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Prayer Watch GEMs for March 18, 2020—When what you’ve leaned upon fails, learn from our great I-Am-God-NOW like Moses did, how to face it with authority and handle it with dominion—as if it’s only an illusion!
[Cobbey Crisler on Ex. 3 & 4
(partly as citations B10 and B11 for the 3-22-20 Christian Science Bible Lesson)
[Cobbey on Exodus 3: 2-6, bracket by verses in citation B10:]
“Notice when God appears to Moses at the burning bush and the bush was not consumed, notice that, otherwise the bush would be I-was.

“The bush was not consumed despite the passage of time, material elements, whatever.

That I Am is continuous and preserved.

“Jesus brings out the point that God could not have used the statement “I am the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” He could not have said that using the present tense in Moses time, if what were not true? (Voice from a live talk: “Eternality”). Eternality of whom? Not just God. His point was not that. His point was the Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were not dead, or God could not have said, “I Am the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.” They are I AM as well. If God is I Am, then his creation must always be I Am. That’s Jesus’ own point.

[W: We can think of the eternality of all whenever we hear frequent updates on the current number of deaths caused by the CoVid-19 “plague.” Over 1,000 years earlier Moses helped the children of Israel overcome a killer plague in Egypt during the first Passover.

[W: In the 91st Psalm, David echoes God’s Passover promise of dominion over every “noisome pestilence” and pandemic. To all who “dwell in “the secret place of the most High” [in the Tabernacle “Holy of Holies” where the Ten Commandments are stored, cherished and lived] David reminds us of God’s ever available protection:A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand, but it shall not come near you. Only a spectator shall you be [yourself inaccessible in the secret place of the Most High] … Because you have made the Lord your refuge, and the Most High your dwelling place, There shall no evil befall you, nor any plague or calamity come near your tent. For He will give His angels [especial] charge over you to accompany and defend and preserve you in all your ways [of obedience and service].” Ps. 91: 7-11 (Amplified Bible, Classic Edition)]

[W: It’s encouraging the Moses got the immortality message enough to show up (with Elijah) at the Transfiguration (Matt. 17:1-3). And Jesus proved death to be an illusion not only; for Jairus and his daughter’s mourners (Mark 5:21, B13); but also for the mourning widow at Nain; and for Lazarus and his mourning family; and for us all with his resurrection and ascension!

[W: Other Facets from Exodus 4 that sparkle bright this week with applications for today:]
[Cobbey continues:] “In Chapter 4 Moses, after he has been tested on this I-Am subject, says he is afraid that others will not be receptive. They will say, when he gets back to Egypt in that symbolic condition of bondage, “Let’s ask ourselves whether we have emerged from Egypt.” Even the geographies of the Bible can be symbolized and made quite relevant to your own experience: The bondage represented by Egypt, the extent to which we are dominated rather than exercise dominion under God, which Genesis 1, (verse 26,) indicates is man’s heritage.

Then Moses (in Exodus 4:1) despairs of being able to go back and say, “God has appeared unto me, God is I AM, forget this antiquated theology that God is I Was. Let’s begin to do something about God now.”

[W: Many dear ones in quarantine or isolation these days may be feeling alone and tested by “Loneliness; doubt; darkness.” Note Mary Baker Eddy’s punctuation choice of a period or “full stop” following these three material views of “WILDERNESS” on p. 597 of Science and Health.
We, like Moses, will be blessed by putting a “full stop” to these wilderness fables by replacing them with the precious aspects of a “WILDERNESS” experience as Mary Baker Eddy defines them in the second, spiritual part of her definition: “Spontaneity of thought and idea; the vestibule in which a material sense of things disappears, and spiritual sense unfolds the great facts of existence.” That spiritual sense (that is CedarS mission to give to all) takes one from feeling alone to feeling all-one with divine Love and all of Her creation!

[C.] “Moses needs some examples. God says (in Verse 2), “What do you have right there, right in your hand?” A rod. I’m sure you know what that would mean to a shepherd, and all the uses of a rod in a shepherd’s hand: the symbol of authority, the counting of the sheep so as not to lose one, the encouragement, sometimes a little bit roughly, to get into the fold, the warding off of wild beasts, the general symbolic authority which it would convey.

