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Answer NO WAY! to: “Are Sin, Disease, and Death Real?”
and Make Your Own the Master’s Decision and Salvation!

Insights from Cobbey Crisler and a Ken Cooper offering on select citations for
“Are Sin, Disease, and Death Real?”

The Christian Science Bible Lesson for October 14, 2018

Warren’s (W’s) PS#1—Cobbey on deciding to awake from sleep to salvation (GT)

We have been involved ever since the earth dawned for us with The Gethsemane Decision… The moment we use the word decision, I’m certain all of us are aware of the choices daily placed before us. There also seems to be a concomitant fact that every time we look in the mirror, we see the results of our choices. That’s kind of scary. Can we change choices if we have made the wrong ones? Do you find the Bible filled with this choice-making? How does it open, for instance?

Genesis 1 (B1) and Genesis 2 (B11) are clearly a choice, aren’t they? They contradict each other. We really cannot live with both although most of us are undoubtedly trying. The necessity to make a decision, important decision, relates back to how the pioneer Christian made his decision. Whether he himself has that rock beneath him, as we said, before he made any rules. Or whether he, too, vacillated and was dualistic, and was pulled to and fro, according to the motion of Satan in the Book of Job.

… Across from the city of Jerusalem at night, do we recall that John said that those who came [to Gethsemane] to arrest Jesus snaked down the slope of the city into the valley of Kidron, and they were carrying torches and lanterns? I ask you to imagine what that would've appeared like from the vantage point from the beginning slope of the Mount of Olives where Jesus and his disciples were. It certainly would have been enough to strike fear in the average human heart.

Jesus certainly knew the objective of those who were coming. … The deep sleep that fell upon the original Adam falls upon his descendants… Jesus' disciples were falling in and out of almost a drugged-like stupor which prevented them from being any support whatsoever to their Master. The Gethsemane Decision is one that must be taken alone anyway, individually, alone with God.

… The decision that was made there, the decision obviously was a mental one. We need to conclude as we study the event whether this decision was made for the first time by Jesus at Gethsemane or whether it was consistent with the choices he had made ever since age twelve when he is recorded as telling his human parents that his mission was to "be about his Father's business" [Luke 2:49].

What do you think the Gethsemane decision is? [Voice: "to let" God's will be made manifest…"] To let God's will. What's the other part of the choice? God's will or our own will, self-will or human will. …

…Is the secret to being a follower and a believer of Jesus the straightening out of priorities in our thinking as Jesus established that method? God's will not our own. It's something human nature is not used to. It is radical. If we are facing the basic, primary decision between success [salvation] and failure, it's whether we are in tune with our own wills or whether we are totally committed to God's will. We should be able to see all kinds of indications of this in the Scriptures…

This Adam-problem is something that is not limited to the discussion in Genesis. We find it referred to and alluded to throughout the Bible, as if it represents in symbols the human problem. … Humanhood following Jesus is ending up at a destination completely opposed to the destination of the Adam followers… Jesus found what humanhood could be when the Divine was behind it every step of the way. There is nothing in Jesus' humanhood that could stop the Divine from manifesting itself on earth as in heaven. This may be our decision we're talking about.

Jesus refused to allow anything to obstruct the divine will from operating on earth. Look what he was able to do with his own humanhood as well as with the humanhood of others as a result. He could take his fragile, one would think, human frame, anatomically speaking, through what was apparently at least the sound barrier, if not the light barrier [in teleporting himself and a boatload of disciples]. In no way did his body hamper him when he walked above the water…

…If our thesis as presented is accurate, that the implication of Paul’s statement [I Corinthians 15:22, (B12)], “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” presents problem and solution, or remedy, then one of the greatest research jobs awaiting all of us is to get back into that problem called Adam which we’re all wrestling with.

