Chap. 7 – The Co-Working of the Divine and the Human

In the ministry of healing the physician is to be a co-worker with Christ. The Saviour ministered to both the soul and the body. The gospel which He taught was a message of spiritual life and of physical restoration. Deliverance from sin and the healing of disease were linked together. The same ministry is committed to the Christian physician. He is to unite with Christ in relieving both the physical and spiritual needs of his fellow men. He is to be to the sick a messenger of mercy, bringing to them a remedy for the diseased body and for the sin-sick soul.  {MH 111.1}

Christ is the true head of the medical profession. The chief Physician, He is at the side of every God-fearing practitioner who works to relieve human suffering. While the physician uses nature’s remedies for physical disease, he should point his patients to Him who can relieve the maladies of both the soul and the body. That which physicians can only aid in doing, Christ accomplishes. They endeavor to assist nature’s work of healing; Christ Himself is the healer. The physician seeks to preserve life; Christ imparts life. {MH 111.2}

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The Source of Healing

The Saviour in His miracles revealed the power that is continually at work in man’s behalf, to sustain and to heal him. Through the agencies of nature, God is working, day by day, hour by hour, moment by moment, to keep us alive, to build up and restore us. When any part of the body sustains injury, a healing process is at once begun; nature’s agencies are set at work to restore soundness. But the power working through

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these agencies is the power of God. All life-giving power is from Him. When one recovers from disease, it is God who restores him.  {MH 112.1}

Sickness, suffering, and death are work of an antagonistic power. Satan is the destroyer; God is the restorer. {MH 113.1}

The words spoken to Israel are true today of those who recover health of body or health of soul. “I am the Lord that healeth thee.” Exodus 15:26. {MH 113.2}

The desire of God for every human being is expressed in the words, “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.” 3 John 2. {MH 113.3}

He it is who “forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with loving-kindness and tender mercies.” Psalm 103:3, 4. {MH 113.4}

When Christ healed disease, He warned many of the afflicted ones, “Sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.” John 5:14. Thus He taught that they had brought disease upon themselves by transgressing the laws of God, and that health could be preserved only by obedience. {MH 113.5}

The physician should teach his patients that they are to cooperate with God in the work of restoration. The physician has a continually increasing realization of the fact that disease is the result of sin. He knows that the laws of nature, as truly as the precepts of the Decalogue, are divine, and that only in obedience to them can health be recovered or preserved. He sees many suffering as the result of hurtful practices who might be restored to health if they would do what they might for their own re storation. They need to be taught that every practice which destroys the physical, mental, or spiritual energies is sin, and that health is to be secured through obedience to the laws that God has established for the good of all mankind. {MH 113.6}

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When a physician sees a patient suffering from disease caused by improper eating and drinking or other wrong habits, yet neglects to tell him of this, he is doing his fellow being an injury. Drunkards, maniacs, those who are given over to licentiousness, all appeal to the physician to declare clearly and distinctly that suffering results from sin. Those who understand the principles of life should be in earnest in striving to counteract the causes of disease. Seeing the continual conflict with pain, la boring constantly to alleviate suffering, how can the physician hold his peace? Is he benevolent and merciful if he does not teach strict temperance as a remedy for disease? {MH 114.1}

Let it be made plain that the way of God’s commandments is the way of life. God has established the laws of nature, but His laws are not arbitrary exactions. Every “Thou shalt not,” whether in physical or in moral law, implies a promise. If we obey it , blessing will attend our steps. God never forces us to do right, but He seeks to save us from the evil and lead us to the good.  {MH 114.2}

Let attention be called to the laws that were taught to Israel. God gave them definite instruction in regard to their habits of life. He made known to them the laws relating to both physical and spiritual well-being; and on condition of obedience He assured them, “The Lord will take away from thee all sickness.” Deuteronomy 7:15. “Set your hearts unto all the words which I testify among you this day.” “For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.” Deuteronomy 32:46; Proverbs 4:22. {MH 114.3}

God desires us to reach the standard of perfection made possible for us by the gift of Christ. He calls upon us to make our choice on the right side, to connect with heavenly agencies, to adopt principles that will restore in us the divine

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image. In His written word and in the great book of nature He has revealed the principles of life. It is our work to obtain a knowledge of these principles, and by obedience to co-operate with Him in restoring health to the body as well as to the soul. {MH 114.4}

Men need to learn that the blessings of obedience, in their fullness, can be theirs only as they receive the grace of Christ. It is His grace that gives man power to obey the laws of God. It is this that enables him to break the bondage of evil habit. This is the only power that can make him and keep him steadfast in the right path.  {MH 115.1}

When the gospel is received in its purity and power, it is a cure for the maladies that originated in sin. The Sun of Righteousness arises, “with healing in His wings.” Malachi 4:2. Not all this world bestows can heal a broken heart, or impart peace of mind, or remove care, or banish disease. Fame, genius, talent–all are powerless to gladden the sorrowful heart or to restore the wasted life. The life of God in the soul is man’s only hope. {MH 115.2}

The love which Christ diffuses through the whole being is a vitalizing power. Every vital part–the brain, the heart, the nerves–it touches with healing. By it the highest energies of the being are roused to activity. It frees the soul from the guilt and sorrow, the anxiety and care, that crush the life forces. With it come serenity and composure. It implants in the soul, joy that nothing earthly can destroy,–joy in the Holy Spirit,–health-giving, life-giving joy.  {MH 115.3}

Our Saviour’s words, “Come unto Me, . . . and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28), are a prescription for the healing of physical, mental, and spiritual ills. Though men have brought suffering upon themselves by their own wrongdoing, He regards them with pity. In Him they may find help. He will do great things for those who trust in Him. {MH 115.4}

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Although for ages sin has been strengthening its hold on the human race, although through falsehood and artifice Satan has cast the black shadow of his interpretation upon the word of God, and has caused men to doubt His goodness; yet the Father’s mercy and love have not ceased to flow earthward in rich currents. If human beings would open the windows of the soul heavenward, in appreciation of the divine gifts, a flood of healing virtue would pour in.  {MH 116.1}

The physician who desires to be an acceptable co-worker with Christ will strive to become efficient in every feature of his work. He will study diligently, that he may be well qualified for the responsibilities of his profession, and will constantly endeavor to reach a higher standard, seeking for increased knowledge, greater skill, and deeper discernment. Every physician should realize that he who does weak, inefficient work is not only doing injury to the sick, but is also doing injustice to his fellow physicians. The physician who is satisfied with a low standard of skill and knowledge not only belittles the medical profession, but does dishonor to Christ, the Chief Physician.  {MH 116.2}

Those who find that they are unfitted for medical work should choose some other employment. Those who are well adapted to care for the sick, but whose education and medical qualifications are limited, would do well to take up the humbler parts of the work, ministering faithfully as nurses. By patient service under skillful physicians they may be  constantly learning, and by improving every opportunity to acquire knowledge they may in time become fully qualified for the work of a physician. Let the younger physicians, “as workers together with Him [the Chief Physician], . . . receive not the grace of God in vain, . . . giving no offense in anything, that the ministry [of the sick] be not blamed: but in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God.” 2 Corinthians 6:1-4. {MH 116.3}

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God’s Purpose for us is that we shall ever move upward. The true medical missionary physician will be an increasingly skillful practitioner. Talented Christian physicians, having superior professional ability, should be sought out and encouraged to engage in the service of God in places where they can educate and train others to become medical missionaries. {MH 117.1}

The Physician should gather to his soul the light of the word of God. He should make continual growth in grace. With him, religion is not to be merely one influence among others. It is to be an influence dominating all others. He is to act from high, holy motives–motives that are powerful because they proceed from the One who gave His life to furnish us with power to overcome evil.  {MH 117.2}

If the physician faithfully and diligently strives to make himself efficient in his profession, if he consecrates himself to the service of Christ, and takes time to search his own heart, he will understand how to grasp the mysteries of his sacred calling. He may so discipline and educate himself that all within the sphere of his influence will see the excellence of the education and wisdom gained by the one who is connected with the God of wisdom and power.  {MH 117.3}

In no place is a closer fellowship with Christ needed than in the work of the physician. He who would rightly perform the physician’s duties must daily and hourly live a Christian life. The life of the patient is in the hands of the physician. One car eless diagnosis, one wrong prescription, in a critical case, or one unskillful movement of the hand in an operation, even by so much as a hair’s breadth, and a life may be sacrificed, a soul launched into eternity. How solemn the thought! How important that the physician shall be ever under the control of the divine Physician!  {MH 117.4}

The Saviour is willing to help all who call upon Him for

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wisdom and clearness of thought. And who needs wisdom and clearness of thought more than does the physician, upon whose decisions so much depends? Let the one who is trying to prolong life look in faith to Christ to direct his every movement. The Saviour will give him tact and skill in dealing with difficult cases.  {MH 117.5}

Wonderful are the opportunities given to the guardians of the sick. In all that is done for the restoration of the sick, let them understand that the physician is seeking to help them co-operate with God in combating disease. Lead them to feel that at every step taken in harmony with the laws of God, they may expect the aid of divine power.  {MH 118.1}

The sick and suffering will have much more confidence in the physician who they are confident loves and fears God. They rely upon his words. They feel a sense of safety in the presence and administration of that physician.  {MH 118.2}

Knowing the Lord Jesus, it is the privilege of the Christian practitioner by prayer to invite His presence in the sickroom. Before performing a critical operation, let the physician ask for the aid of the Great Physician. Let him assure the suffering one that God can bring him safely through the ordeal, that in all times of distress He is a sure refuge for those who trust in Him. The physician who cannot do this loses case after case that otherwise might have been saved. If he could speak words that wo uld inspire faith in the sympathizing Saviour, who feels every throb of anguish, and could present the needs of the soul to Him in prayer, the crisis would oftener be safely passed.  {MH 118.3}

Only He who reads the heart can know with what trembling and terror many patients consent to an operation under the surgeon’s hand. They realize their peril. While they may have confidence in the physician’s skill they know that it is

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not infallible. But as they see the physician bowed in prayer, asking help from God, they are inspired with confidence. Gratitude and trust open the heart to the healing power of God, the energies of the whole being are vitalized, and the life forces triumph.  {MH 118.4}

To the physician also the Saviour’s presence is an element of strength. Often the responsibilities and possibilities of his work bring dread upon the spirit. The feverishness of uncertainty and fear would make the hand unskillful. But the assurance that the divine Counselor is beside him, to guide and to sustain, imparts quietness and courage. The touch of Christ upon the physician’s hand brings vitality, restfulness, confidence, and power. {MH 119.1}

When the crisis is safely passed, and success is apparent, let a few moments be spent with the patient in prayer. Give expression to your thankfulness for the life that has been spared. As words of gratitude flow from the patient to the physician, let the praise and thanksgiving be directed to God. Tell the patient his life has been spared because he was under the heavenly Physician’s protection.  {MH 119.2}

The physician who follows such a course is leading his patient to the One upon whom he is dependent for life, the One who can save to the uttermost all who come to Him. {MH 119.3}

Into the medical missionary work should be brought a deep yearning for souls. To the physician equally with the gospel minister is committed the highest trust ever committed to man. Whether he realizes it or not, every physician is entrusted with the cure of souls. {MH 119.4}

In their work of dealing with disease and death, physicians too often lose sight of the solemn realities of the future life. In their earnest effort to avert the peril of the body, they forget the peril of the soul. The one to whom they are ministering

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may be losing his hold on life. Its last opportunities are slipping from his grasp. This soul the physician must meet again at the judgment seat of Christ.  {MH 119.5}

Often we miss the most precious blessings by neglecting to speak a word in season. If the golden opportunity is not watched for, it will be lost. At the bedside of the sick no word of creed or controversy should be spoken. Let the sufferer be pointed to the One who is willing to save all that come to Him in faith. Earnestly, tenderly strive to help the soul that is hovering between life and death.  {MH 120.1}

The physician who knows that Christ is his personal Saviour, because he himself has been led to the Refuge, knows how to deal with the trembling, guilty, sin-sick souls who turn to him for help. He can respond to the inquiry, “What must I do to be sav ed?” He can tell the story of the Redeemer’s love. He can speak from experience of the power of repentance

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and faith. In simple, earnest words he can present the soul’s need to God in prayer and can encourage the sick one also to ask for and accept the mercy of the compassionate Saviour. As he thus ministers at the bedside of the sick, striving to speak words that will bring help and comfort, the Lord works with him and through him. As the mind of the sufferer is directed to the Saviour, the peace of Christ fills his heart, and the spiritual health that comes to him is used as the helping hand of God in restoring the health of the body. {MH 120.2}

In attending the sick, the physician will often find opportunity for ministering to the friends of the afflicted one. As they watch by the bed of suffering, feeling powerless to prevent one pang of anguish, their hearts are softened. Often grief conce aled from others is expressed to the physician. Then is the opportunity to point these sorrowing ones to Him who has invited the weary and heavy-laden to come unto Him. Often prayer can be offered for and with them, presenting their needs to the Healer of all woes, the Soother of all sorrows. {MH 121.1}

God’s Promises

The physician has precious opportunities for directing his patients to the promises of God’s word. He is to bring from the treasure house things new and old, speaking here and there the words of comfort and instruction that are longed for. Let the physician make his mind a storehouse of fresh thoughts. Let him study the word of God diligently, that he may be familiar with its promises. Let him learn to repeat the comforting words that Christ spoke during His earthly ministry when giving His lessons and healing the sick. He should talk of the works of healing wrought by Christ, of His tenderness and love. Never should he neglect to direct the minds of his patients to Christ, the Chief Physician. {MH 121.2}

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The same power that Christ exercised when He walked visibly among men is in His word. It was by His word that Jesus healed disease and cast out demons; by His word He stilled the sea and raised the dead, and the people bore witness that His word was with power. He spoke the word of God, as He had spoken to all the prophets and teachers of the Old Testament. The whole Bible is a manifestation of Christ.  {MH 122.1}

The Scriptures are to be received as God’s word to us, not written merely, but spoken. When the afflicted ones came to Christ, He beheld not only those who asked for help, but all who throughout the ages should come to Him in like need and with like faith. When He said to the paralytic, “Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee;” when He said to the woman of Capernaum, “Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace,” He spoke to other afflicted, sin-burdened ones who should seek His help. Matthew 9:2; Luke 8:48. {MH 122.2}

So with all the promises of God’s word. In them He is speaking to us individually, speaking as directly as if we could listen to His voice. It is in these promises that Christ communicates to us His grace and power. They are leaves from that tree which is “for the healing of the nations.” Revelation 22:2. Received, assimilated, they are to be the strength of the character, the inspiration and sustenance of the life. Nothing else can have such healing power. Nothing besides can impart the courage and faith which give vital energy to the whole being.  {MH 122.3}

To one who stands trembling with fear on the brink of the grave, to the soul weary of the burden of suffering and sin, let the physician as he has opportunity repeat the words of the Saviour–for all the words of Holy Writ are His:  {MH 122.4}

“Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by

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thy name; thou art Mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour. . . . Since thou wast precious in My sight, thou hast been honorable, and I have loved thee.” “I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for Mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.” “Fear not: for I am with thee.” Isaiah 43:1-4, 25, 5. {MH 122.5}

“Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him. For He knoweth our frame; He remembereth that we are dust.” Psalm 103:13, 14. {MH 123.1} “Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God.” “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Jeremiah 3:13; 1 John 1:9. {MH 123.2}

“I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions, and, as a cloud, thy sins: return unto Me; for I have redeemed thee.” Isaiah 44:22. {MH 123.3}

“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land.” Isaiah 1:18, 19. {MH 123.4}

“I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with loving-kindness have I drawn thee.” “I hid My face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee.” Jeremiah 31:3; Isaiah 54:8. {MH 123.5}

“Let not your heart be troubled.” “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto

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you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:1, 27. {MH 123.6}

“A Man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.” Isaiah 32:2. {MH 124.1}

“When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the Lord will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.” Isaiah 41:17. {MH 124.2}

