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“Why is there so much trouble in the world?”
Throw off … beliefs of inadequacy… and arrive at the knowledge of your true self. …
Declare that you are not fallen and can never be less than whole. (6)
Possible Sunday School Topics (PSSTs) for The Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson:

“Adam and Fallen Man”
for October 30 – November 5, 2023

prepared by Merrill Boudreaux, C.S., for CedarS Camps   •   314-308-1059

The subject of this Lesson is one of the old theological issues of Mary Baker Eddy’s day, and continues today in some orthodox theology. Today, it might boil down to the questions of “Why is there so much trouble in the world?” or, “Why is there so much present suffering in humanity today?”

Help students understand the origin of this subject related to Adam and Eve being separated from God and cast out of the Garden of Eden. Even if that story were true and not just an allegory, could one possibly conceive of a God who is good and an ever-loving Father-Mother being capable of punishing its creation for all eternity?

So let’s look to this Lesson to self-identify as one “cared for, watched over, beloved, and protected” as stated in Hymn 278 from the Christian Science Hymnal (words supplied here).

Hymn 278 (& 279)

Pilgrim on earth, home and heaven are within thee, / Heir of the ages and child of the day. / Cared for, watched over, beloved and protected, / Walk thou with courage each step of the way.

Truthful and steadfast though trials betide thee, / Ever one thing do thou ask of thy Lord, / Grace to go forward, wherever He guide thee, / Gladly obeying the call of His word.

Healed is thy hardness, His love hath dissolved it, / Full is the promise, the blessing how kind; / So shall His tenderness teach thee compassion, / So all the merciful, mercy shall find.

P.S.S.T.  Golden Text (GT)/Job 33:14; Job 38:4,7: “…God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not.  Where was thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? … When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?”

What is it that you should perceive about what God said about Her first creation and all subsequent elements of creation? What is a reason to shout for joy? See Genesis 1:31: “…God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. …”

That is you, and EVERY ONE. That is your true nature. So how do you challenge the false suggestion that you or anyone can ever be less than good? Honor what we perceive as true and challenge the false claim that man is ever less than the man that God created. See what Mary Baker Eddy tells us how our role model, Christ Jesus, did this. See Science & Health 476:32-2, “Jesus beheld in Science the perfect man, who appeared to him where sinning mortal man appears to mortals.”

Responsive Reading (RR)/selections from Genesis 1:1-31

Read together the Responsive Reading that reiterates what we have just spoken of. How dare we believe anything else other than the perfection of the Creator and the goodness of the creation?

P.S.S.T.  Section 1 – Ask students what would they do if the windshield of their car was dirty or the bathroom mirror was fogged over with steam? Would they insist on buying a new car or moving to a new house?

In citation B2/Psalm 8:3, what is the model of how we should choose to think about distorted humanity. Read it together. Science and Health, in citation S2/346:2, agrees, and also states the truth of the creation.

What do your students understand of the word “reflection”? Ask them to complete the phrase, “Reflection means…”

P.S.S.T.  Section 2 Help students understand the words: allegory, riddle, parable. Why do such literary devices exist in the scriptures? How would you answer the questions,

  • Student, who are you?
  • Student, where are you?
  • Can you ever be less than good?
  • Can you ever be away from God?

Read together citation S9/476:1-22. Restate the last sentence of the passage just quoted: What is the spiritual status of man, your spiritual status?

P.S.S.T.  Section 3 – How would you like it if your brother was disobedient, and you were punished for it? How would you like it if your brother was obedient, and you were praised for it? Now be clear that you are responsible for your own study, experiences, and understanding. Do your thoughts present man, including yourself, as fallen, sick, sinning, and dying?
How can you best prepare and protect your thinking? See Science & Health 495:25-8.

P.S.S.T.  Section 4 – This section begins with a great memorization opportunity incitation B8/Matthew 5:48.

Why did Jesus feel comfortable with sitting down to eat with publicans and sinners?
Did it have something to do with what he beheld? See again SH 476:32-2.

What do you make of the parable in citation B10/Luke 15:3-24? This is a good role play or read aloud opportunity. Which of the characters speaks most closely to the individual students? Why?

What does it mean incitation S13/6:3, “Divine Love corrects and governs man.”
What do you think the word “corrects” means? Physical whipping or punishment, or change of thought? If change of thought, on what would that change of thought rely? How do you recognize others, and yourself even, as one of God’s children? Be careful, since who else could be your parent but God only?

P.S.S.T.  Section 5 – Imagine that you were sitting in the synagogue when Jesus stood up to preach and teach? How would you have received his teaching?
See the parable of the sower in Mark 4.

Read together Hymn 42 from the Christian Science Hymnal (words supplied here).

Hymn 42

Come, Thou all-transforming Spirit, / Bless the sower and the seed; / Let each heart Thy grace inherit; / Raise the weak, the hungry feed; / From the Gospel, from the Gospel / Now supply Thy people’s need.

O, may all enjoy the blessing / Which Thy holy word doth give; / Let us all, Thy love possessing, / Joyfully Thy truth receive; / And forever, and forever / To Thy praise and glory live.

P.S.S.T.  Section 6 – What does the word “compassion” mean? To whom and how did Jesus show compassion? Who is it that keeps you from falling, from failing, from being at fault, from suffering from false beliefs?

Throw off those shackles, those mental demons, those beliefs of inadequacy and duplicity, and arrive at the knowledge of your true self. Then, like many in the scripture, you are raised up from the sick bed or from the grave. Declare that you are not fallen and can never be less than whole.

Read together Mary Baker Eddy’s account of the healing of Mr. Clark of Lynn, MA, in citations S23 & S24/SH 192:32-193:21. See also citations S25 & S27/SH 422:25-423:24, & S26/SH 180:25-27.

Here is another brief memorization opportunity in citation S28/391:18-19: “Never plead guilty.”

P.S.S.T.  Section 7 – Read together citation S31/516:21.

Summarize this Lesson by reading together the Scientific Statement of Being in Science & Health 468:8-15. That is who you are and who all of humanity is.

Blessings on you all.


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