Just make a list of everything you detect that Adam did wrong mentally and physically. Because, if it is true that Jesus’ mission was to remedy the Adam man and wipe that alternative off the face of man’s consciousness, then everything that Adam did wrong which was upside down Jesus is going to put right side up and prove that man is upright. Many things may occur to you, for instance …

…part of the curse on Adam [Genesis 3:17,18] was that thorns will be brought forth unto him. Did Jesus have to face Adam's thorns on that [crowning crucifixion] weekend? "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread…dust thou [art], and unto dust shalt thou return" [Genesis 3:19]. The grave was the pressure of the dust he was to return to. There are many others showing the complete reversal of the Adam. It's as if the highest sense of mind on earth, which had relinquished its right to mind except by reflection, is turning everything right side up just as we do visually. That topic is far from being exhausted. In fact, what can exhaust an infinite reservoir? It's one thing about supply in the Bible. It's never consumed. Therefore, there are no consumers….” [SO MUCH MORE!!]
“The Gethsemane Decision,” by B. Cobbey Crisler**

W’s PS#2—Cobbey Crisler on Ps. 107:1 (B2) paying your bill by giving praise

“I'm going to give you an assignment in Psalm 107 because it's a very rewarding one to work with. In the first 22 verses, for example, when you are studying this independently at home, work out the steps that are being given us, the symptoms, the appointment with the Great Physician, the treatment, the complete remedy, and then paying your bill. That happens to be a refrain, "Pay your bill. Pay your bill." In this particular Psalm, in Verse 2, [and Verses [8, 15, 21, 31] "Oh that [men] would praise the LORD [for] his goodness, and [for] his wonderful works to the children of men!" (B2) Follow that all the way through and you'll find three different sets of prescriptions and treatments that can be quite relevant to our own experience.”

[Woman's question on audio unclear except for "symptoms"] “The appointment with the Great Physician and then, of course, when you're in front of the Physician, that's face-to-face, seeing God's face, get the treatment, let His face shine upon thee, then the remedy, go out and have the prescription filled. The remedy solves the whole problem; then pay your bill. Follow that through and see what comes.”

"Leaves of the Tree: Prescriptions from Psalms," by B. Cobbey Crisler**

W’s PS#3 from Cobbey Crisler’s insights on Isaiah 1-2.22 (B7): “Cease ye from Adam”
Isaiah 1:5 and 6. Isn’t this a question of Isaiah asking all humanity, “Why should you be stricken any more? You will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. From the sole of the foot even unto the head [there is] no soundness in it: [but] wounds and bruises, and putrefying sores.”…the application of medicine has not cured what humanity needs to have cured.

In Isaiah 2:22 maybe this is part of the solution? What’s the recommended solution? “Cease ye from man.” That word in Hebrew is actually the Hebrew word “Adam.” It literally reads, “Cease ye from Adam whose breath [is] in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of?”
“Heal the Sick”: A Scriptural Record, by B. Cobbey Crisler**

W’s PS#4 –Cobbey Crisler on Jeremiah 17.14, 17 (B9):
17th Chapter of Jeremiah, Verse 14, “Heal me, O LORD, and I shall be healed.” There’s Jeremiah’s prayer. “Save me and I shall be saved.” The Anchor Bible points out that the word “salvation” as used in the Old Testament is often used in terms of a not-guilty verdict in court. Salvation is often used in the Old Testament in terms that we would understand today as a not-guilty verdict in court.

The salvation of man would eventually include a verdict of not-guilty, or innocent. This is, of course, the entire theme of Job, his guilt or innocence.

…Moses was shown that man has just as much (innocence and) dominion over the serpent, symbolizing iniquity, as over the leprosy on his hand [symbolizing disease].
“Heal the Sick”: A Scriptural Record, by B. Cobbey Crisler**

W’s PS#5—Cobbey Crisler on Psalms 17:15 (B10): Find satisfaction and health only in the original!
“Verse 15 of Psalms 17 [tells us] that God’s prescriptions, precisely filled, bring satisfaction. Satisfaction because “we awake in God’s likeness.” But that results first from the prerequisite of “beholding God’s face in righteousness.” That requires us to go back to the theology of Genesis 1 [B1] to comprehend what that means. If we indeed are image, or likeness, and God is the original, the only way we can find out about our nature is to spend our time studying the original. Then we know the image. We also know what’s not the image by studying the original.