“Thus saith the Lord that made thee”: “I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour My Spirit upon thy seed, and My blessing upon thine offspring.” Isaiah 44:2, 3. {MH 124.3}

“Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth.” Isaiah 45:22. {MH 124.4}

“Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.” “He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed.” Matthew 8:17; Isaiah 53:5. {MH 124.5}

 

Chap. 10 – Helping the Tempted

Not because we first loved Him did Christ love us; but “while we were yet sinners” He died for us. He does not treat us according to our desert. Although our sins have merited condemnation, He does not condemn us. Year after year He has borne with our weakness and ignorance, with our ingratitude and waywardness. Notwithstanding our wanderings, our hardness of heart, our neglect of His Holy Word, His hand is stretched out still. {MH 161.1}

Grace is an attribute of God exercised toward undeserving human beings. We did not seek for it, but it was sent in search of us. God rejoices to bestow His grace upon us, not because we are worthy, but because we are so utterly unworthy. Our only clai m to His mercy is our great need.  {MH 161.2}

The Lord God through Jesus Christ holds out His hand all the day long in invitation to the sinful and fallen. He will receive all. He welcomes all. It is His glory to pardon the chief of sinners. He will take the prey from the mighty, He will deliver the captive, He will pluck the brand from the burning. He will lower the golden chain of His mercy to the lowest depths of human wretchedness, and lift up the debased soul contaminated with sin. {MH 161.3}

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Every human being is the object of loving interest to Him who gave His life that He might bring men back to God. Souls guilty and helpless, liable to be destroyed by the arts and snares of Satan, are cared for as a shepherd cares for the sheep of his flock. {MH 162.1}

The Saviour’s example is to be the standard of our service for the tempted and the erring. The same interest and tenderness and long-suffering that He has manifested toward us, we are to manifest toward others. “As I have loved you,” He says, “that ye also love one another.” John 13:34. If Christ dwells in us, we shall reveal His unselfish love toward all with whom we have to do. As we see men and women in need of sympathy and help, we shall not ask, “Are they worthy?” but “How can I benefit them?” {MH 162.2}

Rich and poor, high and low, free and bond, are God’s heritage. He who gave His life to redeem man sees in every human being a value that exceeds finite computation. By the mystery and glory of the cross we are to discern His estimate

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of the value of the soul. When we do this, we shall feel that human beings, however degraded, have cost too much to be treated with coldness or contempt. We shall realize the importance of working for our fellow men, that they may be exalted to the throne of God. {MH 162.3}

The lost coin, in the Saviour’s parable, though lying in the dirt and rubbish, was a piece of silver still. Its owner sought it because it was of value. So every soul, however degraded by sin, is in God’s sight accounted precious. As the coin bore the image and superscription of the reigning power, so man at his creation bore the image and superscription of God. Though now marred and dim through the influence of sin, the traces of this inscription remain upon every soul. God desires to recover that sou l and to retrace upon it His own image in righteousness and holiness.  {MH 163.1}

How little do we enter into sympathy with Christ on that which should be the strongest bond of union between us and Him–compassion for depraved, guilty, suffering souls, dead in trespasses and sins! The inhumanity of man toward man is our greatest sin. Many think that they are representing the justice of God while they wholly fail of representing His tenderness and His great love. Often the ones whom they meet with sternness and severity are under the stress of temptation. Satan is wrestling with these souls, and harsh, unsympathetic words discourage them and cause them to fall a prey to the tempter’s power.  {MH 163.2}

It is a delicate matter to deal with minds. Only He who reads the heart knows how to bring men to repentance. Only His wisdom can give us success in reaching the lost. You may stand up stiffly, feeling, “I am holier than thou,” and it matters not how correct your reasoning or how true your words; they will never touch hearts. The love of Christ,

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manifested in word and act, will win its way to the soul, when the reiteration of precept or argument would accomplish nothing.  {MH 163.3}

We need more of Christlike sympathy; not merely sympathy for those who appear to us to be faultless, but sympathy for poor, suffering, struggling souls, who are often overtaken in fault, sinning and repenting, tempted and discouraged. We are to go to our fellow men, touched, like our merciful High Priest, with the feeling of their infirmities. {MH 164.1}

It was the outcast, the publican and sinner, the despised of the nations, that Christ called and by His loving-kindness compelled to come unto Him. The one class that He would never countenance was those who stood apart in their self-esteem and looked down upon others. {MH 164.2}

“Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in,” Christ bids us, “that My house may be filled.” In obedience to this word we must go to the heathen who are near us, and to those who are afar off. The “publicans and harlots” must hear the Saviour’s invitation. Through the kindness and long-suffering of His messengers the invitation becomes a compelling power to uplift those who are sunken in the lowest depths of sin.  {MH 164.3}

Christian motives demand that we work with a steady purpose, an undying interest, an ever-increasing importunity, for the souls whom Satan is seeking to destroy. Nothing is to chill the earnest, yearning energy for the salvation of the lost.  {MH 164.4}

Mark how all through the word of God there is manifest the spirit of urgency, of imploring men and women to come to Christ. We must seize upon every opportunity, in private and in public, presenting every argument, urging every motive of infinite weight, to draw men to the Saviour. With all our power we must urge them to look unto Jesus and to

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accept His life of self-denial and sacrifice. We must show that we expect them to give joy to the heart of Christ by using every one of His gifts in honoring His name.  {MH 164.5}

 

Saved by Hope

“We are saved by hope.” Romans 8:24. The fallen must be led to feel that it is not too late for them to be men. Christ honored man with His confidence and thus placed him on his honor. Even those who had fallen the lowest He treated with respect. It was a continual pain to Christ to be brought into contact with enmity, depravity, and impurity; but never did He utter one expression to show that His sensibilities were shocked or His refined tastes offended. Whatever the evil habits, the strong prejudices, or the overbearing passions of human beings, He met them all with pitying tenderness. As we partake of His Spirit, we shall regard all men as brethren, with similar temptations and trials, often falling and struggling to rise again, battling with discouragements and difficulties, craving sympathy and help. Then we shall meet them in such a way as not to discourage or repel them, but to awaken hope in their hearts. As they are thus encouraged,

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they can say with confidence, “Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord shall be a light unto me.” He will “plead my cause, and execute judgment for me: He will bring me forth to the light, and I shall behold His righteousness.” Micah 7:8, 9. God “looketh upon all the inhabitants of the earth. He fashioneth their hearts alike.” Psalm 33:14, 15. {MH 165.1}

He bids us, in dealing with the tempted and the erring, consider “thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” Galatians 6:1. With a sense of our own infirmities, we shall have compassion for the infirmities of others.  {MH 166.1}

“Who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? “One is your Master; . . . and all ye are brethren.” “Why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother?” “Let us not therefore judge on e another: . . . but judge this rather, that no man put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brother’s way.” 1 Corinthians 4:7; Matthew 23:8; Romans 14:10, 13. {MH 166.2}

It is always humiliating to have one’s errors pointed out. None should make the experience more bitter by needless censure. No one was ever reclaimed by reproach; but many have thus been repelled and have been led to steel their hearts against conviction. A tender spirit, a gentle, winning deportment, may save the erring and hide a multitude of sins.  {MH 166.3}

The apostle Paul found it necessary to reprove wrong, but how carefully he sought to show that he was a friend to the erring! How anxiously he explained to them the reason of his action! He made them understand that it cost him pain to give them pain. He showed his confidence and sympathy toward the ones who were struggling to overcome. {MH 166.4}

“Out of much affliction and anguish of heart,” he said, “I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more

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abundantly unto you.” 2 Corinthians 2:4. “For though I made you sorry with my epistle, I do not regret it: though I did regret it, . . . I now rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye were made sorry unto repentance. . . . For behold, this selfsa me thing, that ye were made sorry after a godly sort, what earnest care it wrought in you, yea what clearing of yourselves, yea what indignation, yea what fear, yea what longing, yea what zeal, yea what avenging! In everything ye approved yourselves to be pure in the matter. . . . Therefore we have been comforted.” 2 Corinthians 7:8-13, A.R.V. {MH 166.5}

“I rejoice that in everything I am of good courage concerning you.” “I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now;” “be ing confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ: even as it is right for me to be thus minded on behalf of you all, because I have you in my heart.” “Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved.” “Now we live, if ye stand fast in the Lord.” Verse 16, A.R.V.; Philippians 1:3-5; 1:6, 7, A.R.V.; 4:1; 1 Thessalonians 3:8. {MH 167.1}

Paul wrote to these brethren as “saints in Christ Jesus;” but he was not writing to those who were perfect in character. He wrote to them as men and women who were striving against temptation and who were in danger of falling. He pointed them to “the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that Great Shepherd of the sheep.” He assured them that “through the blood of the everlasting covenant” He will “make you perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you that which is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ.” Hebrews 13:20, 21. {MH 167.2}

When one at fault becomes conscious of his error, be careful not to destroy his self-respect. Do not discourage him by

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indifference or distrust. Do not say, “Before giving him my confidence, I will wait to see whether he will hold out.” Often this very distrust causes the tempted one to stumble. {MH 167.3}

We should strive to understand the weakness of others. We know little of the heart trials of those who have been bound in chains of darkness and who lack resolution and moral power. Most pitiable is the condition of him who is suffering under remorse; he is as one stunned, staggering, sinking into the dust. He can see nothing clearly. The mind is beclouded, he knows not what steps to take. Many a poor soul is misunderstood, unappreciated, full of distress and agony–a lost, straying sheep. He cannot find God, yet he has an intense longing for pardon and peace.  {MH 168.1}

Oh, let no word be spoken to cause deeper pain! To the soul weary of a life of sin, but knowing not where to find relief, present the compassionate Saviour. Take him by the hand, lift him up, speak to him words of courage and hope. Help him to grasp t he hand of the Saviour. {MH 168.2}

We become too easily discouraged over the souls who do not at once respond to our efforts. Never should we cease to labor for a soul while there is one gleam of hope. Precious souls cost our self-sacrificing Redeemer too dear a price to be lightly given up to the tempter’s power. {MH 168.3}

We need to put ourselves in the place of the tempted ones. Consider the power of heredity, the influence of evil associations and surroundings, the power of wrong habits. Can we wonder that under such influences many become degraded? Can we wonder that they should be slow to respond to efforts for their uplifting?  {MH 168.4}

Often, when won to the gospel, those who appeared coarse and unpromising will be among its most loyal adherents and advocates. They are not altogether corrupt. Beneath

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the forbidding exterior there are good impulses that might be reached. Without a helping hand many would never recover themselves, but by patient, persistent effort they may be uplifted. Such need tender words, kind consideration, tangible help. They need that kind of counsel which will not extinguish the faint gleam of courage in the soul. Let the workers who come in contact with them consider this.  {MH 168.5}

Some will be found whose minds have been so long debased that they will never in this life become what under more favorable circumstances they might have been. But the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness may shine into the soul. It is their privilege to have the life that measures with the life of God. Plant in their minds uplifting, ennobling thoughts. Let your life make plain to them the difference between vice and purity, darkness and light. In your example let them read what it means to be a Christian. Christ is able to uplift the most sinful and place them where they will be acknowledged as children of God, joint heirs with Christ to the immortal inheritance. {MH 169.1}

By the miracle of divine grace, many may be fitted for lives of usefulness. Despised and forsaken, they have become utterly discouraged; they may appear stoical and stolid. But under the ministration of the Holy Spirit, the stupidity that makes their uplifting appear so hopeless will pass away. The dull, clouded mind will awake. The slave of sin will be set free. Vice will disappear, and ignorance will be overcome. Through the faith that works by love, the heart will be purified and the mind enlightened. {MH 169.2}

Chap. 11 – Working for the Intemperate

Every true reform has its place in the work of the gospel and tends to the uplifting of the soul to a new and nobler life. Especially does the temperance reform demand the support of Christian workers. They should call attention to this work and make it a living issue. Everywhere they should present to the people the principles of true temperance and call for signers to the temperance pledge. Earnest effort should be made in behalf of those who are in bondage to evil habits.  {MH 171.1}

There is everywhere a work to be done for those who through intemperance have fallen. In the midst of churches, religious institutions, and professedly Christian homes, many of the youth are choosing the path to destruction. Through intemperate habits they bring upon themselves disease, and through greed to obtain money for sinful indulgence they fall into dishonest practices. Health and character are ruined. Aliens from God, outcasts from society, these poor souls feel that they are without hope eithe r for this life or for the life to come. The hearts of the parents are broken. Men speak of these erring ones as hopeless; but not so does God regard them. He understands all the circumstances that have made

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them what they are, and He looks upon them with pity. This is a class that demand help. Never give them occasion to say, “No man cares for my soul.”  {MH 171.2}

Among the victims of intemperance are men of all classes and all professions. Men of high station, of eminent talents, of great attainments, have yielded to the indulgence of appetite until they are helpless to resist temptation. Some of them who were once in the possession of wealth are without home, without friends, in suffering, misery, disease, and degradation. They have lost their self-control. Unless a helping hand is held out to them, they will sink lower and lower. With these, self-indulgence is not only a moral sin, but a physical disease.  {MH 172.1}

Often in helping the intemperate we must, as Christ so often did, give first attention to their physical condition. They need wholesome, unstimulating food and drink, clean clothing, opportunity to secure physical cleanliness. They need to be surround ed with an atmosphere of helpful, uplifting Christian influence. In every city a place should be provided where the slaves of evil habit may receive help to break the chains that bind them. Strong drink is regarded by many as the only solace in trouble; but this need not be, if, instead of acting the part of the priest and Levite, professed Christians would follow the example of the good Samaritan. {MH 172.2}

In dealing with the victims of intemperance we must remember that we are not dealing with sane men, but with those who for the time being are under the power of a demon. Be patient and forbearing. Think not of the repulsive, forbidding appearance, but of the precious life that Christ died to redeem. As the drunkard awakens to a sense of his degradation, do all in your power to show that you are his friend. Speak no word of censure. Let no act or look express reproach or aversion. Very likely the poor s oul curses himself. Help him to rise. Speak words that will encourage faith. Seek

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to strengthen every good trait in his character. Teach him how to reach upward. Show him that it is possible for him to live so as to win the respect of his fellow men. Help him to see the value of the talents which God has given him, but which he has neglected to improve. {MH 172.3}

Although the will has been depraved and weakened, there is hope for him in Christ. He will awaken in the heart higher impulses and holier desires. Encourage him to lay hold of the hope set before him in the gospel. Open the Bible before the tempted, struggling one, and over and over again read to him the promises of God. These promises will be to him as the leaves of the tree of life. Patiently continue your efforts, until with grateful joy the trembling hand grasps the hope of redemption through Christ. {MH 173.1}

You must hold fast to those whom you are trying to help, else victory will never be yours. They will be continually tempted to evil. Again and again they will be almost overcome by the craving for strong drink; again and again they may fall; but do no t, because of this, cease your efforts.  {MH 173.2}

They have decided to make an effort to live for Christ; but their will power is weakened, and they must be carefully guarded by those who watch for souls as they that must give an account. They have lost their manhood, and this they must win back. Many have to battle against strong hereditary tendencies to evil. Unnatural cravings, sensual impulses, were their inheritance from birth. These must be carefully guarded against. Within and without, good and evil are striving for the mastery. Those who have never passed through such experiences cannot know the almost overmastering power of appetite or the fierceness of the conflict between habits of self-indulgence and the determination to be temperate in all things. Over and over again the battle must be fought. {MH 173.3}

Many who are drawn to Christ will not have moral courage to continue the warfare against appetite and passion. But

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the worker must not be discouraged by this. Is it only those rescued from the lowest depths that backslide? {MH 173.4}

Remember that you do not work alone. Ministering angels unite in service with every truehearted son and daughter of God. And Christ is the restorer. The Great Physician Himself stands beside His faithful workers, saying to the repentant soul, “Child, thy sins be forgiven thee.” Mark 2:5, A.R.V. margin. {MH 174.1}

Many are the outcasts who will grasp the hope set before them in the gospel and will enter the kingdom of heaven, while others who were blessed with great opportunities and great light which they did not improve will be left in outer darkness.  {MH 174.2}

