Sabbath, June 16, 2007
FIRST VISION ON HEALTH REFORM
1. When and how was the first vision on health reform given to Sister White?
Deuteronomy 28:1-3. And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God. Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field.
“It was in the midst of the Civil War; evangelistic services had well-nigh been stopped. It occurred immediately after the formation of the General Conference, and organization was assured. ‘It was at the house of Bro. A. Hilliard, at Otsego, Mich., June 6, 1863,’ wrote Mrs. White, ‘that the great subject of Health Reform was opened before me in vision.’” –Arthur Whitefield Spalding,
2. What was included in her writings on this subject?
Numbers 11:4 And the mixt multitude that was among them fell a lusting: and the children of Israel also wept again, and said, Who shall give us flesh to eat?
1 Corinthians 10:6 Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.
“Mrs. White began to write on the subject of health and healthful living. In the autumn of 1863 she issued a booklet entitled An Appeal to Mothers, those first teachers, advocating the inculcation of the laws of life, especially the sacred mysteries of generation, and the relation thereto of dietary law. In this pamphlet is found her first published statement of the relation of diet to the spiritual life. Within a few months there were published her third and fourth volumes of Spiritual Gifts. In the fourth volume was a long article on health, in which she traced the evil course of perverted appetite from Adam to ourselves. Swine’s flesh was specifically condemned, and finally all flesh food, as also inclusion in the diet of rich pastries, grease-filled foods, and condiments. In their place she recom¬mended ‘a plain, wholesome diet,’ the essentials of which were ground whole grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, and nuts, with milk products and eggs gradually, or in the future, to be discarded. Two meals a day instead of three were advocated to relieve the alimentary system during sleep.” –Arthur Whitefield Spalding, Origin and History of Seventh-day Adventists, vol. 1, pp. 346, 347.
SECOND VISION ON THE HEALTH REFORM
3. What warning was given in the second vision on the health reform?
Exodus 15:26 And said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the Lord that healeth thee.
“In the vision given me in Rochester, New York, December 25, 1865, I was shown that our Sabbathkeeping people have been negligent in acting upon the light which God has given in regard to the health reform, that there is yet a great work before us, and that as a people we have been too backward to follow in God’s opening providence as He has chosen to lead us.
“The health reform, I was shown, is a part of the third angel’s message and is just as closely connected with it as are the arm and hand with the human body.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 1, pp. 485, 486.
4. On what platform should the health reform be placed?
1 Corinthians 10:31. Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
“Reform, continual reform, must be kept before the people, and by our example we must enforce our teaching. True religion and the laws of health go hand in hand.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 7, p. 137.
“Keep the work of health reform to the front is the message I am instructed to bear. Show so plainly its value that a widespread need for it will be felt. Abstinence from all hurtful food and drink is the fruit of true religion.” –Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 113.
5. What other issue belongs to the health reform?
1 Peter 3:1-5 Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:
“It was equally inevitable that Seventh-day Adventists, newly aroused to the seeking after health, should revolt against the burdensome dress of the times….
“Yet it cannot be said that all Adventist women exemplify completely the principles inherent in the dress reform of the early years. Whatever legislation, whatever discipline may be administered, still the prime law governs that a meeting of the requirements of the gospel demands that ‘ornament of a meek and quite spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.’” –Arthur Whitefield Spalding, Origin and History of Seventh-day Adventists, vol. 1, pp. 384, 385, 387.
ADVANCEMENT IN THE HEALTH REFORM
6. To what definite determination must God’s people come regarding the question of health reform?
Genesis 1:29 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
Romans 8:20, 21 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
Revelation 21:4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
Revelation 22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
“Again and again I have been shown that God is bringing His people back to His original design, that is, not to subsist upon the flesh of dead animals. He would have us teach people a better way….
“If meat is discarded, if the taste is not educated in that direction, if a liking for fruits and grains is encouraged, it will soon be as God in the beginning designed it should be. No meat will be used by His people.” –Counsels on Diet and Foods, p. 82.