quickly rebuked him, saying, “The Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.” Now God’s way has never changed. He still continues to judge righteous judgment by looking “on the heart” instead of regarding the “outward appearance.” …

The Bible uses the term “heart” to symbolize the receptacle for all one’s inmost feelings, be they good, bad, or indifferent. It talks of all sorts of hearts,—of willing, glad, pure, upright, perfect hearts; and also of wicked, slow, perverse, proud, froward hearts. Jesus said definitely that out of the heart proceed the things which defile. Then it is evident that hearts must needs be purified and made holy if men are to have true hearts,—if they are to express those qualities which make for goodness and greatness, for health and helpfulness. And how can this be done except as God looks in upon the heart and lays bare its inmost recesses? It is therefore absolutely necessary that all human hearts be searched. Each must have the secrets of his heart revealed to him in order that he may relinquish all that is false and win the true…

Then Christian Scientists should not repine at the demand which Truth makes that every mortal feeling, every motive, every affection, joy, and sorrow, must be subjected to God’s searching, that our hearts may be fully purified. Then no time will be left to look on the “outward appearance,” —mortal opinions; but God’s requirement will have been met, for we shall have rejoicingly given Him our whole heart!

— “God Looks on the Heart” Christian Science Sentinel, February 2, 1924, by Ella W. Hoag

Article — “The Power of Prayer” Mary Baker Eddy, Her Spiritual Footsteps by Gilbert Carpenter, Sr.

Article — “The Open Door of Self-Abnegation” by Ella W. Hoag

Poem Shared During Roundtable:
You cannot say the Lord’s Prayer and even once say “I”.
You cannot pray the Lord’s Prayer and even once say “My”.
Nor can you pray the Lord’s Prayer and not pray for another;
for when you ask for daily bread, you must include your brother.
For others are included in each and every plea.
From the beginning to the end of it, it does not once say “Me”!

— Anonymous

Do you believe in change of heart?

We do believe, and understand — which is more — that there must be a change from human affections, desires, and aims, to the divine standard, “Be ye therefore perfect;” also, that there must be a change from the belief that the heart is matter and sustains life, to the understanding that God is our Life, that we exist in Mind, live thereby, and have being. This change of heart would deliver man from heart-disease, and advance Christianity a hundredfold. The human affections need to be changed from self to benevolence and love for God and man; changed to having but one God and loving Him supremely, and helping our brother man.

This change of heart is essential to Christianity, and will have its effect physically as well as spiritually, healing disease. Burnt offerings and drugs, God does not require. Is a belief of nervousness, accompanied by great mental depression, mesmerism? All mesmerism is of one of three kinds; namely, the ignorant, the fraudulent, or the malicious workings of error or mortal mind. We have not the particulars of the case to which you may refer, and for this reason cannot answer your question professionally.

— from Miscellaneous Writings, by Mary Baker Eddy, page 50-51

Article — “The Millennium” Addresses by Martha Wilcox

Thoughts shared on the Lesson from readers:

“Teach me thy way, O Lord” (Psalm 27:11) – Show me what thou wouldst have me to do.

I will walk in thy truth – I will live and act in accordance with what thou dost declare to be true. Whatever that may be, I will pursue it, having no will of my own.

Unite my heart to fear thy name – That is, to worship, obey, and honor thee.

(a) The end which he desired to secure was that he might truly fear God, or properly reverence and honor him;

(b) the means which he saw to be necessary for this was that his “heart” might be “united” in this one great object; that is, that his heart might be single in its views and purposes; that there might be no distracting purposes; that one great aim might be always before him.

The idea is that of union, or conjunction; of being together; of constituting one; and this is accomplished in the heart when there is one great ruling object before the mind which nothing is allowed to interfere with. It may be added, that there is no more appropriate prayer which a man can offer than that his heart may have such a unity of purpose, and that nothing may be allowed to interfere with that one supreme purpose.

— by Barnes Commentary

“Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.” – Matthew 5: 17

Our Saviour was just entering on his work. It was important for him to state what he came to do. By his setting up to be a teacher in opposition to the scribes and Pharisees, some might charge him with an intention to destroy their law, and to abolish the customs of the nation. He therefore told them that he did not come for that end, but really to fulfill or accomplish what was in the law and the prophets.

To destroy – To abrogate; to deny their divine authority; to set people free from the obligation to obey them. “The law.” The five books of Moses called the law. See the notes at Luke 24:44.

The Prophets – The books which the prophets wrote. These two divisions here seem to comprehend the Old Testament, and Jesus says that he came not to do away or destroy the authority of the Old Testament.

But to fulfil – To complete the design; to fill up what was predicted; to accomplish what was intended in them. The word “fulfill” also means sometimes “to teach” or “to inculcate,” Colossians 1:25. The law of Moses contained many sacrifices and rites which were designed to shadow forth the Messiah. See the notes at Hebrews 9. These were fulfilled when he came and offered himself a sacrifice to God,

— by Barnes Commentary

“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.”
-Jeremiah 29:13

“…when ye shall search for me with all your heart; which, … does not design perfection, but integrity and sincerity; when they draw nigh with a true heart, and call upon him in truth, and search for him with eagerness, with a hearty desire to find him, as men search for gold, and silver, and hid treasure.”

— by Gill’s Exposition of the Bible

Final Readings

I shall never forget the first and only time I ever saw Mrs. Eddy. It was at Concord, in front of the church there, a few years ago. Three times her carriage passed by; the first time she was wondrously quiet,—there was even a look of sadness on her face; the second time her face lighted up with a smile, as here and there she recognized one in the throng of her followers who were waiting to see her; the third time she leaned forward in the carriage and looked out of the window, and bowed with smiles, but when she got to where I was her face was turned in the opposite direction, and I thought I should not see her again, when, as she was almost by, she turned and bowed, with a sweet and loving light upon her face that seemed to say, “I love you all.” This thought was with me for many days afterwards, and whenever I think of her now, it is always in connection with the thought of infinite Love as she reflected it that day. Our Leader’s heart is so full of love that it expresses itself in her face, and when I hear any criticism of her it makes me smile to myself, for I think, If they could only see that loving face and feel the inspiration of her presence, they too would love her…

Divine Love can never be anything less than pure and holy, no matter what the mortal belief may be. It is for us to respond more fully to the divine influence, that we may live in the fullest sense. If one has a plant that is not catching the sun’s rays, he need not expect the sun to change its course in order to shine upon the plant, but he can change the position of the plant so that it can drink in the sunshine and blossom out in beauty and strength. Divine Love is to poor suffering humanity what the sunshine is to the earth, and all must come to see this. We who name the name of Christ in Christian Science are called upon to show to others the power of Love, and Mrs. Eddy has set us the example by the life she lives and the love she radiates.

— “The True Sense of Love” from Christian Science Sentinel, February 10, 1906, by Emma Harris Jamison

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