No analogy exists between the vague hypotheses of agnosticism, pantheism, theosophy, spiritualism, or millenarianism and the demonstrable truths of Christian Science . . .
Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health, pp. 110-111, (emphasis added)

G. B. D.

         In the book of the revelation of St. John, there is related a [symbolic] vision of higher thought, in which the inspired seer beholds the destiny of the suffering and persecuted disciples of Truth. "And they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years."

         A period of a thousand years is called a Millennium; mille, thousand, annum, a year.

         For more than three centuries, or since the Bible was translated into the language of Europe, this special vision has engaged the attention of professed Christians, and inspired a hope.

         The reign of the Saints for a thousand years is associated in the minds of millions, with delightful pictures of righteousness, health and happiness for the families of the earth.

         According to Archbishop Usher, or, standard orthodox chronology, the sixth Millennium is near its close. This [1890] is the five thousand, eight hundred and ninety-fourth year of the world. One hundred and six years more [i.e., 1996] will bring the beginning of the seventh Millennium, — the world's Sabbath Millennium, the period of rest, of righteousness and peace; so say the great body of Bible students.

         The five Millenniums that are fully past . . . were succeeded each by the next in unnoticeable transitions; unless we except the fourth, the end of which, with the beginning of its successor, was marked by the advent of Jesus and the work of the New Testament Churches. The Millennium is, therefore, the seventh period of a thousand years because of the hopes which centre in its approach and presence.

         Those who accept this hope of a future period in human history to be characterized by great blessings of power and righteousness, are called in general Millenarians. The epithet is applied however more distinctly to a limited class of people who predict the return of Jesus in person as the prerequisite of the establishment of the new order of things.

         So much has been said and written about the Millennium, that the mental atmosphere is full of the thought of a good time coming. Hence the word itself is used in modern times to signify the happy future which is before the thought, without particular limitations to number of years or date of its commencement.

         Christian Science teaches that there [is a spiritual] Millennium. In the chapter on Marriage [in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, by Mary Baker Eddy], we are taught that "the formation and education of mortals must improve before the Millennium can arrive." Here is a bare hint which should be carefully noted, that Divine Science is to play an important part . . . This hint to the student of the Millennial agency is exchanged for plain statement on page 354 [of Science and Health (1890)]: "If half the attention given to hygiene was given to the study of Christian Science, and its elevation of thought, this alone would usher in the Millennium." This is more than a hint. Not only will the Millennium come, but its approach is near. The apprehension of the Truth as it is in Science will usher it in.

         A more practical statement is that which is found on page 504 [of Science and Health (1890)]: "If all who have ever partaken of the sacrament had really commemorated the suffering of Jesus and drank of his cup, they would have revolutionized the world.

         "If all who seek His commemoration through material symbols will take up the cross, heal the sick, cast out error, and preach Christ, or Truth, to the poor, they will speedily establish the millennium."

         The millennium is here defined. It is ["a state and stage of mental advancement, going on since ever time was. Its impetus, accelerated by the advent of Christian Science, is marked, and will increase till all men shall know Him (divine Love) from the least to the greatest, and one God and the brotherhood of man shall be known and acknowledged throughout the earth." The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, by Mary Baker Eddy, p. 239:27].

         Prophecy of the Old and New Testaments connects with the millennial thought the restoration of the Jews and their unison with the nations in bonds of brotherly love. Christian Science likewise takes up the prediction, and gives spirituality to the prophetic words. On page 514 [of Science and Health (1890)] we read, "The twelve tribes of Israel and all mankind — separated by belief from their divine origin and their true, spiritual being, — shall return, through the spiritual idea, to their Divine Principle, and dwell in the harmony of Science. These are stars in her crown of rejoicing. Like lamps in the spiritual heavens of this age are the workings of this ideal, healing the sick and sinner, manifesting the light that shall shine 'unto the perfect day,' when the night of materialism shall flee before the millennial dawn."

         Material millenarianism has an eye only for the external manifestations of discord . . . Confining itself to the letter of Scripture, it anticipates wars, earthquakes, darkening of the sun and moon, tempests upon the sea, and bitter conflicts of the material elements. Christian Science does not deny these gloomy forebodings. It also predicts dire scenes, but more clearly pictures them.

         On page 263 [of Science and Health (1890)] we read: "At no distant date this material world will be the scene of conflicting forces. On one side will be discord and dismay: on the other Science and peace. In the latter days earth will be convulsed with error, famine, and pestilence. Sickness will assume more acute phases, and death become more sudden. These disturbances will continue until the end, when all material discord is swallowed up in spiritual harmony."

