Created in Perfection and Beauty .--Man came from the hand of his Creator perfect in organization and beautiful in form.-- Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, page 7.
Man was the crowning act of the creation of God, made in the image of God, and designed to be a counterpart of God. -- Review and Herald, June 18, 1895.
Adam was a noble being, with a powerful mind, a will in harmony with the will of God, and affections that centered upon heaven. He possessed a body heir to no disease, and a soul bearing the impress of Deity.-- The Youth's Instructor, March 5, 1903.
He stood before God in the strength of perfect manhood. All the organs and faculties of his being were equally developed, and harmoniously balanced.-- Redemption; or the Temptation of Christ, page 30.
God's Pledge to Maintain the Body's Healthful Action .-- The Creator of man has arranged the living machinery of our bodies. Every function is wonderfully and wisely made. And God pledged Himself to keep this human machinery in healthful action if the human agent will obey His laws and co-operate with God.-- Counsels on Diet and Foods, page 17.
Responsibility to Heed Nature's Laws .--A healthy experience demands growth, and growth demands that careful
attention be paid to the laws of nature, that the organs of the body may be kept in a sound state, untrammeled in their action.--Manuscript 47, 1896.
God Appointed the Inclinations and Appetites .--Our natural inclinations and appetites . . . were divinely appointed, and when given to man, were pure and holy. It was God's design that reason should rule the appetites, and that they should minister to our happiness. And when they are regulated and controlled by a sanctified reason, they are holiness unto the Lord.--Manuscript 47, 1896.
Satan gathered the fallen angels together to devise some way of doing the most possible evil to the human family. One proposition after another was made, till finally Satan himself thought of a plan. He would take the fruit of the vine, also wheat, and other things given by God as food, and would convert them into poisons, which would ruin man's physical, mental, and moral powers, and so overcome the senses that Satan should have full control. Under the influence of liquor, men would be led to commit crimes of all kinds. Through perverted appetite the world would be made corrupt. By leading men to drink alcohol, Satan would cause them to descend lower and lower in the scale.
Satan has succeeded in turning the world from God. The blessings provided in God's love and mercy he has turned into a deadly curse. He has filled men with a craving for liquor and tobacco. This appetite, which has no foundation in nature, has destroyed its millions.-- Review and Herald, April 16, 1901.
The Secret of the Enemy's Strategy .--Intemperance of any kind benumbs the perceptive organs and so weakens the brain-nerve power that eternal things are not appreciated, but placed upon a level with the common. The higher powers of the
mind, designed for elevated purposes, are brought into slavery to the baser passions. If our physical habits are not right, our mental and moral powers cannot be strong; for great sympathy exists between the physical and the moral.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, pp. 50, 51.
The brain nerves which communicate with the entire system are the only medium through which Heaven can communicate to man and affect his inmost life. Whatever disturbs the circulation of the electric currents in the nervous system lessens the strength of the vital powers, and the result is a deadening of the sensibilities of the mind.-- Testimonies, vol. 2, p. 347.
Satan is constantly on the alert to bring the race fully under his control. His strongest hold on man is through the appetite, and this he seeks to stimulate in every possible way.-- Counsels on Diet and Foods, page 150.
Satan's Scheme to Wreck the Plan of Salvation .--Satan had been at war with the government of God, since he first rebelled. His success in tempting Adam and Eve in Eden, and introducing sin into the world, had emboldened this arch foe; and he had proudly boasted to the heavenly angels that when Christ should appear, taking man's nature, He would be weaker than himself, and that he would overcome Him by his power.
He exulted that Adam and Eve in Eden could not resist his insinuations when he appealed to their appetite. The inhabitants of the old world he overcame in the same manner, through the indulgence of lustful appetite and corrupt passions. Through the gratification of appetite, he had overthrown the Israelites.
He boasted that the Son of God Himself, who was with Moses and Joshua, was not able to resist his power, and lead the favored people of His choice to Canaan; for nearly all who left Egypt died in the wilderness; also, that he had tempted
the meek man, Moses, to take to himself glory which God claimed. David and Solomon, who had been especially favored of God, he had induced, through the indulgence of appetite and passion, to incur God's displeasure. And he boasted that he could yet succeed in thwarting the purpose of God in the salvation of man through Jesus Christ.-- Redemption; or the Temptation of Christ, page 32.
