Some of the biblical teachings represented in the Church Manual

by Robert Nguyen Cramer, (version

The biblical & Christian foundation of the Church Manual The Church of Christ, Scientist, topical index


1. The Ten Commandments
10 Commandments
The Ten Commandments Exo 20:3-17 (Deu 5:7-21) Man 62:24-4; see also
1. Have no other gods

Exo 20:3 (Deu 5:7)

Man 15:6-9; 62:24-4; also click here
2. Do not make idols

Exo 20:4-6 (Deu 5:8-10)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
3. Do not take the Lord's name in vain

Exo 20:7 (Lev 19:12; Deu 5:11)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
4. Keep the Sabbath day

Exo 20:8-11 (Exo 23:12; Exo 31:13; Exo 34:21; Lev 19:3; Lev 23:3; Deu 5:12-15)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
5. Honor your father and mother

Exo 20:12 (Lev 19:3,32; Deu 5:16)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
6. Do not kill

Exo 20:13 (Deu 5:17)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
7. Do not commit adultery.

Exo 20:14 (Lev 18:20; Deu 5:18)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
8. Do not steal.

Exo 20:15 (Lev 19:11; Deu 5:19)

Man 43:17; 62:24-4; also click here
9. Do not falsely accuse.

Exo 20:16 (Lev 19:11; Deu 5:20)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
10. Do not covet.

Exo 20:17 (Deu 5:21)

Man 62:24-4; also click here
Ten Commandments as a whole

Exo 20:3-17 (Deu 5:7-21)

Man 62:24-4; also click here

2. The Sermon on the Mount
Sermon on Mount
The Sermon on the Mount Mat 5, 6, and 7 Man 62:24-4; see also
The beatitudes Mat 5:3-12 (Luk 6:20-23)

Man 62:24-4; see also;

Blessed are:

the poor in Spirit... click here
the meek... click here
those who mourn... click here
those who hunger and... click here
the merciful... click here
the pure in heart... click here
the peacemakers... click here
those who are persecuted... click here


Salt and light Mat 5:13-16 (Mar 9:50; Luk 14:34-35) Man 47:24-5; 98:1-6
Teaching about the law Mat 5:17-20 Man 28:3-13
Teaching about anger Mat 5:31-32 (Mat 19:9; Mar 10:11-12; Luk 16:18) Man 41:8-13; see also
Teaching about adultery Mat 5:27-30 Man 46:1; see also
Teaching about divorce Mat 5:31-32 (Mat 19:9; Mar 10:11-12; Luk 16:18) See also
Teaching about oaths Mat 5:33-37 Man 77:18-22
Teaching about retaliation Mat 5:38-42 (Luk 6:29-30) Man 41:10-13; 47:1; 84:1-6; see also
Teaching about love for enemies Mat 5:43-48 (Luk 6:27-28, 32-36) Man 41:10-13; 47:1; 84:1-6; see also
Teaching about charity Mat 6:1-4 Man 44:23-13; see also
Teaching about prayer Mat 6:5-15 (Mar 11:22-25, Luk 11:2-4) Man 16:9-12; 40:11-15; 41:19-25; 60:7-11; 42:1; 62:24-11; 120:7-9; 122:6-8; 123:9-11; 125:5-7; 126:6-9; 127:9-10; see also
Teaching about fasting Mat 6:16-18 See Mis 156:19-28; '02 16:23; My 339:11-341:7 (Note: "and fasting" was not in the original texts of Mat 17:21 and Mar 9:29.)
Treasure in heaven Mat 6:19-21 (Luk 12:33-34) Man 46:26-3; 47:11-17; 49:1-6; 77:18-22; see also
The light of the body Mat 6:22-23 (Luk 11:34-36) Man 41:19; 46:1-6; 81:20-24; 114:8-15; 116:8-15; 118:5-12; see also
God and posessions and cares Mat 6:24-34 (Luk 16:13) Man 46:26-3; 77:18-22; see also
Judging others Mat 7:1-6 (Luk 6:37-38, 41-42) Man 40:11-15
Ask, seek, knock Mat 7:7-11 (Luk 11:9-13) Man 12:1-7; 94:6-13
Golden rule Mat 7:12; Luk 6:31

