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Metaphysical Application Ideas for the Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson on

“Probation (after Death)”
for April 23, 2023

by John & Lindsey Biggs, C.S of Maryland Heights, MO
541 418 1176
541 460 3515


This week’s Lesson gives us some great ideas on how to live and experience the Kingdom of God right here and now. From Joseph saving his people from famine, to Moses leading the Israelites across the Red Sea, this week’s Lesson contains many examples of the nowness of the Kingdom of Heaven. Enjoy diving into this week’s Bible Lesson and exploring the life-preserving power of God.

Golden Text

“. . . behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” Luke 17:21

Isn’t this the greatest gift? It means that the understanding of God and the spiritual power that flows from that is right with us wherever we go. We don’t have to wait because it is now! It’s not “out there”.

Some neat aspects of the word within:
In the inner part; inwardly; internally; In the mind; not reaching to any thing external. (1828 Webster’s Dictionary)

This means it cannot be bought and it’s not material. It’s spiritual, ever-present, equally available to one and all.

I’ve found that the qualities in the Beatitudes and the rest of the Sermon on the Mount enable us to discern the Kingdom of Heaven – be pure in heart, be meek, hunger for right thinking and acting, be a peacemaker, etc.  Consider taking a look at the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew, chapters 5, 6,7) and see what new qualities you can discover about living in the Kingdom today.

Responsive Reading

God knows everything about us! And it is good! God is delighted in what God creates. So, each of us is the delight of God expressed.

“O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me…Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.” (Psalm 139:3)

God is acquainted with all your ways! So, if you’re getting ready to embark on a new project, looking for physical healing, trying to find funding for a new endeavor, God is already ahead of you ordering every detail. God knows your business plan; God knows which college or spouse or job is best for you. God knows your needs even before you even ask.

Our task then is to listen, open up our hearts and minds, to what God is seeing and knowing.
When we desire to do God’s will, then things fall into place. Isn’t that what this petition illustrates:

“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139:23)

Section 1 Live and be God’s song!

“The Lord is my strength and song, and is become my salvation.” (citation B1/Psalm 118:14)

Where does our strength come from? This passage makes it clear that our strength comes from God, Life, Truth, and Love – not from muscles or material elements.

“And Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated.” Deut. 34:7

Where did that “life force” come from? Clearly not from the body. It came from doing the will of God and allowing God to live through him. It’s allowing ourselves to be the song that God is singing through us.

“thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” (cit. B2, Psalm 23:4)
God’s rod and staff lead us and guide us. They lead and guide us in paths of right thinking, living, and acting. When we are obedient to God, we feel comfort – comforted knowing we are on the right track. The word “comfort” means to strengthen. So, God gives us the comfort and the encouragement needed to see clearly what God is seeing and knowing in every situation.

With God as our Shepherd, we can’t want. We can’t lack any good thing. This certainly is a great way to counteract the consumerism that seems so prevalent in our society today. The belief that comfort and satisfaction are somewhere out there – rather than in the Kingdom of Heaven within. What an imposition on eternal rest and satisfaction!

“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house [the consciousness] of [love] for ever.” (cit. S3, SH p. 578:16)

Dwelling in the consciousness of Love means knowing what eternally belongs to you – all the health, joy, radiance, and freedom that are inherent in you – are yours right here and now for you to claim today!

Section 2 Joseph’s persistence paves the way

We can learn so much from Joseph. He was certainly put in some tough situations but he recognized God as the sole authority over his life. This is what enabled him to overcome those situations, gave him the strength to keep going, and gave him new talents and abilities that put him in a prominent position in Egypt.

He said, “And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God:” (cit. B5, Genesis 45:7, 8)

Recognizing God as the sole authority over his life made him tributary to God. He maintained his constant connection to God – a connection that was needed to give him the inspiration to interpret dreams, to have the courage to stand before Pharaoh, and to manage food supplies for Egypt.