The victims of evil habit must be aroused to the necessity of making an effort for themselves. Others may put forth the most earnest endeavor to uplift them, the grace of God may be freely offered, Christ may entreat, His angels may minister; but all will be in vain unless they themselves are roused to fight the battle in their own behalf.  {MH 174.3}

The last words of David to Solomon, then a young man, and soon to receive the crown of Israel, were, “Be … strong, … and show thyself a man.” 1 Kings 2:2. To every child of humanity, the candidate for an immortal crown, are these words of inspirat ion spoken, “Be … strong, … and show thyself a man.”  {MH 174.4}

The self-indulgent must be led to see and feel that great moral renovation is necessary if they would be men. God calls upon them to arouse and in the strength of Christ win back the God-given manhood that has been sacrificed through sinful indulgence. {MH 174.5}

Feeling the terrible power of temptation, the drawing of desire that leads to indulgence, many a man cries in despair, “I cannot resist evil.” Tell him that he can, that he must resist. He may have been overcome again and again, but it need not be always thus. He is weak in moral power,

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controlled by the habits of a life of sin. His promises and resolutions are like ropes of sand. The knowledge of his broken promises and forfeited pledges weakens his confidence in his own sincerity and causes him to feel that God cannot accept him or work with his efforts. But he need not despair.  {MH 174.6}

Those who put their trust in Christ are not to be enslaved by any hereditary or cultivated habit or tendency. Instead of being held in bondage to the lower nature, they are to rule every appetite and passion. God has not left us to battle with

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evil in our own finite strength. Whatever may be our inherited or cultivated tendencies to wrong, we can overcome through the power that He is ready to impart.  {MH 175.1}

The Power of the Will

The tempted one needs to understand the true force of the will. This is the governing power in the nature of man–the power of decision, of choice. Everything depends on the right action of the will. Desires for goodness and purity are right, so far as they go; but if we stop here, they avail nothing. Many will go down to ruin while hoping and desiring to overcome their evil propensities. They do not yield the will to God. They do not choose to serve Him. {MH 176.1}

God has given us the power of choice; it is ours to exercise. We cannot change our hearts, we cannot control our thoughts, our impulses, our affections. We cannot make ourselves pure, fit for God’s service. But we can choose to serve God, we can give Him our will; then He will work in us to will and to do according to His good pleasure. Thus our whole nature will be brought under the control of Christ.  {MH 176.2}

Through the right exercise of the will, an entire change may be made in the life. By yielding up the will to Christ, we ally ourselves with divine power. We receive strength from above to hold us steadfast. A pure and noble life, a life of victory ove r appetite and lust, is possible to everyone who will unite his weak, wavering human will to the omnipotent, unwavering will of God.  {MH 176.3}

Those who are struggling against the power of appetite should be instructed in the principles of healthful living. They should be shown that violation of the laws of health, by creating diseased conditions and unnatural cravings, lays the foundation o f the liquor habit. Only by living in obedience to the

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principles of health can they hope to be freed from the craving for unnatural stimulants. While they depend upon divine strength to break the bonds of appetite, they are to co-operate with God by obedience to His laws, both moral and physical.  {MH 176.4}

Those who are endeavoring to reform should be provided with employment. None who are able to labor should be taught to expect food and clothing and shelter free of cost. For their own sake, as well as for the sake of others, some way should be devised whereby they may return an equivalent for what they receive. Encourage every effort toward self-support. This will strengthen self-respect and a noble independence. And occupation of mind and body in useful work is essential as a safeguard against temptation. {MH 177.1}

Disappointments; Dangers

Those who work for the fallen will be disappointed in many who give promise of reform. Many will make but a superficial change in their habits and practices. They are moved by impulse, and for a time may seem to have reformed; but there is no real change of heart. They cherish the same self-love, have the same hungering for foolish pleasures, the same desire for self-indulgence. They have not a knowledge of the work of character building, and they cannot be relied upon as men of principle. They have debased their mental and spiritual powers by the gratification of appetite and passion, and this makes them weak. They are fickle and changeable. Their impulses tend toward sensuality. These persons are often a source of danger to others. Being looked upon as reformed men and women, they are trusted with responsibilities and are placed where their influence corrupts the innocent. {MH 177.2}

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Even those who are sincerely seeking to reform are not beyond the danger of falling. They need to be treated with great wisdom as well as tenderness. The disposition to flatter and exalt those who have been rescued from the lowest depths sometimes proves their ruin. The practice of inviting men and women to relate in public the experience of their life of sin is full of danger to both speaker and hearers. To dwell upon scenes of evil is corrupting to mind and soul. And the prominence given to the rescued ones is harmful to them. Many are led to feel that their sinful life has given them a certain distinction. A love of notoriety and a spirit of self-trust are encouraged that prove fatal to the soul. Only in distrust of self and dependence on the mercy o f Christ can they stand.  {MH 178.1}

All who give evidence of true conversion should be encouraged to work for others. Let none turn away a soul who leaves the service of Satan for the service of Christ. When one gives evidence that the Spirit of God is striving with him, present every encouragement for entering the Lord’s service. “Of some have compassion, making a difference.” Jude 22. Those who are wise in the wisdom that comes from God will see souls in need of help, those who have sincerely repented, but who without encouragement would hardly dare to lay hold of hope. The Lord will put it into the hearts of His servants to welcome these trembling, repentant ones to their loving fellowship. Whatever may have been their besetting sins, however low they may have fallen, when in contrition they come to Christ, He receives them. Then give them something to do for Him. If they desire to labor in uplifting others from the pit of destruction from which they themselves were rescued, give them opportunity. Bring them into association with experienced Christians, that they may gain spiritual strength.

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Fill their hearts and hands with work for the Master.  {MH 178.2}

When light flashes into the soul, some who appeared to be most fully given to sin will become successful workers for just such sinners as they themselves once were. Through faith in Christ some will rise to high places of service and be entrusted with responsibilities in the work of saving souls. They see where their own weakness lies, they realize the depravity of their nature. They know the strength of sin, the power of evil habit. They realize their inability to overcome without the help of Christ, and their constant cry is, “I cast my helpless soul on Thee.”  {MH 179.1}

These can help others. The one who has been tempted and tried, whose hope was well-nigh gone, but who was saved by hearing a message of love, can understand the science of soulsaving. He whose heart is filled with love for Christ because he himself has been sought for by the Saviour and brought back to the fold, knows how to seek the lost. He can point sinners to the Lamb of God. He has given himself without reserve to God and has been accepted in the Beloved. The hand that in weakness was held out for help has been grasped. By the ministry of such ones many prodigals will be brought to the Father. {MH 179.2}

For every soul struggling to rise from a life of sin to a life of purity, the great element of power abides in the only “name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:12. “If any man thirst” for restful hope, for deliverance from sinful propensities, Christ says, “let him come unto Me, and drink.” John 7:37. The only remedy for vice is the grace and power of Christ.  {MH 179.3}

The good resolutions made in one’s own strength avail nothing. Not all the pledges in the world will break the power of evil habit. Never will men practice temperance in

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all things until their hearts are renewed by divine grace. We cannot keep ourselves from sin for one moment. Every moment we are dependent upon God.  {MH 179.4}

True reformation begins with soul cleansing. Our work for the fallen will achieve real success only as the grace of Christ reshapes the character and the soul is brought into living connection with God.  {MH 180.1}

Christ lived a life of perfect obedience to God’s law, and in this He set an example for every human being. The life that He lived in this world we are to live through His power and under His instruction. {MH 180.2}

In our work for the fallen the claims of the law of God and the need of loyalty to Him are to be impressed on mind and heart. Never fail to show that there is a marked difference between the one who serves God and the one who serves Him not. God is love, but He cannot excuse willful disregard for His commands. The enactments of His government are such that men do not escape the consequences of disloyalty. Only those who honor Him can He honor. Man’s conduct in this world decides his eternal destiny. As he has sown, so he must reap. Cause will be followed by effect.  {MH 180.3}

Nothing less than perfect obedience can meet the standard of God’s requirement. He has not left His requirements indefinite. He has enjoined nothing that is not necessary in order to bring man into harmony with Him. We are to point sinners to His ideal of character and to lead them to Christ, by whose grace only can this ideal be reached. {MH 180.4}

The Saviour took upon Himself the infirmities of humanity and lived a sinless life, that men might have no fear that because of the weakness of human nature they could not overcome. Christ came to make us “partakers of the divine nature,” and His life declares that humanity, combined with divinity, does not commit sin. {MH 180.5}

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The Saviour overcame to show man how he may overcome. All the temptations of Satan, Christ met with the word of God. By trusting in God’s promises, He received power to obey God’s commandments, and the tempter could gain no advantage. To every temptation His answer was, “It is written.” So God has given us His word wherewith to resist evil. Exceeding great and precious promises are ours, that by these we “might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” 2 Peter 1:4. {MH 181.1}

Bid the tempted one look not to circumstances, to the weakness of self, or to the power of temptation, but to the power of God’s word. All its strength is ours. “Thy word,” says the psalmist, “have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against Thee.” “By the word of Thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer.” Psalm 119:11; 17:4. {MH 181.2}

Talk courage to the people; lift them up to God in prayer. Many who have been overcome by temptation are humiliated by their failures, and they feel that it is in vain for them to approach unto God; but this thought is of the enemy’s suggestion. When they have sinned, and feel that they cannot pray, tell them that it is then the time to pray. Ashamed they may be, and deeply humbled; but as they confess their sins, He

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who is faithful and just will forgive their sins and cleanse them from all unrighteousness. {MH 181.3}

Nothing is apparently more helpless, yet really more invincible, than the soul that feels its nothingness and relies wholly on the merits of the Saviour. By prayer, by the study of His word, by faith in His abiding presence, the weakest of human beings may live in contact with the living Christ, and He will hold them by a hand that will never let go. {MH 182.1}

These precious words every soul that abides in Christ may make his own. He may say:

 

“I will look unto the Lord;

I will wait for the God of my salvation: My God will hear me.

Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: When I fall, I shall arise;

When I sit in darkness,

The Lord shall be a light unto me.” Micah 7:7, 8.

“He will again have compassion on us, He will blot out our iniquities;

Yea, Thou wilt cast all our sins into the depths of the sea!” Micah 7:19, Noyes. {MH 182.2}

God has promised:

“I will make a man more precious than fine gold; Even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir.” Isaiah 13:12.

“Though ye have lain among the pots,

Yet shall ye be as the wings of a dove covered with silver, And her feathers with yellow gold.” Psalm 68:13. {MH 182.3}

Those whom Christ has forgiven most will love Him most. These are they who in the final day will stand nearest to His throne.  {MH 182.4}

“They shall see His face; and His name shall be in their foreheads.” Revelation 22:4. {MH 182.5}

 

Chap. 15 – In the Sickroom

Those who minister to the sick should understand the importance of careful attention to the laws of health. Nowhere is obedience to these laws more important than in the sickroom. Nowhere does so much depend upon faithfulness in little things on the p art of the attendants. In cases of serious illness, a little neglect, a slight inattention to a patient’s special needs or dangers, the manifestation of fear, excitement, or petulance, even a lack of sympathy, may turn the scale that is balancing life and death, and cause to go down to the grave a patient who otherwise might have recovered.  {MH 219.1}

The efficiency of the nurse depends, to a great degree, upon physical vigor. The better the health, the better will she be able to endure the strain of attendance upon the sick, and the more successfully can she perform her duties. Those who care for the sick should give special attention to diet, cleanliness, fresh air, and exercise. Like carefulness on the part of the family will enable them also to endure the extra burdens brought upon them, and will help to prevent them from contracting disease. {MH 219.2}

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Where the illness is serious, requiring the attendance of a nurse night and day, the work should be shared by at least two efficient nurses, so that each may have opportunity for rest and for exercise in the open air. This is especially important in c ases where it is difficult to secure an abundance of fresh air in the sickroom. Through ignorance of the importance of fresh air, ventilation is sometimes restricted, and the lives of both patient and attendant are often in danger.  {MH 220.1}

If proper precaution is observed, noncontagious diseases need not be taken by others. Let the habits be correct, and by cleanliness and proper ventilation keep the sickroom free from poisonous elements. Under such conditions, the sick are much more likely to recover, and in most cases neither attendants nor the members of the family will contract the disease. {MH 220.2}

Sunlight, Ventilation, and Temperature

To afford the patient the most favorable conditions for recovery, the room he occupies should be large, light, and cheerful, with opportunity for thorough ventilation. The room in the house that best meets these requirements should be chosen as the sickroom. Many houses have no special provision for proper ventilation, and to secure it is difficult; but every possible effort should be made to arrange the sickroom so that a current of fresh air can pass through it night and day. {MH 220.3}

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So far as possible an even temperature should be maintained in the sickroom. The thermometer should be consulted. Those who have the care of the sick, being often deprived of sleep or awakened in the night to attend to the patient, are liable to chilliness and are not good judges of a healthful temperature.  {MH 221.1}

Diet

An important part of the nurse’s duty is the care of the patient’s diet. The patient should not be allowed to suffer or become unduly weakened through lack of nourishment, nor should the enfeebled digestive powers be overtaxed. Care should be taken so to prepare and serve the food that it will be palatable, but wise judgment should be used in adapting it to the needs of the patient, both in quantity and quality. In times of convalescence especially, when the appetite is keen, before the digestive organs have recovered strength, there is great danger of injury from errors in diet.  {MH 221.2}

Duties of Attendants

Nurses, and all who have to do with the sickroom, should be cheerful, calm, and self-possessed. All hurry, excitement, or confusion, should be avoided. Doors should be opened and shut with care, and the whole household be kept quiet. In cases of fever, special care is needed when the crisis comes

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and the fever is passing away. Then constant watching is often necessary. Ignorance, forgetfulness, and recklessness have caused the death of many who might have lived had they received proper care from judicious, thoughtful nurses.  {MH 221.3}

Visiting the Sick

It is misdirected kindness, a false idea of courtesy, that leads to much visiting of the sick. Those who are very ill should not have visitors. The excitement connected with receiving callers wearies the patient at a time when he is in the greatest need of quiet, undisturbed rest.  {MH 222.1}

To a convalescent or a patient suffering from chronic disease, it is often a pleasure and a benefit to know that he is kindly remembered; but this assurance conveyed by a message of sympathy or by some little gift will often serve a better purpose tha n a personal visit, and without danger of harm.  {MH 222.2}

Institutional Nursing

In sanitariums and hospitals, where nurses are constantly associated with large numbers of sick people, it requires a decided effort to be always pleasant and cheerful, and to show thoughtful consideration in every word and act. In these institutions it is of the utmost importance that the nurses strive to do their work wisely and well. They need ever to remember

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that in the discharge of their daily duties they are serving the Lord Christ.  {MH 222.3}

The sick need to have wise words spoken to them. Nurses should study the Bible daily, that they may be able to speak words that will enlighten and help the suffering. Angels of God are in the rooms where these suffering ones are being ministered to, a nd the atmosphere surrounding the soul of the one giving treatment should be pure and fragrant. Physicians and nurses are to cherish the principles of Christ. In their lives His virtues are to be seen. Then, by what they do and say, they will draw the sick to the Saviour. {MH 223.1}

The Christian nurse, while administering treatment for the restoration of health, will pleasantly and successfully draw the mind of the patient to Christ, the healer of the soul as well as of the body. The thoughts presented, here a little and there a little, will have their influence. The older nurses should lose

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no favorable opportunity of calling the attention of the sick to Christ. They should be ever ready to blend spiritual healing with physical healing. {MH 223.2}

In the kindest and tenderest manner nurses are to teach that he who would be healed must cease to transgress the law of God. He must cease to choose a life of sin. God cannot bless the one who continues to bring upon himself disease and suffering by a willful violation of the laws of heaven. But Christ, through the Holy Spirit, comes as a healing power to those who cease to do evil and learn to do well.  {MH 224.1}

Those who have no love for God will work constantly against the best interests of soul and body. But those who awake to the importance of living in obedience to God in this present evil world will be willing to separate from every wrong habit. Gratitude and love will fill their hearts. They know that Christ is their friend. In many cases the realization that they have such a friend means more to the suffering ones in their recovery from sickness than the best treatment that can be given. But both lines of ministry are essential. They are to go hand in hand.  {MH 224.2}

Chap. 16 – Prayer for the Sick

The Scripture says that “men ought always to pray, and not to faint” ( Luke 18:1); and if ever there is a time when they feel their need of prayer, it is when strength fails and life itself seems slipping from their grasp. Often those who are in health forget the wonderful mercies continued to them day by day, year after year, and they render no tribute of praise to God for His benefits. But when sickness comes, God is remembered. When human strength fails, men feel their need of divine help. And never does our merciful God turn from the soul that in sincerity seeks Him for help. He is our refuge in sickness as in health.

