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Doing the Greater Works

  "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father" (John 14:12).

Jesus fulfilled all the prophecies of the Old Testament that related to him, but his human mission did not include the fulfillment of all prophecy. He foresaw additional unfoldment and promised us, "I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth" (John 14:16-17). The Spirit of truth has ever been with us, but for most of human history, it has been a veiled mystery recognized to a degree by only a few. "Abraham, Jacob, Moses, and the prophets caught glorious glimpses of the Messiah, or Christ, which baptized these seers in the divine nature, the essence of Love" (SH 333:23). When Moses came down from the mount, his face shone as a result of his communion with God. His unappreciative followers, however, demanded that he put a veil over his face to hide the transformative effects of knowing the truth. Moses intuitively knew that "spiritual teaching must always be by symbols," and he met his followers where they were, building a veiled temple in the wilderness and writing baby-step rules designed to form habits of obedience and to bolster their faith in that which they refused to look upon (SH 575:13). "Did not Jesus illustrate the truths he taught by the mustard-seed and the prodigal?" (SH 575:14). And when Jesus' promised Comforter appeared to Saint John as evidenced by his record of The Revelation, the form of that record was still veiled in symbolism, although, for John, the Comforter arrived with distinct clarity. The Revelation was a seed planted in human consciousness where it awaited the germination and growth of greater works.

Why did Jesus leave here and go unto the Father? Jesus disappeared to human consciousness because no one was spiritually prepared to ascend with him. Just like the children of Israel in the desert, we demand that the veil of our personal bodies and the so-called instinct of self-preservation obscure spiritualized man. We find ourselves balking at Jesus' specific instructions; must we really leave all for Christ? Jesus knew that what we see physically is an inverted image of reality since the personal ego demands an identity separate from infinite good. Matter is the objective form of that inversion. If we were to look at God through distorted glasses, the distortion that we see is what we call matter. We need to refocus on the good only and pay no attention to the distortion until we realize that we can take off the glasses and see clearly, that is, without matter. Jesus' ascension was really a reversion to his limitless form as God's image and likeness. Jesus presented the most exquisite picture of life without matter that the world had ever witnessed. Before this demonstration, few even suspected that it was a sin to believe in or possess one's physical body.

Saint Paul's declaration, "Jesus died for your sins" is often misinterpreted to mean that his death certified forgiveness of all sin, even while sin continues unabated. Jesus' real purpose was to remove the belief that life is contained in and composed of matter (body) and to reveal divine Life without it - without the sin we call matter.

But "matter is the primitive belief of mortal mind" (SH 292:13). "It is mortal mind which convulses its substratum, matter" (SH 80:25). Mary Baker Eddy unveiled and overcame mortal mind, which is the greater work that Jesus promised us that we would do, for it dissolves the source of matter or body and the desire for it. Confirmation of this statement can be found in a letter Mrs. Eddy wrote to a friend: "I know the crucifixion of the one who presents truth in its highest aspect will be this time through a bigger error, through mortal mind instead of its lower stratum, or matter, showing that the idea given of God this time is higher, clearer and more permanent than before."1 Mrs. Eddy distinctly declared that she had done a greater work than Jesus' testimony by her demonstration of Science and by providing Christian Science as the clearest means for its full expression. All of her writings point to this end: first, to the exposure of mortal mind as a liar and the father of lies by proving that there is no scientific evidence of its existence; and secondly, to the realization of our rightful place as God's all-knowing image and likeness.

"Jesus mapped out the path for others" and demonstrated life without matter (SH 38:24). Mary Baker Eddy explained Jesus' map and demonstrated the Comforter, the majesty of Mind knowing itself. Life as Spirit never left, Mind knows it, and man comprehends All-in-all. The Comforter requires no explanation and no symbols, for of this time, Jesus said, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free" (John 8:32). Here time-based prophecy ceases because inspiration and fulfillment arrive together. Saint John foresaw that "the mystery of God should be finished" and that ascended consciousness is Science (Rev 10:7).

When the Comforter (divine Science) dawns on human consciousness, Jesus' prophecy that we shall be doing greater works will be fulfilled, for the darkness called mortal mind is no thing. We will finally understand how it is that "God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good" (Gen 1:31).

1 Divinity Course and General Collectanea, 107

George Denninger ©

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