The Health Food Ministry


The Object of Health Food Work

There was need for the establishment of the health food work and hygienic restaurants, and these have accomplished good. But they are not to become simply commercial enterprises. They are to be an object-lesson. HFM 88.2

In the feeding of the five thousand, Christ passed food from His hands to the hands of the disciples. Of this we read, “So the men sat down, in number about five thousand. And Jesus took the loaves; and when He had given thanks, He distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down.” John 6:10, 11. HFM 88.3

The word of God is here represented. The feeding of the five thousand with food from the hands of the disciples prepared the way for the giving of the gospel message. It was done with thanksgiving. The feeding of the multitude represents the feeding of hungry souls with the bread of life. HFM 88.4

After the hunger of the people had been satisfied, the word was given, “Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.” John 6:12. HFM 88.5

Then follows the history of Christ's giving the Word of life. Although Christ could furnish a supply of temporal food as often as He desired, yet He did not often perform a like miracle. When the people saw this miracle, they said, “This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.” John 6:14. Will they eat as readily of the bread of life, the Word-food, as they did of the temporal food? Their minds, corrupted by false teaching, would not so readily receive the word of eternal life.... HFM 88.6

I have earnest words to speak to those who shall engage in the health food business. There is to be an entirely different feature brought into the work of our food stores, restaurants, and into every line in which our food productions are handled. This work must be carried forward as a means of gospel enlightenment to those who have not given themselves to the Lord. Those who handle these foods need daily the counsel of the One who created food for the five thousand hungry men. The work of our food stores and restaurants must be carried on in such a way that there will be no loss financially. We must not forget that this line of work needs to live. But all corrupting influences must be weeded out from it. HFM 89.1

Keep on the gaining side we must. But what is the use of carrying on this work if we have to sacrifice principles of justice, mercy, and the love of God? What is the use of carrying it on if through its influence, no souls are enlightened and prepared to lay hold upon the word that is their spiritual food? Upon those connected with this work there should be urged the necessity of calling the attention of the people with whom they are brought into contact [to] the truths of heavenly origin. HFM 89.2

There should be appointed to the health food work, men who are well qualified to speak words in season, and out of season, and who can enlighten the minds of men and women in regard to the truth. Special wisdom is needed in order to understand when to speak, and when to keep silent. Let each worker pray much for spiritual understanding. HFM 89.3

Financial gain is to be made a secondary matter. Let the mind become spiritualized. Watch unto prayer. It is hard for some to admit that, to a great extent, selfishness controls their actions. The food business is a door through which we are to let our light shine forth. Jesus is watching, ready to help every one who desires His help. My brethren, humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God. Watch and pray, and work to answer your prayers by seizing the precious opportunities for service as they come. HFM 89.4

There is a genuine, sensible way in which to speak words of faith and encouragement. Paul, who had been greatly blessed by God, brought his religion into the workshop. Our workers may be sanctified by the Holy Spirit, and thus reap the very best results in their efforts to proclaim the truth. Such workers will not be satisfied unless they see something done. Often they will earnestly inquire of God, “Have I done all I might have done in sowing the seeds of truth?” HFM 90.1

Let our food stores and restaurants be provided with suitable reading matter,—simply prepared tracts and papers, containing the truth in short, pointed articles. Thus the workers can bring the truth for this time before the minds of those with whom they talk. The mind needs to be sanctified, that it may be worked by the Spirit of God. The words spoken in season and out of season may be good seed dropped in the soil of the soul. HFM 90.2

Those who claim to be Christians do not do half that they might for the Master. Beside all waters the seed of truth is to be sown. Our restaurants and food stores must be made a means of enlightening minds. Let the workers have at hand leaflets and tracts containing the very best selections. If these can not readily be sold, let them be given away; and good results will be seen from the seed thus sown.... HFM 90.3

An effort should be made to utilize natural products for healthful foods. A good work along this line may be done at Loma Linda. Our brethren there should make a beginning soon, even if all the arrangements regarding this work can not be definitely decided upon at this time. As our brethren at Loma Linda study how to make the health food work a means of bringing the truth for this time before the minds of unbelievers, the Lord will add His blessing and will make plain the course they should pursue in the conduct of the business. HFM 90.4

A similar work is to be carried forward in the Southern States. Men and women who embrace the truth in the South will often need to be helped to find employment. Many will find opportunity to engage in evangelistic work; and these should learn, in connection with this work, to teach worldlings how to prepare simple, palatable food. HFM 91.1

Outside the city of Nashville, there are advantages that should be utilized in providing wholesome food for the people. Expensive buildings are not essential in order for this work to be carried forward. Let our health food men realize that the truth is to be sown beside all waters. My brethren in the health food work, speak words that will impress minds. Conduct meetings that will be a means of converting souls. HFM 91.2

In times past I have written to our brethren in the South that as soon as they are prepared to carry forward the health food work in a proper manner, for the advancement of present truth, it would be well for them to make a beginning. If wise plans could be made to operate the food plant near Nashville, this would give opportunity for many to secure employment. But let not our brethren in the South, or in any other field, pay large sums for the privilege of manufacturing and handling expensive foods. We can use the productions that the Lord has given us. These are to be prepared by the skillful hands and minds of those whom the Lord shall teach. We need minds that can be worked in an unselfish way. Manuscript 81, 1906 (written September 27, 1906). HFM 91.3