 

“Like as a father pitieth his children,

So the Lord pitieth them that fear Him. For He knoweth our frame;

He remembereth that we are dust.” Psalm 103:13, 14.

“Because of their transgression,

And because of their iniquities, [men] are afflicted. Their soul abhorreth all manner of food;

And they draw near unto the gates of death.” Psalm 107:17, 18, A.R.V.

“Then they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, And He saveth them out of their distresses. He sendeth His word, and healeth them,

And delivereth them from their destructions.” Verses 19, 20, R.V. {MH 225.1}

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God is just as willing to restore the sick to health now as when the Holy Spirit spoke these words through the psalmist. And Christ is the same compassionate physician now that He was during His earthly ministry. In Him there is healing balm for every disease, restoring power for every infirmity. His disciples in this time are to pray for the sick as verily as the disciples of old prayed. And recoveries will follow; for “the prayer of faith shall save the sick.” We have the Holy Spirit’s power, the calm assurance of faith, that can claim God’s promises. The Lord’s promise, “They shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover” (Mark 16:18), is just as trustworthy now as in the days of the apostles. It presents the privilege of God’s children, and our faith should lay hold of all that it embraces. Christ’s servants are the channel of His working, and through them He desires to exercise His healing power. It is our work to present the sick and suffering to God in the arms of our faith. We should teach them to believe in the Great Healer.  {MH 226.1}

The Saviour would have us encourage the sick, the hopeless, the afflicted, to take hold upon His strength. Through faith and prayer the sickroom may be transformed into a Bethel. In word and deed, physicians and nurses may say, so plainly that it cann ot be misunderstood, “God is in this place” to save, and not to destroy. Christ desires to manifest His presence in the sickroom, filling the hearts of physicians and nurses with the sweetness of His love. If the life of the attendants upon the sick is suc h that Christ can go with them to the bedside of the patient, there will come to him the conviction that the compassionate Saviour is present, and this conviction will itself do much for the healing of both the soul and the body.  {MH 226.2}

And God hears prayer. Christ has said, “If ye shall ask anything in My name, I will do it.” Again He says, “If any man serve Me, him will My Father honor.” John 14:14; 12:26. If we live according to His word, every precious promise

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He has given will be fulfilled to us. We are undeserving of His mercy, but as we give ourselves to Him, He receives us. He will work for and through those who follow Him. {MH 226.3}

But only as we live in obedience to His word can we claim the fulfillment of His promises. The psalmist says, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.” Psalm 66:18. If we render to Him only a partial, halfhearted obedience, His promises will not be fulfilled to us.  {MH 227.1}

In the word of God we have instruction relative to special prayer for the recovery of the sick. But the offering of such prayer is a most solemn act, and should not be entered upon without careful consideration. In many cases of prayer for the healing of the sick, that which is called faith is nothing less than presumption.  {MH 227.2}

Many persons bring disease upon themselves by their self-indulgence. They have not lived in accordance with natural law or the principles of strict purity. Others have disregarded the laws of health in their habits of eating and drinking, dressing, or working. Often some form of vice is the cause of feebleness of mind or body. Should these persons gain the blessing of health, many of them would continue to pursue the same course of heedless transgression of God’s natural and spiritual laws, reasoning that if God heals them in answer to prayer, they are at liberty to continue their unhealthful practices and to indulge perverted appetite without restraint. If God were to work a miracle in restoring these persons to health, He would be encouraging sin.  {MH 227.3}

It is labor lost to teach people to look to God as a healer of their infirmities, unless they are taught also to lay aside unhealthful practices. In order to receive His blessing in answer to prayer, they must cease to do evil and learn to do well. Their surroundings must be sanitary, their habits of life

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correct. They must live in harmony with the law of God, both natural and spiritual.  {MH 227.4}

Confession of Sin

To those who desire prayer for their restoration to health, it should be made plain that the violation of God’s law, either natural or spiritual, is sin, and that in order for them to receive His blessing, sin must be confessed and forsaken.  {MH 228.1}

The Scripture bids us, “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed.” James 5:16. To the one asking for prayer, let thoughts like these be presented: “We cannot read the heart, or know the secrets of your life. These are known only to yourself and to God. If you repent of your sins, it is your duty to make confession of them.” Sin of a private character is to be confessed to Christ, the only mediator between God and man. For “if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” 1 John 2:1. Every sin is an offense against God

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and is to be confessed to Him through Christ. Every open sin should be as openly confessed. Wrong done to a fellow being should be made right with the one who has been offended. If any who are seeking health have been guilty of evilspeaking, if they have sowed discord in the home, the neighborhood, or the church, and have stirred up alienation and dissension, if by any wrong practice they have led others into sin, these things should be confessed before God and before those who have been offended. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us f rom all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9. {MH 228.2}

When wrongs have been righted, we may present the needs of the sick to the Lord in calm faith, as His Spirit may indicate. He knows each individual by name, and cares for each as if there were not another upon the earth for whom He gave His beloved Son. Because God’s love is so great and so unfailing, the sick should be encouraged to trust in Him and be cheerful. To be anxious about themselves tends to cause weakness and disease. If they will rise above depression and gloom, their prospect of recovery will be better; for “the eye of the Lord is upon them” “that hope in His mercy.” Psalm 33:18. {MH 229.1}

In prayer for the sick it should be remembered that “we know not what we should pray for as we ought.” Romans 8:26. We do not know whether the blessing we desire will be best or not. Therefore our prayers should include this thought: “Lord, thou knowest every secret of the soul. Thou art acquainted with these persons. Jesus, their Advocate, gave His life for them. His love for them is greater than ours can possibly be. If, therefore, it is for Thy glory and the good of the afflicted ones, we ask, in the name of Jesus, that they may be restored to health. If it be not Thy will that they may be

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restored, we ask that Thy grace may comfort and Thy presence sustain them in their sufferings.” {MH 229.2}

God knows the end from the beginning. He is acquainted with the hearts of all men. He reads every secret of the soul. He knows whether those for whom prayer is offered would or would not be able to endure the trials that would come upon them should they live. He knows whether their lives would be a blessing or a curse to themselves and to the world. This is one reason why, while presenting our petitions with earnestness, we should say, “Nevertheless not my will, but Thine, be done.” Luke 22:42. Jesus added these words of submission to the wisdom and will of God when in the Garden of Gethsemane He pleaded, “O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me.” Matthew 26:39. And if they were appropriate for Him, the Son of God, how much more are they becoming on the lips of finite, erring mortals!  {MH 230.1}

The consistent course is to commit our desires to our all-wise heavenly Father, and then, in perfect confidence, trust all to Him. We know that God hears us if we ask according to His will. But to press our petitions without a submissive spirit is not right; our prayers must take the form, not of command, but of intercession.  {MH 230.2}

There are cases where God works decidedly by His divine power in the restoration of health. But not all the sick are healed. Many are laid away to sleep in Jesus. John on the Isle of Patmos was bidden to write: “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; and their works do follow hem.” Revelation 14:13. From this we see that if persons are not raised to health, they should not on this account be judged as wanting in faith.  {MH 230.3}

We all desire immediate and direct answers to our prayers,

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and are tempted to become discouraged when the answer is delayed or comes in an unlooked-for form. But God is too wise and good to answer our prayers always at just the time and in just the manner we desire. He will do more and better for us than to accomplish all our wishes. And because we can trust His wisdom and love, we should not ask Him to concede to our will, but should seek to enter into and accomplish His purpose. Our desires and interests should be lost in His will. These experiences that test faith are for our benefit. By them it is made manifest whether our faith is true and sincere, resting on the word of God alone, or whether depending on circumstances, it is uncertain and changeable. Faith is strengthened by exercise. We must let patience have its perfect work, remembering that there are precious promises in the Scriptures for those who wait upon the Lord. {MH 230.4}

Not all understand these principles. Many who seek the Lord’s healing mercy think that they must have a direct and immediate answer to their prayers or their faith is defective. For this reason, those who are weakened by disease need to be counseled wisely, that they may act with discretion. They should not disregard their duty to the friends who may survive them, or neglect to employ nature’s agencies for the restoration of health. {MH 231.1}

Often there is danger of error here. Believing that they will be healed in answer to prayer, some fear to do anything that might seem to indicate a lack of faith. But they should not neglect to set their affairs in order as they would desire to do if they expected to be removed by death. Nor should they fear to utter words of encouragement or counsel which at the parting hour they wish to speak to their loved ones. {MH 231.2}

Those who seek healing by prayer should not neglect to make use of the remedial agencies within their reach. It is not

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a denial of faith to use such remedies as God has provided to alleviate pain and to aid nature in her work of restoration. It is no denial of faith to co-operate with God, and to place themselves in the condition most favorable to recovery. God has put it in our power to obtain a knowledge of the laws of life. This knowledge has been placed within our reach for use. We should employ every facility for the restoration of health, taking every advantage possible, working in harmony with natural laws. When we have prayed for the recovery of the sick, we can work with all the more energy, thanking God that we have the privilege of co-operating with Him, and asking His blessing on the means which He Himself has provided. {MH 231.3}

We have the sanction of the word of God for the use of remedial agencies. Hezekiah, king of Israel, was sick, and a prophet of God brought him the message that he should die. He cried unto the Lord, and the Lord heard His servant and sent him a message that fifteen years should be added to his life. Now, one word from God would have healed Hezekiah instantly; but special directions were given, “Let them take a lump of figs, and lay it for a plaster upon the boil, and he shall recover.” Isaiah 38:21. {MH 232.1}

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On one occasion Christ anointed the eyes of a blind man with clay and bade him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam. . . . He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.” John 9:7. The cure could be wrought only by the power of the Great Healer, yet Christ made use of the simple agencies of nature. While He did not give countenance to drug medication, He sanctioned the use of simple and natural remedies. {MH 233.1}

When we have prayed for the recovery of the sick, whatever the outcome of the case, let us not lose faith in God. If we are called upon to meet bereavement, let us accept the bitter cup, remembering that a Father’s hand holds it to our lips. But shoul d health be restored, it should not be forgotten that the recipient of healing mercy is placed under renewed obligation to the Creator. When the ten lepers were cleansed, only one returned to find Jesus and give Him glory. Let none of us be like the unthin king nine, whose hearts were untouched by the mercy of God. “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” James 1:17. {MH 233.2}

Chap. 17 – The Use of Remedies

Disease never comes without a cause. The way is prepared, and disease invited, by disregard of the laws of health. Many suffer in consequence of the transgression of their parents. While they are not responsible for what their parents have done, it is nevertheless their duty to ascertain what are and what are not violations of the laws of health. They should avoid the wrong habits of their parents and, by correct living, place themselves in better conditions. {MH 234.1}

The greater number, however, suffer because of their own wrong course of action. They disregard the principles of health by their habits of eating, drinking, dressing, and working. Their transgression of nature’s laws produces the sure result; and when sickness comes upon them, many do not credit their suffering to the true cause, but murmur against God because of their afflictions. But God is not responsible for the suffering that follows disregard of natural law.  {MH 234.2}

God has endowed us with a certain amount of vital force. He has also formed us with organs suited to maintain the various functions of life, and He designs that these organs

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shall work together in harmony. If we carefully preserve the life force, and keep the delicate mechanism of the body in order, the result is health; but if the vital force is too rapidly exhausted, the nervous system borrows power for present use from its resources of strength, and when one organ is injured, all are affected. Nature bears much abuse without apparent resistance; she then arouses and makes a determined effort to remove the effects of the ill-treatment she has suffered. Her effort to correc t these conditions is often manifest in fever and various other forms of sickness.  {MH 234.3}

Rational Remedies

When the abuse of health is carried so far that sickness results, the sufferer can often do for himself what no one else can do for him. The first thing to be done is to ascertain the true character of the sickness and then go to work intelligently to remove the cause. If the harmonious working of the system has become unbalanced by overwork, overeating, or other irregularities, do not endeavor to adjust the difficulties by adding a burden of poisonous medicines. {MH 235.1}

Intemperate eating is often the cause of sickness, and what nature most needs is to be relieved of the undue burden that has been placed upon her. In many cases of sickness, the very best remedy is for the patient to fast for a meal or two, that the overworked organs of digestion may have an opportunity to rest. A fruit diet for a few days has often brought great relief to brain workers. Many times a short period of entire abstinence from food, followed by simple, moderate eating, has led to recovery t hrough nature’s own recuperative effort. An abstemious diet for a month or two would convince many sufferers that the path of self-denial is the path to health. {MH 235.2}

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Rest as a Remedy

Some make themselves sick by overwork. For these, rest, freedom from care, and a spare diet, are essential to restoration of health. To those who are brain weary and nervous

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because of continual labor and close confinement, a visit to the country, where they can live a simple, carefree life, coming in close contact with the things of nature, will be most helpful. Roaming through the fields and the woods, picking the flowers, listening to the songs of the birds, will do far more that any other agency toward their recovery.  {MH 236.1}

In health and in sickness, pure water is one of heaven’s choicest blessings. Its proper use promotes health. It is the beverage which God provided to quench the thirst of animals and man. Drunk freely, it helps to supply the necessities of the system and assists nature to resist disease. The external application of water is one of the easiest and most satisfactory ways of regulating the circulation of the blood. A cold or cool bath is an excellent tonic. Warm baths open the pores and thus aid in the elimination of impurities. Both warm and neutral baths soothe the nerves and equalize the circulation. {MH 237.1}

But many have never learned by experience the beneficial effects of the proper use of water, and they are afraid of it. Water treatments are not appreciated as they should be, and to apply them skillfully requires work that many are unwilling to perform. But none should feel excused for ignorance or indifference on this subject. There are many ways in which water can be applied to relieve pain and check disease. All should become intelligent in its use in simple home treatments. Mothers, especially, should know how to care for their families in both health and sickness.  {MH 237.2}

Action is a law of our being. Every organ of the body has its appointed work, upon the performance of which its development and strength depend. The normal action of all the organs gives strength and vigor, while the tendency of disuse is toward decay and death. Bind up an arm, even for a few weeks, then free it from its bands, and you will see that

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it is weaker than the one you have been using moderately during the same time. Inactivity produces the same effect upon the whole muscular system.  {MH 237.3}

Inactivity is a fruitful cause of disease. Exercise quickens and equalizes the circulation of the blood, but in idleness the blood does not circulate freely, and the changes in it, so necessary to life and health, do not take place. The skin, too, bec omes inactive. Impurities are not expelled as they would be if the circulation had been quickened by vigorous exercise, the skin kept in a healthy condition, and the lungs fed with plenty of pure, fresh air. This state of the system throws a double burden on the excretory organs, and disease is the result.  {MH 238.1}

Invalids should not be encourage in inactivity. When there has been serious overtaxation in any direction, entire rest for a time will sometimes ward off serious illness; but in the case of confirmed invalids, it is seldom necessary to suspend all activity. {MH 238.2}

Those who have broken down from mental labor should have rest from wearing thought; but they should not be led to believe that it is dangerous to use their mental powers at all. Many are inclined to regard their condition as worse than it really is. T his state of mind is unfavorable to recovery, and should not be encouraged.  {MH 238.3}

