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Metaphysical Application Ideas for The Christian Science Quarterly Bible Lesson on

“Adam and Fallen Man”
for November 1-7, 2021

by Christie C. Hanzlik, C.S.  Boulder, Colorado •

Introduction-Golden Text and Responsive Reading

As I’m seeing it, this week’s Christian Science Bible Lesson on “Adam and Fallen Man” answers two primary questions:

1) where do we come from?

2) why do bad things happen?

Mary Baker Eddy highlights the importance of answering these fundamental questions when she writes, “The foundation of mortal discord is a false sense of man’s origin.” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 262:27–28)

In simple terms, the Lesson explains that we have always been known by divine Mind, God, and divine Mind only knows us as good.  But a cloudy, misty, or dream-like view of existence (represented by the Adam-and-Eve myth) seems to make us forget our innate goodness and purity and feel separate—or fallen—from God’s grace.  Christ—the divine message from God—corrects this cloudy view, dispels the mist, and wakes us up to remind us that we are and always have been inseparable from divine Mind and all of Mind’s goodness.  In truth, we are not fallen or separate from divine Mind and all of Mind’s goodness, but a misty, cloudy, or dream-like sense of reality seems to make us feel separate and fallen.  Each moment we understand our true origin more clearly is a moment of healing.  Healing is the awakening from a cloudy or misty view.

The false view that we are fallen from God’s grace is corrected at the beginning of the Lesson in the Golden Text, which announces, “…we are risen, and stand upright.”  (Psalm 20:8) The statement—”we are risen”—is true right now.  The Responsive Reading is full of reminders that we can keep our focus on the good, the real, and true as we “praise the Lord with [our] whole heart,” “rejoice in the Lord,” and “give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.” (Psalms 111, 64, 97)

When we’re studying the Bible or the writings of Mary Baker Eddy, it is helpful to notice “sight words,” or words that are associated with vision.  “Sight words” are often associated with understanding, like in this sentence, “I hope this insight is clear to you.”  See what I mean?  Anyway, I made a partial list of the sight words that are in this week’s Bible Lesson because so much of the Lesson is about seeing beyond a limited view of existence.  Here’s the list: sought, image, saw, behold, beheld, perception, representation, reflecting sight, picture, illusion, likeness, see, discernment, shew, enlengthen, appeared, appears, view.

SECTION 1: “GOD IS THE ONLY AUTHOR OF MAN” (Answer to Question #1)

The first section starts us off with the clear view of God—divine Mind and divine Love—creating the heaven and the earth, and creating us in the image and likeness of all that is divine.  From a limited perspective, “creating” means to start something new, or to create out of nothing.  But from divine Mind’s all-knowing perspective, there never has been a moment in which divine Mind did not already know of all of creation.  There never was a moment in which divine Mind did not know about you.  And thus, you never had a start.  You have always been known, and known as good.  This is difficult to see from a limited or cloudy perspective, but from a divine perspective we can begin to sense an unfolding vision of our beginninglessness.  According to this unlimited view, no one’s life starts before anyone else’s because divine Mind has always known all of us.  As  we see that we are all eternal—without beginning—then it becomes clear that there is no sequential order to man.

In Science and Health, Mary Baker Eddy corrects the false view of “material [or limited] history with the phrase “spiritual development.” (citation S1, 547:23-27 I added the words “or limited”) The phrase “spiritual development” is about the continual unfoldment of Mind’s infinite creation, which has no beginning and no end and is in a state of infinite progression.  There will never be an end to the unfoldment of divine Mind’s creation just as there will never be a last musical song…there is always room for one more song to be written.  And there will always be more of Mind’s creation to reveal.

Section 1 describes God as “the only author of man.” (cit. S2, 29:14-16) The divine Author has always known the whole story, which has no beginning, and this story is continually expanding and developing even while it is already completely known by the Author.  The divine Author has always known of simple ideas, like a table, chair and pencil.  And the divine Author has also always known of “compound ideas” like “man,” which is the “family name for all ideas,– the sons and daughters of God.” (cit. S3 591:5; S4, 515:21)  The compound ideas of the divine Author are complete and harmonious systems that are always in balance and that function as a whole even though they appear to have different parts.  Compound ideas include “the spiritual universe,” “earth,” and “man.”  Mary Baker Eddy defines man as “the compound idea of infinite Spirit.”  (cit. S3, 591:5; SH 468:22; 585:7)  A clear view of man (us) as a compound idea of the divine Author helps to correct the false view that we are made up of discrete parts that don’t work together well.  As a compound idea of divine Mind, we are complete, not bits and parts, and we function as a harmonious whole.

