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[Let Christ reveal your true story & expunge the false one of ever being put out of “paradise.”]
Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Bible Lesson, May 5-11, 2014

Subject: Adam and Fallen Man

Prepared by Kathy Fitzer of St. Louis, MO and Park City, UT
kathyfitzer@gmail.com 314-323-4083

[Bracketed italics by CedarS Director Warren Huff. Life-transforming camperships needed!]

This week let’s choose which version of creation we’re going to accept … Genesis 1 or Genesis 2. It’s fun to notice the sharp contrasts between the absolute truth of the first chapter of Genesis and the falsity of the second chapter. The first chapter describes the perfect creation of Mind. The second is the inverted human view, adulterated by material belief. The second chapter was written first. But, as thought was enlightened, the truth of the first chapter was recognized. Christ Jesus taught and demonstrated life based on this true story. As a result, we are free to reject all the complications of the fable of material creation and stick with the facts — perfect God, perfect man!

Golden Text: Let’s pray — for ourselves and all mankind — as Paul prayed for the people of Corinth, that thought can’t be corrupted (changed) from the simplicity (quality of being easy to understand or do) that is in Christ. Let’s know that we can’t be beguiled (led astray) as Eve was. The Christ light lets us see — and avoid — the subtle traps of “serpent speak.”

Responsive Reading: The story says that Eve succumbed to the suggestion of a serpent to disobey God’s simple command… don’t eat the fruit of the tree in the center of the garden. Do we — like Eve — sometimes know the “right” thing to do or right way to think, but get pulled away from it? And, do we sometimes take others with us? Or, like Adam, follow without thinking? Are we doomed to live life on the roller coaster of right and wrong decisions? Not if we go back to the original, simple truth demonstrated by Christ Jesus and forever communicated to each of us by Christ… Man is made in the image of God and can never truly fall from that high estate! I was struck by Paul’s statement, “Do not deceive yourselves.(NRSV) The word translated deceive here comes from the Greek word, exapatao, and means to beguile, as well as deceive. Eve admitted to succumbing to the serpent’s suggestion, but still said it was the serpent who “beguiled” her… or lead her astray. To admit that another can lead us astray is saying that our dominion can be taken from us… making us subject to contagion as well as the influence of peer pressure. But, Paul puts control of our thought (and experience) back on us. Let’s be alert to not lead ourselves astray. Instead, watch thought! Consistently and vehemently identifying ourselves as Christ’s — as the image of God described in Genesis 1, inseparable from God — we’ll stay on track. No hijacking of thought allowed!

Section 1: Who are you?
After Adam and Eve fell for the serpent’s trick, they tried to hide from God. Perhaps they realized they had messed up! They felt vulnerable (naked.) Consequences of their actions were being felt, and they responded to “being caught” by making excuses… playing the blame game. (B-1) I think most of us have been in situations where we have responded with justification. I know I have. Paul again corrects this misguided thought. He tells the Galatians not to be deceived. In this case, the Greek word is meheytabel, and means to roam. We can’t let thought wander from absolute Truth, nor let God be mocked, or ridiculed. The term “Lord God” is used in the second chapter of Genesis. It appears when the translator loses sight of the spiritual sense of God (presented in Genesis 1 — citation B-3) and entertains a false sense of life as resident in matter. (S-3 & S-5) If we accept a false sense of God as the creator of a material universe, the upright nature of man made in God’s image is lost sight of! Don’t be tricked! You are the child of God… and thus the heir of Spirit! You have been given dominion. We’re assured in the Christian Science textbook that as we discern (recognize) this fact and perceive our world according to Christ, Truth, rather than fickle matter, we will be able to use Science (a right understanding of Life) as a key which reopens “the gates of Paradise” to human consciousness. The gates leading to our God-given freedom of heavenly paradise have never truly been closed. We can take thought there at any time. We simply have to turn away from the seemingly ever-present sneaky suggestions of human belief. Remember, a suggestion can never MAKE us do anything. As we take responsibility for your own thoughts, know who God made us to be, follow Truth, and refuse to fall for lies or justify ourselves when we do slip up, we can use our key of Science to open those gates right back up, and enter in! (S-6)

