I do hope that you will heed the words I have spoken to you. It has been presented to me that you will not be able to exert the most successful influence in health reform unless in some things you become more liberal to yourself and to others. The time will come when milk cannot be used as freely as it is now used; but the present is not the time to discard it. And eggs contain properties which are remedial agencies in counteracting poisons. And while warnings have been given against the use of these articles of diet in families where the children were addicted to, yes, steeped in, habits of self abuse, yet we should not consider it a denial of principle to use eggs of hens which are well cared for and suitably fed.
I have something to say in reference to extreme views of health reform. Health reform becomes health deform, a health destroyer, when it is carried to extremes. You will not be successful in sanitariums where the sick are treated if you prescribe for the patients the same diet you have prescribed for yourself and your wife. I assure you that your ideas in regard to diet for the sick are not advisable. The change is too great. While I would discard flesh meat as injurious, something less objectionable may be used, and this is found in eggs. Do not remove milk from the table or forbid its being used in the cooking of food. The milk used should be procured from healthy cows, and should be sterilised. 12MR 172
This is all I can write today, for the mail must go soon. But I wish to say that when the time comes that it is no longer safe to use milk, cream, butter, and eggs, God will reveal this. No extremes in health reform are to be advocated. The question of using milk and butter and eggs will work out its own problem. At present we have no burden on this line. Let your moderation be known unto all men.--Letter 37, 1901, pp. 1-13. (To Dr. and Mrs. Kress, May 29, 1901.) 12MR 178
Some have sneered at this work of reform and have said it was all unnecessary, that it was an excitement to divert minds from present truth. They have said that matters were being carried to extremes. Such do not know what they are talking about. While men and women professing godliness are diseased from the crown of their head to the soles of their feet, while their physical, mental, and moral energies are enfeebled through gratification of depraved appetite and excessive labour, how can they weigh the evidences of truth and comprehend the requirements of God? If their moral and intellectual faculties are beclouded, they cannot appreciate the value of the atonement or the exalted character of the work of God, nor delight in the study of His word. How can a nervous dyspeptic be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh him a reason of the hope that is in him, with meekness and fear? How soon would such a one become confused and agitated, and by his diseased imagination be led to view matters in altogether a wrong light, and by a lack of that meekness and calmness which characterised the life of Christ be caused to dishonour his profession while contending with unreasonable men? Viewing matters from a high religious standpoint, we must be thorough reformers in order to be Christlike. 1T 487
There are but few as yet who are aroused sufficiently to understand how much their habits of diet have to do with their health, their characters, their usefulness in this world, and their eternal destiny. I saw that it is the duty of those who have received the light from heaven and have realised the benefit of walking in it, to manifest a greater interest for those who are still suffering for want of knowledge. Sabbathkeepers who are looking for the soon appearing of their Saviour should be the last to manifest a lack of interest in this great work of reform. Men and women must be instructed, and ministers and people should feel that the burden of the work rests upon them to agitate the subject and urge it home upon others. 1T 488
Said the angel, "Abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul." You have stumbled at the health reform. It appears to you to be a needless appendix to the truth. It is not so; it is a part of the truth. Here is a work before you which will come closer and be more trying than anything which has yet been brought to bear upon you. While you hesitate and stand back, failing to lay hold upon the blessing which it is your privilege to receive, you suffer loss. You are stumbling over the very blessing which heaven has placed in your path to make progress less difficult. Satan presents this before you in the most objectionable light, that you may combat that which would prove the greatest benefit to you, which would be for your physical and spiritual health.
The Lord has let His light shine upon us in these last days, that the gloom and darkness which have been gathering in past generations because of sinful indulgence, might in some degree be dispelled, and that the train of evils which have resulted because of intemperate eating and drinking, might be lessened.