Just as Treasury Department experts know counterfeit bills, not because they have studied all the many thousands of counterfeit attempts, from poor work to expert work, but rather, simply study the original and you will know the counterfeit immediately. That’s in a sense akin to surgically removing in a mental way, or taking the purgative cathartic Word of God to remove what does not belong to our nature. Imagine the joy of letting go what has burdened us for so long. It’s part of that darkness that is ignorance, that the light, the laser beam of revealed truth, simply removes, and not painfully at all. It just does what light is supposed to do. It removes any rationale for the existence of darkness.”
“Leaves of the Tree: Prescriptions from Psalms”
by B. Cobbey Crisler**

W’s PS#6—Cobbey on Matthew 9:2-8 (B15), the healing value of good cheer and forgiveness:
“Verse 2, Chapter 9: ‘We have a man in bed with the palsy.” Can you imagine Jesus going by a man who had been that long without moving and telling him to “be of good cheer”? But there’s nothing Jesus said that he didn’t discern was needed. What that man needed, more than physical movement, was to be of good cheer. Jesus said, “Thy sins be forgiven thee.” Jesus knew at a glance the whole history of a case.”
(Verse 3). The scribes say, “This man blasphemes.” In order to get the healing, he has to eliminate the theological obstruction to healing first.
(Verse 5). He says, “What is easier? To say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk?”
(Verse 6). “Because the Son of man does have power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy), Arise, take up thy bed, and he goes.”
"The Book of Matthew, A Tax Collector’s Account, Auditing the Master," by B. Cobbey Crisler**

W’s PS#7a­­—Cobbey Crisler on John 5:2-9 (& 30) (B17):
“John 5:2 We’re now at the famous incident at the “Pool of Bethesda”. Near what serves as an occasional sheep market today, there is still a pool that has been excavated, that has archeological remnants that suggest the five porches. There is apparently, if this is the correct location of the pools, a structure that had two pools, each with two porches. Down the middle was a fifth porch with pools on either side. It may have been the ancient equivalent of a hospital.
John 5:4 There’s some indication that it might have at some point in its history a spot that might have been associated with Aesculapius, the pagan founder of medicine, and that this superstition may have gotten to the point “that those who stepped into the pool when the water was troubled would be instantly healed.”
John 5:3 At least “an awful lot of people were waiting around for that event,” so the news must have spread that this occurred.
John 5:5 Here we run into a man that doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. “He’d been there for thirty-eight years.” I’m sure that many of us would feel for him. We all have been sitting around our own pool of Bethesda waiting for something to happen, something miraculous, something fateful. We have all waited for something unexpected from the outside to lift us out of a condition that we haven’t made too much of an effort to do anything about.
There was an environment there that did not help the problem. As a matter of fact, here’s how Professor Dodd describes it. I like this:
‘There is another story about a man who had given way to a chronic disability, and for years had nursed a grievance which excused him from doing anything about it.’
John 5:7. “Someone else always gets in before me.” If that sounds like a familiar excuse, then Bethesda isn’t so far back in history. So he translates Jesus’ statements this way. Do you want to recover? That pinpoints it, doesn’t it? Do you see how that translation exhibits Jesus dealing with the thought of the patient? Where must it happen?
If communication from God to man must work, where must we work? In the thought of the receiver. Do we want to recover? That almost sounds silly to people who have been in a longtime condition, but it may very well be the core of the issue. Do we really want to be healed? Or have we become so settled into our condition that for thirty eight years, we just sit there with our friends and talk about our operations? Misery loving company is a quality that attaches itself to human nature.
John 5: 6. Here’s how Dodd again translates Jesus’ question and then his demand on the patient. “Do you want to recover?”
John 5:8, “Then, pick up your bed and walk.” Jesus wasn’t about to volunteer to pick up his bed for him.
That says a lot. How else do we know Jesus, but to study his thoughts, his words, his methods, his messages, his intent, the logos, not but the word, but the thought behind it? What is required for the healing of a paralytic condition that has lasted practically a generation? It’s the very thing that he thought he couldn’t do, to pick up his bed and walk. Do you want to be healed? ‘Let there be light!’ (Genesis 1:3) That’s permission. Let it in.
John 5:9, “Immediately the man was made whole.” We don’t have any sense that there was a convalescence period. “He took up his bed and walked.”