God was clearly living through him, inspiring him to be of service to those around him even when he was unjustly imprisoned. God was the life force that gave him new energy, persistence, encouragement, ideas, gratitude, and guidance throughout his journey. What a model for us! He had a clear sense of purpose and wasn’t disheartened by the things going on around him. He had clear spiritual vision helping him to see God’s grace and presence leading and guiding him.

The article The Truth About Adversity by Louise Knight Wheatley Cook talks a lot about Joseph and his walk with God. Enjoy reading it using the shared link in blue.

Joseph lived the Spirit of Paul’s statement here, allowing the newness of Christ to move him forward.

“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 3:13, 14)

Enjoy these remarks from Bible Lens Research:

“At this point Joseph has spent over twenty years in Egypt. Because their treachery brought about his enslavement there, his brothers must be frightened to find him alive and in a position of immense authority. But Joseph forgives them, proclaiming God’s activity in his and his family’s life. A scriptural authority explains: “He invites them to view the past from the perspective of the present: . . . What God has done now counts in charting a way into the future. God has preserved life; God has kept this family intact in the threat of death.” (Christian Science Sentinel)

Section 3 Stand still and consider what God is doing

This section contains quite the action movie! There’s one passage in particular that stands out to me as I read this week’s Lesson. It’s found here in Bible citation 10, from Exodus 14:13: “Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord…” This whole scene was not one that “stand still” would probably have seemed like a fit for! There was so much frenzy and fear. But it was so wonderful that Moses was willing to listen to God – to admit that God was actually there, and to avail himself of God’s presence. And then, he followed through. He didn’t try to add on to what God commanded. He just followed, and gave a model to the Israelites to follow.

There are probably many relevancies that each of us can take away from this into our own lives. Let’s enjoy listening to God to see how and where we can stand still and see God’s presence and salvation, instead of thinking we have to navigate by the ever-changing circumstances surrounding us. God loves you. He made you to bear witness to Him and to show what He is like. It’s good to stand still and see what He is doing here, how He is loving you wherever you are right now.

Section 4 God knows you

In the story of the raising of Lazarus (cit. B13, John 11), there’s a line from Jesus that always sticks out to me. Here in the context of this week’s Bible Lesson, with our Golden Text assuring us the immediacy of heaven, it stands out in a new light. I’m thinking of the line where Jesus says, in verse 41, “Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me.” Great! Except….Jesus hadn’t said anything yet. One might think that, after uttering this sincere gratitude, that Jesus had prefaced it with some sort of statement or perhaps a request of God. But nope – the people took away the stone, and then Jesus thanks God for always hearing him. Jesus must have been referring to the fact, then, that God ALWAYS hears us! Jesus was thanking God for knowing what he was saying in his heart. Of course, we know that Jesus was so consistent in his praise of God and turning to God in everything and for everything. It’s telling, that he didn’t plead with God to raise Lazarus, or try and convince a human body to become healthy again, or anything like that. He cast his weight on the side of the truth, and more importantly, he ALWAYS cast his weight on the side of the truth.

Now, this actually makes complete sense! Not just because, “he was Jesus!” but because, since heaven is always here – we are in heaven and the qualities of heaven abide within us – it makes sense that Jesus would always be alert to and engaged with the presence of God. God knew Jesus perfectly, and Jesus was so glad about that! This presents us with an interesting opportunity, as well. Can we say at any time, with such gratitude, “Thank you God for hearing me” ? In other words, can we be honestly grateful every day that God knows us and hears us? Or are there portions of our days which are filled with mental thought-patterns which we would NOT want God – or anyone – to know about? How focused are we, how single-minded are we, on the presence of God and allowing our thoughts and actions to appropriately honor His ever-presence? Now, something that’s vitally important here is that God is not like some cartoon police officer, yelling at people to shape up. God loves us! He made us and we are literally His expressions. So, God knowing us is not scary but truly freeing – it’s the assurance that we are made to honor and fully represent and express Him.