Man 16:9-12; 42:19-24; 43:21-7; 48:11-15; see also Mis 90:13-20; Mis 119:31-10; Mis 146:15-19; Mis 282:7-283:18; Mis 235:27-2; Ret 87:15-21; '00 14:12-17; My 266:2-9

The narrow gate Mat 7:13-14 (Luk 13:24) Man 34:4-16; 41:1-18; 3:1-16; 40:1-56:6
A tree and its fruit Mat 7:15-20 (Luk 6:43-44) Man 49:1-6
I never knew you Mat 7:21-23 (Luk 6:46; 13:25-27) Man 42:19-4; 53:15-22
The two house builders and the two foundations Mat 7:24-27 (Luk 6:47-49) Man 34:4-16; 41:1-18; see also S&H 359:29-360:21
The authority of Jesus Mat 7:28-29 (Mar 1:22) Man 41:1-18; see additional references on "Example" at

3. Some other teachings of Jesus
Jesus' teachings
Christ: Christ Jesus is the example we are the follow

Joh 13:15; 1Co 1:9-13; 1Co 3:3-7; Phi 2:5; 1Pe 2:21

Man 41:1-18; see also Man 15:2-9; 42:11-18; see additional references on "Example" at
Correction of others: Correct each other first in private (without prior gossip) Mat 18:15-17 Man 40:7-11; 50:22-6; 51:14-19; S&H 447:20-27; 452:12-15; 571:7-21; see also (regarding gossip, see: Rom 1:31; 2Co 12:20; 1Ti 3:11; 1Ti 5:13; S&H 235:25-30; Mis 227:6-12; 230:8-12; '01 16:6-12)
Healing: Heal the sick "only through prayer" (NRSV) Mat 10:8 and Mar 9:29 (for correct representation of this verse, see a modern translation such as NAB, NRSV, or TEV) Man 92:3-11; see also
Mercy: Be merciful Mat 5:7; Mat 9:13; Mat 12:7; Mat 23:23; Luk 6:36; Luk 10:37; Rom 1:31; Rom 12:8 Man 16:9-12; 54:7-18

4. Some of the teachings of Paul
Paul's teachings [details]
Benevolence: Share with those in need those things that God has entrusted to you Rom 12: 4-8; Gal 2:9-10 Man 45:4-13; 46:26-3; 77:18-22; see also
Christ: Understand that we all are one in Christ, regardless of ethnicity, social status, or gender Gal 3:26-28 Man 29:20-23; 49:7-13; 100:25-27; see also; see also
Christ: Understand that there is one Lord Jesus Christ 1Co 8:6 Man 15:2-9; 41:1-18; 42:11-18; see also
Conscience: Support fellow-Christians' conscience, even if you don't feel so restricted by the issue about which they feel restricted 1Co 10:23-11:1 Man 74:15-21; 51:7-13
Correction of others: Correct others, if you yourself are spiritually fit

Gal 6:1

Man 40:7-11; 50:22-6; 51:14-19; S&H 447:20-27; 452:12-15; 571:7-21; see also
Ethics and morality: Practice high ethical and moral thoughts, words, and actions 1Th 4:11; Rom 12:2; 1Th 4:2-7; Gal 5:16; 1Co 5:1-13; 1Co 15:33-34 Man Man 31:9-14; 41:19; 46:1-6; 81:20-24; 114:8-15; 116:8-15; 118:5-12; see also
Fellowship: Receive each other as we would receive Christ Jesus Gal 4:13-14; Mat 25:31-46 Man 74:15-21; 51:7-13; see also S&H 316:3-7; 249:6-14; 476:32-5
Financial support: Financially support those engaged in Christian service 1Co 9:4 Man 44:12-22; see also
Forgiveness: Forgive and be compassionate 2Co 2:7