… John 5:30. [And, Jesus said], “I can of mine own self do nothing.” Is this false humility or is Jesus actually giving us the facts straight out? What is the secret and source of everything he thought or did? What is the obstacle then between us and following Jesus? There’s something in there. Some kind of different concept of our selfhood than what he had. His was so transparent that there was nothing obstructing his at-one-ment with God, even on earth. His summons to us is to follow his example and shows his own expectation that we’re equipped to do it. So, we’re equipped to receive and to act on the instructions given us via communication. All we need to do is tune in.
We’re coming to understand Jesus’ view of himself, and where he thinks this authority originates, “The Son of Man can do nothing of himself. (John 5:19)"

John, the Beloved Disciple,” by B. Cobbey Crisler**

W’s PS#7b—Ken Cooper monologue on “Are Sin, Disease, and Death Real?” (the Christian Science Bible Lesson this week) springs from citation B17 in which Jesus heals the longtime cripple at the pool of Bethesda.

Ken calls this monologue "Wilt Thou Be Made Whole". It can be seen and downloaded in either its color or black-ink version via this link to the online version of Warren's PS additions by clicking on the DOWNLOADABLE PDF FILE in the UPPER RIGHT-HAND CORNER.

When Ken sent this poem, he commented: “It doesn’t matter how long a dream has lasted, when we awake it loses its claim to reality. It is seen for what it was, and it no longer has any hold. There is no need to keep dreaming and dreaming doesn’t ever make it true. Whatever the material dream, the spiritual Truth is always the present fact. Jesus was in effect asking the man at the pool of Bethesda “Are you willing to wake up?” And when he was obedient, (“Rise”) his natural health was immediately revealed, and he walked………..

The monologue is available in spoken form on https://youtu.be/Cg9b9KsySno while earlier spoken poems can be all found on on Ken G Cooper You Tube at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCv6edwM4E2y4wJ98jGEPUOw

W’s PS#8—Check out in the upper right the DOWNLOADable picture of a prayer shawl from Israel with the "Arise, shine" message that's meant for each of us. We too can feel like we are walking on holy ground, with sandals off.

W’s PS#9—A Great February 1949 CS Journal article on citation S19, SH 230:1



From the February 1949 issue of The Christian Science Journal

AT a vaudeville performance which the writer attended, a professional hypnotist induced a boy who consented to be his subject to believe he was eating ice cream and had spilled some on his coat. He took out his handkerchief and to the amusement of the audience went through the motions of removing the sticky substance. Was the boy's predicament due to the ice cream being on his coat? No, but to believing it was there, to having yielded to the suggestions of the hypnotist. He could not and did not remove the ice cream, for it was not on his coat. Only the mesmerism needed to be broken. When the boy was freed from the hypnotic suggestion, he no longer believed he saw what had never been present.

The recollection of this performance has often helped the writer to see the illusory nature of sin, sickness, and lack. Material systems regard sickness as a reality and attempt to heal it with drugs. But to admit the reality of sickness and then attempt without drugs to cure it is equally fallacious. Furthermore, it is far removed from Jesus' method of healing as practiced today in Christian Science.

Discussing this important point, Mary Baker Eddy writes in "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 230), "If sickness is real, it belongs to immortality; if true, it is a part of Truth." Then she asks this pertinent question: "Would you attempt with drugs, or without, to destroy a quality or condition of Truth?" She then continues: "But if sickness and sin are illusions, the awakening from this mortal dream, or illusion, will bring us into health, holiness, and immortality. This awakening is the forever coming of Christ, the advanced appearing of Truth, which casts out error and heals the sick." Our beloved Leader here shows that there is in reality no disease. That which appears as disease is an externalized suggestion of mortal mind that is dispelled and replaced with harmony when one awakens to Christ, Truth.

Earnest Christian Scientists should frequently ask themselves, "Am I attempting without drugs to destroy a disease that is true?" As one grasps the fundamental truths of Christian Science, he ceases to attempt with or without drugs to destroy an actuality, but entertains the forever coming of Christ, which destroys belief in what is untrue and thereby heals the sick. Christ, Truth, "casts out error and heals the sick" because error, or belief in what is untrue, and sickness are not two things, but one and the same thing. That one, though externalized, remains a false belief, an illusion.