The Lord in wisdom designed to bring His people into a position where they would be separate from the world in spirit and practice, that their children might not so readily be led into idolatry, and become tainted with the prevailing corruptions of this age. It is God's design that believing parents and their children should stand forth as living representatives of Christ, candidates for everlasting life. All who are partakers of the divine nature will escape the corruption that is in the world through lust. It is impossible for those who indulge the appetite to attain to Christian perfection. 2T 399
The health reform would be a great benefit to you both if you would strictly carry it out. This you have failed to do. Your appetites are morbid, and because you do not relish a plain, simple diet, composed of unbolted wheat flour, vegetables and fruits prepared without spices or grease, you are continually transgressing the laws which God has established in your system. While you do this you must suffer the penalty, for to every transgression is affixed a penalty. Yet you wonder at your continued poor health. 2T 66
Knowledge must be gained in regard to how to eat, and drink, and dress so as to preserve health. Sickness is caused by violating the laws of health; it is the result of violating nature's law. Our first duty, one which we owe to God, to ourselves, and to our fellow men, is to obey the laws of God, which include the laws of health. If we are sick, we impose a weary tax upon our friends, and unfit ourselves for discharging our duties to our families and to our neighbours. And when premature death is the result of our violation of nature's law, we bring sorrow and suffering to others; we deprive our neighbours of the help we ought to render them in living; we rob our families of the comfort and help we might render them, and rob God of the service He claims of us to advance His glory. Then, are we not, in the worst sense, transgressors of God's law?
But God is all-pitiful, gracious, and tender, and when light comes to those who have injured their health by sinful indulgences, and they are convinced of sin, and repent and seek pardon, He accepts the poor offering rendered to Him, and receives them. Oh, what tender mercy that He does not refuse the remnant of the abused life of the suffering, repenting sinner! In His gracious mercy, He saves these souls as by fire. But what an inferior, pitiful sacrifice at best, to offer to a pure and holy God! Noble faculties have been paralysed by wrong habits of sinful indulgence. The aspirations are perverted, and the soul and body defaced. 3T 164
The body, which God calls his temple, should be preserved in as healthy a condition as possible. Many act as though they had a right to treat their own bodies as they please. They do not realise that God has claims upon them. They are required to glorify him in their bodies and spirits, which are his. While they give themselves up to the gratification of unhealthy appetites, and thus bring disease upon themselves, they cannot render to God acceptable service. None should remain in ignorance of God's claims. All his promises are on conditions of obedience. All should work for themselves. They should do that which God requires them to do, and not leave God to do for them that which he has left for them to do. It is a sacred duty which God has enjoined upon reasonable beings, formed in his image, to keep that image in as perfect a state as possible. Those who bring disease upon themselves, by self-gratification, have not healthy bodies and minds. They cannot weigh the evidences of truth, and comprehend the requirements of God. Our Saviour will not reach his arm low enough to raise such from their degraded state, while they persist in pursuing a course to sink themselves still lower. 4ASG 148
All are required to do what they can to preserve healthy bodies, and sound minds. If they will gratify a gross appetite, and by so doing blunt their sensibilities, and becloud their perceptive faculties so that they cannot appreciate the exalted character of God, or delight in the study of his Word, they may be assured that God will not accept their unworthy offering any sooner than that of Cain. God requires them to cleanse themselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord. After man has done all in his power to insure health, by the denying of appetite and gross passions, that he may possess a healthy mind, and a sanctified imagination, that he may render to God an offering in righteousness, then he is saved alone by a miracle of God's mercy, as was the ark upon the stormy billows. Noah had done all that God required of him in making the ark secure, then God performed that which man could not do, and preserved the ark by his miraculous power. 4ASG 148
Because of imprudence in eating, the senses of some seem to be half paralysed, and they are sluggish and sleepy. These pale-faced ministers who are suffering in consequence of selfish indulgence of the appetite are no recommendation of health reform. When suffering from overwork, it would be much better to drop out a meal occasionally and thus give nature a chance to rally. Our labourers could do more by their example to advance health reform than by preaching it. When elaborate preparations are made for them by well-meaning friends, they are strongly tempted to disregard principle; but by refusing the dainty dishes, the rich condiments, the tea and coffee, they may prove themselves to be practical health reformers. Some are now suffering in consequence of transgressing the laws of life, thus causing a stigma to rest on the cause of health reform. 4T 417
When persons are spoken to on the subject of health, they often say, "We know a great deal better than we do." They do not realise that they are accountable for every ray of light in regard to their physical well-being, and that their every habit is open to the inspection of God. Physical life is not to be treated in a haphazard manner. Every organ, every fibre of the being, is to be sacredly guarded from harmful practices. 6T 372