Man 15:10-13; 40:7-11; 46:26-3; 52:11-19; 55:10-20; see also

God: Understand that God is one, and that we are God's children 1Co 8:6; Gal 3:19-20; Gal 4:6,7 Man 15:6-9
Legal suits: Do not sue fellow Christians 1Co 6:1-8 Man 46:19-23
Love: Love one another 1Th 4:9; 1Th 5:11; 1Th 5:12-13; 1Th 5:14-15; Gal 6:10; Man 48:2-5; 60:15-17; 77:18-22; see also
Marriage: Support one's own and fellow members' marriages, even if a spouse is not a Christian 1Co 7:1-16 Man 49:19-22; see also
Men and women roles in church: Men and women are equal and deserve equal participation in church roles and responsibilities Rom 16:3 (The entire 16th chapter is written to the church in Ephesus as a letter of introduction to Phoebe, the president of the church in Cenchreae.); 1Co 16:19; Gal 3:28 Man 29:20-23; 49:7-13; 100:25-27; see also
Prayer: Pray at all times 1Th 5:16-18 See also
Prayer: Pray regularly for our church congregations and for those we visit 1Th 1:2; 1Th 5:25 Man 42:1; see also
Spirituality: Seek humble, loving, faith-inspired spirituality, not popularity and not religiousness Gal 1:10; Gal 2:15; Gal 3:1-5; Gal 5:6; Gal 5:26; Gal 6:2-5 Man 48:16; 67:17-23

5. Some other writings relevant to primitive Christianity and the Church Manual
Other writings


5.1. Gospel message of early Christianity

Marcus Borg (The Meaning of Jesus: Two Visions, New York: HarperCollins, 1999, pages 241-243) comments on the message of early Christianity as exemplified by Jesus:

As a lens through which we see God, Jesus enables us to see much... Jesus as a lens becomes a magnifying glass of what is most central about God.

1. God is near, at hand, and can be experienced... God is not a distant being "out there" but the one in whom we live and move and have our being...

2. The near God is immediately accessible, apart from convention, tradition, and institution. Jesus' experience as a mystic, his activity as a healer, his wisdom teaching, and his inclusive community all point to this. The opposite is thinking of God as accessible only through the observance of sacred tradition and the mediation of sacred institution. The notion that God is accessible only through such mediation was widespread in Jesus' day, as it has been also in the history of Christianity. Voices in both Jewish and Christian traditions have often claimed a monopoly on access to God, even as other voices in both traditions have challenged the claim. Jesus did so: he taught and embodied and unmediated relationship to the sacred. God was accessible to those were were "not much" or worse, including the radically marginalized and outcasts.

3. God is compassionate. Jesus embodied the compassion of God and taught that God is compassionate: be compassionate as God is compassionate. Compassion is not simply the will of God, but the very quality of God. God as compassionate is life giving, nourishing, embracing: God feeds the birds, clothes the lilies, makes the sun rise on the just and the unjust, and sends rain on the righteous and wicked. God as compassionate feels for us, for all of us, even the birds and the lilies, as a mother feels for the children of her womb. And like a mother who sees some of her children being victimized by others, God's compassion can become fierce. The compassion of God is commonly and more abstractly spoken of as the love of God. God is love -- and can be a fierce love.

4. God is passionate about justice. God's passion for justice is central to Moses and the prophets, voices of religious social protest against the domination systems of their day. Jesus stood in this stream of the Jewish tradition. God's passion for justice led Jesus to side with the poor and marginalized and to indict the religious and political elites, including Jerusalem and the temple as the center of the native domination system. Indeed, Jesus' passion for justice in the name of God was the cause of his death: he challenged and suffered the wrath of the powers.

...The vision of Jesus I have sketched suggest five characteristics as most central: a life centered in the Spirit, lived by an alternative wisdom, marked by compassion, concerned about justice, and lived wiithin the alternative community of Jesus...


