Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Ishmael and Isaac ; Bringing a Spiritual Perspective to Daily Life

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Ishmael and Isaac ; Bringing a Spiritual Perspective to Daily Life

Article excerpt

God preserved Ishmael. Envy sent him and Hagar, his mother, into the desert, and their death was expected. But there was practical spiritual intervention, and their lives were preserved.

The division between Arab and Jew is traditionally traced to these half-brothers' forced separation in the desert. Sarah, driven by fear for the status of her son Isaac, demanded that Ishmael and his mother Hagar be banished. Abraham, father of both sons, consented. Hagar, with a mother's prayer, saved herself and her son. And God provided that a great nation would grow from Ishmael. And, likewise, according to promise, a great nation grew from Isaac.

As this is written, hearts all over the world are full of tense hope over the Holy Land, Palestine, Jerusalem. Is there some solution to this rift from long ago that we have overlooked all these centuries? Is there something more that must be known and understood about that complex land and the legacy left by the brothers? There is urgent need. Please, no more killing, no more vengeance, no more grief.

The rupturing of brotherhood in the desert thousands of years ago has come to a time ripe for healing.

So, what is the fundamental foundation for healing among nations? God. The worship of God. Most of the world worships one God - whatever the heart's form of that worship. The unity of humankind rests on this worship of God, and rests there with trust, hope, faith, and expectation. The founder of this newspaper, Mary Baker Eddy, who actively pursued the worship of God in the interest of peace, wrote in her book "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures": With one Father, even God, the whole family of man would be brethren; and with one Mind and that God, or good, the brotherhood of man would consist of Love and Truth, and have unity of Principle and spiritual power which constitute divine Science (pgs. 469-470).

Ishmael and Isaac, according to the account of their lives in Genesis, were together when they buried their father Abraham. Today their descendants bury their dead separately, and they mourn separately. But their grief is the same. …

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