Monthly Archives: June 2016

Completion of Book selections

Dear Readers,

The previous blog post contains the last of the lessons found in my three volumes of work on “The First Lessons in Christian Science.”

That doesn’t mean the end of this blog, however.  At the time my books were originally published, I had a web site that contained articles and teaching material related to the First Lessons and other subjects for teaching Christian Science to young people at home and in Sunday School.  Over time, I will start posting these items and possibly adding new material.

I hope you will find these articles useful.

Vicki Cole

 

 

 

 

 

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The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #12

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: What qualities of thought will help us overcome covetousness?

Answer: Gratitude is one. Another is a desire for divine things, which Mary Baker Eddy
illustrates in these comments about her discovery of Christian Science:

“From my very childhood I was impelled, by a hunger and thirst after divine things, — a desire for something higher and better than matter, and apart from it, — to seek diligently for the knowledge of God as the one great and ever-present relief from human woe. The first spontaneous motion of Truth and Love, acting through Christian Science on my roused consciousness, banished at once
and forever the fundamental error of faith in things material; for this trust is the unseen sin, the unknown foe, — the heart’s untamed desire which breaketh the divine commandments. As says
St.
James: ‘Whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.’”
(Ret. 31)

Notice in Mrs. Eddy’s explanation above, that faith in material things is “the unseen sin,” which would break the divine commandments. This sums up the importance of the Tenth Commandment:  the evil we think, not just the evil we do, can lead us to break all of God’s laws.

This Tenth Commandment, which urges us to control selfish thinking, prepares us for the lessons of Christ Jesus, which can be found in the New Testament. There, we learn that the best way to obey the Old Testament laws is through love.

Practice: Today, and always, remember:  “For this is the love of God, that we keep his
commandments.” (I John 5) 

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #12

Next:  Volume Two: The Beatitudes

Note:  An essay on Teaching Children the Tenth Commandment will be coming in the future.
For more background information now see:

The Tenth Commandment – a Christian Science Perspective – essay

Teaching Children the Ten Commandments
Questions and Answers on Christian Science
What Mary Baker Eddy Writes about Teaching Children
Introducing children to the Concept of God
Teaching Children the First Commandment

List of all pages and lessons in Volume One: The Ten Commandments,
Volume Two: The Beatitudes, and Volume Three: The Lord’s Prayer

List of all essays on this site

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #11

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: If we are to trust God to give us what we need, so that we are not tempted to covet others, what exactly can we expect Him to give us?

Answer: Mary Baker Eddy wrote often about the nature of God’s giving:

“God gives you His spiritual ideas, and in turn, they give you daily supplies. Never ask for tomorrow: it is enough that divine Love is an ever-present help; and if you wait, never doubting, you will have
all you need every moment.” (Mis. 307)

“Christ, Truth, gives mortals temporary food and clothing until the material, transformed with the ideal, disappears, and man is clothed and fed spiritually.” (S&H 442)

“When a hungry heart petitions the divine Father-Mother God for bread, it is not given a stone, — but more grace, obedience, and love.” (My. 18)

“Happiness consists in being and in doing good; only what God gives, and what we give ourselves and others through His tenure, confers happiness.”  (‘02 17)

“I give immortality to man, for I am Truth. I include and impart all bliss, for I am Love. I give life, without beginning and without end, for I am Life. I am supreme and give all, for I am Mind. I
am the substance of all, because I AM THAT I AM.” (S&H 253)

Practice: If you are tempted to covet or envy another today, turn to God and thank Him for all the wonderful things He has already given His children. Watch for His spiritual ideas that give daily supplies.

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #11

Next:  The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #12

List of all pages and lessons from Volume One: The Ten Commandments

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #10

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: What about our “affections”? Is it wrong to simply like something, or want
something good in our lives?

Answer: No. Although covetousness and envy are negative, mortal qualities, which are
always wrong, affection is a moral, human quality, which can be guided in the right direction. Our affections are the warm feelings we may have about something, or someone, we like.
It is one way we express love in our life. But, we can still like or love the wrong things, and we must be willing to let them go when the time comes that we are shown that our desires are misplaced.

“To ascertain our progress, we must learn where our affections are placed and whom we
acknowledge and obey as
God.” (S&H 239)

“Have no ambition, affection, nor aim apart from holiness.” (Mis. 154)

“If our hopes and affections are spiritual, they come from above, not from beneath, and they bear as of old the fruits of the Spirit.” (S&H 451)

“Let us open our affections to the Principle that moves all in harmony, — from the falling of a
sparrow to the
rolling of a world.” (Mis. 174)

“The baptism of the Holy Ghost is the spirit of Truth cleansing from all sin; giving mortals new
motives, new
purposes, new affections, all pointing upward.” (Mis. 204)

“Once more I write, Set your affections on things above.” (Pan. 14)

Practice: In your prayer today, ask God to help you “set your affections” higher.

