An Antitobacco and Temperance Message

Man has Sold His Reason—Satan is taking the world captive through the use of liquor and tobacco, tea and coffee. The God-given mind, which should be kept clear, is perverted by the use of narcotics. The brain is no longer able to distinguish correctly. The enemy has control. Man has sold his reason for that which makes him mad. He has no sense of what is right. Yet the liquor curse is legalized, and works untold ruin in the hands of those who love to tamper with that which not only ruins the poor victim but his whole family. Ev 529.3

The curse of liquor-drinking is demonstrated by the awful murders that take place. Intemperance is widespread. How much man's senses are perverted by intoxicating drugs it is impossible to say.—Manuscript 11, 1899. Ev 529.4

An Important Duty—Years ago we regarded the spread of the temperance principles as one of our most important duties. It should be so today.—Medical Ministry, 266 (1907). Ev 529.5

Methods for Presenting the Temperance Message—The subject of temperance should be strongly and clearly presented. Let the people be shown what a blessing the practice of health principles will be to them. Let them see what God designed men and women to become. Point to the great sacrifice made for the uplifting and ennobling of the human race. With the Bible in hand, present the requirements of God. Tell the hearers that He expects them to use the powers of mind and body in a way that will honor Him. Show them how the enemy is trying to drag human beings down by leading them to indulge perverted appetite. Ev 530.1

Clearly, plainly, earnestly, tell them how thousands of men and women are using God's money to corrupt themselves and to make this world a hell. Millions of dollars are spent for that which makes men mad. Present this matter so clearly that its force cannot but be seen. Then tell your hearers of the Saviour, who came to this world to save men and women from all sinful practices. “God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Ev 530.2

Ask those who attend the meetings to help you in the work that you are trying to do. Show them how evil habits result in diseased bodies and diseased minds—in wretchedness that no pen can describe. The use of intoxicating liquor is robbing thousands of their reason. And yet the sale of this liquor is legalized. Tell them that they have a heaven to win and a hell to shun. Ask them to sign the pledge. The commission of the great I AM is to be your authority. Have the pledges prepared, and present them at the close of the meeting. Ev 530.3

One man should not try to do this work alone. Let several unite in such an effort. Let them come to the front with a message from heaven, imbued with the power of the Holy Spirit. Let them draw with all their strength, with words made eloquent by the Spirit's efficiency. Let them ask their hearers to assist in the work of warning the cities. Let men and women be shown the evil of spending money in indulgences that destroy the health of mind and soul and body.... Ev 531.1

Not by outward display, not by worldly patronage, is the kingdom of Christ established, but by the implanting of Christ's nature in humanity through the work of the Holy Spirit. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” Here is the only power that can work for the uplifting of humanity. And the human agency for the accomplishment of this work is the teaching and preaching of the Word of God.—Manuscript 42, 1905. Ev 531.2

Experience in Helping Tobacco Users—In Australia I met a man considered free from everything like intemperance, except for one habit. He used tobacco. He came to hear us at the tent, and one night after he went home, as he afterward told us, he wrestled against the habit of tobacco-using, and obtained the victory. Some of his relatives had told him that they would give him fifty pounds if he would throw away his tobacco. He would not do it. “But,” he said, “when you present the principles of temperance before us as you have done, I cannot resist them. You present before us the self-denial of One who gave His life for us. I do not know Him now, but I desire to know Him. I have never offered a prayer in my house. I have cast away my tobacco, but that is as far as I have gone.” Ev 531.3

We prayed with him, and after we left him we wrote to him and later visited him again. He finally reached the point where he gave himself to God, and he is becoming the very pillar of the church in the place where he lives. He is working with all his soul to bring his relatives to a knowledge of the truth.—The General Conference Bulletin, April 23, 1901. Ev 532.1

Victory Through Faith—In this work all classes will be reached. When the Holy Spirit works among us, souls who are unready for Christ's appearing are convicted. Many come to our meetings and are converted who for years have not attended meetings in any church. The simplicity of the truth reaches their hearts. The tobacco devotees sacrifice their idol, and the liquor drinker his liquor. They could not do this if they did not by faith grasp the promises of God for the forgiveness of their sins. The truth as it is in the Word comes before high and low, rich and poor, and those who receive the message become workers with us and with God, and a strong force is raised up to labor harmoniously. This is our work.—Manuscript 3, 1899. Ev 532.2