Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake:
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Question: What is “the kingdom of heaven?”
Answer: Do you recall from the lessons on the first Beatitude, that “the kingdom of heaven” is also the reward of those who are “poor in spirit”? You learned a little bit then about what the kingdom of heaven is, and why it is such a wonderful promise for us all.
In the “Glossary” of Science and Health, we find a definition of “Kingdom of Heaven” which reads: “The reign of harmony in divine Science; the realm of unerring, eternal, and omnipotent Mind; the atmosphere of Spirit, where Soul is supreme.”
Do you remember in the previous lesson we learned that the kingdom of heaven is a mental state, not a place up in the sky?
“Let unselfishness, goodness, mercy, justice, health, holiness, love — the kingdom of heaven — reign within us, and sin, disease, and death will diminish until they finally disappear.” (S&H 248)
Again, we must see the connection between our love for mankind, which can bring us persecution, and our sense of heaven:
“Love is consistent, uniform, sympathetic, self-sacrificing, unutterably kind; even that which lays
all upon the altar, and, speechless and alone, bears all burdens, suffers all inflictions, endures all piercing for the sake of others, and for the kingdom of heaven’s sake.” (Mis. 312)
Further Study: Read in Daniel 3 about Shadrack, Meshach, and Abednego. Their persecution was a “fiery furnace.”
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(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume Two: The Beatitudes”
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