“What is that in thine hand?” “You have a symbol of authority you’re already exercising.” But do know really what it is? How are you regarding it?” He is told to throw it on the ground (in Verse 3) and the minute it’s thrown on the ground, it becomes a serpent. If we wish to throw down our symbol of authority and release our grasp on it and let it fall into the dust-man theory of Genesis 2 and 3, according to Genesis 3 (Verse 14), dust is the serpent’s meat.

It becomes a serpent and Moses runs from a problem of his own making. Is this relevant to us? Does this teach us a lesson for ourselves? When things that we have learned to lean upon— whatever, hope, faith, perhaps health, substance or wealth, youth, another person. If what we’ve relied upon falls from our grasp and hits the dirt, turning into what looks like the opposite, as our health disappears, our youth disappears, our wealth disappears, our hope, our faith, our religion, whatever, and in their places, we find what the serpent represents, dread and danger. Then where are we religiously? Where are we? Is there any way out? Probably the biggest question that humanity asks itself: Is there a way out?

God tells Moses, as our spiritual progenitor, our pioneer in this laboratory testing, is God telling Moses what? (Voice: “Face it.”) Face it. Don’t run from it. Take it. Is the tail of the serpent the safest part or the most dangerous? In order to grab a serpent by the tail, you will have had to overcome what? (Voices: “Fear.”) Fear. You just simply cannot pick up a serpent that way if you have not already exercised a mental dominion and security over it. The lesson, too, perhaps is implicit that we should not have let go of our rod or misunderstood its meaning, turn it into a false reliance, because it really isn’t youth, health, or hope or faith. It’s something even stronger.

We see the minute he picks that illusion… it was a magical illusion. The rod was always there. The problem was the illusion. He had fled before it. Now the rod become even higher than hope or faith, it becomes what for Moses? He now understands how to overcome human problems. Is this what he has to bring down into Egypt for dominion for the rest of humanity?

What in the Bible does the serpent represent or symbolize, right from the beginning? It’s a symbol of the devil, the symbol of the power given to any opposition to God. So, we find that a serpent here can be overcome. The serpent, in just whispering or suggesting things to Adam and Eve, introduces what according to the legend? (Voice: “Death.”) Before death, sin. The serpent and sin are parallels in Biblical symbolism.

That is not the only news that Moses, through his own experience in the wilderness, is to bring to waiting humanity. That’s only half the news: That man has the power in his grasp to overcome sin. The other half of the news is in Verse 6 (of Exodus 4) when God says, “put now thy hand into thy bosom.” He does. When he takes it out, before him is the evidence, and perhaps an incurable form of this disease, leprosy. You have to realize the dreaded nature of this disease at that time. It was sufficient to virtually ostracize you from the rest of the world. He takes this out. He has the same reaction he had when he first saw the serpent. What is it? The fear, the dread, to flee before, just even in repulsion. But look at the calm instruction (Verse 7), “Don’t get excited. Put it right back. Take it out.” Poof. [Negative “test.”]

The whole to-and-fro nature of disease is exposed here. Is this a message that God has given to Moses as the only receptive individual in that known world—certainly the only one who has reported such an event—the news that man also has a God-ordained, God-given dominion over sickness and disease as well as over sin? But he must exercise that dominion just as he has to show the same dominion over sin.

In (Exodus 4,) Verse 8 (is) almost as historical, even though it is a prophetic note here, it seems historical for us, especially in our twentieth century when we have seen so many denominations are now being to focus on the role of healing within their ranks. In Verse 8 the prophesy is “if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign,” the victory over sin, “they will believe the voice of the latter sign,” the victory over disease, which is most easy to accept when one witnesses it. To see leprosy healed in front of you would cause many people at least to wonder seriously about what brought it about.

“Heal the Sick: A Scriptural Record,” by B. Cobbey Crisler**

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