Wherever the last message of warning is given combined with medical missionary work and lessons on the right principles of living, wonderful results are seen. Our sanitariums are to be the means of enlightening those who come to them for treatment. The patients are to be shown how they can live upon a diet of grains, fruits, nuts, and other products of the soil. I have been instructed that lectures should be regularly given in our sanitariums on health topics. People are to be taught to discard those articles of food that weaken the health and strength of the beings for whom Christ gave His life. The injurious effects of tea and coffee are to be shown. The patients are to be taught how they can dispense with those articles of diet that injure the digestive organs. These things are to be treated from a health standpoint.--Letter 233, 1905, pp. 7, 9. (To Dr. and Mrs. D. H. Kress, August 9, 1905.) 7MR 380
Milk, eggs, and butter should not be classed with flesh-meat. In some cases the use of eggs is beneficial. The time has not come to say that the use of milk and eggs should be wholly discarded. There are poor families whose diet consists largely of bread and milk. They have little fruit, and can not afford to purchase the nut foods. In teaching health reform, as in all other gospel work, we are to meet the people where they are. Until we can teach them how to prepare health-reform foods that are palatable, nourishing, and yet inexpensive, we are not at liberty to present the most advanced propositions regarding health-reform diet. 7T 135
The question of how to preserve the health is one of primary importance. When we study this question in the fear of God, we shall learn that it is best, for both our physical and our spiritual advancement, to observe simplicity in diet. Let us patiently study this question. We need knowledge and judgement in order to move wisely in this matter. Nature's laws are not to be resisted, but obeyed.
Those who have received instruction regarding the evils of the use of flesh foods, tea and coffee, and rich and unhealthful food preparations, and who are determined to make a covenant with God by sacrifice, will not continue to indulge their appetite for food that they know to be unhealthful. God demands that the appetites be cleansed, and that self-denial be practised in regard to those things which are not good. This is a work that will have to be done before His people can stand before Him a perfected people. . . .
There are some professed believers who accept certain portions of the Testimonies as the message of God, while they reject those portions that condemn their favourite indulgences. Such persons are working contrary to their own welfare, and the welfare of the church. It is essential that we walk in the light while we have the light. Those who claim to believe in health reform, and yet work counter to its principles in the daily life practice, are hurting their own souls and are leaving wrong impressions upon the minds of believers and unbelievers. . . .
I have been shown that the principles that were given us in the early days of the message are as important and should be regarded just as conscientiously today as they were then. There are some who have never followed the light given on the question of diet. It is now time to take the light from under the bushel, and let it shine forth in clear, bright rays.
All are now being tested and proved. We have been baptised into Christ, and if we will act our part by separating from everything that would drag us down and make us what we ought not to be, there will be given us strength to grow up into Christ, who is our living head, and we shall see the salvation of God.
Only when we are intelligent in regard to the principles of healthful living, can we be fully aroused to see the evils resulting from improper diet. Those who, after seeing their mistakes, have courage to change their habits will find that the reformatory process requires a struggle and much perseverance; but when correct tastes are once formed, they will realise that the use of the food which they formerly regarded as harmless, was slowly but surely laying the foundation for dyspepsia and other diseases. 9T 158-160
There is a real common sense in dietetic reform. The subject should be studied broadly and deeply, and no one should criticise others because their practice is not, in all things, in harmony with his own. It is impossible to make an unvarying rule to regulate every one's habits, and no one should think himself a criterion for all. Not all can eat the same things. Foods that are palatable and wholesome to one person may be distasteful, and even harmful, to another. Some cannot use milk, while others thrive on it. Some persons cannot digest peas and beans; others find them wholesome. For some the coarser grain preparations are good food, while others cannot use them. CD 198
There is danger that in presenting the principles of health reform some will be in favour of bringing in changes that would be for the worse instead of for the better. Health reform must not be urged in a radical manner. As the situation now is, we cannot say that milk and eggs and butter should be entirely discarded. We must be careful to make no innovations, because under the influence of extreme teaching there are conscientious souls who will surely go to extremes. Their physical appearance will injure the cause of health reform; for few know how to properly supply the place of that which they discard. [ Caution Against Extremes Letter 98, 1901 ] CD 352