5.2. Benevolence
Everett Ferguson (Early Christians Speak -- Faith and Life in the First Three Centuries, Revised Edition (Abilene, Texas: Abilene Christian University Press, 1981, 1987)

    The sharing of food by the wealthier with the poorer was an important means of charity. The host provided food for those chosen who sometimes did not eat at his house but received the food at home or accepted it to take home. The recipients were expected to pray for the their benefactor, so sharing spiritual blessings in return for material ones. [page 133]

    Clement of Rome [1st Century]:

      Let the strong take care of the weak; let the weak respect the strong. Let the rich man minister to the poor man; let the poor man give thanks to God that he gave him one through whom his need might be satisfied. Let the wise man manifest his wisdom not in words but in good deeds... [page 208]

    Ignatius [35-107 AD]:

      Widows are not to be neglected. You, after the Lord, be their protector... [page 208]

    Aristides [early 2nd century AD]:

      They [Christians] love one another. They do not overlook the widow, and they save the orphan. He who has ministers ungrudgingly to him who does not have. When they see strangers, they take him under their own roof and rejoice over him as a true brother, for they do not call themselves brothers according to the flesh but according to the soul... [page 207]

    Lucian of Samosata [115-200 AD]:

      Then Proteus was apprehended as a Christian and thrown into prison.... The Christians, regarding the affair as a great misfortune, set in motion every effort to rescue him. Then, when this was impossible, every other attention was paid him, not cursorily but diligently. At dawn there were to be seen waiting at the prison aged widows and orphan children, and their officials even slept inside with him, having bribed the guards. Varied meals were brought in, and their sacred words were spoken... There were some even from the cities in Asia who came, the Christians sending them from their common fund to succour, defend, and encourage the man. They exhibit extraordinary haste whenever one of them becomes such a public victim, for in no time they lavish their all. [page 208]

    Irenaeus [130-200 AD]:

      And instead of the tithes which the law commanded, the Lord said to divide everthing we have with the poor. And he said to love not only our neighbors but also our enemies, and to be givers and sharers not only with the good but also to be liberal givers toward those who take away our possessions. (Against Heresies IV.xiv.3) , [page 209]

Martin Hengel (Property and Riches in the Early Church, Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1974)

In cases of castrophe, readiness to help knew no bounds. When barbarian nomads laid waste Numidia in AD 253 and made many Christians homeless, Cyprian collected a spontaneous contribution of 100,000 sesterces for those who had been affected. This was from the relatively small community in Carthage... We hear of similar generous help -- even towards pagans -- in epidemics of plague in Carthage, Alexandria and elsewhere... Even in the fourth century the emperor Julian the Apostate (361-363), an enemy of the Christians, told the pagan high priest Arsacius of Galatia 'the the godless Galileans feed not only their (poor) but ours also', whereas the pagan cult, in the revival of which the ruler was so interested, was a complete failure in the welfare of the poor. In this way the early Christian communities abolished complete penury among their own members and at the same time made a very good impression on outsiders, since such comprehensive care was alien to the pagan world. [pages 44-45]  

    [BibleTexts editorial note: Cyprian was a Christian martyr beheaded at Carthage in 258. Emperor Julian, who was himself a pagan referred to the Christians as "godless Galileans," because the Christians did not worship the pagan gods.]

    Clement of Alexandria [150-215 AD] ... who wrote a treatise..., The Rich Man's Salvation... Possessions, rightly understood, are an instrument given by God..., indeed they are God's gift, which we receive for our brother's sake and not for our own... Everything depends on using riches to supply the need of one's fellow-men:

      For he who holds possessions... and houses, as the gifts of God; and ministers from them to the God who gives them for the salvation of men; and knows that he possesses them more for the sake of the brethren than his own; and is superior to the possession of them, not the slave of the things he possesses; and does not carry them about in his soul, nor bind and circumscribe his life with them, but is ever labouring at some good and divine work, even should he be necessarily some time or other deprived of them, is able with cheerful mind to bear their removal equally with their abundance. This is he who is blessed by the Lord, and called poor in spirit, a meet heir of the kingdom of heaven... [pages 74-75]

