WE'VE all heard it said before - that you can't keep a good man down. And today we might add, or a good woman! Why is that? Why can't you keep a good person down? What is there in the nature of genuine goodness that's irrepressible, unsinkable, indomitable?
Maybe this is something to think about as the Easter season once again comes upon us. If there was ever a supreme example of the indestructible nature of true manhood it was Christ Jesus. For though he was the Son of God, the incarnate Christ, he was also the Son of man.
He knew the pains of the body, felt the heartaches and longings of the human heart. He drank fully of the cup his Father gave him. On him the full weight of the world's hatred of Truth fell, yet he bore it - and triumphed! And his triumph was not only for himself but for every human being who would ever live.
You might say that Jesus lifted ''you can't keep a good man down'' from a truism to the level of a divine law - a law of salvation for you and me. He showed us the way to achieve a kind of manhood that simply could not then and cannot now be defeated.
He showed us a manhood too good to sin, too good to be sick, too good to die. He showed us man as the son of God, man as he is in God's sight - His beloved, having unlimited dominion, power, and glory as the ''express image of (His) person.'' n1
n1 Hebrews 1:3 the incorporeal expression of Spirit, was not just Jesus' real being; it is ours too. This is Jesus' essential message - that God is our Father and that in the spiritual consciousness of being that God bestows we are all His sons and daughters.
The wonderful thing is, every good thought and act of ours already evidences, to some degree, something of the real man, the wholly good man. And it is the nature of the Christ in us to bring this latent Godlikeness into full bloom - to uncover what is already there in each of us but needs to be realized.
If we strive to know God and obey the laws He has given us through the Bible and Christ Jesus, we will develop a budding spiritual manhood and womanhood. The desire to be good as God defines good will transform us. Every good quality in us will shine more brightly, lose limitations, deepen and develop, under God's guidance.
We shouldn't be surprised, however, if at the same time ungodlike qualities come to the surface so that we can get rid of them. The Christian often finds himself in a spiritual battle with evil, with limited, materially based thinking. Sometimes the carnal mind's resistance to the appearing of the real man can seem overwhelming.
But God's grace for us is that the very goodness He is developing within us is a power, a divine healing power that is the very expression of His indomitable will. Nothing can keep down or repress this goodness within us. Nothing can keep us from fulfilling God's purpose that we reflect Him.
As we grasp this true idea of manhood, the Christ gives us buoyancy, resiliency, lightness of heart, spontaneity, a sense of humor, irrepressible joy in living and doing good. This doesn't mean we won't face challenges. But even if we pass through a crucifixion-like experience, there will always be a resurrection.
Mary Baker Eddy, a woman who overcame tremendous adversity in discovering and founding Christian Science for the world, has written: ''Whatever envy, hatred, revenge - the most remorseless motives that govern mortal mind - whatever these try to do, shall 'work together for good to them that love God.'
''Because He has called His own, armed them, equipped them, and furnished them defenses impregnable. Their God will not let them be lost; and if they fall they shall rise again, stronger than before the stumble. The good cannot lose their God, their help in times of trouble.'' n2
n2 Miscellaneous Writings, P. 10
Nothing can keep a good man down. Certainly nothing can keep God's man down, for the real man, which the Christ brings out in us, knows no limitation of good , no hindrance in his expression of God. With this thought in our heart, every day becomes an Easter; every moment of spiritual awakening, a resurrection. Daily Bible Verse If the Spirt of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. Romans 8:11