Manuscript Releases, vol. 6 [Nos. 347-418]


Ministers and Health Reform

Ministers of the gospel are engaged in a most solemn work. They should be encouraged to deny themselves on the point of appetite, refusing to eat anything that will work an injury to their physical and mental powers. It is their privilege to have physical strength, which they may use to the honor of God in carrying forward His work. The fact that a man preaches the gospel does not give him license to indulge in selfish practices that will imperil his health. The ministers should set an example of temperance before the church members. They should keep their physical and mental powers in the very best condition, that they may do the greatest amount of good.—Manuscript 101, 1903, 2. (Diary, typed September 1, 1903.) 6MR 37.2

I believe if our ministering brethren would only read the testimonies that the Lord has graciously given them, that they would reveal a different spirit. God will hold them accountable for neglect and disregard of the light which he has given them.... You have had too many burdens upon you, but I tell you in love that the Lord has not been pleased with the spirit of warfare you have had on health reform. Had you been a health reformer in deed and truth, you would have had much better health and escaped many perils. God has given light upon this subject, but you have worked away from the light, and your influence has been opposed to the work that the Lord would do for this people upon this point. You have stood directly in the way of the work of God in health reform. You have suffered sickness because your habits in eating and in labor have not been according to the light which God has given to His people. I am sorry that I have to write in reference to these things as I do. Had you appreciated and heeded the light which the Lord has given us, you would not now be confused in judgment, and so enfeebled in nerve and brain power. You attribute your sickness to erroneous causes.... Your health is shattered, but do not allow your mind to take a wrong bias; for when you once get set in the wrong direction it will be difficult for you to change. You have been doing this, little by little, for years.... I want to be in harmony with God and in harmony with you. I want you to fall on the Rock and be broken. Let self die; let Christ be enthroned in the heart.... Jesus loves you and will work for you and gather you in His strong arms.—Letter 18, 1888, pp. 3, 4, 6. (To Brother and Sister Butler, December 11, 1888.) 6MR 38.1

Those ministers who feel at liberty to indulge appetite are falling far short of the mark. God wants them to be health reformers. He wants them to live up to the light that has been given us on this subject.—Manuscript 48, 1904, 7. (“Lessons from the First and Second Chapters of Colossians,” Talk, May 20, 1904.) 6MR 39.1