Ministers, teachers, students, and other brain workers often suffer from illness as the result of severe mental taxation, unrelieved by physical exercise. What these persons need is a more active life. Strictly temperate habits, combined with proper exercise, would ensure both mental and physical vigor, and would give power of endurance to all brain workers. {MH 238.4}

Those who have overtaxed their physical powers should not be encouraged to forgo manual labor entirely. But labor,

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to be of the greatest advantage, should be systematic and agreeable. Outdoor exercise is the best; it should be so planned as to strengthen by use the organs that have become weakened; and the heart should be in it; the labor of the hands should never degenerate into mere drudgery. {MH 238.5}

When invalids have nothing to occupy their time and attention, their thoughts become centered upon themselves, and they grow morbid and irritable. Many times they dwell upon their bad feelings until they think themselves much worse than they really are and wholly unable to do anything. {MH 239.1}

In all these cases well-directed physical exercise would prove an effective remedial agent. In some cases it is indispensable to the recovery of health. The will goes with the labor of the hands; and what these invalids need is to have the will arouse d. When the will is dormant, the imagination becomes abnormal, and it is impossible to resist disease. {MH 239.2}

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Inactivity is the greatest curse that could come upon most invalids. Light employment in useful labor, while it does not tax mind or body, has a happy influence upon both. It strengthens the muscles, improves the circulation, and gives the invalid the satisfaction of knowing that he is not wholly useless in this busy world. He may be able to do but little at first, but he will soon find his strength increasing, and the amount of work done can be increased accordingly. {MH 240.1}

Exercise aids the dyspeptic by giving the digestive organs a healthy tone. To engage in severe study or violent physical exercise immediately after eating, hinders the work of digestion; but a short walk after a meal, with the head erect and the shoulders back, is a great benefit. {MH 240.2}

Notwithstanding all that is said and written concerning its importance, there are still many who neglect physical exercise. Some grow corpulent because the system is clogged; others become thin and feeble because their vital powers are exhausted in disposing of an excess of food. The liver is burdened in its effort to cleanse the blood of impurities, and illness is the result.  {MH 240.3}

Those whose habits are sedentary should, when the weather will permit, exercise in the open air every day, summer or winter. Walking is preferable to riding or driving, for it brings more of the muscles into exercise. The lungs are forced into healthy action, since it is impossible to walk briskly without inflating them.  {MH 240.4}

Such exercise would in many cases be better for the health than medicine. Physicians often advise their patients to take an ocean voyage, to go to some mineral spring, or to visit different places for change of climate, when in most cases if they would eat temperately, and take cheerful, healthful exercise, they would recover health and would save time and money.  {MH 240.5}

Chap. 18 – Mind Cure

The relation that exists between the mind and the body is very intimate. When one is affected, the other sympathizes. The condition of the mind affects the health to a far greater degree than many realize. Many of the diseases from which men suffer are the result of mental depression. Grief, anxiety, discontent, remorse, guilt, distrust, all tend to break down the life forces and to invite decay and death.  {MH 241.1}

Disease is sometimes produced, and is often greatly aggravated, by the imagination. Many are lifelong invalids who might be well if they only thought so. Many imagine that every slight exposure will cause illness, and the evil effect is produced because it is expected. Many die from disease the cause of which is wholly imaginary.  {MH 241.2}

Courage, hope, faith, sympathy, love, promote health and prolong life. A contented mind, a cheerful spirit, is health to the body and strength to the soul. “A merry [rejoicing] heart doeth good like a medicine.” Proverbs 17:22. {MH 241.3}

In the treatment of the sick the effect of mental influence should not be overlooked. Rightly used, this influence affords one of the most effective agencies for combating disease. {MH 241.4}

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Control of Mind Over Mind

There is, however, a form of mind cure that is one of the most effective agencies for evil. Through this so-called science, one mind is brought under the control of another so that the individuality of the weaker is merged in that of the stronger mind. One person acts out the will of another. Thus it is claimed that the tenor of the thoughts may be changed, that health-giving impulses may be imparted, and patients may be enabled to resist and overcome disease. {MH 242.1}

This method of cure has been employed by persons who were ignorant of its real nature and tendency, and who believed it to be a means of benefit to the sick. But the so-called science is based upon false principles. It is foreign to the nature and spirit of Christ. It does not lead to Him who is life and salvation. The one who attracts minds to himself leads them to separate from the true Source of their strength.  {MH 242.2}

It is not God’s purpose that any human being should yield his mind and will to the control of another, becoming a passive instrument in his hands. No one is to merge his individuality in that of another. He is not to look to any human being as the source of healing. His dependence must be in God. In the dignity of his God-given manhood he is to be controlled by God Himself, not by any human intelligence.  {MH 242.3}

God desires to bring men into direct relation with Himself. In all His dealings with human beings He recognizes the principle of personal responsibility. He seeks to encourage a sense of personal dependence and to impress the need of personal guidance. He desires to bring the human into association with the divine, that men may be transformed into the divine likeness. Satan works to thwart this purpose. He seeks to encourage dependence upon men. When minds are

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turned away from God, the tempter can bring them under his rule. He can control humanity. {MH 242.4}

The theory of mind controlling mind was originated by Satan, to introduce himself as the chief worker, to put human philosophy where divine philosophy should be. Of all the errors that are finding acceptance among professedly Christian people, none is a more dangerous deception, none more certain to separate man from God, than is this. Innocent though it may appear, if exercised upon patients it will tend to their destruction, not to their restoration. It opens a door through which Satan will enter to take possession both of the mind that is given up to be controlled by another, and of the mind that controls. {MH 243.1}

Fearful is the power thus given to evil-minded men and women. What opportunities it affords to those who live by taking advantage of other’s weaknesses or follies! How many, through control of minds feeble or diseased, will find a means of gratifying lustful passion or greed of gain!  {MH 243.2}

There is something better for us to engage in than the control of humanity by humanity. The physician should educate the people to look from the human to the divine. Instead of teaching the sick to depend upon human beings for the cure of soul and body, he should direct them to the One who can save to the uttermost all who come unto Him. He who made man’s mind knows what the mind needs. God alone is the One who can heal. Those whose minds and bodies are

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diseased are to behold in Christ the restorer. “Because I live, He says, “ye shall live also.” John 14:19. This is the life we are to present to the sick, telling them that if they have faith in Christ as the restorer, if they co-operate with Him, obeying the laws of health, and striving to perfect holiness in His fear, He will impart to them His life. When we present Christ to them in this way, we are imparting a power, a strength, that is of value; for it comes from above. This is the true science of healing for body and soul. {MH 243.3}

Sympathy

Great wisdom is needed in dealing with diseases caused through the mind. A sore, sick heart, a discouraged mind, needs mild treatment. Many times some living home trouble is, like a canker, eating to the very soul and weakening the life force. And sometimes it is the case that remorse for sin undermines the constitution and unbalances the mind. It is through tender sympathy that this class of invalids can be benefited. The physician should first gain their confidence and then point them to the Great Healer. If their faith can be directed to the True Physician, and they can have confidence that He has undertaken their case, this will bring relief to the mind and often give health to the body.  {MH 244.1}

Sympathy and tact will often prove a greater benefit to the sick than will the most skillful treatment given in a cold, indifferent way. When a physician comes to the sickbed with a listless, careless manner, looks at the afflicted one with little con cern, by word or action giving the impression that the case is not one requiring much attention, and then leaves the patient to his own reflections, he has done that patient positive harm. The doubt and discouragement produced by his indifference will often counteract the good effect of the remedies he may prescribe. {MH 244.2}

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If physicians could put themselves in the place of the one whose spirit is humbled and whose will is weakened by suffering, and who longs for words of sympathy and assurance, they would be better prepared to appreciate his feelings. When the love and sympathy that Christ manifested for the sick is combined with the physician’s knowledge, his very presence will be a blessing.  {MH 245.1}

Frankness in dealing with a patient inspires him with confidence, and thus proves an important aid to recovery. There are physicians who consider it wise policy to conceal from the patient the nature and cause of the disease from which he is suffering . Many, fearing to excite or discourage a patient by stating the truth, will hold out false hopes of recovery, and even allow a patient to go down to the grave without warning him of his danger. All this is unwise. It may not always be safe or best to explain to the patient the full extent of his danger. This might alarm him and retard or even prevent recovery. Nor can the whole truth always be told to those whose ailments are largely imaginary. Many of these persons are unreasonable, and have not accustomed themselves to exercise self-control. They have peculiar fancies, and imagine many things that are false in regard to themselves and to others. To them these things are real, and those who care for them need to manifest constant kindness and unwearied patience and tact. If these patients were told the truth in regard to themselves, some would be offended, others discouraged. Christ said to His disciples, “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” John 16:12. But though the truth may not all be spoken on all occasions, it is never necessary or justifiable to deceive. Never should the physician or the nurse stoop to prevarication. He who does this places himself where God cannot co-operate with him, and in forfeiting the confidence of his patients he is casting away one of the most effective human aids to their restoration. {MH 245.2}

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The power of the will is not valued as it should be. Let the will be kept awake and rightly directed, and it will impart energy to the whole being and will be a wonderful aid in the maintenance of health. It is a power also in dealing with disease. Exercised in the right direction, it would control the imagination and be a potent means of resisting and overcoming disease of both mind and body. By the exercise of the will power in placing themselves in right relation to life, patients can do much to co-operate with the physician’s efforts for their recovery. There are thousands who can recover health if they will. The Lord does not want them to be sick. He desires them to be well and happy, and they should make up their minds to be well. Often invalids can resist disease simply by refusing to yield to ailments and settle down in a state of inactivity. Rising above their aches and pains, let them engage in useful employment suited to their strength. By such employment and the free use of air and sunlight, many an emaciated invalid might recover health and strength.  {MH 246.1}

Bible Principles of Cure

For those who would regain or preserve health there is a lesson in the words of Scripture, “Be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.” Ephesians 5:18. Not through the excitement or oblivion produced by unnatural or unhealthful stimulants; not through indulgence of the lower appetites or passions, is to be found true healing or refreshment for the body or the soul. Among the sick are many who are without God and without hope. They suffer from ungratified desires, disordered passions, and the condemnation of their own consciences; they are losing their hold upon this life, and they have no prospect for the life to come. Let not the attendants upon the sick hope to benefit these patients

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by granting them frivolous, exciting indulgences. These have been the curse of their lives. The hungry, thirsting soul will continue to hunger and thirst so long as it seeks to find satisfaction here. Those who drink at the fountain of selfish pleasure are deceived. They mistake hilarity for strength, and when the excitement ceases, their inspiration ends, and they are left to discontent and despondency.  {MH 246.2}

Abiding peace, true rest of spirit, has but one Source. It was of this that Christ spoke when He said, “Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28. “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you.” John 14:27. This peace is not something that He gives apart from Himself. It is in Christ, and we can receive it only by receiving Him.  {MH 247.1}

Christ is the wellspring of life. That which many need is to have a clearer knowledge of Him; they need to be patiently and kindly, yet earnestly, taught how the whole being may be thrown open to the healing agencies of heaven. When the sunlight of Go d’s love illuminates the darkened chambers of the soul, restless weariness and dissatisfaction will cease, and satisfying joys will give vigor to the mind and health and energy to the body.  {MH 247.2}

We are in a world of suffering. Difficulty, trial, and sorrow await us all along the way to the heavenly home. But there are many who make life’s burdens doubly heavy by continually anticipating trouble. If they meet with adversity or

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disappointment they think that everything is going to ruin, that theirs is the hardest lot of all, that they are surely coming to want. Thus they bring wretchedness upon themselves and cast a shadow upon all around them. Life itself becomes a burden to them. But it need not be thus. It will cost a determined effort to change the current of their thought. But the change can be made. Their happiness, both for this life and for the life to come, depends upon their fixing their minds upon cheerful things. Let them look away from the dark picture, which is imaginary, to the benefits which God has strewn in their pathway, and beyond these to the unseen and eternal.  {MH 247.3}

For every trial, God has provided help. When Israel in the desert came to the bitter waters of Marah, Moses cried unto the Lord. The Lord did not provide some new remedy; He called attention to that which was at hand. A shrub which He had created was to be cast into the fountain to make the water pure and sweet. When this was done, the people drank of the water and were refreshed. In every trial, if we seek Him, Christ will give us help. Our eyes will be opened to discern the healing promises recorded in His word. The Holy Spirit will teach us how to appropriate every blessing that will be an antidote to grief. For every bitter draft that is placed to our lips, we shall find a branch of healing. {MH 248.1}

We are not to let the future, with its hard problems, its unsatisfying prospects, make our hearts faint, our knees tremble, our hands hang down. “Let him take hold of My strength,” says the Mighty One, “that he may make peace with Me; and he shall make peace with Me.” Isaiah 27:5. Those who surrender their lives to His guidance and to His service will never be placed in a position for which He has not made provision.

Whatever our situation, if we are doers of His word, we have a Guide to direct our way; whatever our

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perplexity, we have a sure Counselor; whatever our sorrow, bereavement, or loneliness, we have a sympathizing Friend. {MH 248.2}

If in our ignorance we make missteps, the Saviour does not forsake us. We need never feel that we are alone. Angels are our companions. The Comforter that Christ promised to send in His name abides with us. In the way that leads to the City of God there are no difficulties which those who trust in Him may not overcome. There are no dangers which they may not escape. There is not a sorrow, not a grievance, not a human weakness, for which He has not provided a remedy.  {MH 249.1}

None need abandon themselves to discouragement and despair. Satan may come to you with the cruel suggestion, “Yours is a hopeless case. You are irredeemable.” But there is hope for you in Christ. God does not bid us overcome in our own strength. He asks us to come close to His side. Whatever difficulties we labor under, which weigh down soul and body, He waits to make us free.  {MH 249.2}

He who took humanity upon Himself knows how to sympathize with the sufferings of humanity. Not only does Christ know every soul, and the peculiar needs and trials of that soul, but He knows all the circumstances that chafe and perplex the spirit. His hand is outstretched in pitying tenderness to every suffering child. Those who suffer most have most of His sympathy and pity. He is touched with the feeling of our infirmities, and He desires us to lay our perplexities and troubles at His feet and leave them there. {MH 249.3}

It is not wise to look to ourselves and study our emotions. If we do this, the enemy will present difficulties and temptations that weaken faith and destroy courage. Closely to study our emotions and give way to our feelings is to entertain doubt and entangle ourselves in perplexity. We are to look away from self to Jesus. {MH 249.4}

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When temptations assail you, when care, perplexity, and darkness seem to surround your soul, look to the place where you last saw the light. Rest in Christ’s love and under His protecting care. When sin struggles for the mastery in the heart, when guilt oppresses the soul and burdens the conscience, when unbelief clouds the mind, remember that Christ’s grace is sufficient to subdue sin and banish the darkness. Entering into communion with the Saviour, we enter the region of peace.

The Healing Promises

 

“The Lord redeemeth the soul of His servants: And none of them that trust in Him shall be desolate.” Psalm 34:22.

“In the fear of the Lord is strong confidence: And His children shall have a place of refuge.” Proverbs 14:26.

“Zion said, Jehovah hath forsaken me, and The Lord hath forgotten me.

Can a woman forget her sucking child,

That she should not have compassion on the son of her womb?

Yea, these may forget, yet will not I forget thee.

Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of My hands.” Isaiah 49:14-16, A.R.V.

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“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: Be not dismayed; for I am thy God:

I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee;

Yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness.” Isaiah 41:10.

“Ye that have been borne by Me from your birth,

That have been carried by Me from your earliest breath, Even to your old age I am the same;

Even to hoar hairs I will carry you;

I have done it, and I will still bear you; I will carry, and I will deliver you.”

