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[PYCL: 1- Focus on the true record! Act out healings! Let hugs show tenderness! Keep guard vs. fake views. Expose the terrible scheme as a scam. Practice the dust I.D. to all lies.]
Possible Younger Class Lessons for the Christian Science Bible Lesson on

"Adam and Fallen Man"

For May 7, 2017

by Kerry Jenkins, CS, House Springs, MO (314) 406-0041

Pycl #1: Focus on reflection as in the true record of creation!
I think I like the idea with the younger children, of focusing especially on the true record of creation. We could start by sharing the true record of creation. Talk about reflection, and image. Bring in a mirror. Look at citation S28 where Mrs. Eddy says that "Man reflects infinity, and this reflection is the true idea of God." That says to me that reflection is the true man, not matter. When we look at a reflection or image in the mirror, it seems like we are the "true idea" and the reflection is just an image of us. But if you think of God as the one in front of the mirror and man as the reflection, then that puts things in a whole new light. Then the image of God is certainly more than an insubstantial picture of you. Check out p. 515 of Science & Health at the bottom and on to the top of p. 516. There, Mrs. Eddy uses this analogy and calls the mirror "divine Science". Isn't that a great way to think of this idea? Then the mirror/divine Science is how we are able to see clearly this true image of God! One thing that may need clarifying is the idea that we see a replica of ourselves in a mirror. How can God's image be so varied and individual? Are we talking about individual mortal images—people with different eye color, etc.? It is helpful to note that we don't want to leave things too "pie in the sky". We are individual expressions! "Man reflects infinity…"—that means we are expressed in infinite variety and color and interest and so on. I think there are a number of directions you can take the mirror idea and the first chapter of Genesis account of creation.

Pycl #2: [Discuss (and maybe act out) the healings of the man born blind and of Eutychus.]
Why do we have that second account of creation, what is its purpose? Mrs. Eddy answers that question in citation S12. Unfortunately I think, more often, it has been used to explain why man and creation in general, is sometimes bad. It explains the suggestion of mortality. Also, see if the children understand what is meant by "fallen man". Then compare that idea to the number of places in the lesson where the word "upright" is used (can also look at "rise" or "risen"). In the Bible upright really means righteous, good. But in a literal sense it is also helpful for a young person to think of the term "fallen" vs. "upright". You can do a little visual demonstration of it right there in class. Does this help us understand better the term "fallen man"? This would be a good time to bring in the story in Section 5 where Paul heals the man who falls from the loft and dies. There is a literal fall, a deadly height. And Paul, who has learned what Jesus taught, that the man of God's creating has a different status, an immortal one, heals him on that basis. You can share the idea from this healing and from the one in Section 4 of the man born blind and talk about the material impossibility of these two healings. If they are not possible humanly, then why would they be possible otherwise? Because man is spiritual, reflection, and not made of matter that must be repaired, etc.

Pycl #3: [Impart a sense of God’s closeness and tenderness with hand-holding and hugs!]
I think younger children (well, maybe anyone) would enjoy pondering the passage in the Golden Text about how God will "walk" with us. If someone is walking with us, they are involved with us, maybe even holding our hand. They are present and we know that they are there. This is how it is with God/Love. Then, there are two passages that use the term "embraced" and "embracing". Talk about what that means. It is like a hug; it is when you are circled all around with someone. It is an act of love. One passage, citation S2, speaks of us as spiritual identities "embraced in infinite Mind…" We are circled about, hugged in infinite Mind, there is nothing separate here. And then in citation B9 Paul embraces the young man who has fallen from the loft. Isn't this an act of tenderness, and isn't he also embracing this man in his spiritual understanding of that man's wholeness as a spiritual idea that cannot be damaged by a fall? You can certainly demonstrate and embrace with the very youngest of our Sunday School students, that is almost always a welcome gesture of love! Then, share the idea that this is how God/Love feels about Her creation.

Pycl #4: [Keep careful guard to never let sneaky thoughts and fake views take root.]
What is the serpent that comes to our thought? Is it something that tells us that we aren't feeling well? Is it one that tells us we don't like someone, that we are sad…etc.? What can we do with that "serpent" thought? What comes to replace that thought? Can we use what we know of God's true creation to help us replace a serpent thought with a true one? How do we prove that this true thought is the real one? Healing! Just like in the Bible lesson this week with the stories in sections 4 and 5. Think together about the image of a snake. They are not, of course, inherently evil creatures—maybe discuss that the one in the Bible is a talking one…not really representative of snakes today? But think of the symbolism of how they can twist and slither and sneak. This is why they have a bad reputation—that and the poison that some have. But the point is the symbolism of how those twisty, sneaky ideas can take root in our thought if we aren't careful to keep guard over them.

Pycl #5: [Expose as a scam the terrible scheme of a God allowing and cursing a fallen man.]
Consider just bringing in a little sample of dirt and think about it holding intelligence within it, or being formed into something intelligent, as in Genesis 2. Even though we know that God can do anything, why would he create intelligence out of dirt? Why would He do any number of the things in this story? He forms dirt into man, a rib into woman, and then He tempts them and curses them forever when they fall prey to that temptation. Does that sound like the God that they know and love? Why would a good, all-powerful God, get involved in such a terrible scheme. Remember that this is not a "hands off" God that set creation in motion and then walked away. He is a God that walks with us today and embraces us in His Love!

Pycl #6: [Allow only spiritual sense to be served. Practice the dust I.D. to all lies.]
Bring in a serving tray. Write some notes on small pieces of paper that contain spiritual impressions of man, true ideas about man. They can be specific to each child, or general. Label the tray "spiritual sense". Have the children put the notes on the tray and tell them that the tray comes from Mind, God. These are the only kinds of ideas that Mind brings to us (serves to us), there are no material ideas on that tray—from spiritual sense. We can be sure that if our thoughts are in any way ugly, then we are not using our spiritual sense to see the real, true spiritual man. This is loosely based on citation S18. Then look at citation S19 and explain that any messages with materially-based ideas about man are lies. That Truth, God has only one reply to all error: "…dust [nothingness] thou art, and unto dust [nothingness] shalt thou return." You could even have them practice this reply when offered something untrue about themselves.

Hope this gives you some ideas! Happy Sunday.

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