Mary Baker Eddy

It shall be the duty of the members of The Mother Church and of its branches to promote peace on earth and good will toward men;... and they shall strive to promote the welfare of all mankind by demonstrating the rules of divine Love. (Church Manual 45:4)

A Christian Scientist is a humanitarian; he is benevolent, forgiving, long-suffering, and seeks to overcome evil with good. (Church Manual 46:26)

If we turn away from the poor, we are not ready to receive the reward of Him who blesses the poor. We confess to having a very wicked heart and ask that it may be laid bare before us, but do we not already know more of this heart than we are willing to have our neighbor see? (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures [S&H] 8:22)

If the soft palm, upturned to a lordly salary, and architectural skill, making dome and spire tremulous with beauty, turn the poor and the stranger from the gate, they at the same time shut the door on progress. In vain do the manger and the cross tell their story to pride and fustian. Sensuality palsies the right hand, and causes the left to let go its grasp on the divine. As in Jesus' time, so to-day, tyranny and pride need to be whipped out of the temple, and humility and divine Science to be welcomed in. The strong cords of scientific demonstration, as twisted and wielded by Jesus, are still needed to purge the temples of their vain traffic in worldly worship and to make them meet dwelling-places for the Most High. (S&H 142:11-24)

Take away wealth, fame, and social organizations, which weigh not one jot in the balance of God, and we get clearer views of Principle. Break up cliques, level wealth with honesty, let worth be judged according to wisdom, and we get better views of humanity. (S&H 239:5)

In the scientific relation of God to man, we find that whatever blesses one blesses all, as Jesus showed with the loaves and the fishes,--Spirit, not matter, being the source of supply. (S&H 206:15)

The cement of a higher humanity will unite all interests in the one divinity. (S&H 571:19)

A higher and more practical Christianity, demonstrating justice and meeting the needs of mortals in sickness and in health, stands at the door of this age, knocking for admission. Will you open or close the door upon this angel visitant, who cometh in the quiet of meekness, as he came of old to the patriarch at noonday? (S&H 224:22)

God gives the lesser idea of Himself for a link to the greater, and in return, the higher always protects the lower. The rich in spirit help the poor in one grand brotherhood, all having the same Principle, or Father; and blessed is that man who seeth his brother's need and supplieth it, seeking his own in another's good. Love giveth to the least spiritual idea might, immortality, and goodness, which shine through all as the blossom shines through the bud. All the varied expressions of God reflect health, holiness, immortality--infinite Life, Truth, and Love. (S&H 518:13)

Christian Science Nurse. SECT. 31. A member of The Mother Church who represents himself or herself as a Christian Science nurse shall be one who has a demonstrable knowledge of Christian Science practice, who thoroughly understands the practical wisdom necessary in a sick room, and who can take proper care of the sick.(Church Manual 49:7)

I propose that the institution you found be called Sanatorium ... that it be a resort for invalids without homes or relatives available in time of need; where they can go and recruit. Our cause demands a wider circle of means for the ends of philanthropy and charity, and better qualifications for practical purposes. This latter lack in students of Christian Science is a great hindrance to our Cause and it must be met and mastered. The students need to be qualified so that under the fire of mortal mind they can stand and 'having done all, to stand.' (St. Paul) (excerpt from a January, 1906, letter that Mrs. Eddy wrote to Mrs. Longyear of Brookline, Massachusetts, CSS, 1916, October 7, Vol 19, page 110)



5.3. Christian healing

Lloyd G. Patterson (Encyclopedia of Early Christianity, Second Edition, edited by Everett Ferguson, NY: Garland Publishing, 1998, pages 511-512):