Section 2: Conflict is resolved through Christ — Choose spiritual-mindedness.
We often hear that conflict is simply part of life. Disputes (especially in parts of the world such as the Middle East) have been going on for generations, and there is not much hope for resolution. Doesn’t this belief in conflict begin with a false sense of creation as matter-based, a misconception of God’s nature as outlined in the second chapter of Genesis? Here, the serpent (material sense) and mankind are sentenced to perpetual cursing and conflict. (B-5) And that sentence appears to continue to be the verdict for our world today. But, we can’t be made to believe that story! Jesus came to reveal the truth of God’s creation as blessed — full of life. We learn from the apostle Paul that “to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” The Greek word translated “carnally” is sarx. It refers to “human nature with its frailties.” On the other hand, the phrase “spiritually minded” comes from the Greek word pneuma — “breath, Christ’s spirit, or the Holy Spirit.” (Strong’s, B-6) So, to be deceived by what appears to be human nature is a resignation to death. But, God is Love, whose nature is not to destroy, but to save. Thus, the Son of God (Christ) comes to human consciousness as the breath of Life, canceling the death-sentence. (B-7 & B-8) No matter how loudly the testimony of conflict screams, nothing can separate any of us from the love of God… the LOVE that is in Christ, expressed by Jesus. (B-9) I’ve often thought of Christ in connection with Truth and light. But, I see here the clear connection of Christ as the expression of LOVE… the perfect antidote for conflict and cursing. We have to keep turning thought Spirit-ward and thus improve material beliefs. (S-8) Conflict can only occur if more than one entity is present. The carnal mind truly has no origin — no presence — in the allness of God. As we allow divine Science (demonstrable Truth) to destroy all faith in human nature and material methods, apparent conflict, known as sin, disease, and death will disappear. (S-10) Let’s choose to reject the “conflict story”! God has made us to be spiritually minded. Christ is here, revealing God’s love!

Section 3: Sinless perfection is our birthright.
This section more fully develops the idea of Christ saving mankind from “the law of sin and death.” (B-10) The word translated as law comes from a primary Greek root, nemo, which means to parcel out, as in grazing for animals. I loved thinking about the “law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” as a table spread before us, from which we are continually fed with delicious and healthy thoughts that lead to clear decisions and fruitful activities. Such a fabulous provision must surely put any lesser option (the law of sin and death) out of business — permanently! What’s even better is to realize that this provision of good can’t be interrupted, as we realize our nature to be the offspring of God. As a plant includes only the nature of the seed from which it comes, man — coming from the “seed” of God — can only express the nature of God. Coming from the Greek word hamartano, to sin is to “miss the mark.” But, no matter how many times it seems we’ve missed, we must understand our nature to be as perfect as the nature of our Father. Then we know the mark (or target) can be hit — and we strive for that. We have to be careful not to confuse human perfectionism with divine perfection. The former isn’t attainable… the latter is. I’m remembering the story of the eagle that was raised in a chicken coop. That eagle thought he was a chicken — but he never was! Once the farmer showed him that he was indeed capable of flight, he rose to his full potential. Apparently living in the realm of “human nature,” we tend to accept mortal limits and discord as part of life. But, Christ and Christian Science show us that we are in fact the perfect expression of perfect God. With this knowledge, we can soar — like the eagle!

Section 4: Refuse to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge.
As we said earlier, the Lord God gave a simple command… eat freely of all the good I’ve given you. Just don’t eat the fruit of the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” And, He even explained why… eat the fruit of knowledge, and you’ll die! (B-17) God tells us that as we listen to and obey Him, we’ll experience the life and health that are ours! (B-16) So, what does this “tree” that mortal mind tempts us to eat from look like today? Let’s take a good look at Mrs. Eddy’s definition of “knowledge.” According to it, we should avoid taking in (eating) whatever the 5 material senses tell us as well as all human opinions and theories… whatever is not divine. (S-16) This kind of knowledge is constantly changing, so it can’t be trusted. What is considered healthy one year is unhealthy another. “Diseases have multiplied, since man-made material theories took the place of spiritual truth.” (S-17) So, rather than trying to keep up with the latest “authorities” concerning what to eat and how to exercise and what diseases to fear, reject every false image and every human opinion (regardless of how “scientific” it claims to be) and see what divine Mind has to say! Mind knows only good and we can count on it to guide us! Stick with the truth of Genesis 1 rather than the misconception of Genesis 2. Life is the reward!

Section 5: Tune in to the message.
God is continually telling us who we are and what’s really going on in Life. The question has forever been … are we listening to the message, or being mesmerized by the static? When we turn on the radio and hear static, we know that a broadcast is going out. The problem is that either we’re too far away to receive the signal, or haven’t properly tuned in. Jesus appeared in a human form so that we could clearly hear the Christ message and see the effects of the Christ consciousness. That message of Truth is still being communicated by God, and the healing effects can still be felt. The message is basically that man is upright … whole and perfect. But, mortal thought, basing life on the Adam fable has made up all sorts of sub-plots (inventions) that would detour thought and attempt to derail man’s well-being. (B-19 & B-22) So, how do we get back on track? Consider the analogy of the radio static. First, move thought close to God and away from the interference of mortal health theories. It’s not enough just to “ignore” the theories. Correct them by fine tuning your dial of thought. Get off the fence as to where your aid comes from. As we learn from the experience of the dyspeptic, there is no need to honor health laws of food and exercise. Instead, we need to exercise our “dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle.” We can eat all that is set before us, and fear no consequences from our activities, as long as we listen for God’s direction as to what and how much of everything we’re involved in (food, exercise, work, socializing, etc.) to partake of. (S-26 & S-27) A key to Jesus’ teachings was the presence of the “kingdom of God” within us. Because Truth and Love reign within us, there’s no room for a reaction to anything going on “outside.” (S-24) Tune in to being God’s child and you’ll realize you can’t ever be thrown out of “paradise.”