Section 5 Run your own race

 Like in the last section, again I’m really drawn to one particular line.
“Let us run with patience the race that is set before us” (citation B17, Hebrews 12:1).
Not someone else’s race. Not the race you imagined you’d be running. Today, this day, our individualized opportunity to honor and glorify God. I could be the fastest person in the world…but if I run the opposite direction from the race, or if I just run across the shot-put arena, then my speed doesn’t matter. I need to run the race, the track, the opportunity that is set before me. This means that we shouldn’t compare ourselves to others. We also shouldn’t idolize or demonize others.

As Christ Jesus said in his Sermon on the Mount, we “are the light of the world” and we are all made to show forth God’s spiritual, wholly good nature. We’re so busy shining that we don’t have time to fret about what others may be doing! Now, certainly, our good examples can be a support to others – as others’ good examples are a support to us. Part of being of God’s family is that, as brothers and sisters, we help each other! But we don’t run each other’s races, for each other.

Take some time to consider what your “races” are. Perhaps an upcoming school assignment, or summer job opportunities, or career or home changes. Perhaps relationship opportunities, or budding new interests. Maybe a deeper dive into your practice of Christian Science, considering when to take class instruction, or how to effectively engage in ecumenical and interfaith settings. Or perhaps simply a more spiritualized approach to healthcare for oneself, or caregiving for others.

We are able to run the race that is set before us; let’s not fret about a race that isn’t ours.

Section 6 Now is the acceptable time

 “Nowness” is the perfect antidote to thinking the Kingdom of Heaven is somewhere out there in a time and land faraway. Jesus’s ministry lived nowness.

+And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked (John 5:9)
+And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way. (Mark 10:52)
+And he laid his hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.  (Luke 13:13)

+…and immediately the ship was at the land whither they went. (John 6:21)

This immediacy was a sign of the ever presence of the Kingdom of Heaven. This kingdom wasn’t a “far-off” thing. Jesus said the Kingdom of Heaven is already here among us.

As Mary Baker Eddy puts it: “… the heavens and earth to one human consciousness, that consciousness which God bestows, are spiritual, while to another, the unillumined human mind, the vision is material.”  (Science and Health, p. 573:6–9)

Jesus always had spiritual vision which is what enabled him to “see” ever-present goodness. He was utterly unconvinced of material senses – knowing they were only expressions of a limited, carnal mind. He was seeing God as the true Mind. God as Life and Truth. This showed him that God and God’s creation was and could be the only reality. He lived this reality and brought it out in healing.

We, too, can pray to have an enlightened mind that sees spiritually – the way Jesus did – that the Kingdom of Heaven is here and now.

“Now,” cried the apostle, “is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation,” — meaning, not that now men must prepare for a future-world salvation, or safety, but that now is the time in which to experience that salvation in spirit and in life. (citation S28, 39:18–22)

 Enjoy living in this Kingdom today!

Some of GEMs of BIBLE-BASED application ideas (from Cobbey Crisler & others) should be POSTED soon and others will be added to the string and EMAILED together later in the week.  You can always check  for current GEMs at CedarS INSPIRATION website, whether or not you’ve  SUBSCRIBED here for this free, inspirational offering.

Also later in the week, look for Ken Cooper’s
contributions related to this Bible Lesson.

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After hosting this Fall another wonderful Bible Study Workshop, a touching and joyous Celebration of Life Service, and a great Methodist Women’s Retreat, CEDARS IS SEEKING TO UPGRADE OUR NORTH STAR DINING ROOM TO BE A MISSION-WORTHY CONFERENCE CENTER TO SERVE other SUCH EVENTS. For more about supporting this upgrade, or about making a planned gift, a required IRA distribution or an endowment gift (that will all be MATCHED), feel free to call or text me (Warren Huff) anytime at 314-378-2574.



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