Mary Baker Eddy shared a revelation about the compound idea of man and the universe in a statement about spiritual union and marriage.  She wrote, “Look long enough, and you see male and female one — sex or gender eliminated; you see the designation man meaning woman as well, and you see the whole universe included in one infinite Mind and reflected in the intelligent compound idea, image or likeness, called man, showing forth the infinite divine Principle, Love, called God, — man wedded to the Lamb, pledged to innocence, purity, perfection.” (The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, Mary Baker Eddy, pp. 268:29–5)

SECTION 2: “BUT THERE WENT UP A MIST” (Answer to Question #2)

The first section answered the question, “Where do we come from?” and the second section addresses the question, “why do bad things happen?”  We started out the Lesson with the premise that the divine Author has always known all of creation and this creation is very good.  The second section begins, “But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.”  (cit. B2, Genesis 2:1-23)  And then it continues with the myth of Adam and Eve made from the dust of the ground, and tree that contains knowledge of good and evil.

In Genesis 1, the divine and all-knowing and all-good Author reveals the only-good and all-complete truth, BUT in Genesis 2, a misty, cloudy and dream-like view makes reality seem fuzzy and discordant.  In this misty-cloudy-dreamlike view, man is separate from God, and is not a compound idea, but is made up of parts—like a rib.  In this limited view, “man” is only man or woman, and is not the compound idea of divine Spirit.

The Genesis 2 view is full of mistakes.  For example, why does the second chapter of Genesis state that everything was finished but then say that man was not yet created…plus Genesis 1 already addressed the creation of man.  And why would Adam give a name to woman if God is the creator?   As Mary Baker Eddy state, Genesis 2 is a “picture of error throughout.”  (cit. S7, 526:24)  She defines Adam as “a falsity,” and Eve as “a beginning; mortality; that which does not last forever.”  Adam and Eve are inverted counterfeits of the true man—which would be the image and likeness of good—and the Genesis 2 story’s mythological inconsistencies contradict the spiritual foundation set forth in Genesis 1.

As we expose the fallacies of the Genesis 2 myth, we see through the “Adam dream” that clouds thought and suggests that we are separate from good.  As Mary Baker Eddy states, “Another change will come as to the nature and origin of man, and this revelation will destroy the dream of existence, reinstate reality, usher in divine Science and the glorious fact of creation, that both man and woman proceed from God and are His eternal children, belonging to no lesser parent.”  (cit. S12, 529:6) Here God is described as a divine Parent.  In Section one, God was described as a divine Author.  And next, God is described as the “great architect.”  The great Architect has always known good and only knows good and does not make mistakes that later need correcting.  The great Architect is continually revealing the truth of being.  Whether we describe divine Mind as our Parent, the great Author, or the great Architect, we can know that creation can never be separated from its Creator.


The third section continues an explanation of how our view of reality may seem to get distorted, misty, cloudy and dreamlike view of reality.  The section opens with the Genesis 3 story of the sneaky serpent who tricks Adam and Eve.  But the story starts out on bad footing. In the story, there is a talking serpent that has a mind of its own—but who made this serpent? Mary Baker Eddy asks, “Whence comes a lying, talking serpent to tempt the children of divine Love?” (cit. S16, 529:21)

In Genesis 3, the misty-cloudy-dreamlike view of God shows God like a man-like being that has limited knowledge. God doesn’t even know where Adam is and has to call out, “Adam…where art thou?”  (cit. B3, Gen 3:1-23) To me, this one question, “Adam…where art thou?” exposes the most glaring fallacy of the story.  In this one little question is the suggestion that God is separate from man, is not all-knowing, and that man can hide from God.  Nonsense.  Divine Mind and Mind’s idea cannot be separated, especially by a mythical serpent.