In Genesis we read (1:31), "And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good." Only what God creates and sees actually exists. Because infinite Spirit, or perfect Love, creates and maintains all, man, its spiritual idea, must be as perfect as is his divine Principle.

Spiritual man, reflecting the nature of God, divine Love, cannot fail to express all divine Love's qualities forever; he cannot have anything that God does not possess. As in mathematics the identity of each figure and fraction remains constant, so in divine Science God, Mind, governs man not partially, but completely. The one Mind is forever the Mind of man. The conscious sense of good is established in each individual man. The real man has never left heaven, and it is impossible for him to do so.

Man, being inseparable from Deity, is as impervious to evil and as unimpairably perfect as is God Himself. Man being perfect, every right idea and spiritual quality comprising his being must be eternally perfect. Man is the expression of omnipotent, omniscient, and omniactive Mind. He therefore never lacks dominion, wisdom, or harmonious activity. Man, whose consciousness reflects infinite good, is never fooled by evil, since his Mind is the one infallible Mind, which cannot be deceived. He needs no healing, for he is eternally well and knows it. Surely, there is nothing to do, "with drugs, or without," to the real spiritual selfhood of any one of us. God's spiritual man eternally has all the good that God gives to His individual expression.

One can indeed be grateful that these truths can be applied in human experience to destroy discord. The all-important point is not first to accept the testimony of material sense that there is really a sick man or a real disease, and then attempt to heal what is actually present. Instead, we can dismiss from thought the wrong picture by awakening to the ever-present Christ, Truth, which reveals the present perfection of God's spiritual man. In awakening oneself or another from the illusion of sickness, it is most helpful to remember our Leader's Christlike admonition in Science and Health (p. 395): "It is mental quackery to make disease a reality—to hold it as something seen and felt—and then to attempt its cure through Mind. It is no less erroneous to believe in the real existence of a tumor, a cancer, or decayed lungs, while you argue against their reality, than it is for your patient to feel these ills in physical belief."

We can follow Jesus' method and begin with perfect God and perfect man. There can be but one God because God is infinite. There cannot be an opposite to infinite Mind any more than there can be an imperfect multiplication table. There is in reality, then, no mind to be deceived into accepting disease. One who is alert to the ever-presence of health and harmony will not be deceived by aggressive suggestions of sickness and discord, but will find that the truth that he knows dispels such suggestions. When one does not yield to suggestion in the form of sin, sickness, fear, or lack, it has to yield. Only ignorance yields to non-intelligent thought or suggestion. Truly intelligent thought cannot yield, because it knows the truth.

It is essential to remember that animal magnetism cannot create anything. In the illustration given at the beginning of this article, the hypnotist could only suggest; he could not make the ice cream appear. But one may say, "The boy, when mesmerized, did see the ice cream on his coat." But did he? Of course not. Nor was it visible to the audience. To have seen it the audience would have had to be mesmerized. Similarly, mortal mind, the archmesmerist, can only suggest disease; it cannot make it appear as reality, for disease cannot attain actual presence in infinite good. One may accept the suggestion of discord and think he sees or feels a diseased substance or formation. However, God, the only creator, did not make it, does not see it, and therefore it is not present to be seen.

Mortal mind does not see what really exists. It believes a thing first and then sees and feels that which it believes. (See Science and Health 86:29-31.) But since all is divine Mind and its ideas, mortal mind's false concepts never attain reality or existence. Sickness, then, is like the ice cream that never got on the boy's coat. To be got rid of, it needs only not to be believed. When Truth awakens one to spiritual reality, erring belief is banished. Then he no longer accepts and sees what is not really there. That which seems to be obscured— the health and holiness of man's perfect being—is always present. The understanding and realization of this spiritual fact manifests harmony to our thought. In the words of Job (28:11), "The thing that is hid bringeth he forth to light."