His Most Effective Temptation Today .--Satan comes to man, as he came to Christ, with his overpowering temptations to indulge appetite. He well knows his power to overcome man upon this point. He overcame Adam and Eve in Eden upon appetite, and they lost their blissful home. What accumulated misery and crime have filled our world in consequence of the fall of Adam. Entire cities have been blotted from the face of the earth because of the debasing crimes and revolting iniquity that made them a blot upon the universe. Indulgence of appetite was the foundation of all their sins.
Through appetite, Satan controlled the mind and being. Thousands who might have lived, have prematurely passed into their graves, physical, mental, and moral wrecks. They had good powers, but they sacrificed all to indulgence of appetite, which led them to lay the reins upon the neck of lust.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, pp. 561, 562.
Satan Triumphs at His Ruinous Work .--Satan exults to see the human family plunging themselves deeper, and deeper, into suffering and misery. He knows that persons who have wrong habits, and unsound bodies, cannot serve God so earnestly, perseveringly, and purely as though sound. A diseased body affects the brain. With the mind we serve the Lord. The head is the capital of the body. . . . Satan triumphs in the ruinous work he causes by leading the human family to indulge in habits which destroy themselves, and one another; for by this means he is robbing God of the service due Him. -- Spiritual Gifts, vol. p. 146.
3. Impairment Through Indulged Appetite
The Food We Eat and the Lives We Live .--Indulgence of appetite is the greatest cause of physical and mental debility, and lies at the foundation of the feebleness which is apparent everywhere.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 487.
Our physical health is maintained by that which we eat; if our appetites are not under the control of a sanctified mind, if we are not temperate in all our eating and drinking, we shall not be in a state of mental and physical soundness to study the word with a purpose to learn what saith the Scripture --what shall I do to inherit eternal life? Any unhealthful habit will produce an unhealthful condition in the system, and the delicate, living machinery of the stomach will be injured, and will not be able to do its work properly. The diet has much to do with the disposition to enter into temptation and commit sin.-- Counsels on Diet and Foods, page 52.
Adam and Eve Failed Here .--Through the temptation to indulge appetite, Adam and Eve first fell from their high, holy, and happy estate. And it is through the same temptation that the race have become enfeebled. They have permitted appetite and passion to take the throne, and to bring into subjection reason and intellect.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 139.
Their Children Have Followed On .--Eve was intemperate in her desires when she put forth the hand to take of the fruit-forbidden tree. Self-gratification has reigned almost supreme in the hearts of men and women since the Fall. Especially has the appetite been indulged, and they have been controlled by it, instead of reason. For the sake of gratifying the taste, Eve transgressed the command of God. He had given her everything her wants required, yet she was not satisfied.
Ever since, her fallen sons and daughters have followed the desires of their eyes, and of their taste. They have, like Eve, disregarded the prohibitions God has made, and have followed
in a course of disobedience, and, like Eve, have flattered themselves that the consequence would not be as fearful as had been apprehended.-- How to Live, page 51.
Sin Made Attractive .--Sin is made attractive by the covering of light which Satan throws over it, and he is well pleased when he can hold the Christian world in their daily habits under the tyranny of custom, like the heathen, and allow appetite to govern them.-- Signs of the Times, Aug. 13, 1874.
Satan Gains Control of the Will .--Satan knows that he cannot overcome man unless he can control his will. He can do this by deceiving man so that he will co-operate with him in transgressing the laws of nature in eating and drinking, which is transgression of the law of God.--Manuscript 3, 1897.
Every Function Enfeebled .--Many groan under a burden of infirmities because of wrong habits of eating and drinking, which do violence to the laws of life and health. They are enfeebling their digestive organs by indulging perverted appetite. The power of the human constitution to resist the abuses put upon it is wonderful; but persistent wrong habits in excessive eating and drinking will enfeeble every function of the body. In the gratification of perverted appetite and passion, even professed Christians cripple nature in her work, and lessen physical, mental, and moral power.-- The Sanctified Life, page 20.
