Manuscript Releases, vol. 16 [Nos. 1186-1235]


MR No. 1232—Health Teachings Not To Replace The Third Angel's Message

(Written May 27, 1896, From Cooranbong, N.S.W., to Dr. J. H. Kellogg.)

I have been much perplexed in regard to some matters that have been presented before me concerning the condition of things in some of our institutions. I sent you a copy of letters sent to Elder Olsen. I have been shown that you also are in danger of making serious mistakes. You feel a deep interest in the circulation of the health publications, and this is right; but that special branch is not to be made all-absorbing. The health reform is as closely related to the third angel's message as the arm to the body; but the arm cannot take the place of the body. The proclamation of the third angel's message, the commandments of God, and the testimony of Jesus, is the burden of our work. The message is to be proclaimed with a loud cry and is to go to the whole world. The presentation of health principles must be united with this message, but must not be independent of it or in any way take the place of it. 16MR 332.1

I was shown that the strong presentation of the health line of work is causing it to absorb more attention than should be given to any one branch. There must be a well-balanced, symmetrical development of the work in all its parts. You, my brother, should not press workers to handle the health books as the Bible Readings was handled. Matters are now taking that phase. The glowing impressions given to the canvassers in regard to this one branch result in excluding from the field other works that must come before the people. You know I would have the health books occupy their proper place, but they are only one of many lines in the great work to be done. 16MR 332.2

Canvassers should not be taught that one book or one class of books is to occupy the field to the neglect of all others. Among the workers are always some who can be swayed in almost any direction. Those who have charge of the canvassing work should be men of well-balanced minds, who can discern the relation of each part of the work to the great whole. Let them give due attention to the circulation of health books, but not make this line so prominent as to draw men away from other lines of vital interest. It is my prayer that you may not move unadvisedly in this matter and exercise an influence that shall lead men to dishonor God by neglecting the very things essential to come before the people at this time. My brother, you are in danger of self-exaltation; I caution you to walk humbly with God. Seek wisdom from Him, that you may be guided in safe paths. 16MR 333.1

There is need of a much closer study of the Word of God. Especially should Daniel and the Revelation have attention as never before in the history of our work. We may have less to say in some lines, in regard to the Roman power and the papacy, but we should call attention to what the prophets and the apostles have written under the inspiration of the Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit has so shaped matters, both in the giving of the prophecy, and in the events portrayed, as to teach that the human agent is to be kept out of sight, hid in Christ, and the Lord God of heaven and His law are to be exalted. 16MR 333.2

Read the book of Daniel. Call up, point by point, the history of the kingdoms there represented. Behold statesmen, councils, powerful armies, and see how God wrought to abase the pride of men, and lay human glory in the dust. God alone is represented as great. In the vision of the prophet He is seen casting down one mighty ruler and setting up another. He is revealed as the monarch of the universe, about to set up His everlasting kingdom—the Ancient of days, the living God, the Source of all wisdom, the Ruler of the present, the Revealer of the future. Read and understand how poor, how frail, how short-lived, how erring, how guilty, is man in lifting up his soul unto vanity. 16MR 333.3

The Holy Spirit through Isaiah points us to God, the living God, as the chief object of attention—to God as revealed in Christ. “Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace” [Isaiah 9:6]. 16MR 334.1

The light that Daniel received direct from God was given especially for these last days. The visions he saw by the banks of the Ulai and the Hiddekel, the great rivers of Shinar, are now in process of fulfillment, and all the events foretold will soon have come to pass. 16MR 334.2

Consider the circumstances of the Jewish nation when the prophecies of Daniel were given. The Israelites were in captivity, their temple had been destroyed, their temple service suspended. Their religion had centered in the ceremonies of the sacrificial system. They had made the outward forms all-important, while they had lost the spirit of true worship. Their services were corrupted with the traditions and practices of heathenism, and in the performance of the sacrificial rites they did not look beyond the shadow to the substance. They did not discern Christ, the true offering for the sins of men. The Lord wrought to bring the people into captivity, and to suspend the services in the temple, in order that the outward ceremonies might not become the sum total of their religion. Their principles and practices must be purged from heathenism. The ritual service ceased in order that heart service might be revived. The outward glory was removed that the spiritual might be revealed. 16MR 334.3

In the land of their captivity, as the people turned unto the Lord with repentance, He manifested Himself unto them. They lacked the outward representation of His presence; but the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness shone into their minds and hearts. When they called unto God in their humiliation and distress, visions were given to His prophets which unfolded the events of the future—the overthrow of the oppressors of God's people, the coming of the Redeemer, and the establishment of the everlasting kingdom. 16MR 335.1

In giving the light to His people, God did not work exclusively through any one class of men. Daniel was a prince of Judah. Isaiah also was of the royal tribe. David was a shepherd boy, Amos a herdsman, Zechariah a captive from Babylon, Elisha a tiller of the soil. The Lord raised up as representative men the prophets and princes, the noble and the lowly, and by inspiration taught them truths to be given to His people. 16MR 335.2

The revealed will of God must stand forth distinct as a lamp that burneth. Those who, like yourself, are in responsible positions, we thank God can be a power for good if they are not perverted by prosperity. But in order that our work may be a success, we must cooperate with the heavenly messenger that is to lighten the whole earth with his glory. The Lord calls upon you, as upon Daniel, to enlist all your God-given powers in revealing Him to the world. The interest and effort of physicians are to be given, not to the health question alone, but to making known the truths for these last times, truths that are deciding the destiny of souls. 16MR 335.3

Daniel and his three companions had a special work to do. Although greatly honored in this work, they did not become in any way exalted. They were scholars, being skilled in secular as well as religious knowledge, but they had studied science without being corrupted. They were well-balanced because they had yielded themselves to the control of the Holy Spirit. These youth gave to God all the glory of their secular, scientific, and religious endowments. Their learning did not come by chance; they obtained knowledge by the faithful use of their powers, and God gave them skill and understanding. 16MR 336.1

True science and Bible religion are in perfect harmony. Let the students in our schools learn all they possibly can. But, as a rule, let them be educated in our own institutions. Be careful how you advise them to go to other schools, where error is taught, in order to complete their education. Do not give them the impression that greater educational advantages are to be obtained by mingling with those who do not seek wisdom from God. The great men of Babylon were willing to be benefited by the instruction that God gave through Daniel, to help the king out of his difficulty by the interpretation of his dream. But they were anxious to mix in their heathen religion with that of the Hebrews. Had Daniel and his fellows consented to such a compromise, they would, in the view of the Babylonians, have been complete as statesmen, fit to be entrusted with the affairs of the kingdom. But the four Hebrews entered into no such arrangement. They were true to God, and God upheld them and honored them. The lesson is for us. “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.”—Letter 57, 1896. 16MR 336.2

Ellen G. White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

January 23, 1987.

Entire Letter.