Practical Theology

Recently on the web site in the Community tab, was a post in the Circle of Faith blog by Shirley Paulson discussing an ecumenical topic known as “Practical Theology.” This is mainly a Protestant theology, centuries old, whose focus is becoming increasingly engaged in discovering ideas from the Bible that relate directly to contemporary human experience. Paulson states that it is only in the last couple of decades that its meaning has expanded to the point where the voice of Christian Science can contribute meaningfully. If you want to look it up, it’s blog #240.

But really, relating the Bible and its spiritual lesson to our contemporary life is exactly what we do every Wednesday evening. Every Wednesday there is opportunity to share experiences on how we have been uplifted and healed in our daily lives; putting our study of Biblical truths into practice.
First Church of Christ, Scientist, Asheville, NC 11-11-2015

KJV Acts 3:1-13 (to 1st Jesus:), 16
1 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. 2 And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; 3 Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. 4 And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. 5 And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. 6 Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. 7 And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. 8 And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. 9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God: 10 And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him. 11 And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon’s, greatly wondering. 12 And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk? 13 The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; 16 And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
KJV II Samuel 22:33
33 God is my strength and power: and he maketh my way perfect.
KJV Isaiah 40:28-31
28 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. 29 He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. 30 Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: 31 But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
KJV Habakkuk 1:12 (to 1st die.), 13 (to 1st iniquity:)
12 Art thou not from everlasting, O LORD my God, mine Holy One? we shall not die. 13 Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity:
KJV Matt 5:43-45 (to 1st heaven:), 48
43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. 44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; 45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: 48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
KJV John 14:6
6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
KJV Matt 9:18-25
18 While he spake …, behold, there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him, saying, My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live. 19 And Jesus arose, and followed him, and so did his disciples. 20 And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment: 21 For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. 22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour. 23 And when Jesus came into the ruler’s house, and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise, 24 He said unto them, Give place: for the maid is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn. 25 But when the people were put forth, he went in, and took her by the hand, and the maid arose.
KJV Matt 7:20
20 … by their fruits ye shall know them.
KJV Galatians 5:22, 23, 25
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
KJV Galatians 6:8-10
8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. 9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. 10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.
KJV Ephesians 4:13
13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

S&H 170:22
Spiritual causation is the one question to be considered,
for more than all others spiritual causation relates to
human progress. The age seems ready to
approach this subject, to ponder somewhat
the supremacy of Spirit, and at least to touch the hem
of Truth’s garment.
S&H 369:5-22
In proportion as matter loses to human sense all en-
tity as man, in that proportion does man become its
master. He enters into a diviner sense of the
facts, and comprehends the theology of Jesus
as demonstrated in healing the sick, raising the dead,
and walking over the wave. All these deeds manifested
Jesus’ control over the belief that matter is substance,
that it can be the arbiter of life or the constructor of any
form of existence.
We never read that Luke or Paul made a reality of
disease in order to discover some means of healing it.
Jesus never asked if disease were acute or
chronic, and he never recommended atten-
tion to laws of health, never gave drugs, never prayed
to know if God were willing that a man should live. He
understood man, whose life is God, to be immortal, and
knew that man has not two lives, one to be destroyed and
the other to be made indestructible.
S&H 328:20-25, 30-1
persons die there annually from serpent-bites? Under-
standing spiritual law and knowing that there is no mate-
rial law, Jesus said: “These signs shall follow them that
believe, . . . they shall take up serpents, and if they
drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them. They
shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
The purpose of his great life-work
extends through time and includes universal humanity.
Its Principle is infinite, reaching beyond the pale of a
single period or of a limited following.
S&H 43:27-4
The divine must overcome the human at every point.
The Science Jesus taught and lived must triumph over
all material beliefs about life, substance, and intelli-
gence, and the multitudinous errors growing from such
Love must triumph over hate. Truth and Life must
seal the victory over error and death, before the thorns
can be laid aside for a crown, the benediction follow,
“Well done, good and faithful servant,” and the suprem-
acy of Spirit be demonstrated.
S&H 170:18
If there are material laws which prevent disease, what
then causes it? Not divine law, for Jesus healed the
sick and cast out error, always in opposition, never in
obedience, to physics.
S&H 377:26-3
The cause of all so-called disease is mental, a mortal
fear, a mistaken belief or conviction of the necessity and
power of ill-health; also a fear that Mind is helpless to
defend the life of man and incompetent to control it. With-
out this ignorant human belief, any circumstance is of it-
self powerless to produce suffering. It is latent belief in
disease, as well as the fear of disease, which associates sick-
ness with certain circumstances and causes the two to
appear conjoined, even as poetry and music are repro-
duced in union by human memory.
S&H 378:22-30 (to inconceivable;)
Disease is not an intelligence to dispute the empire of
Mind or to dethrone Mind and take the government into
its own hands. Sickness is not a God-given,
nor a self-constituted material power, which
copes astutely with Mind and finally conquers it. God
never endowed matter with power to disable Life or to
chill harmony with a long and cold night of discord.
Such a power, without the divine permission, is incon-
S&H 384:30-18
Sickness, sin, and death must at length quail before
the divine rights of intelligence, and then the power
of Mind over the entire functions and organs of the
human system will be acknowledged. It is proverbial
that Florence Nightingale and other philanthropists en-
gaged in humane labors have been able to
undergo without sinking fatigues and expo-
sures which ordinary people could not endure. The ex-
planation lies in the support which they derived from
the divine law, rising above the human. The spiritual
demand, quelling the material, supplies energy and en-
durance surpassing all other aids, and forestalls the
penalty which our beliefs would attach to our best
deeds. Let us remember that the eternal law of right,
though it can never annul the law which makes sin its
own executioner, exempts man from all penalties but
those due for wrong-doing.
Constant toil, deprivations, exposures, and all untow-
ard conditions, if without sin, can be experienced with-
out suffering. Whatever it is your duty to do,
you can do without harm to yourself.
S&H 387:27
The history of Christianity furnishes sublime proofs
of the supporting influence and protecting power bestowed
on man by his heavenly Father, omnipotent
Mind, who gives man faith and understanding
whereby to defend himself, not only from temptation, but
from bodily suffering.
S&H 390:20
Suffer no claim of sin or of sickness to grow upon
the thought. Dismiss it with an abiding conviction that
it is illegitimate, because you know that God is no more
the author of sickness than He is of sin. You have no
law of His to support the necessity either of sin or sick-
ness, but you have divine authority for denying that neces-
sity and healing the sick.
S&H 395:6-11
Like the great Exemplar, the healer should speak to
disease as one having authority over it, leaving Soul to
master the false evidences of the corporeal
senses and to assert its claims over mortal-
ity and disease. The same Principle cures both sin and
S&H 406:1-9
The Bible contains the recipe for all healing. “The
leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.”
Sin and sickness are both healed by the same
Principle. The tree is typical of man’s divine
Principle, which is equal to every emergency, offering
full salvation from sin, sickness, and death. Sin will
submit to Christian Science when, in place of modes and
forms, the power of God is understood and demonstrated
in the healing of mortals, both mind and body.

Acts 3:1-13 (to Jesus:), 16
II Samuel 22:33
Isaiah 40:28-31
Habakkuk 1:12 (to die.),13 (to iniquity:)
Matt 5:43-45 (to heaven:), 48
John 14:6
Matt 9:18-25
Matt 7:20
Galatians 5:22, 23, 25
Galatians 6:8-10
Ephesians 4:13

328:20-25, 30-1
378:22-30 (to inconceivable;)

88…Gracious Spirit, dwell with me
82…God is working His purpose out
451…O, sometimes gleams upon our sight

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