Failure to Perfect Character .--The controlling power of appetite will prove the ruin of thousands, when, if they had conquered on this point, they would have moral power to gain victory over every other temptation of Satan. But slaves to appetite will fail in perfecting Christian character. The continual transgression of man for six thousand years has brought sickness, pain, and death, as its fruits.-- Health Reformer, August, 1875.
Death Preferred to Reform .-Many are so devoted to
intemperance that they will not change their course of indulging in gluttony under any considerations. They would sooner sacrifice health, and die prematurely, than to restrain their intemperate appetite.-- Spiritual Gifts, vol. 4, p. 130.
A Vicious Circle of Degradation .--The lower estimate men place upon their body, the less they desire to keep it pure and holy, the more reckless will they be in the indulgence of perverted appetite.--Manuscript 150, 1898.
The World Taken Captive .--Satan is taking the world captive through the use of liquor and tobacco, tea and coffee. The God-given mind, which should be kept clear, is perverted by the use of narcotics. The brain is no longer able to distinguish correctly. The enemy has control. Man has sold his reason for that which makes him mad. He has no sense of what is right. Evangelism, page 529.
The Results of Natural Law Violated .--Many marvel that the human race have so degenerated, physically, mentally, and morally. They do not understand that it is the violation of God's constitution and laws, and the violation of the laws of health, that has produced this sad degeneracy. The transgression of God's commandments has caused His prospering hand to be removed.
Intemperance in eating and in drinking, and the indulgence of base passions have benumbed the fine sensibilities. . . .
Those who permit themselves to become slaves to a gluttonous appetite, often go still further, and debase themselves by indulging their corrupt passions, which have become excited by intemperance in eating and in drinking. They give loose rein to their debasing passions, until health and intellect greatly suffer. The reasoning faculties are, in a great measure, destroyed by evil habits.-- Spiritual Gifts, vol. 4, pp. 124-131.
Let none who profess godliness regard with indifference the health of the body, and flatter themselves that intemperance
is no sin, and will not affect their spirituality. A close sympathy exists between the physical and the moral nature. The standard of virtue is elevated or degraded by the physical habits. . . . Any habit which does not promote healthful action in the human system degrades the higher and nobler faculties. Wrong habits of eating and drinking lead to errors in thought and action. Indulgence of appetite strengthens the animal propensities, giving them the ascendancy over the mental and spiritual powers.-- Review and Herald, Jan. 25, 1881.
Life Record Closed in Dissipation .--Many close their last precious hours of probationary time, in scenes of gaiety, feasting and amusement, where serious thoughts are not allowed to enter, where the spirit of Jesus would be unwelcome! Their last precious hours are passing while their minds are benumbed with tobacco and alcoholic liquors. There are not a few who pass directly from the dens of infamy to the sleep of death; they close their life record among the associations of dissipation and vice. What will the awakening be at the resurrection of the unjust!
The eye of the Lord is open upon every scene of debasing amusement and profane dissipation. The words and deeds of the pleasure lovers pass directly from these halls of vice to the book of final records. What is the life of this class worth to the world, except as a beacon of warning to those who will be warned, not to live like these men, and die as the fool dieth.-- Signs of the Times, Jan. 6, 1876.
The Christian Controls His Appetite .--No Christian will take into his system food or drink that will cloud his senses, or that will so act upon the nervous system as to cause him to degrade himself, or to unfit him for usefulness. The temple of God must not be defiled. The faculties of mind and body should be preserved in health, that they may used to glorify God.--Manuscript 126, 1903.
With Ceaseless Vigilance .--Men's natural appetites have been perverted by indulgence. Through unholy gratification they have become "fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." Unless the Christian watches unto prayer, he gives loose reign to habits which should be overcome. Unless he feels the need of constant watching, ceaseless vigilance, his inclinations, abused and misguided, will be the means of his backsliding from God.--Manuscript 47, 1896.
Indulged Appetite Inimical to Christian Perfection .--It is impossible for those who indulge the appetite to attain to Christian perfection.-- Testimonies, vol. 2, p. 400.
The Spirit of God cannot come to our help, and assist us in perfecting Christian characters, while we are indulging our appetites to the injury of health, and while the pride of life controls.-- Health Reformer, September, 1871.