Now no tea, coffee, or flesh meat is served in the institution. We are determined to live out the principles of health reform, to walk in the way of truth and righteousness. We shall not, for fear of losing patronage, be half-and-half reformers. We have taken our position, and by God's help we shall stand by it. The food provided for the patients is wholesome and palatable. The diet is composed of fruits and grains and nuts. Here in California there is an abundance of fruit of all kinds. CD 414
Our sanitariums are to be the means of enlightening those who come to them for treatment. The patients are to be shown how they can live upon a diet of grains, fruits, nuts, and other products of the soil. I have been instructed that lectures should be regularly given in our sanitariums on health topics. People are to be taught to discard those articles of food that weaken the health and strength of the beings for whom Christ gave His life. The injurious effects of tea and coffee are to be shown. The patients are to be taught how they can dispense with those articles of diet that injure the digestive organs. . . . Let the patients be shown the necessity of practising the principles of health reform, if they would regain their health. Let the sick be shown how to get well by being temperate in eating and by taking regular exercise in the open air. . . . By the work of our sanitariums, suffering is to be relieved and health restored. People are to be taught how, by carefulness in eating and drinking, they may keep well. . . . Abstinence from flesh meat will benefit those who abstain. The diet question is a subject of living interest. . . . Our sanitariums are established for a special purpose, to teach people that we do not live to eat, but that we eat to live. CD 444
Health is a blessing of which few appreciate the value; yet upon it the efficiency of our mental and physical powers largely depends. Our impulses and passions have their seat in the body, and it must be kept in the best condition physically and under the most spiritual influences in order that our talents may be put to the highest use. COL 346
Anything that lessens physical strength enfeebles the mind and makes it less capable of discriminating between right and wrong. We become less capable of choosing the good and have less strength of will to do that which we know to be right. COL 346
The misuse of our physical powers shortens the period of time in which our lives can be used for the glory of God. And it unfits us to accomplish the work God has given us to do. By allowing ourselves to form wrong habits, by keeping late hours, by gratifying appetite at the expense of health, we lay the foundation for feebleness. By neglecting physical exercise, by overworking mind or body, we unbalance the nervous system. Those who thus shorten their lives and unfit themselves for service by disregarding nature's laws, are guilty of robbery toward God. And they are robbing their fellow men also. The opportunity of blessing others, the very work for which God sent them into the world, has by their own course of action been cut short. And they have unfitted themselves to do even that which in a briefer period of time they might have accomplished. The Lord holds us guilty when by our injurious habits we thus deprive the world of good. COL 346
There is work for us to do--stern, earnest work. All our habits, tastes, and inclinations must be educated in harmony with the laws of life and health. By this means we may secure the very best physical conditions, and have mental clearness to discern between the evil and the good. CTBH 25
God has permitted the light of health reform to shine upon us in these last days, that by walking in the light we may escape many of the dangers to which we shall be exposed. Satan is working with great power to lead men to indulge appetite, gratify inclination, and spend their days in heedless folly. He presents attractions in a life of selfish enjoyment and of sensual indulgence. Intemperance saps the energies of both mind and body. He who is thus overcome, has placed himself upon Satan's ground, where he will be tempted and annoyed, and finally controlled at pleasure by the enemy of all righteousness. CTBH 75
And when I violate the laws God has established in my being, I am to repent and reform, and place myself in the most favourable condition under the doctors God has provided--pure air, pure water, and the healing, precious sunlight. PH144 06 (2SM 297)
When Lord Palmerston, Premier of England, was petitioned by the Scotch clergy to appoint a day of fasting and prayer to avert the cholera, he replied, in effect, "Cleanse and disinfect your streets and houses, promote cleanliness and health among the poor, and see that they are plentifully supplied with good food and raiment, and employ right sanitary measures generally, and you will have no occasion to fast and pray. Nor will the Lord hear your prayers, while these, his preventives, remain unheeded." RH JAN.25,1881
Those who would work in God's service must not be seeking worldly gratification and selfish indulgence. The physicians in our institutions must be imbued with the living principles of health reform. Men will never be truly temperate until the grace of Christ is an abiding principle in the heart. All the pledges in the world will not make you or your wife health reformers. No mere restriction of your diet will cure your diseased appetite. Brother and Sister ----- will not practice temperance in all things until their hearts are transformed by the grace of God.
Circumstances cannot work reforms. Christianity proposes a reformation in the heart. What Christ works within, will be worked out under the dictation of a converted intellect. The plan of beginning outside and trying to work inward has always failed, and always will fail. God's plan with you is to begin at the very seat of all difficulties, the heart, and then from out of the heart will issue the principles of righteousness; the reformation will be outward as well as inward. SPTA NO.9 54