         . . . Error will not give place to Truth without a desperate final struggle, which the NEW TESTAMENT and SCIENCE AND HEALTH alike foretell. . . . The leaven now works which will make a universal fermentation. The clouds may gather blackness. To material sight all things may seem to resolve themselves into another chaos; but to him who has or who shall have the spiritual illumination, it will be seen that order and harmony will be the residuum when discord shall have ceased. 


"Millenarianism" by G. B. D.
The Christian Science Journal, September, 1890

The False View of the Millennium
and the Millennial Kingdom
From The Christian Science Standard, April 2, 1990

         Christianity, including many Christian Scientists, have long expected the manifestation of the millennial estate described in Isaiah and Revelation (Isa. 11:6-9; 65:17-25; 66:22; Rev. 20:4-6). They generally interpret these passages as describing an earthly condition of bliss and happiness lasting one thousand years. This interpretation is so universal as to constitute a Christian doctrine.

         According to the Popular and Critical Bible Encyclopedia (Samuel Fallows, Editor, Chicago: Howard-Severence Co. 1911. 3 Vols.), this is a Jewish concept, originating before the first advent of Christ and having taken root in Christian thought. "As the world was made in six days, and as, according to Psalms 90:4 'a thousand years is as one day' in the sight of God, so it has been thought the world would continue in the condition in which it had been for 6000 years; and as the Sabbath is a day of rest, so will the seventh period of a thousand years consist of this millennial kingdom, as the close of the whole earthly state. This period [the period following the six thousand years] was conceived by the Jews as a sort of golden age to the earth, and every one formed such a picture of it as agreed with his own disposition, and with the views concerning the highest felicity which were dictated by the degree of intellectual and moral culture to which he had attained. With many these views were very low, being confined to sensual delights, while others entertained better and more pure conceptions of that happy time." (Page 1163)

         The millennium, however, is that state referred to in Isaiah 65:17-25 as a realm of perpetual blessedness, when "the wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the Lord."

         This view of an earthly, material golden age constitutes a barrier preventing people from making the effort to escape the "horrors" of the "day of the Lord." It omits the fact that Isaiah said the millennial state would occur after the establishment of the new heavens and the new earth.

         These millennial references indicate that after "six thousand years since Adam" there is to come about some significant change in the human situation which will forever alter the course of human history. Along this line of thought, we find the following interesting reference in Science and Health, where Mary Baker Eddy writes: "The twelfth chapter of the Apocalypse, or Revelation of St. John, has a special suggestiveness in connection 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." (559:32)

         On page 514 of Science and Health in the paragraph subtitled "Qualities of thought," Mrs. Eddy plainly indicates that the millennial state is spiritual, not material, and explains by quoting the well known passage from Isaiah (11:6-9) that he is describing a spiritual state of thought, "the individuality created by God," and not the material millennial utopia found in popular Christian thought.  

The Millennium a Process

         Mrs. Eddy explains the millennium as a process, not a material state or realm in these words from Miscellany 239:27: "The millennium is a state and stage of mental advancement, going on since ever time was. Its impetus, accelerated by the advent of Christian Science, is marked, and will increase till all men shall know Him (divine Love) from the least to the greatest, and one God and the brotherhood of man shall be known and acknowledged throughout the earth."

         That Mrs. Eddy did not believe the millennium to be a material utopia is further confirmed in her statement in Science and Health 110:32, where she states: "No analogy exists between the vague hypotheses of agnosticism, pantheism, theosophy, spiritualism, or millenarianism [i.e., "belief in the millennium of Christian prophecy" Webster, 3rd New International] and the demonstrable truths of Christian Science; and I find the will, or sensuous reason of the human mind, to be opposed to the divine Mind as expressed through divine Science."

         The words and works of Jesus and his followers confirm the fact that the millennium is actually a process by which we are to gain access to the Kingdom of Heaven. This is the kingdom of heaven about which Jesus preached throughout his three year ministry. This is the reign of Christ which is eventually to rule all nations, the new heaven and new earth, when "the first heaven and the first earth [are] passed away," as St. John writes in Revelation 21:1. (The Christian Science Standard, Vol. 1, No. 3, pp. 4-6)


"The False View of the Millennium and the Millennial Kingdom"
The Christian Science Standard, April 2, 1990

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