Isaiah 46:3, 4, Noyes. {MH 250.1}

Nothing tends more to promote health of body and of soul than does a spirit of gratitude and praise. It is a positive duty to resist melancholy, discontented thoughts and feelings–as much a duty as it is to pray. If we are heaven-bound, how can we go as a band of mourners, groaning and complaining all along the way to our Father’s house? {MH 251.1}

Those professed Christians who are constantly complaining, and who seem to think cheerfulness and happiness a sin, have not genuine religion. Those who take a mournful pleasure in all that is melancholy in the natural world, who choose to look upon dead leaves rather than to gather the beautiful living flowers, who see no beauty in grand mountain heights and in valleys clothed with living green, who close their senses to the joyful voice which speaks to them in nature, and which is sweet and musical to the listening ear–these are not in Christ. They are gathering to themselves gloom and darkness, when they might have brightness, even the Sun of Righteousness arising in their hearts with healing in His beams.  {MH 251.2}

Often your mind may be clouded because of pain. Then do not try to think. You know that Jesus loves you. He understands your weakness. You may do His will by simply resting in His arms. {MH 251.3}

It is a law of nature that our thoughts and feelings are encouraged and strengthened as we give them utterance.

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While words express thoughts, it is also true that thoughts follow words. If we would give more expression to our faith, rejoice more in the blessings that we know we have,–the great mercy and love of God,–we should have more faith

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and greater joy. No tongue can express, no finite mind can conceive, the blessing that results from appreciating the goodness and love of God. Even on earth we may have joy as a wellspring, never failing, because fed by the streams that flow from the throne of God. {MH 251.4}

Then let us educate our hearts and lips to speak the praise of God for His matchless love. Let us educate our souls to be hopeful and to abide in the light shining from the cross of Calvary. Never should we forget that we are children of the heavenly King, sons and daughters of the Lord of hosts. It is our privilege to maintain a calm repose in God. {MH 253.1}

“Let the peace of God rule in your hearts; . . . and be ye thankful.” Colossians 3:15. Forgetting our own difficulties and troubles, let us praise God for an opportunity to live for the glory of His name. Let the fresh blessings of each new day awaken praise in our hearts for these tokens of His loving care. When you open your eyes in the morning, thank God that He has kept you through the night. Thank Him for His peace in your heart. Morning, noon, and night, let gratitude as a sweet perfume ascend to heaven. {MH 253.2}

When someone asks how you are feeling, do not try to think of something mournful to tell in order to gain sympathy. Do not talk of your lack of faith and your sorrows and sufferings. The tempter delights to hear such words. When talking on gloomy subjects, you are glorifying him. We are not to dwell on the great power of Satan to overcome us. Often we give ourselves into his hands by talking of his power. Let us talk instead of the great power of God to bind up all our interests with His own. Tell of the matchless power of Christ, and speak of His glory. All heaven is interested in our salvation. The angels of God, thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand, are commissioned to minister to those who shall be heirs of salvation. They guard us against evil and press back the powers of darkness that are seeking our destruction. Have we not

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reason to be thankful every moment, thankful even when there are apparent difficulties in our pathway? {MH 253.3}

Sing Praises

Let praise and thanksgiving be expressed in song. When tempted, instead of giving utterance to our feelings, let us by faith lift up a song of thanksgiving to God. We praise Thee, O God, for the Son of Thy love,– For Jesus who died and is now gone above. We praise Thee, O God, for Thy Spirit of light, Who has shown us our Saviour, and scattered our night.

All glory and praise to the Lamb that was slain,

Who has borne all our sins, and has cleansed every stain.

All glory and praise to the God of all grace,

Who has bought us, and sought us, and guided our ways.

Revive us again; fill each heart with Thy love; May each soul be rekindled with fire from above.

 

Chorus:

Hallelujah! Thine the glory, Hallelujah! amen; Hallelujah! Thine the glory, Revive us again.  {MH 254.1}

Song is a weapon that we can always use against discouragement. As we thus open the heart to the sunlight of the Saviour’s presence, we shall have health and His blessing.

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“Give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good: For His mercy endureth forever.

Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,

Whom He hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy.”

“Sing unto Him, sing psalms unto Him: Talk ye of all His wondrous works. Glory ye in His holy name:

Let the heart of them rejoice that seek the Lord.”

“For He satisfieth the longing soul,

And filleth the hungry soul with goodness.

Such as sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, Being bound in affliction and iron; . . .

They cried unto the Lord in their trouble,

And He saved them out of their distresses.

He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, And brake their bands in sunder.

Oh that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, And for His wonderful works to the children of men!”

“Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God:

For I shall yet praise Him,

Who is the health of my countenance, And my God.”

Psalm 107:1,2; 105:2,3; Psalm 107:9-15; 42:11. {MH 254.2}

“In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

1 Thessalonians 5:18. This command is an assurance that even the things which appear to be against us will work for our good. God would not bid us be thankful fo r that which would do us harm.

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear?

The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?”

“In the day of trouble He shall keep me secretly in His pavilion: In the covert of His tabernacle shall He hide me; . . .

And I will offer in His tabernacle sacrifices of joy;

I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the Lord.”

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“I waited patiently for the Lord;

And He inclined unto me, and heard my cry.

He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay,

And set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God.”

“The Lord is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped: Therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth;

And with my song will I praise Him.” Psalm 27:1; 27:5, 6, R.V.; 40:1-3; 28:7. {MH 255.1}

One of the surest hindrances to the recovery of the sick is the centering of attention upon themselves. Many invalids feel that everyone should give them sympathy and help, when what they need is to have their attention turned away from themselves, to think of and care for others.  {MH 256.1}

Often prayer is solicited for the afflicted, the sorrowful, the discouraged; and this is right. We should pray that God will shed light into the darkened mind and comfort the sorrowful heart. But God answers prayer for those who place themselves in th e channel of His blessings. While we offer prayer for these sorrowful ones, we should encourage them to try to help those more needy than themselves. The darkness will be dispelled from their own hearts as they try to help others. As we seek to comfort oth ers with the comfort wherewith we are comforted, the blessing comes back to us.  {MH 256.2}

The fifty-eight chapter of Isaiah is a prescription for maladies of the body and of the soul. If we desire health and the true joy of life we must put into practice the rules given in this scripture. Of the service acceptable to Him, and its blessings, the Lord says:

 

“Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry,

And that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? When thou seest the naked, that thou cover him;

And that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?

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Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, And thine health shall spring forth speedily: And thy righteousness shall go before thee; The glory of the Lord shall be thy rearward.

Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; Thou shalt cry, and He shall say, Here I am.

If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, The putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry,

And satisfy the afflicted soul;

Then shall thy light rise in obscurity, And thy darkness be as the noonday:

And the Lord shall guide thee continually, And satisfy thy soul in drought,

And make fat thy bones:

And thou shalt be like a watered garden, And like a spring of water,

Whose waters fail not.”

Isaiah 58:7-11. {MH 256.3}

Good deeds are twice a blessing, benefiting both the giver and the receiver of the kindness. The consciousness of right-doing is one of the best medicines for diseased bodies and minds. When the mind is free and happy from a sense of duty well done and the satisfaction of giving happiness to others, the cheering, uplifting influence brings new life to the whole being.  {MH 257.1}

Let the invalid, instead of constantly requiring sympathy, seek to impart it. Let the burden of your own weakness and sorrow and pain be cast upon the compassionate Saviour. Open your heart to His love, and let it flow out to others. Remember that all have trials hard to bear, temptations hard to resist, and you may do something to lighten these burdens. Express gratitude for the blessings you have; show appreciation of the attentions you receive. Keep the heart full of the precious promises of God, th at you may bring forth from this treasure, words that will be a comfort and strength to others. This will surround you with an atmosphere that will be helpful and uplifting. Let it be your aim to bless those around

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you, and you will find ways of being helpful, both to the members of your own family and to others. {MH 257.2}

If those who are suffering from ill-health would forget self in their interest for others; if they would fulfill the Lord’s command to minister to those more needy than themselves, they would realize the truthfulness of the prophetic promise, “Then sh all thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily.”

 

Marah and Elim

Today ’tis Elim with its palms and wells, And happy shade for desert weariness;

‘Twas Marah yesterday, all rock and sand, Unshaded solitude and dreariness.

Yet the same desert holds them both, the same

Hot breezes wander o’er the lonely ground; The same low stretch of valley shelters both,

And the same mountains compass them around.

So it is here with us on earth, and so

I do remember it has ever been;

The bitter and the sweet, the grief and joy, Lie near together, but a day between.

Sometimes God turns our bitter into sweet, Sometimes He gives us pleasant watersprings; Sometimes He shades us with His pillar cloud, And sometimes to a blessed palm shade brings.

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What matters it? The time will not be long; Marah and Elim will alike be passed;

Our desert wells and palms will soon be done, We reach the “City of our God” at last.

O happy land! beyond these lonely hills, Where gush in joy the everlasting springs; O holy Paradise! above these heavens,

Where we shall end our desert wanderings.

–Horatius Bonar.

 

Blessed Assurance

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.

 

Chorus:

This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Saviour all the day long; This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Saviour all the day long.

Perfect submission, perfect delight, Visions of rapture now burst on my sight. Angels descending bring from above Echoes of mercy, whispers of love.

 

Perfect submission, all is at rest,

I in my Saviour am happy and blest, Watching and waiting, looking above, Filled with His goodness, lost in His love.

–Fanny J. Crosby.  {MH 258.1}

 

Chap. 20 – General Hygiene

The knowledge that man is to be a temple for God, a habitation for the revealing of His glory, should be the highest incentive to the care and development of our physical powers. Fearfully and wonderfully has the Creator wrought in the human frame, an d He bids us make it our study, understand its needs, and act our part in preserving it from harm and defilement. {MH 271.1}

The Circulation of the Blood

In order to have good health, we must have good blood; for the blood is the current of life. It repairs waste and nourishes the body. When supplied with the proper food elements and when cleansed and vitalized by contact with pure air, it carries life and vigor to every part of the system. The more perfect the circulation, the better will this work be accomplished. {MH 271.2}

At every pulsation of the heart the blood should make its way quickly and easily to all parts of the body. Its circulation should not be hindered by tight clothing or bands, or by insufficient clothing of the extremities. Whatever hinders the circulation forces the blood back to the vital organs, producing

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congestion. Headache, cough, palpitation of the heart, or indigestion is often the result. {MH 271.3}

Respiration

In order to have good blood, we must breathe well. Full, deep inspirations of pure air, which fill the lungs with oxygen, purify the blood. They impart to it a bright color and send it, a life-giving current, to every part of the body. A good respiration soothes the nerves; it stimulates the appetite and renders digestion more perfect; and it induces sound, refreshing sleep.  {MH 272.1}

The lungs should be allowed the greatest freedom possible. Their capacity is developed by free action; it diminishes if they are cramped and compressed. Hence the ill effects of the practice so common, especially in sedentary pursuits, of stooping

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at one’s work. In this position it is impossible to breathe deeply. Superficial breathing soon becomes a habit, and the lungs lose their power to expand. A similar effect is produced by tight lacing. Sufficient room is not given to the lower part of the chest; the abdominal muscles, which were designed to aid in breathing, do not have full play, and the lungs are restricted in their action.  {MH 272.2}

Thus an insufficient supply of oxygen is received. The blood moves sluggishly. The waste, poisonous matter, which should be thrown off in the exhalations from the lungs, is retained, and the blood becomes impure. Not only the lungs, but the stomach, l iver, and brain are affected. The skin becomes sallow, digestion is retarded; the heart is depressed; the brain is clouded; the thoughts are confused; gloom settles upon the spirits; the whole system becomes depressed and inactive, and peculiarly susceptible to disease. {MH 273.1}

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The lungs are constantly throwing off impurities, and they need to be constantly supplied with fresh air. Impure air does not afford the necessary supply of oxygen, and the blood passes to the brain and other organs without being vitalized. Hence the necessity of thorough ventilation. To live in close, ill-ventilated rooms, where the air is dead and vitiated, weakens the entire system. It becomes peculiarly sensitive to the influence of cold, and a slight exposure induces disease. It is close confineme nt indoors that makes many women pale and feeble. They breathe the same air over and over until it becomes laden with poisonous matter thrown off through the lungs and pores, and impurities are thus conveyed back to the blood.  {MH 274.1}

Ventilation and Sunlight

In the construction of buildings, whether for public purposes or as dwellings, care should be taken to provide for good ventilation and plenty of sunlight. Churches and schoolrooms are often faulty in this respect. Neglect of proper ventilation is responsible for much of the drowsiness and dullness that destroy the effect of many a sermon and make the teacher’s work toilsome and ineffective.  {MH 274.2}

So far as possible, all buildings intended for human habitation should be placed on high, well-drained ground. This will ensure a dry site and prevent the danger of disease from dampness and miasma. This matter is often too lightly regarded. Continuous ill-health, serious diseases, and many deaths result from the dampness and malaria of low-lying, ill-drained situations. {MH 274.3}

In the building of houses it is especially important to secure thorough ventilation and plenty of sunlight. Let there be a current of air and an abundance of light in every room in the house. Sleeping rooms should be so arranged as to have a

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free circulation of air day and night. No room is fit to be occupied as a sleeping room unless it can be thrown open daily to the air and sunshine. In most countries bedrooms need to be supplied with conveniences for heating, that they may be thoroughly warmed and dried in cold or wet weather. {MH 274.4}

The guestchamber should have equal care with the rooms intended for constant use. Like the other bedrooms, it should have air and sunshine, and should be provided with some means of heating, to dry out the dampness that always accumulates in a room not in constant use. Whoever sleeps in a sunless room, or occupies a bed that has not been thoroughly dried and aired, does so at the risk of health, and often of life. {MH 275.1}

In building, many make careful provision for their plants and flowers. The greenhouse or window devoted to their use is warm and sunny; for without warmth, air, and sunshine, plants would not live and flourish. If these conditions are necessary to the life of plants, how much more necessary are they for our own health and that of our families and guests! {MH 275.2}

If we would have our homes the abiding place of health and happiness we must place them above the miasma and fog of the lowlands, and give free entrance to heaven’s life-giving agencies. Dispense with heavy curtains, open the windows and the blinds, allow no vines, however beautiful, to shade the windows, and permit no trees to stand so near the house as to shut out the sunshine. The sunlight may fade the drapery and the carpets, and tarnish the picture frames; but it will bring a healthy glow to the cheeks of the children. {MH 275.3}

Those who have the aged to provide for should remember that these especially need warm, comfortable rooms. Vigor declines as years advance, leaving less vitality with which to resist unhealthful influences; hence the greater necessity for the aged to have plenty of sunlight, and fresh, pure air. {MH 275.4}

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Scrupulous cleanliness is essential to both physical and mental health. Impurities are constantly thrown off from the body through the skin. Its millions of pores are quickly clogged unless kept clean by frequent bathing, and the impurities which should pass off through the skin become an additional burden to the other eliminating organs.  {MH 276.1}

Most persons would receive benefit from a cool or tepid bath every day, morning or evening. Instead of increasing the liability to take cold, a bath, properly taken, fortifies against cold, because it improves the circulation; the blood is brought to the surface, and a more easy and regular flow is obtained. The mind and the body are alike invigorated. The muscles become more flexible, the intellect is made brighter. The bath is a soother of the nerves. Bathing helps the bowels, the stomach, and the li ver, giving health and energy to each, and it promotes digestion.  {MH 276.2}

It is important also that the clothing be kept clean. The garments worn absorb the waste matter that passes off through the pores; if they are not frequently changed and washed, the impurities will be reabsorbed. {MH 276.3}

Every form of uncleanliness tends to disease. Death-producing germs abound in dark, neglected corners, in decaying refuse, in dampness and mold and must. No waste vegetables or heaps of fallen leaves should be allowed to remain near the house to decay and poison the air. Nothing unclean or decaying should be tolerated within the home. In towns or cities regarded perfectly healthful, many an epidemic of fever has been traced to decaying matter about the dwelling of some careless householder.  {MH 276.4}

Perfect cleanliness, plenty of sunlight, careful attention to sanitation in every detail of the home life, are essential to freedom from disease and to the cheerfulness and vigor of the inmates of the home.  {MH 276.5}

 