Let us suppose the boy had come to a student of Christian Science for help and said, "Please help me to get this ice cream off my coat." The student would immediately have seen that the boy's difficulty was pure delusion and would have aroused him from it. Would not the aim be the same if he came for help when ill? The misfortune in the second instance is just as much a mental illusion as in the first. Neither is going on in God's universe of harmony and perfection.

For this reason a Christian Scientist would not accept illness as real and then attempt "with drugs, or without," to heal it. Rather would he awaken the patient to his true selfhood, at one with God now. Thus we see the significance of the Psalmist's words (Ps. 10:15), "Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil man: seek out his wickedness till thou find none." Leave out the italicized words put in by the translators and the passage would be still clearer, for it would read: "Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil . . .: seek out his wickedness . . . thou find none." Indeed, the only arm or power of evil is in our acceptance of its false claim. When its false pretension or mesmeric suggestion is seen through, its power is broken. Then one will find no disease to be healed. Belief does not support and externalize it; hence it ceases to be.

Christian Science teaches that the claims of frustration, lack, and sin are not real and do not belong to man. It overcomes them by awakening the individual to their unreality. In Christian Science treatment the power of Truth acts upon and eliminates a false belief claiming to be a sick or sinful person. As our Leader so clearly writes (Retrospection and Introspection, p. 62): "Test Christian Science by its effect on society, and you will find that the views here set forth—as to the illusion of sin, sickness, and death—bring forth better fruits of health, righteousness, and Life, than a belief in their reality has ever done. A demonstration of the unreality of evil destroys evil."

Christian Science is an exact Science, which reveals God as All. Nothing can exist outside of His allness. The scientific understanding of perfect God and the present perfection of His idea, man, enables one intelligently to deny and cast out of thought every lying suggestion that man's well-being is in danger. As the angels of God, which always pass directly to man, who is ever at one with God, are entertained, false beliefs cannot be accepted and are destroyed. Thus the Christ, the ideal Truth, appears to us here and now, and it so illumines thought that one proves the words of a hymn,

"The Christ is here, all dreams of error breaking,
Unloosing bonds of all captivity."

It is reassuring to see sin, sickness, or lack destroyed by Truth. Yet we have the promise in the epistle to the Romans (8:37), "Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us." Error can indeed be conquered and permanently destroyed. Furthermore, the realization that brings the victory reveals to us that error never existed in the divine Mind or in Mind's reflection, man.

God is so good that He made no evil. Sin and sickness, then, have never been real. One who has attained in some measure this understanding of the all-inclusiveness of God's love gains the conviction that it precludes the existence of any evil. This enables him so to grasp the unreality of sin and sickness that he is healed of attempting "with drugs, or without, to destroy a quality or condition of Truth."

PS#10—Cobbey Crisler’s insights on John 11:1-44 (B21) & Jesus raising Lazarus with gratitude-in-advance prayer.

In Chapter 11, note how Jesus handles news of a severe sickness.

In John 11:3, "Jesus gets a message from Lazarus' sisters that Lazarus is sick."

In John 11:4, the first thing Jesus says is, "This sickness is not unto death.”

Remember that's what he said about the man born blind in John 9:3, " Neither has this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God might be manifest in him." We find the same kind of approach to a patient with Jesus' method of healing including that concept.

John 11:5, "He loved the family very much, the family of Bethany,”

John 11:6, "But he still remains for two days."

Then in John 11:7, he says, "Let us go into Judea again.”

John 11:8, "His disciples say, What? Last time we were there we had to duck projectiles. "

Then in John 11:11, he says to the disciples, “Our friend . . . (see the shepherd­motive) Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep." There are two Greek words for sleeping here. The first one is as if taking rest in sleep. The second one, "awake him out of sleep," is the Greek word "exhyp,nos”. It includes within it the root of our word hypnotism. It has a suggestion of a trance-like, not­normally-induced sleep. It is interesting to see Jesus referring to death as a process of needing to be awakened from a trance.

John 11:12. His disciples misunderstand that whole thing and "they say, If he’s sleeping, leave him alone. He’s fine if he’s resting."

John 11:13 shows how Jesus was using what we would call a euphemism. He avoided the word die, because he is seeing it differently.

In John 11:14, when, "they don't comprehend him, he says very plainly, Lazarus is dead ."