Religious healing: Overcoming bodily weakness or disease by divine power. Religious healing was as persistent a feature of early Christianity as of the the pagan religious cults of the Greco-Roman world... Accounts of healing, from an early time (John 20:30f.), were designed to elicit faith or were said to have done so (1 Cor. 2:4; 2 Cor. 12:12; Acts 2:43; 3:6-10; 5:12-16; 9:32-35; 14:3; A. Paul. 50-55; A. Jo. 38-45). Healings by those awaiting martyrdom (e.g., Eusebius, Mart. Pal. 1.1; Pass. Perp. 9:1; 16:4) and by ascetics (e.g., Athonasius, V. Ant. 80; Gregory of Nyssa, V. Gr. Thaum. [PG 46.916A]; Jerome, V. Hilar. 8.) were frequent. Bishop Novation of Rome was said to have been converted through being healed (Eusebius, H.E. 6.43.14). This phenomenon of healing was an important factor in the growth of the church... Healings thus witness to God's purpose to free the whole creation for eternal life with him. In general, early Christians assumed that healings were manifestations of the redemptive power of God; they were more concerned to keep them in this perspective than, as in our time, either to promote healing as central to Christian experience or to deny their their occurence.

Mary Baker Eddy (Mis 192:10-193:13)

"He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father." -- JOHN xiv. 12.

Such are the words of him who spake divinely, well knowing the omnipotence of Truth. The Hebrew bard saith, "His name shall endure forever: His name shall be continued as long as the sun." Luminous with the light of divine Science, his words reveal the great Principle of a full salvation. Neither can we question the practicability of the divine Word, who have learned its adaptability to human needs, and man's ability to prove the truth of prophecy.

The fulfilment of the grand verities of Christian healing belongs to every period; as the above Scripture plainly declares, and as primitive Christianity confirms. Also, the last chapter of Mark is emphatic on this subject; making healing a condition of salvation, that extends to all ages and throughout all Christendom. Nothing can be more conclusive than this: "And these signs shall follow them that believe; . . . they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover." This declaration of our Master settles the question; else we are entertaining the startling inquiries, Are the Scriptures inspired? Are they true? Did Jesus mean what he said? If this be the cavil, we reply in the affirmative that the Scripture is true; that Jesus did mean all, and even more than he said or deemed it safe to say at that time. His words are unmistakable, for they form propositions of self-evident demonstrable truth. Doctrines that deny the substance and practicality of all Christ's teachings cannot be evangelical; and evangelical religion can be established on no other claim than the authenticity of the Gospels, which support unequivocally the proof that Christian Science, as defined and practised by Jesus, heals the sick, casts out error, and will destroy death. (Mis 192:10-193:13)

For man to know Life as it is, namely God, the eternal good, gives him not merely a sense of existence, but an accompanying consciousness of spiritual power that subordinates matter and destroys sin, disease, and death. This, Jesus demonstrated; insomuch that St. Matthew wrote, "The people were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes." This spiritual power, healing sin and sickness, was not confined to the first century; it extends to all time, inhabits eternity, and demonstrates Life without beginning or end. (Mis 189:21)

To-day the healing power of Truth is widely demonstrated as an immanent, eternal Science, instead of a phenomenal exhibition. Its appearing is the coming anew of the gospel of "on earth peace, good-will toward men." This coming, as was promised by the Master, is for its establishment as a permanent dispensation among men; but the mission of Christian Science now, as in the time of its earlier demonstration, is not primarily one of physical healing. Now, as then, signs and wonders are wrought in the metaphysical healing of physical disease; but these signs are only to demonstrate its divine origin,--to attest the reality of the higher mission of the Christ-power to take away the sins of the world. (S&H 150:4)


