Science and Health
with Key to The Scriptures
by Mary Baker Eddy
Chapter XVI - The Apocalypse


To-day's lesson
tion of St. John, has a special suggestiveness in connec-
tion with the nineteenth century. In the opening of the
sixth seal, typical of six thousand years since
Adam, the distinctive feature has reference
to the present age.
Revelation xii. 1. And there appeared a great wonder in
heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon
under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve
True estimate of God's messenger
Heaven represents harmony, and divine Science inter-
prets the Principle of heavenly harmony. The great
miracle, to human sense, is divine Love, and
the grand necessity of existence is to gain the
true idea of what constitutes the kingdom of
heaven in man. This goal is never reached while we
hate our neighbor or entertain a false estimate of any-
one whom God has appointed to voice His Word. Again,
without a correct sense of its highest visible idea, we can
never understand the divine Principle. The botanist must
know the genus and species of a plant in order to classify
it correctly. As it is with things, so is it with persons.
Persecution harmful
Abuse of the motives and religion of St. Paul hid from
view the apostle's character, which made him equal to
his great mission. Persecution of all who have
spoken something new and better of God has
not only obscured the light of the ages, but has been fatal
to the persecutors. Why? Because it has hid from
them the true idea which has been presented. To mis-
understand Paul, was to be ignorant of the divine idea he
taught. Ignorance of the divine idea betrays at once a
greater ignorance of the divine Principle of the idea – igno-
rance of Truth and Love. The understanding of Truth
and Love, the Principle which works out the ends of eternal
good and destroys both faith in evil and the practice of
evil, leads to the discernment of the divine idea.
Espousals supernal
Agassiz, through his microscope, saw the sun in an
egg at a point of so-called embryonic life. Because of
his more spiritual vision, St. John saw an
"angel standing in the sun." The Revelator
beheld the spiritual idea from the mount of vision.
Purity was the symbol of Life and Love. The Revelator
saw also the spiritual ideal as a woman clothed in light, a
bride coming down from heaven, wedded to the Lamb
of Love. To John, "the bride" and "the Lamb" repre-
sented the correlation of divine Principle and spiritual idea,
God and His Christ, bringing harmony to earth.
Divinity and humanity
John saw the human and divine coincidence, shown in
the man Jesus, as divinity embracing humanity in Life
and its demonstration, – reducing to human
perception and understanding the Life which
is God. In divine revelation, material and corporeal self‑
hood disappear, and the spiritual idea is understood.
Spiritual sunlight
The woman in the Apocalypse symbolizes generic man,
the spiritual idea of God; she illustrates the coincidence
of God and man as the divine Principle and
divine idea. The Revelator symbolizes Spirit
by the sun. The spiritual idea is clad with the radiance
of spiritual Truth, and matter is put under her feet. The
light portrayed is really neither solar nor lunar, but spirit-
ual Life, which is "the light of men." In the first chapter
of the Fourth Gospel it is written, "There was a man sent
from God . . . to bear witness of that Light."
Spiritual idea revealed
John the Baptist prophesied the coming of the im-
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