John 11:16. Thomas doesn’t cover himself with glory every time he appears in the Scriptures. On the other hand, neither do we in our daily lives very often. I don't think we should finger-point at Thomas. But Thomas does have somewhat of a note of sarcasm here when he says to his fellow disciples, "Alright, let's go with him. Let's go die with him if he's going to Judea. " This was something he was not that willing to do when the opportunity arose. As you recall, when they captured Jesus in Gethsemane, where did Thomas head with all the rest of them?

John 11:17, "When Jesus arrives, we find that four days Lazarus had been in the tomb." He sees the scene that was so often associated with death, the hired mourners and the official mourners.

Martha appears in what I hope will always be a new light. We have a tendency to stereotype, even people we haven't known. Martha has been labeled for centuries, "Don't be a Martha." Some people are sorry their name is Martha, because of that.

In John 11:25, it is only to Martha that Jesus ever makes the statement, "I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live." Since we know that Jesus only addressed the receptive thought, and since Martha is the only one to whomw he felt free to say, "I am the resurrection," it is somewhat of an honor to be named Martha from that point of view. …

John 11:33, "shows the weeping and the groaning that's going on."

John 11:35 is the shortest verse in the Bible. It indicates Jesus' humanity, "Jesus wept."

John 11:36, "Behold how he loved him!"

John 11:37, "They asked, Could this man have prevented this incident?"

John 11:38, "Jesus comes to the cave."

John 11:39, "And says, Take ye away the stone. At that point even Martha's faith breaks down. It's a hot country and a body in a tomb for four days and she so states."

John 11:40, "Jesus," supporting her continuing faith, "said, Didn't I tell you that if you would believe, you would see the glory of God?" Thereby he continued to support the resurrection trust in womanhood.

John 11:41, "They took away the stone. Jesus lifts up his eyes, and makes a pronouncement that what he desires through prayer has already been accomplished. I thank thee that thou hast heard me."

John 11:42, "And I knew that thou hearest me always. That's a remarkable statement of Jesus' theology.

Here's what the Anchor Bible says: "The prayer of petition is not the only form of prayer. If prayer is a form of union with God, then the Johannine (John's Gospel) Jesus is always praying, for he and the Father are one."

1 John 5:14 is another work attributed to the beloved disciple and one of the most beautiful views and definitions of prayer. It comes through the transparency of this thought that was so close to Jesus. Check your prayer against this measurement.

Here is the "Bureau of Standards" on prayer, "This is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us." Notice the qualification. It is not according to our will. It is totally selfless.

1 John 5:15. But that's not all, "If we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.” That's prayer of affirmation coming through there.

In John 11:42, isn't that exactly what Jesus said, "I know that thou hearest me always. If we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions. “It is important to examine how our prayers measure against that standard. We also find Jesus expressing gratitude before the event.

John 11:43. Then he says, “Lazarus, come forth." Obviously, he wouldn’t yell if he didn't think Lazarus could hear. You notice he's communicating with a so­called dead man, expecting him to be able to hear, using one of the faculties that was supposedly shut off. At the point of death, he doesn't regard it as shut off.

John 11:44, "Lazarus comes forth,” very awkwardly, I may add, but nothing could keep him from answering that demand. As a matter of fact, if you have been through the traditional tomb of Lazarus in Bethany, I consider it much more of a miracle that he ever emerged from the tomb, let alone being raised from the dead. I’m quite sure he would have bumped his head several times on his way out.

There's another part of the healing that’s necessary. "Jesus turns to those around him, “the environment, holding him in this grave, "and says, ‘Loose him, and let him go.'" There is a sense of freedom which is so important. Remember what he says to a woman in another gospel, Luke 13:12, "Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity.”
"Book of John, A Walk with the Beloved Disciple,"
by B. Cobbey Crisler**

**You can buy your own transcripts of most of Cobbey Crisler’s 28 talks at a new website: www.crislerlibrary.co.uk Email your order or inquiry to office@crislerlibrary.co.uk, or directly to Janet Crisler, at janetcrisler7@gmail.com

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(636) 394-6162

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Lebanon, MO 65536
(417) 532-6699

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