IF we’re ever feeling alone, or as if we’re separate from God, divine Mind, divine Love, this false feeling of separation can be our red flag to remind us that we are safe, moving in accord with Love, and that we are not alone.  There is no talking serpent that can drive a wedge between us and God.  We move in accord with God, and where God is, we are.  “All that God imparts moves in accord with Him, reflecting goodness and power.” (cit. S4, 515:21)

The talking serpent is a merely a mythological symbol of that which would try to make us accept sin—the belief that we’re separated from divine Love.  The serpent may try to talk to us in the form of annoyance, judgmentalism, resentment, self-righteousness, guilt, anger, or any form of self-oriented thought that seems to present us as a mind separate from divine Mind.  Mary Baker Eddy defines the talking snake this way: “SERPENT (ophis, in Greek; nacash, in Hebrew). Subtlety; a lie; the opposite of Truth, named error; the first statement of mythology and idolatry; the belief in more than one God; animal magnetism; the first lie of limitation; finity; the first claim that there is an opposite of Spirit, or good, termed matter, or evil; the first delusion that error exists as fact; the first claim that sin, sickness, and death are the realities of life. The first audible claim that God was not omnipotent and that there was another power, named evil, which was as real and eternal as God, good. (SH, p. 594:1)

As we see the falsity of the talking serpent, and know that it has no basis in truth, then we gain dominion over it.  The first step is exposing it.

About five years ago, I became aware of a venomous snake that was hiding under a deck with only its tail showing.  I contacted someone to remove the snake, but there was a danger that the snake would sense the additional movement around it, slither under the deck, and become completely hidden.  During the time that I waited for the person to come and remove the snake, I prayed.  I affirmed that nothing could be hidden in God’s kingdom, that all creatures, including the snake, were governed by divine Mind alone, and that nothing could disturb the harmony of existence.  I prayed until I felt no fear or worry or hurry.  I was certain that divine Mind governed.  As it turned out, when the person arrived to remove the snake, the snake had moved out from under the deck completely, and its whole body was coiled about a foot away from the deck, making it easy to remove.  This was answered prayer because it seems that the normal tendency of the snake would have been to hide.  I recall this example of divine harmony when I find myself in a situation in which the subtlety of the symbolic serpent needs to be exposed and removed properly.  We do not need to be afraid of talking serpents in any form.  We can call them out, expose the lie behind them, and gain dominion over them.


The fourth section explains that even if we do seem to buy in to the lies of the talking serpent, and find ourselves feeling lost and separate from God, all is not lost.  When we feel “fallen,” we can turn to divine Truth, find that “we are risen, and stand upright.”  (Golden Text and cit. B5, Psalm 20:7, 8)  In Truth, it is not that we are fallen and then rise, but rather that we wake up from a false view that we are fallen and discover that we cannot actually fall from God’s grace (unconditional love).  In other words, prayer helps us gain a clearer and clearer view that we are unfallen and upright.

Section 4 reminds us that it was Christ Jesus’ mission to make us aware of the grace—unconditional love—of God, and to open our eyes so that we can see that we are not fallen, but loved like precious children.  Whereas the myth of Adam’s example suggests that we are all fallen and guilty sinners, the reality of Christ Jesus’ example makes us aware that we are unfallen and blessed with the grace of divine Love. (cit. B7, Romans 5:17; cit. B13, I Cor 15:22)

Notice the “sight words” in Jesus’ statements in this section: “I came into this world for judgment so that those who do not see may see, and those who do see may become blind.” (cit. B8, John 9:39) Jesus’ mission was to open our eyes to the grace of divine Love.  He came to correct this misty, cloudy, dreamlike view of existence and wake us up to the full view of divine Love’s embrace.  It may seem confusing that he also said that “those who do see may become blind,” but this was a way of saying that those who are looking in the wrong direction will be stopped, and turned to feel the full grace of divine Love.  For example, Paul experienced this “blindness” quite literally on the on the road to Damascus as his eyes were opened to the Christ-light, as we read about in last week’s Bible Lesson.  And, of course, Paul was later healed of the blindness.  (Note that part about “those who do see may become blind” is not included in this week’s Lesson but it felt appropriate to include it in this Met.)


Section 5 shows that the correct view – that we are not fallen – brings about healing.  The section includes the account of Christ Jesus healing Simon’s mother-in-law, who was sick with a fever.  Christ Jesus took her by the hand, lifted her up, and immediately the fever left her.  How did he heal her?  As Mary Baker Eddy explains, “Jesus beheld in Science the perfect man, who appeared to him where sinning moral man appears to mortals.  In this perfect man the Savior saw God’s own likeness, and this correct view of man healed the sick.”  (cit. S21, 476:13-15, 28-5) Let’s put this into the context of the healing with Simon’s mother-in-law. This statement could read, Jesus beheld in Science the perfect woman, who appeared to him where a sick-feverish woman appeared to everyone else.  In this perfect view of the woman, Christ Jesus saw God’s own likeness, and this correct view of her healed her.