Chap. 23 – Diet and Health

Our bodies are built up from the food we eat. There is a constant breaking down of the tissues of the body; every movement of every organ involves waste, and this waste is repaired from our food. Each organ of the body requires its share of nutrition. The brain must be supplied with its portion; the bones, muscles, and nerves demand theirs. It is a wonderful process that transforms the food into blood and uses this blood to build up the varied parts of the body; but this process is going on continually, supplying with life and strength each nerve, muscle, and tissue.  {MH 295.1}

Selection of Food

Those foods should be chosen that best supply the elements needed for building up the body. In this choice, appetite is not a safe guide. Through wrong habits of eating, the appetite has become perverted. Often it demands food that impairs health and causes weakness instead of strength. We cannot safely be guided by the customs of society. The disease and suffering that everywhere prevail are largely due to popular errors in regard to diet.  {MH 295.2}

In order to know what are the best foods, we must study God’s original plan for man’s diet. He who created man

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and who understands his needs appointed Adam his food. “Behold,” He said, “I have given you every herb yielding seed, . . . and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for food.” Genesis 1:29, A.R.V. Upon leaving Eden to gain his livelihood by tilling the earth under the curse of sin, man received permission to eat also “the herb of the field.” Genesis 3:18. {MH 295.3}

Grains, fruits, nuts, and vegetables constitute the diet chosen for us by our Creator. These foods, prepared in as simple and natural a manner as possible, are the most healthful and nourishing. They impart a strength, a power of endurance, and a vigor of intellect that are not afforded by a more complex and stimulating diet.  {MH 296.1}

But not all foods wholesome in themselves are equally suited to our needs under all circumstances. Care should be

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taken in the selection of food. Our diet should be suited to the season, to the climate in which we live, and to the occupation we follow. Some foods that are adapted for use at one season or in one climate are not suited to another. So there are different foods best suited for persons in different occupations. Often food that can be used with benefit by those engaged in hard physical labor is unsuitable for persons of sedentary pursuits or intense mental application. God has given us an ample variety of healthful foods, and each person should choose from it the things that experience and sound judgment prove to be best suited to his own necessities.  {MH 296.2}

Nature’s abundant supply of fruits, nuts, and grains is ample, and year by year the products of all lands are more generally distributed to all, by the increased facilities for transportation. As a result many articles of food which a few years ago were regarded as expensive luxuries are now within the reach of all as foods for everyday use. This is especially the case with dried and canned fruits. {MH 297.1}

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Nuts and nut foods are coming largely into use to take the place of flesh meats. With nuts may be combined grains, fruits, and some roots, to make foods that are healthful and nourishing. Care should be taken, however, not to use too large a proportio n of nuts. Those who realize ill effects from the use of nut foods may find the difficulty removed by attending to this precaution. It should be remembered, too, that some nuts are not so wholesome as others. Almonds are preferable to peanuts, but peanuts in limited quantities, used in connection with grains, are nourishing and digestible.  {MH 298.1}

When properly prepared, olives, like nuts, supply the place of butter and flesh meats. The oil, as eaten in the olive, is far preferable to animal oil or fat. It serves as a laxative. Its use will be found beneficial to consumptives, and it is healing to an inflamed, irritated stomach. {MH 298.2}

Persons who have accustomed themselves to a rich, highly stimulating diet have an unnatural taste, and they cannot at once relish food that is plain and simple. It will take time for the taste to become natural and for the stomach to recover from the abuse it has suffered. But those who persevere in the use of wholesome food will, after a time, find it palatable. Its delicate and delicious flavors will be appreciated, and it will be eaten with greater enjoyment than can be derived from unwholesome dainties. And the stomach, in a healthy

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condition, neither fevered nor overtaxed, can readily perform its task.  {MH 298.3}

In order to maintain health, a sufficient supply of good, nourishing food is needed. {MH 299.1}

If we plan wisely, that which is most conducive to health can be secured in almost every land. The various preparations of rice, wheat, corn, and oats are sent abroad everywhere, also beans, peas, and lentils. These, with native or imported fruits, an d the variety of vegetables that grow in each locality, give an opportunity to select a dietary that is complete without the use of flesh meats.  {MH 299.2}

Wherever fruit can be grown in abundance, a liberal supply should be prepared for winter, by canning or drying. Small fruits, such as currants, gooseberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries, can be grown to advantage in many places where they are but little used and their cultivation is neglected.  {MH 299.3}

For household canning, glass, rather than tin cans, should be used whenever possible. It is especially necessary that the fruit for canning should be in good condition. Use little sugar, and cook the fruit only long enough to ensure its preservation. Thus prepared, it is an excellent substitute for fresh fruit.  {MH 299.4}

Wherever dried fruits, such as raisins, prunes, apples, pears, peaches, and apricots are obtainable at moderate prices, it will be found that they can be used as staple articles of diet much more freely than is customary, with the best results to the health and vigor of all classes of workers. {MH 299.5}

There should not be a great variety at any one meal, for this encourages overeating and causes indigestion. {MH 299.6}

It is not well to eat fruit and vegetables at the same meal. If the digestion is feeble, the use of both will often cause

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distress and inability to put forth mental effort. It is better to have the fruit at one meal and the vegetables at another.  {MH 299.7}

The meals should be varied. The same dishes, prepared in the same way, should not appear on the table meal after meal and day after day. The meals are eaten with greater relish, and the system is better nourished, when the food is varied.  {MH 300.1}

Preparation of Food

It is wrong to eat merely to gratify the appetite, but no indifference should be manifested regarding the quality of the food or the manner of its preparation. If the food eaten is not relished, the body will not be so well nourished. The food should be carefully chosen and prepared with intelligence and skill.  {MH 300.2}

For use in breadmaking, the superfine white flour is not the best. Its use is neither healthful nor economical. Fine-flour bread is lacking in nutritive elements to be found in bread made from the whole wheat. It is a frequent cause of constipation an d other unhealthful conditions. {MH 300.3}

The use of soda or baking powder in breadmaking is harmful and unnecessary. Soda causes inflammation of the stomach and often poisons the entire system. Many housewives

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think that they cannot make good bread without soda, but this is an error. If they would take the trouble to learn better methods, their bread would be more wholesome, and, to a natural taste, it would be more palatable.  {MH 300.4}

In the making of raised or yeast bread, milk should not be used in place of water. The use of milk is an additional expense, and it makes the bread much less wholesome. Milk bread does not keep sweet so long after baking as does that made with water, and it ferments more readily in the stomach.  {MH 301.1}

Bread should be light and sweet. Not the least taint of sourness should be tolerated. The loaves should be small and so thoroughly baked that, so far as possible, the yeast germs shall be destroyed. When hot or new, raised bread of any kind is difficu lt of digestion. It should never appear on the table. This rule does not, however, apply to unleavened bread. Fresh rolls made of wheaten meal without yeast or leaven, and baked in a well-heated oven, are both wholesome and palatable.  {MH 301.2}

Grains used for porridge or “mush” should have several hours’ cooking. But soft or liquid foods are less wholesome than dry foods, which require thorough mastication. Zwieback, or twice-baked bread, is one of the most easily digested and most palatabl e of foods. Let ordinary raised bread be cut in slices and dried in a warm oven till the last trace of moisture disappears. Then let it be browned slightly all the way through. In a dry place this bread can be kept much longer than ordinary bread, and, if reheated before using, it will be as fresh as when new.  {MH 301.3}

Far too much sugar is ordinarily used in food. Cakes, sweet puddings, pastries, jellies, jams, are active causes of indigestion. Especially harmful are the custards and puddings in which milk, eggs, and sugar are the chief ingredients. The

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free use of milk and sugar taken together should be avoided.  {MH 301.4}

If milk is used, it should be thoroughly sterilized; with this precaution, there is less danger of contracting disease from its use. Butter is less harmful when eaten on cold bread than when used in cooking; but, as a rule, it is better to dispense wi th it altogether. Cheese is still more objectionable; it is wholly unfit for food.  {MH 302.1}

Scanty, ill-cooked food depraves the blood by weakening the blood-making organs. It deranges the system and brings on disease, with its accompaniment of irritable nerves and bad tempers. The victims of poor cookery are numbered by thousands and tens of thousands. Over many graves might be written: “Died because of poor cooking;” “Died of an abused stomach.” {MH 302.2}

It is a sacred duty for those who cook to learn how to prepare healthful food. Many souls are lost as the result of poor cookery. It takes thought and care to make good bread; but there is more religion in a loaf of good bread than many think. There a re few really good cooks. Young women think that it is menial to cook and do other kinds of housework, and for this reason many girls who marry and have the care of families have little idea of the duties devolving upon a wife and mother.  {MH 302.3}

Cooking is no mean science, and it is one of the most essential in practical life. It is a science that all women should

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learn, and it should be taught in a way to benefit the poorer classes. To make food appetizing and at the same time simple and nourishing, requires skill; but it can be done. Cooks should know how to prepare simple food in a simple and healthful manner, and so that it will be found more palatable, as well as more wholesome, because of its simplicity. {MH 302.4}

Every woman who is at the head of a family and yet does not understand the art of healthful cookery should determine to learn that which is so essential to the well-being of her household. In many places hygienic cooking schools afford opportunity for instruction in this line. She who has not the help of such facilities should put herself under the instruction of some good cook and persevere in her efforts for improvement until she is mistress of the culinary art.  {MH 303.1}

Regularity in eating is of vital importance. There should be a specified time for each meal. At this time let everyone eat what the system requires and then take nothing more until the next meal. There are many who eat when the system needs no food, a t irregular intervals, and between meals, because they have not sufficient strength of will to resist inclination. When traveling, some are constantly nibbling if anything eatable is within their reach. This is very injurious. If travelers would eat regularly of food that is simple and nutritious, they would not feel so great weariness nor suffer so much from sickness. {MH 303.2}

Another pernicious habit is that of eating just before bedtime. The regular meals may have been taken; but because there is a sense of faintness, more food is eaten. By indulgence this wrong practice becomes a habit and often so firmly fixed that it is thought impossible to sleep without food. As a result of eating late suppers, the digestive process is continued through the sleeping hours. But though the stomach works constantly, its work is not properly accomplished. The sleep

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is often disturbed with unpleasant dreams, and in the morning the person awakes unrefreshed and with little relish for breakfast. When we lie down to rest, the stomach should have its work all done, that it, as well as the other organs of the body, may enjoy rest. For persons of sedentary habits, late suppers are particularly harmful. With them the disturbance created is often the beginning of disease that ends in death.  {MH 303.3}

In many cases the faintness that leads to a desire for food is felt because the digestive organs have been too severely taxed during the day. After disposing of one meal, the digestive organs need rest. At least five or six hours should intervene between the meals, and most persons who give the plan a trial will find that two meals a day are better than three. {MH 304.1}

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Wrong Conditions of Eating

Food should not be eaten very hot or very cold. If food is cold, the vital force of the stomach is drawn upon in order to warm it before digestion can take place. Cold drinks are injurious for the same reason; while the free use of hot drinks is debilitating. In fact, the more liquid there is taken with the meals, the more difficult it is for the food to digest; for the liquid must be absorbed before digestion can begin. Do not eat largely of salt, avoid the use of pickles and spiced foods, eat an abundance of fruit, and the irritation that calls for so much drink at mealtime will largely disappear.  {MH 305.1}

Food should be eaten slowly and should be thoroughly masticated. This is necessary in order that the saliva may be properly mixed with the food and the digestive fluids be called into action.  {MH 305.2}

Another serious evil is eating at improper times, as after violent or excessive exercise, when one is much exhausted or

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heated. Immediately after eating there is a strong draft upon the nervous energies; and when mind or body is heavily taxed just before or just after eating, digestion is hindered. When one is excited, anxious, or hurried, it is better not to eat until rest or relief is found. {MH 305.3}

The stomach is closely related to the brain; and when the stomach is diseased, the nerve power is called from the brain to the aid of the weakened digestive organs. When these demands are too frequent, the brain becomes congested. When the brain is constantly taxed, and there is lack of physical exercise, even plain food should be eaten sparingly. At mealtime cast off care and anxious thought; do not feel hurried, but eat slowly and with cheerfulness, with your heart filled with gratitude to God for all His blessings. {MH 306.1}

Many who discard flesh meats and other gross and injurious articles think that because their food is simple and wholesome they may indulge appetite without restraint, and they eat to excess, sometimes to gluttony. This is an error. The digestive organs should not be burdened with a quantity or quality of food which it will tax the system to appropriate. {MH 306.2}

Custom has decreed that the food shall be placed upon the table in courses. Not knowing what is coming next, one may eat a sufficiency of food which perhaps is not the best suited to him. When the last course is brought on, he often ventures to overstep the bounds, and take the tempting dessert, which, however, proves anything but good for him. If all the food intended for a meal is placed on the table at the beginning, one has opportunity to make the best choice.  {MH 306.3}

Sometimes the result of overeating is felt at once. In other cases there is no sensation of pain; but the digestive organs lose their vital force, and the foundation of physical strength is undermined. {MH 306.4}

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The surplus food burdens the system and produces morbid, feverish conditions. It calls an undue amount of blood to the stomach, causing the limbs and extremities to chill quickly. It lays a heavy tax on the digestive organs, and when these organs have accomplished their task, there is a feeling of faintness or languor. Some who are continually overeating call this all-gone feeling hunger; but it is caused by the over-worked condition of the digestive organs. At times there is numbness of the brain, with disinclination to mental or physical effort.  {MH 307.1}

These unpleasant symptoms are felt because nature has accomplished her work at an unnecessary outlay of vital force and is thoroughly exhausted. The stomach is saying, “Give me rest.” But with many the faintness is interpreted as a demand for more food; so instead of giving the stomach rest, another burden is placed upon it. As a consequence the digestive organs are often worn out when they should be capable of doing good work. {MH 307.2}

We should not provide for the Sabbath a more liberal supply or a greater variety of food than for other days. Instead of this the food should be more simple, and less should be eaten in order that the mind may be clear and vigorous to comprehend spiritual things. A clogged stomach means a clogged brain. The most precious words may be heard and not appreciated because the mind is confused by an improper diet. By overeating on the Sabbath, many do more than they think to unfit themselves for receiving the benefit of its sacred opportunities. {MH 307.3}

Cooking on the Sabbath should be avoided; but it is not therefore necessary to eat cold food. In cold weather the food prepared the day before should be heated. And let the meals, however simple, be palatable and attractive. Especially in

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families where there are children, it is well, on the Sabbath, to provide something that will be regarded as a treat, something the family do not have every day.  {MH 307.4}

Where wrong habits of diet have been indulged, there should be no delay in reform. When dyspepsia has resulted from abuse of the stomach, efforts should be made carefully to preserve the remaining strength of the vital forces by removing every overtaxing burden. The stomach may never entirely recover health after long abuse; but a proper course of diet will save further debility, and many will recover more or less fully. It is not easy to prescribe rules that will meet every case; but, with attention t o right principles in eating, great reforms may be made, and the cook need not be continually toiling to tempt the appetite. {MH 308.1}

Abstemiousness in diet is rewarded with mental and moral vigor; it also aids in the control of the passions. Overeating is especially harmful to those who are sluggish in temperament; these should eat sparingly and take plenty of physical exercise. Th ere are men and women of excellent natural ability who do

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not accomplish half what they might if they would exercise self-control in the denial of appetite. {MH 308.2}

Many writers and speakers fail here. After eating heartily, they give themselves to sedentary occupations, reading, study, or writing, allowing no time for physical exercise. As a consequence the free flow of thought and words is checked. They cannot write or speak with the force and intensity necessary in order to reach the heart; their efforts are tame and fruitless. {MH 309.1}

Those upon whom rest important responsibilities, those, above all, who are guardians of spiritual interests, should be men of keen feeling and quick perception. More than others, they need to be temperate in eating. Rich and luxurious food should have no place upon their tables.  {MH 309.2}

Every day men in positions of trust have decisions to make upon which depend results of great importance. Often they have to think rapidly, and this can be done successfully by those only who practice strict temperance. The mind strengthens under the correct treatment of the physical and mental powers. If the strain is not too great, new vigor comes with every taxation. But often the work of those who have