5.4 Vernacular language
Helmut Koester (Introduction to the New Testament, Volume One: History, Culture, and Religion of the Hellenistic Age, Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1982, page 107)
Early Christian writers without exception wrote the language of their time, the Greek Koine... The New Testament has very little relationship to the artificial representation of the language of Attic [Greek] prose in the literature and rhetoric of the Roman imperial period... [With the exception of the Epistle to the Hebrews,] the other books of the New Testament... as well as other early Christian writings, are dominated by the vernacular language.
Joachim Jeremias ("Daily Prayer in the Life of Jesus and the Primitive Church" in The Prayers of Jesus, Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1978, page 76)
In contrast with the the Shema and the Tephilla, the Lord's Prayer is an Aramaic prayer... Moreover, the invocation of God as 'Abba', coined by Jesus, is also Aramaic, as is finally the cry from the cross (Mark 15:34). Thus Jesus not only prayed in his native tongue in his private prayers, he also gave his disciples a formal prayer couched in the vernaclar when he taught them the Lord's Prayer. In so doing, he removes prayer from the liturgical sphere of sacred language and places it right in the midst of everyday life.
Eduard Schweizer (The Good News According to Matthew, Atlanta: John Knox Press, 1975, page 147)
The Lord's Prayer ([Matthew] 6:7-13)... The Lord's Prayer is found in a rather different form in Luke 11:2-4. It is astounding how little legalism the early Christians showed in transmitting the words of Jesus. Even so central a text as this is reshaped with relative freedom, adapted to local usage, and elaborated. The community had no sacred texts in the sense of ones that had to be repeated without the slightest change. The Lord's Prayer is therefore not the letter of the law; it is an aid to prayer, a guide to be followed without being bound to this or that precise wording.
Ferdinand Hahn (The Worship of the Early Church, Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1973, pages 22, 38, and 106)
Attention must be given not only to the content but also to the outward form of the Lord's Prayer in its original version: it is not a prayer in Hebrew but in the Aramaic vernacular -- not totally out of the question in contempory Judaism, but unusal. This means again that Jesus removes prayer from the liturgical sphere of sacral language and places it right in the midst of everyday life... The terminological evidence means not only that any cultic understanding of Christian worship is out of the question, but also that there is no longer any distinction in principle between assembly for worship and the service of Christians in the world... For the Christian community worship does not take place in a separate realm but in the midst of the existing world; it therefore includes service by the faithful in everyday life. Christian worship is no longer cultic in nature.


5.5. The central role of the Bible
Mary Baker Eddy

As adherents of Truth, we take the inspired Word of the Bible as our sufficient guide to eternal Life. (Man 15:3-5 and S&H 497:3)

Divine Science derives its sanction from the Bible, and the divine origin of Science is demonstrated through the holy influence of Truth in healing sickness and sin. (S&H 146:23-26)

The Bible contains the recipe for all healing. (S&H 406:1)

Jesus gave his disciples (students) power over all manner of diseases; and the Bible was written in order that all peoples, in all ages, should have the same opportunity to become students of the Christ, Truth, and thus become God-endued with power (knowledge of divine law) and with "signs following." (My 190:22-27)

The Bible teaches transformation of the body by the renewal of Spirit. (S&H 241:13-14)

I have demonstrated through Mind the effects of Truth on the health, longevity, and morals of men; and I have found nothing in ancient or in modern systems on which to found my own, except the teachings and demonstrations of our great Master and the lives of prophets and apostles. (S&H 126:24-29)

The Bible was my textbook. It answered my questions as to how I was healed;... (Ret 25:3-4)

The Bible has been my only authority. I have had no other guide in "the straight and narrow way" of Truth. (S&H 126:29 )

Acquaintance with the original texts, and willingness to give up human beliefs (established by hierarchies, and instigated sometimes by the worst passions of men), open the way for Christian Science to be understood, and make the Bible the chart of life, where the buoys and healing currents of Truth are pointed out. (S&H 24:4)

The Scriptures are very sacred. Our aim must be to have them understood spiritually, for only by this understanding can truth be gained... It is this spiritual perception of Scripture, which lifts humanity out of disease and death and inspires faith. (S&H 547:23-25,31-32)

The Bible is our sea-beaten rock. It guides the fishermen. It stands the storm. It engages the attention and enriches the being of all men. (My 295:17)

