Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 20 (1905)


Ms 96, 1905

Words of Counsel Regarding the Health Food Work

Glendale, California

September 7, 1905

Portions of this manuscript are published in HFM 72-75. +Note

Many years ago the Lord gave us light regarding health reform. This light was designed to be a blessing to those in need of physical help and to open doors for the proclamation of the truth. The light upon health reform should be better understood. As further light is revealed to God’s people, they are to communicate the truth to others. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 1

I am instructed to say that the health food work is not at present being conducted as to greatly advance the work of God. The Lord has presented before me many dangers that threaten the management of this business. The Lord never designed that the manufacture and sale of health foods should become such a commercial [business] as it now is. This is not to become a speculative business in which a few shall receive large personal profits. To many minds God has given wisdom to devise healthful food preparations. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 2

The Lord would have a knowledge of diet reform imparted to the people of God. It is an essential part of the education to be given in our schools. As the truth is presented in new places, lessons should be given in hygienic cookery. Teach the people how they may live without the use of flesh meats. Teach them the simplicity of living. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 3

The Lord has been working and is still working to lead men to prepare from fruits and grains foods more simple and less expensive than many of those that can now be obtained. Many cannot obtain these expensive food preparations, yet they need not necessarily live upon an impoverished diet. The same God who fed the thousands in the wilderness with bread from heaven will give to His people today a knowledge of how to provide food in a simple manner. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 4

I have a testimony to bear regarding the work of our restaurants. These institutions have absorbed much of the talent which could be used in evangelical work. In this enterprise many are employed who, with Bible in hand, should be teaching in new places, flashing the light of truth into the mist and fog of error. Thus much talent and capability are absorbed in a work which, as now conducted, reveals but small results in the salvation of souls. The restaurants are carrying a burden which God has not laid upon them. The preparations of food are so expensive that the poorer class of people are unable to use them. There should be greater simplicity in the preparation of foods. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 5

As a people we stand reproved of God because so much talent is absorbed in mere commercial interests, while the all-important work of soul saving is left to languish. Such an intensity of effort should not be given to the manufacture and merchandise of food products, while souls are left to starve for the bread of life. God never designed that the manufacture of foods should be a snare to His people, as it certainly has been. The Lord gave this work to be a blessing to His people, but selfishness and greed and dishonesty have made it productive of great evil. That which God designed to be a blessing has absorbed and diverted from His work valuable talents. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 6

The health food work is not to be conducted as a selfish monopoly in which a few shall gather to themselves large profits, while others, equally capable, are excluded as those having no rights. The Lord forbids anyone to force his brethren to sign contracts whereby he may appropriate to himself the benefit of the knowledge which has come from other minds. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 7

As God’s peculiar people, we must stand free from every fraudulent transaction. Let not one thread of selfishness be drawn into the pattern. No cheap or unwholesome articles are to be placed before the public. Nothing should be represented as being pure and first-class when it is really of inferior quality. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 8

Care must be taken lest we communicate to unscrupulous men a knowledge that will enable them to utilize as a source of income for themselves the light that God has given to be a blessing to His people. In the manufacture of so-called health foods, unprincipled men would introduce adulterations that would be injurious. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 9

Let every business transaction be done in righteousness, remembering that we must all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. “For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every one of us shall give an account of himself to God. Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, That no man put a stumbling block, or an occasion to fall in his brothers way. ... Let not then your good be evil spoken of: for the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” [Romans 14:11-13, 16, 17.] 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 10

We need to cut away from our lives everything that would absorb the mind and dull our sensibilities in the perception of the future eternal riches of glory. We should bring into our daily experience those things only which will enable us to strengthen and perfect our character, that we may reflect to others the light of heavenly things. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 11

There is a world to be warned. We are nearing the close of time. The Spirit of God is being withdrawn from the world. The Lord is calling us out of sleep. We have lost many precious opportunities, but let us lose no more time. The sunlight of truth is to shine forth to the world. Cast off the works of darkness and uncertainty. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 12

It is time that those who have had the light of present truth should arouse to a sense of their duty. It is high time to awake out of sleep, “for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make ye not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.” [Romans 13:11-14.] 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 13

The Word of God is given to us that we may not walk in darkness but have the light of life. Nothing relating to our duty to God or to one another is left in uncertainty. It is the work of Satan, through unsanctified hands, to bring in deceptive human inventions, to turn the truth of God into a lie. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 14

Did our great Example ever speak an idle word? Was He not diligent in warning the people of danger and pointing out the sure and safe path that leads to life eternal? “I must work the works of Him that sent Me,” He declared, “while it is day; for the night cometh, wherein no man can work.” [John 9:4.] 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 15

To all that profess to be children of God He has given a work. In proportion to the light we have received are our responsibilities. With greater opportunities and advantages our obligations increase. We are now called upon to redeem the time. “To him that knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” [James 4:17.] 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 16

Our capabilities are to be employed in the performance of good works. We are to give to others the light given to us. We are to be instruments through whom Christ works to reach souls that are ready to perish. The greatest work we can do is to reveal the Saviour to those who are in darkness. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 17

Shall we not clothe ourselves with the garments of Christ’s righteousness? Let us not sleep as do others, lest the light so graciously given us becomes darkness. Let us, without delay, place ourselves in right relation to Jesus Christ, that we may represent Him to those who know Him not. 20LtMs, Ms 96, 1905, par. 18