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important plans to consider and important decisions to make is affected for evil by the results of improper diet. A disordered stomach produces a disordered, uncertain state of mind. Often it causes irritability, harshness, or injustice. Many a plan that would have been a blessing to the world has been set aside, many unjust, oppressive, even cruel measures have been carried, as the result of diseased conditions due to wrong habits of eating. {MH 309.3}

Here is a suggestion for all whose work is sedentary or chiefly mental; let those who have sufficient moral courage and self-control try it: At each meal take only two or three kinds of simple food, and eat no more than is required to satisfy hunger. Take active exercise every day, and see if you do not receive benefit.  {MH 310.1}

Strong men who are engaged in active physical labor are not compelled to be as careful as to the quantity or quality of their food as are persons of sedentary habits; but even these would have better health if they would practice self-control in eatin g and drinking. {MH 310.2}

Some wish that an exact rule could be prescribed for their diet. They overeat, and then regret it, and so they keep thinking about what they eat and drink. This is not as it should be. One person cannot lay down an exact rule for another. Everyone sho uld exercise reason and self-control, and should act from principle.  {MH 310.3}

Our bodies are Christ’s purchased possession, and we are not at liberty to do with them as we please. All who understand the laws of health should realize their obligation to obey these laws which God has established in their being. Obedience to the l aws of health is to be made a matter of personal duty. We ourselves must suffer the results of violated law. We must individually answer to God for our habits and practices. Therefore the question with us is not, “What is the world’s practice?” but, “How s hall I as an individual treat the habitation that God has given me?”  {MH 310.4}

 

Chap. 25 – Extremes in Diet

Not all who profess to believe in dietetic reform are really reformers. With many persons the reform consists merely in discarding certain unwholesome foods. They do not understand clearly the principles of health, and their tables, still loaded with harmful dainties, are far from being an example of Christian temperance and moderation.  {MH 318.1}

Another class, in their desire to set a right example, go to the opposite extreme. Some are unable to obtain the most desirable foods, and, instead of using such things as would best supply the lack, they adopt an impoverished diet. Their food does no t supply the elements needed to make good blood. Their health suffers, their usefulness is impaired, and their example tells against, rather than in favor of, reform in diet.  {MH 318.2}

Others think that since health requires a simple diet, there need be little care in the selection or the preparation of food. Some restrict themselves to a very meager diet, not having sufficient variety to supply the needs of the system, and they suf fer in consequence. {MH 318.3}

Those who have but a partial understanding of the principles of reform are often the most rigid, not only in carrying out their views themselves, but in urging them on their families

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and their neighbors. The effect of their mistaken reforms, as seen in their own ill-health, and their efforts to force their views upon others, give many a false idea of dietetic reform, and lead them to reject it altogether.  {MH 318.4}

Those who understand the laws of health and who are governed by principle, will shun the extremes, both of indulgence and of restriction. Their diet is chosen, not for the mere gratification of appetite, but for the upbuilding of the body. They seek t o preserve every power in the best condition for highest service to God and man. The appetite is under the control of reason and conscience, and they are rewarded with health of body and mind. While they do not urge their views offensively upon others, their example is a testimony in favor of right principles. These persons have a wide influence for good. {MH 319.1}

There is real common sense in dietetic reform. The subject should be studied broadly and deeply, and no one should criticize others because their practice is not, in all things, in harmony with his own. It is impossible to make an unvarying rule to regulate everyone’s habits, and no one should think

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himself a criterion for all. Not all can eat the same things. Foods that are palatable and wholesome to one person may be distasteful, and even harmful, to another. Some cannot use milk, while others thrive on it. Some persons cannot digest peas and beans; others find them wholesome. For some the coarser grain preparations are good food, while others cannot use them.  {MH 319.2}

Those who live in new countries or in poverty-stricken districts, where fruits and nuts are scarce, should not be urged to exclude milk and eggs from their dietary. It is true that persons in full flesh and in whom the animal passions are strong need to avoid the use of stimulating foods. Especially in families of children who are given to sensual habits, eggs should not be used. But in the case of persons whose blood-making organs are feeble,–especially if other foods to supply the needed elements ca nnot be obtained,–milk and eggs should not be wholly discarded. Great care should be taken, however, to obtain milk from healthy cows, and eggs from healthy fowls, that are well fed and well cared for; and the eggs should be so cooked as to be most easily digested. {MH 320.1}

The diet reform should be progressive. As disease in animals increases, the use of milk and eggs will become more and more unsafe. An effort should be made to supply their

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place with other things that are healthful and inexpensive. The people everywhere should be taught how to cook without milk and eggs, so far as possible, and yet have their food wholesome and palatable. {MH 320.2}

The practice of eating but two meals a day is generally found a benefit to health; yet under some circumstances persons may require a third meal. This should, however, if taken at all, be very light, and of food most easily digested. “Crackers”–the E nglish biscuit–or zwieback, and fruit, or cereal coffee, are the foods best suited for the evening meal. {MH 321.1}

Some are continually anxious lest their food, however simple and healthful, may hurt them. To these let me say, Do not think that your food will injure you; do not think about it at all. Eat according to your best judgment; and when you have asked the Lord to bless the food for the strengthening of your body, believe that He hears your prayer, and be at rest.  {MH 321.2}

Because principle requires us to discard those things that irritate the stomach and impair health, we should remember that an impoverished diet produces poverty of the blood. Cases of disease most difficult to cure result from this cause. The system i s not sufficiently nourished, and dyspepsia and general debility are the result. Those who use such a diet are

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not always compelled by poverty to do so, but they choose it through ignorance or negligence, or to carry out their erroneous ideas of reform.  {MH 321.3}

God is not honored when the body is neglected or abused and is thus unfitted for His service. To care for the body by providing for it food that is relishable and strengthening is one of the first duties of the householder. It is far better to have le ss expensive clothing and furniture than to stint the supply of food.  {MH 322.1}

Some householders stint the family table in order to provide expensive entertainment for visitors. This is unwise. In the entertainment of guests there should be greater simplicity. Let the needs of the family have first attention.  {MH 322.2}

Unwise economy and artificial customs often prevent the exercise of hospitality where it is needed and would be a blessing. The regular supply of food for our tables should be such that the unexpected guest can be made welcome without

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burdening the housewife to make extra preparation. {MH 322.3}

All should learn what to eat and how to cook it. Men, as well as women, need to understand the simple, healthful preparation of food. Their business often calls them where they cannot obtain wholesome food; then, if they have a knowledge of cookery, they can use it to good purpose. {MH 323.1}

Carefully consider your diet. Study from cause to effect. Cultivate self-control. Keep appetite under the control of reason. Never abuse the stomach by overeating, but do not deprive yourself of the wholesome, palatable food that health demands.  {MH 323.2}

The narrow ideas of some would-be health reformers have been a great injury to the cause of hygiene. Hygienists should remember that dietetic reform will be judged, to a great degree, by the provision they make for their tables; and instead of taking a course that will bring discredit upon it, they should so exemplify its principles as to commend them to candid minds. There is a large class who will oppose any reform movement, however reasonable, if it places a restriction on the appetite. They consult taste instead of reason or the laws of health. By this class, all who leave the beaten track of custom and advocate reform will be accounted radical, no matter how consistent their course. That these persons

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may have no ground for criticism, hygienists should not try to see how different they can be from others, but should come as near to them as possible without the sacrifice of principle. {MH 323.3}

When those who advocate hygienic reform go to extremes, it is no wonder that many who regard these persons as representing health principles reject the reform altogether. These extremes frequently do more harm in a short time than could be undone by a lifetime of consistent living.  {MH 324.1}

Hygienic reform is based upon principles that are broad and far-reaching, and we should not belittle it by narrow views and practices. But no one should permit opposition or ridicule, or a desire to please or influence others, to turn him from true principles, or cause him lightly to regard them. Those who are governed by principle will be firm and decided in standing for the right; yet in all their associations they will manifest a generous, Christlike spirit and true moderation. {MH 324.2}

 

Chap. 29 – The Builders of the Home

He who gave Eve to Adam as a helpmeet, performed His first miracle at a marriage festival. In the festal hall where friends and kindred rejoiced together, Christ began His public ministry. Thus He sanctioned marriage, recognizing it as an institution that He Himself had established. He ordained that men and women should be united in holy wedlock, to rear families whose members, crowned with honor, should be recognized as members of the family above.  {MH 356.1}

Christ honored the marriage relation by making it also a symbol of the union between Him and His redeemed ones. He Himself is the Bridegroom; the bride is the church, of which, as His chosen one, He says, “Thou art all fair, My love; there is no spot in thee.” Song of Solomon 4:7. {MH 356.2}

Christ “loved the church, and gave Himself for it; that He might sanctify and cleanse it; . . .  that it should be holy and without blemish.” “So ought men to love their wives.” Ephesians 5:25-28. {MH 356.3}

The family tie is the closest, the most tender and sacred, of any on earth. It was designed to be a blessing to mankind. And it is a blessing wherever the marriage covenant is entered

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into intelligently, in the fear of God, and with due consideration for its responsibilities. {MH 356.4}

Those who are contemplating marriage should consider what will be the character and influence of the home they are founding. As they become parents, a sacred trust is committed to them. Upon them depends in a great measure the well-being of their children in this world, and their happiness in the world to come. To a great extent they determine both the physical and the moral stamp that the little ones receive. And upon the character of the home depends the condition of society; the weight of each famil y’s influence will tell in the upward or the downward scale.  {MH 357.1}

The choice of a life companion should be such as best to secure physical, mental, and spiritual well-being for parents and for their children–such as will enable both parents and

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children to bless their fellow men and to honor their Creator.  {MH 357.2}

Before assuming the responsibilities involved in marriage, young men and young women should have such an experience in practical life as will prepare them for its duties and its burdens. Early marriages are not to be encouraged. A relation so important as marriage and so far-reaching in its results should not be entered upon hastily, without sufficient preparation, and before the mental and physical powers are well developed. {MH 358.1}

The parties may not have worldly wealth, but they should have the far greater blessing of health. And in most cases there should not be a great disparity in age. A neglect of this rule may result in seriously impairing the health of the younger. And o ften the children are robbed of physical and mental strength. They cannot receive from an aged parent the care and companionship which their young lives demand, and they may be deprived by death of the father or the mother at the very time when love and guidance are most needed. {MH 358.2}

It is only in Christ that a marriage alliance can be safely formed. Human love should draw its closest bonds from divine love. Only where Christ reigns can there be deep, true, unselfish affection. {MH 358.3}

Love is a precious gift, which we receive from Jesus. Pure and holy affection is not a feeling, but a principle. Those who are actuated by true love are neither unreasonable nor blind. Taught by the Holy Spirit, they love God supremely, and their neighbor as themselves. {MH 358.4}

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Let those who are contemplating marriage weigh every sentiment and watch every development of character in the one with whom they think to unite their life destiny. Let every step toward a marriage alliance be characterized by modesty, simplicity, sincerity, and an earnest purpose to please and honor God. Marriage affects the afterlife both in this world and in the world to come. A sincere Christian will make no plans that God cannot approve. {MH 359.1}

If you are blessed with God-fearing parents, seek counsel of them. Open to them your hopes and plans, learn the lessons which their life experiences have taught, and you will be saved many a heartache. Above all, make Christ your counselor. Study His word with prayer. {MH 359.2}

Under such guidance let a young woman accept as a life companion only one who possesses pure, manly traits of character, one who is diligent, aspiring, and honest, one who loves and fears God. Let a young man seek one to stand by his side who is fitted to bear her share of life’s burdens, one whose influence will ennoble and refine him, and who will make him happy in her love.  {MH 359.3}

“A prudent wife is from the Lord.” “The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her. . . . She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” “She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her,” saying, “Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.” He who gains such a wife “findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favor of the Lord.” Proverbs 19:14; 31:11, 12, 26-29; 18:22. {MH 359.4}

However carefully and wisely marriage may have been entered into, few couples are completely united when the

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marriage ceremony is performed. The real union of the two in wedlock is the work of the after years. {MH 359.5}

As life with its burden of perplexity and care meets the newly wedded pair, the romance with which imagination so often invests marriage disappears. Husband and wife learn each other’s character as it was impossible to learn it in their previous association. This is a most critical period in their experience. The happiness and usefulness of their whole future life depend upon their taking a right course now. Often they discern in each other unsuspected weaknesses and defects; but the hearts that love has united will discern excellencies also heretofore unknown. Let all seek to discover the excellencies rather than the defects. Often it is our own attitude, the atmosphere that surrounds ourselves, which determines what will be revealed to us in another. There are many who regard the expression of love as a weakness, and they maintain a reserve that repels others. This spirit checks the current of sympathy. As the social and generous impulses are repressed, they wither, and the heart becomes desolate and cold. We should beware of this error. Love cannot long exist without expression. Let not the heart of one connected with you starve for the want of kindness and sympathy. {MH 360.1}

Though difficulties, perplexities, and discouragements may arise, let neither husband nor wife harbor the thought that their union is a mistake or a disappointment. Determine to be all that it is possible to be to each other. Continue the early attent ions. In every way encourage each other in fighting the battles of life. Study to advance the happiness of each other. Let there be mutual love, mutual forbearance. Then marriage, instead of being the end of love, will be as it were the very beginning of love. The warmth of true friendship, the love that binds heart to heart, is a foretaste of the joys of heaven. {MH 360.2}

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Around every family there is a sacred circle that should be kept unbroken. Within this circle no other person has a right to come. Let not the husband or the wife permit another to share the confidences that belong solely to themselves.  {MH 361.1}

Let each give love rather than exact it. Cultivate that which is noblest in yourselves, and be quick to recognize the good qualities in each other. The consciousness of being appreciated is a wonderful stimulus and satisfaction. Sympathy and respect encourage the striving after excellence, and love itself increases as it stimulates to nobler aims. {MH 361.2}

Neither the husband nor the wife should merge his or her individuality in that of the other. Each has a personal relation to God. Of Him each is to ask, “What is right?” “What is wrong?” “How may I best fulfill life’s purpose?” Let the wealth of your affection flow forth to Him who gave His life for you. Make Christ first and last and best in everything. As your love for Him becomes deeper and stronger, your love for each other will be purified and strengthened. {MH 361.3}

The spirit that Christ manifests toward us is the spirit that husband and wife are to manifest toward each other. “As Christ also hath loved us,” “walk in love.” “As the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it.” Ephesians 5:2, 24, 25. {MH 361.4}

Neither the husband nor the wife should attempt to exercise over the other an arbitrary control. Do not try to compel each other to yield to your wishes. You cannot do this and retain each other’s love. Be kind, patient, and forbearing, considerate, a nd courteous. By the grace of God you can succeed in making each other happy, as in your marriage vow you promised to do. {MH 361.5}

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Happiness in Unselfish Service

But remember that happiness will not be found in shutting yourselves up to yourselves, satisfied to pour out all your affection upon each other. Seize upon every opportunity for contributing to the happiness of those around you. Remember that true joy can be found only in unselfish service.  {MH 362.1}

Forbearance and unselfishness mark the words and acts of all who live the new life in Christ. As you seek to live His life, striving to conquer self and selfishness and to minister to the needs of others, you will gain victory after victory. Thus your influence will bless the world. {MH 362.2}

Men and women can reach God’s ideal for them if they will take Christ as their helper. What human wisdom cannot do, His grace will accomplish for those who give themselves to Him in loving trust. His providence can unite hearts in bonds that are of heavenly origin. Love will not be a mere exchange of soft and flattering words. The loom of heaven weaves with warp and woof finer, yet more firm, than can be woven by the looms of earth. The result is not a tissue fabric, but a texture that will bear wear a nd test and trial. Heart will be bound to heart in the golden bonds of a love that is enduring.

 

Better than gold is a peaceful home, Where all the fireside charities come;

The shrine of love and the heaven of life, Hallowed by mother, or sister, or wife. However humble the home may be,

Or tried with sorrows by heaven’s decree,

The blessings that never were bought or sold, And center there, are better than gold.

Anon.  {MH 362.3}

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