* * *

(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons see the “About page.”

10th - #10

Next:  The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #11

List of all pages and lessons from Volume One: The Ten Commandments

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #9

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: What desires are the right kind to have?

Answer: A desire that leads us away from selfishness and materiality would be good. Here are some other ideas about desires that are right and pure:

“What we most need is the prayer of fervent desire for growth in grace, expressed in patience, meekness, love, and good deeds.” (S&H 4)

“Prayer begets an awakened desire to be and do good.” (No. 39)

“Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.”  (Psalms 37)

Another word for having strong desires is craving. Mary Baker Eddy speaks of the good kind:

“Soul is the infinite source of bliss: only high and holy joy can satisfy immortal cravings.” (Mis. 287)

“Higher enjoyments alone can satisfy the cravings of immortal man. We cannot circumscribe
happiness within the
limits of personal sense. The senses confer no real enjoyment.” (S&H 60-61)

“The sublime summary of an honest life satisfies the mind craving a higher good, and bathes it in the cool waters of peace on earth.” (Mis. 227)

Further Study: Today, study and memorize this verse from the Sermon on the Mount: “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6)   What does it mean to you?

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #9

Next: The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #10

List of pages and lessons from Volume One: The Ten Commandments

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #8

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: What about our desires for things we really, really want? Can God help us deal with these longings?

Answer: Yes. Mary Baker Eddy tells us:

“Desire is prayer; and no loss can occur from trusting God with our desires, that they may be moulded and exalted before they take form in words and in deeds.”  (S&H 1)

You can see that our desires may need to be lifted up higher, since some desires are not as good as others. Either way, they are what we honestly feel deep in our heart, and we need to pay attention to them, and how they affect our motives. Below, are citations that relate to those desires that are not so good for us:

“Jesus declared that to look with desire on forbidden objects was to break a moral precept. He laid great stress on the action of the human mind, unseen to the senses.” (S&H 234)

“Let the slave of wrong desire learn the lessons of Christian Science, and he will get the better of that desire, and ascend a degree in the scale of health, happiness, and existence.” (S&H 407)

“The signs for the wayfarer in divine Science lie in meekness, in unselfish motives and acts . . . in the purification of the affections and desires.” (Ret. 79)

“That which we desire and for which we ask, it is not always best for us to receive. In this case
infinite Love will not grant
the request.” (S&H 10)

Practice: Think of some desires that might not be so good. Do you have one that you can hand over to God, today?

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #8

Next: The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #9

List of all pages and lessons from Volume One: The Ten Commandments

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #7

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: What can we do to lessen envy and covetousness?

Answer: We need to keep watch over our thoughts every day, and continue our study of Christian Science. Mary Baker Eddy urges us to clear our thoughts of envy:

“You must give much time to self-examination and correction; you must control appetite, passion, pride, envy, evil-speaking, resentment.” (Mis. 137)

“The anatomy of Christian Science teaches when and how to probe the self-inflicted wounds of
selfishness, malice,
envy, and hate.” (S&H 462)

“Man’s enslavement to the most relentless masters — passion, selfishness, envy, hatred, and revenge — is conquered only by a mighty struggle. Every hour of delay makes the struggle more severe. If
man is not victorious over the passions, they crush out happiness, health, and manhood. Here Christian Science is the sovereign panacea, giving strength to the weakness of mortal mind, — strength from the immortal and omnipotent Mind, — and lifting humanity above itself into purer desires, even into spiritual power and good-will to man.” (S&H 407)

“Are we clearing the gardens of thought by uprooting the noxious weeds of passion, malice, envy, and strife?” (Mis. 343)

Practice: Keeping our “gardens of thought” clear of envy and hate is not a one-time event. We must weed this garden daily through prayer and watchfulness. Today, if you spot a weed of envy in thought, carefully pull it out. Replace it with seeds of love and gratitude.

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #7

Next: The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #8

List of all the pages and lessons from Volume One: The Tenth Commandment

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #6

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: If we covet and envy others, will that make us sick?