True Sanctification .--It [sanctification] is not merely a theory, an emotion, or a form of words, but a living, active principle, entering into the everyday life. It requires that our habits of eating, drinking, and dressing be such as to secure the preservation of physical, mental, and moral health, that we may present to the Lord our bodies--not an offering corrupted by wrong habits, but--"a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God."-- Review and Herald, Jan. 25, 1881.
Fitted for Immortality .--If man will cherish the light that God in mercy gives him upon health reform, he may be sanctified through the truth and fitted for immortality. But if he disregards that light and lives in violation of natural law he must pay the penalty.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 162.
4. Importance of Christ's Victory Over Appetite
Christ's First Victory .--Christ knew that in order to successfully carry forward the plan of salvation He must commence the work of redeeming man just where the ruin
began. Adam fell on the point of appetite.-- Health Reformer, August, 1875.
His first test was on the same point where Adam failed. It was through temptations addressed to the appetite that Satan had overcome a large proportion of the human race, and his success had made him feel that the control of this fallen planet was in his hands. But in Christ he found one who was able to resist him, and he left the field of battle a conquered foe.-- Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, page 16.
Cause of His Anguish .--Many who profess godliness do not inquire into the reason of Christ's long period of fasting and suffering in the wilderness. His anguish was not so much from the pangs of hunger as from His sense of the fearful result of the indulgence of appetite and passion upon the race. He knew that appetite would be man's idol, and would lead him to forget God, and would stand directly in the way of his salvation.-- Redemption; or the Temptation of Christ, page 50.
Victory in Behalf of the Race .--Satan was defeated in his object to overcome Christ upon the point of appetite. And here in the wilderness Christ achieved a victory in behalf of the race upon the point of appetite, making it possible for man, in all future time in His name to overcome the strength of appetite on his own behalf.-- Redemption; or the Temptation of Christ, page 46.
We, Too, May Overcome .--Our only hope of regaining Eden is through firm self-control. If the power of indulged appetite was so strong upon the race, that, in order to break its hold, the divine Son of God, in man's behalf, had to endure a fast of nearly six weeks, what a work is before the Christian! Yet, however great the struggle, he may overcome. By the help of that divine power which withstood the fiercest
temptations that Satan could invent, he, too, may be entirely successful in his warfare with evil, and at last may wear the victor's crown in the kingdom of God.-- Counsels on Diet and Foods, page 167.
Victory Through Obedience and Continued Effort .--Those who overcome as Christ overcame will need to constantly guard themselves against the temptations of Satan. The appetite and passions should be restricted and under the control of enlightened conscience, that the intellect may be unimpaired, the perceptive powers clear, so that the workings of Satan and his snares may not be interpreted to be the providence of God. Many desire the final reward and victory which are to be given to overcomers, but are not willing to endure toil, privation, and denial of self, as did their Redeemer. It is only through obedience and continual effort that we shall overcome as Christ overcame.
The controlling power of appetite will prove the ruin of thousands, when, if they had conquered on this point, they would have had moral power to gain the victory over every other temptation of Satan. But those who are slaves to appetite will fail in perfecting Christian character. The continual transgression of man for six thousand years has brought sickness, pain, and death as its fruits. And as we near the close of time, Satan's temptation to indulge appetite will be more powerful and more difficult to overcome.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, pp. 491, 492.
Claim Christ's Overcoming Power .--Christ has power from His Father to give His divine grace and strength to man-- making it possible for him through His name, to overcome. There are but few professed followers of Christ who choose to engage with Him in the work of resisting Satan's temptation as He resisted, and overcome. . . .
All are personally exposed to the temptations that Christ overcame, but strength is provided for them in the all-powerful
name of the great Conqueror. And all must, for themselves, individually overcome.-- Signs of the Times, Aug. 13, 1874.
What Will We Do? --Shall we not draw near to the Lord, that He may save us from all intemperance in eating and drinking, from all unholy, lustful passion, all wickedness? Shall we not humble ourselves before God, putting away everything that corrupts the flesh and the spirit, that in His fear we may perfect holiness of character?-- Testimonies, vol. 7, p. 258.