Christ Jesus did not have a magical power that enabled him to heal.  He was able to heal because he knew we are not fallen or separated from divine Love.  He maintained a conscious awareness that divine Life and intelligence are purely from God, and that we are not and never can be separated from the love of God. Our unity with God, divine Love, is our perfectness.  We are perfectly at one with divine Love.


Section 6 explains that we can overturn the myth of sin and death as we gain a clear sense of Christ—”the true idea voicing good, the divine message from God to men speaking to the human consciousness.” (SH 332:9–11) As we read in 1st Corinthians, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.”  (cit. B13, I Corinthians 15:22)

As an example of the healing power of the Christ-view, this section includes the account of Christ Jesus raising a young man from death.  While the dead man was being carried in a funeral procession, Christ Jesus spoke to him, “Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak.” (cit. B16, Luke 7:1-16) Christ Jesus beheld in Science the perfect view of this man—perfectly at one with divine Life—where others saw a dead man, and Christ Jesus’ correct view healed him.  (cit. S21, 476:13-15, 28-5)   Christ Jesus was able to heal the young man because of his conscious awareness of our perfect bond with divine Life.  He overturned the myth that we are separate from God.  He saw through the mist of the Adam-and-Eve myth.

As Mary Baker Eddy states, Jesus “unfolded the remedy for Adam” meaning that he corrected the lie of the Adam-and-Eve myth.  Through his perfect view of our at-one-ment with God, Christ Jesus overturned what Mary Baker Eddy described as the “mythological material intelligence called energy.” (cit. S25, p. 534:12)   (Okay, sidenote: For several years I have been collecting examples of Mary Baker Eddy’s word play.  And, I think this may be another example.  When you look at the phrase “material intelligence called energy” as an acronym, it spells out the word “m.i.c.e.”  (mice)  So, perhaps, even as she was making a serious metaphysical point, she was also playfully saying that divine power easily destroys “mythological m.i.c.e.” (mice) … or maybe we should say exterminates…Saying that divine power easily exterminates “mythological m.i.c.e.” (mice) … we’ll be kind to the good mice, of course, and exterminate only the mythological ones that try to cause trouble.)

Alright, back to our Met: Christ Jesus did not succumb to mythological or mysterious thinking.  He did not buy in to the Adam-and-Eve myth.  “Jesus of Nazareth was the most scientific man that ever trod the globe.  He plunged beneath the surface of things, and found the spiritual cause.” (cit. S26, 313:23-6) He overcame death—the so-called “king of terrors”—by showing it is no more than a wrong belief that there is a starting point to life.  He showed that “what appears to the senses to be death is but a mortal illusion, for to the real man and the real universe there is no death-process.” (cit. S27, 289:14, italics added)


The seventh section reminds us to celebrate our victory over the myth of fallen man.  It begins, “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.”  (cit. B18, Isaiah 60: 1) We overcome the false myth of mortality and death as we discover that our origins are in infinite Spirit, and we have no beginning because we have always been known by Mind.  A glimpse of this is enough to break through the misty, cloudy view and wake up from the dream of limited life.

We can know that that good things come from divine good, and nothing—not even a talking serpent—can separate us from the goodness of divine Love.  This Lesson has answered the two questions listed at the start of this Met.  First, where do we come from?  We come from divine Mind and nothing else, and we have no starting point because we have always been known.  And, second, where do bad things seem to come from?  The belief in bad things comes from a misty, cloudy and dreamlike view that is nothing but a distorted and inverted picture of reality.  As we see through the misty and cloudy view presented by the mythological sneaky serpent, or “mythological mice,” we find healing and peace and spiritual dominion.  It is Christ—the true idea voicing good—that helps break through the clouds of mist, and frees us to see the whole of creation.  Starting from the correct premise—that we are God’s own likeness—sets us “free to master the infinite idea.” (cit. S30, 90:24-25)
(And in case you were hearing some snoring in the background, know that it was the dog, and not me!)

CLICK HERE for more application ideas & Bible-based GEMs from Cobbey Crisler & others! [This is started and will have additions before it is emailed.]

Click on the titles of these insightful Ken Cooper poems & monologue to hear them read on YouTube by Ken or Sue Cooper:

“The Eve Dream”      “A Parent’s Revelation”     “The Widow of Nain” 

PDF copies are available under Downloads in the online version of  this Met.

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