Answer: In belief, yes. Mary Baker Eddy writes:

“The procuring cause and foundation of all sickness is fear, ignorance, or sin.” (S&H 411)

Envy and lust are sins, and she explains that they can be harmful:

“Hatred, envy, dishonesty, fear . . . make a man sick.” (S&H 404)

Other citations explain further:

“A moral question may hinder the recovery of the sick. Lurking error, lust, envy, revenge, malice, or hate will perpetuate or even create the belief in disease.” (S&H 419)

“If one is untruthful, his mental state weighs against his healing power; and similar effects come from pride, envy, lust, and all fleshly vices.” (Rud. 9)

“Lust, malice, and all sorts of evil are diseased beliefs, and you can destroy them only by destroying the wicked motives which produce them.” (S&H 404)

“The reports of sickness may form a coalition with the reports of sin, and say, ‘I am malice, lust,
appetite, envy, hate.’”
(S&H 218)

“Christian Science commands man to master the propensities . . . to conquer lust with chastity . . . Choke these errors in their early stages, if you would not cherish an army of conspirators against
health, happiness, and success.”  (S&H 405)

Practice: Choke off all feelings of envy today! Do not let any belief in sin rob you of your sense of good health. In the Lord’s Prayer, we ask to be “delivered from all evil.” God will help us.

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #6

Next:  The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #7

List of all pages and lessons from Volume One: The Ten Commandments

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #5

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: If coveting has to do only with what we think, and it does not seem to hurt the ones we envy, why is it bad?

Answer: From what we read in the Bible and the writings of Mary Baker Eddy, those who covet and envy are hurting themselves in a big way. Doesn’t God need all His children to be fit for service to mankind? We can’t be much help to others if we are hurting ourselves. Envy, jealousy, covetousness, and lust are always to be chased out of thought. Why? Because:

“Envy is the atmosphere of hell.” (‘02 3)

“HELL. Mortal belief; error; lust.” (S&H 588)

“Evil was, and is . . . the spirit of idolatry, envy, jealousy, covetousness, superstition, lust.” (Mis. 123)

“Evil is nothing, no thing, mind, nor power. As manifested by mankind it stands for a lie, nothing claiming to be something, — for lust, dishonesty, selfishness, envy, hypocrisy, slander, hate, theft, adultery, murder.” (S&H 330)

“For the wicked boasteth of his heart’s desire, and blesseth the covetous, whom the Lord
abhorreth.” (Psalms 10)

“Envy, the great red dragon of this hour, would obscure the light of Science.” (Mis. 254)

“From Genesis to the Apocalypse, sin, sickness, and death, envy, hatred, and revenge, — all evil, — are typified by a serpent, or animal subtlety.” (S&H 564)

Practice: Today, do not let the “serpent,” the whisperings of animal magnetism, trick you into any envious thinking, by pretending to be your own thought!

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #5

Next: The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #6

List of all pages and lessons from Volume One: The Ten Commandments

The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #4

The Tenth Commandment
“Thou shalt not covet”

Question: What about lust? Does it have to do with covetousness?

Answer: It does if what you are lusting after belongs to another. Like greed, lust is an evil quality that would try to pull us down into the mud, and adulterate our pure spiritual thinking. Lust would cause us to covet.

Lust is an intense desire, or longing, for physical pleasure. For instance, do you have a love for chocolate? Do you ever dream about how great it feels in your mouth, or how your taste buds seem to leap for joy? That is because mortal mind and the physical sense of touch
and taste demand to be entertained! Some people might lust after coffee, alcohol, drugs,
or tobacco. There are many other forms of lust. If, at times, we cannot think of much else
besides the physical pleasure we desire, we are indulging lust.

Mary Baker Eddy writes:

“The Scriptures say: ‘Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.’ That which we desire and for which we ask, it is not always best for us to receive. In this case infinite Love will not grant the request.” (S&H 10)

“The lust of the flesh and the pride of physical life must be quenched in the divine essence.” (Un. 39)

“Lust, dishonesty, sin, disable the student; they preclude the practice or efficient teaching of
Christian Science,
the truth of man’s being.” (My. 4)

Practice: The qualities of Soul give us true satisfaction. Today, identify yourself with Soul: joyous, pure, happy. Look for the touch of angels, not matter.

* * *
(Excerpted from “First Lessons in Christian Science, Volume One: The Ten Commandments”
Copyright 2001)

To print out the image below, which is from the original book, click on the image and save to your computer. To read explanation on how to use these “clip and carry” lessons, see the “About” page.

10th - #4

Next: The Tenth Commandment – Q&A #5

List of all pages and lessons from Volume One: The Ten Commandments