The Bible is the learned man's masterpiece, the ignorant man's dictionary, the wise man's directory. (Mis 363:27)


5.6. The importance of the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson
Bible Lesson

Mary Baker Eddy

The Readers of The Mother Church and of all its branch churches must devote a suitable portion of their time to preparation for the reading of the Sunday lesson, -- a lesson on which the prosperity of Christian Science largely depends. (Man 31:4-9)

Our Publishing Society, and our Sunday Lessons, are of inestimable value to all seekers after Truth. The Committee on Sunday School Lessons* cannot give too much time and attention to their task, and should spare no research in the preparation of the Quarterly as an educational branch. (Mis 114:1)

* The Church Manual later renamed "the Committee on Sunday School Lessons" to be "Committee on Bible Lessons," also known as the "Bible Lesson Committee." (See Man 104:13 and 124:1)

Mrs. Eddy once said to a student that she longed for the day to come when no one could enter a Christian Science Church, no matter how sick or how sorrowing that one might be, without being healed, and that this day can come only when every member of the church studies and demonstrates the truth contained in the Lesson-Sermon, and takes with him to the service the consciousness thus prepared." (Florence Clerihew Boyd, Christian Science Sentinel, "Healing the Multitudes," CSS, 7/1/1916, Vol 18: 168)

The Editors of The Christian Science Journal
In the case of the Bible texts, then the Reader should study the context, and if an historical incident be referred to he should learn the whole history of the event named. In this study he may be helped by Smith's Bible Dictionary, the Revised Version of the Bible, Rotherham, or other equally high authorities. Having a clear understanding of the outward facts concerning the Bible passages, he should study them in connection with their correlative passages from Science and Health to learn their scientific meaning. Then with prayer and meditation he will behold their deep inward meaning, and grasp their profound spiritual import." (The Christian Science Journal, "The Lesson Sermons," CSJ, 5/1899, Vol 17: 144-152)


5.7. The importance of the Church Manual

Mary Baker Eddy

We enjoin upon every member of the Mother Church a careful and prayerful perusal of each of these By-laws, that we may become so thoroughly imbued with their letter and spirit as to be able to carry them out in our daily lives. ("By-Laws," CSJ, 1900, January, Vol 17, page 702)

I beg to inform my beloved members of the Mother Church that the By-law in Article XXVI of its Manual does not require members of benevolent and progressive organizations, such as Free Masons, Odd Fellows, temperance societies, and those of similar cult, to resign this membership. It specifies in plain English that after individuals become members of our Church they shall not thereafter 'be made' members of clubs or other organizations not named in its Manual, and wherefore? Because our religious denomination demands the faithful attention and labor of its members in all philanthropic, therapeutic, and progressive Christian work for the human race, and relies upon the adequate, scientific Source and resource therefor." (CSJ, 1904, June, Vol 22, page 184 - "Take Notice")

[To explore background information on this statement and the By-Law, browse and]

Good deeds overdone numerically, or bad deeds, are remedied by reading the Manual. ("What our Leader Says," CSS, 1904, November 12, Vol 7, page 168)

Never abandon the By-laws nor the denominational government of the Mother Church. If I am not personally with you, the Word of God, and my instructions in the by-laws have led you hitherto and will remain to guide you safely on, and the teachings of St. Paul are as useful to-day as when they were first written. (from a letter Mrs. Eddy wrote to the Christian Science Board of Directors in 1904, "Permanency of The Mother Church and Its Manual," page 12)

Notwithstanding the sacrilegious moth of time, eternity awaits our Church Manual, which will maintain its rank as in the past, amid ministries aggressive and active, and will stand when those have passed to rest... This church is impartial. Its rules apply not to one member only, but to one and all equally. Of this I am sure, that each Rule and By-law in this Manual will increase the spirituality of him who obeys it, invigorate his capacity to heal the sick, to comfort such as mourn, and to awaken the sinner. (My 230:1-14)


Copyright 2004 Robert Nguyen Cramer
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