The Destiny of The Mother Church
Knapp, Bliss. The Destiny of The Mother Church. Boston: The Writings of Mary Baker Eddy, (1947) 1991.
The mere publication of Knapp’s 1947 book by the Christian Science Church in 1991 caused as much controversy as the content of the book. But from a distance of 30 years, researchers can look at the meaning and role of prophecy in the early development of Christian Science. Knapp’s father (Ira) was especially trusted and valued by Eddy, and his proclivity to visions and revelation was of interest to her. Eddy, like other 19th-century religious leaders, was encouraged by those few who found prophetic justification in scriptures, but only to acknowledge her unique historical role and justify her exercise of absolute authority among her followers. From a contemporary historical-critical perspective, the reasoning behind faith in prophecy is circular: One needs faith to believe in prophecy, and prophecy confirms faith. Knapp’s controversial argument stems from his creative justification from Genesis, Isaiah and Revelation ‘proving’ that the Woman of the Apocalypse (Revelation 12) stands in type for the female of God’s creation. However, he blurs the line between the person of Eddy (blasphemous in Christian Science) and her works (a satisfying confirmation) as the fulfillment of this biblical prophecy.
ISBN-13 (Hardcover): 978-0875102313
See also annotation:
Honesty, Blasphemy, and The Destiny of the Mother Church by Stephen Gottschalk
“Christian Science Polity in Crisis” by Stephen Gottschalk
Annotations related by category:
- Availability: Library or Purchase
- Controversy: Bliss Knapp’s "Destiny"
- Official Christian Science Publication: Yes
- People: Eddy, Mary Baker
- People: Knapp, Bliss
- Publication Date: 1911-1955
- Resource Types: Book
- Subjects: Bible
- Subjects: Biographies and Chronologies
- Subjects: Christian Science History after 1910