Section 6: Full redemption through understanding our relationship to God
The key to freedom from the limitations of material belief (from the curse of Adam) is to understand who we are as the sons and daughters of God! Although the children of Israel were being obstinately disobedient at this time, God spoke through the prophet Isaiah to reaffirm their true nature to be how He created them to be … HIS children. God reaffirms His love and explains that man was made to show off God’s nature. (B-23) As Mrs. Eddy puts it, “Man is the expression of God’s being.” (S-28) An expression of something can’t be separated from the original. The expression on someone’s face can’t be separated from the face. Rather, it shows what a person is thinking. As Mind’s expression, man reveals what Mind is thinking. There is one Mind and one expression — one man! The key is to really understand that and not be fooled by what appears to be many minds and material life. There’s just ONE Life, and we will experience it as we identify with the first account of creation in Genesis 1, and reject the fable of man created in matter, and liable to poor judgment and punishment. What a lovely message we have from our pastor… the love of God is able to keep us from falling and presents us as faultless (as God made us to be.) (B-24) The REAL man “was, is, and ever shall be perfect” because the image of God must be “upright and Godlike.” (S-30) We are the “real man.” There IS no other man, because God couldn’t create something the opposite of himself. Anything that opposes that fact just isn’t so. Our job is to not be fooled, knowing that man can’t be fooled. Staying focused on the love of God, we can adamantly dismiss anything — and all things — unlovely. Know yourself as the child of God, made in His image, and Love will enable you to act accordingly and receive the blessings of Christ, rather than the cursing of Adam and Eve. When your story seems to be closer to that of Adam and Eve than to Jesus, go back and remember who you really are, and praise God for making you in His image!


The Met application ideas above are provided primarily to help CedarS campers and staff (as well as friends) see and daily demonstrate the great value of studying and applying the Christian Science Bible lessons throughout the year, not just at camp! YOU CAN ALSO SIGN UP for weekly emails from past CedarS staff of possible ways to share Bible Lesson applications with older, as well as younger, Sunday School classes by clicking the "Subscribe Now" button (lower left) at http://www.cedarscamps.org/metaphysical/ ]

[THANK YOU in advance for MAKING A TAX-DEDUCTIBLE GIFT ONLINE,
BY PHONE at 636-394-6162,
OR BY MAIL at:
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[Additional Director's Note: You can sign up to have these application ideas emailed to you free – by Monday each week in English; or by each Wednesday you can get a FREE TRANSLATION: in German, thanks to Manfred and Jeanette; or in Spanish, thanks to a team of Ana, Erick, Claudia and Patricio, or in Portuguese, thanks to helpers of Orlando Trentini in Brazil. A voluntary French translation by Rodger Glokpor, a Christian Scientist from Togo (West Africa) has been contributed. Thank you, Rodger and all translators! Go to http://www.cedarscamps.org/ and click "Newsletters" to sign-up for a free translation into these languages. This sharing is the latest in an ongoing, 13-year series of CedarS Bible Lesson "Mets" (Metaphysical application ideas) contributed weekly by a rotation of CedarS Resident Practitioners and occasionally by other metaphysicians. (Ask and look for "Possible Sunday School Topics "and "Possible Younger Class Lessons" in emails to follow.) These weekly offerings are intended to encourage further study and application of ideas in the lesson and to invigorate Sunday School participation by students and by the budding teachers on our staff. Originally sent JUST to my Sunday School students and to campers, staff and CedarS families who wanted to continue at home and in their home Sunday Schools the same type of focused Lesson study, application and inspiration they had felt at camp, CedarS lesson "Mets "and Sunday School ideas are in no way meant to be definitive or conclusive or in any way serve as a substitute for daily study of the lesson. The thoughts presented are the inspiration of the moment and are offered to give a bit more dimension and background as well as new angles (and angels) on the daily applicability of some of the ideas and passages being studied. The weekly Bible Lessons are copyrighted by the Christian Science Publishing Society and are printed in the Christian Science Quarterly and in a variety of useful formats as available at Christian Science Reading Rooms or online at eBibleLesson.com or myBibleLesson.com. The citations referenced (i.e.B-1 and S-28) from this week's Bible Lesson in the "Met" (Metaphysical application ideas) are taken from the Bible (B-1 thru B-26) and the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy (S-1 thru S-32). The Bible and Science and Health are the ordained pastor of the Churches of Christ, Scientist. The Bible Lesson is the sermon read in Christian Science church services throughout the world. The Lesson-Sermon speaks individually through the Christ to everyone, providing unique insights and tailor-made applications for each one. We are glad you requested this metaphysical sharing and hope that you find some of the ideas helpful in your daily spiritual journey, in your deeper digging in the books and in closer bonding with your Comforter and Pastor.]

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