Bible Study Guides – Four Successful Missionaries

November 21, 2015 – November 27, 2015

Key Text

“Now from among those [captives] of the sons of Judah were Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah.” Daniel 1:6 NKJV.

Study Help: Prophets and Kings, 479–490, 499–502, 510–513, 539–548.


“Among the children of Israel who were carried captive to Babylon at the beginning of the seventy years’ captivity were Christian patriots.” A Call to Stand Apart, 52.


  • What providential decision put King Nebuchadnezzar in contact with four Hebrew captives and, later, with their God? Daniel 1:3–5.
  • What were the names of the young men chosen for that purpose? Daniel 1:6. After being approved to take part in a three-year training course, how and why were their names changed? Verse 7.

Note: “The [Babylonish] king did not compel the Hebrew youth to renounce their faith in favor of idolatry, but he hoped to bring this about gradually. By giving them names significant of idolatry, by bringing them daily into close association with idolatrous customs, and under the influence of the seductive rites of heathen worship, he hoped to induce them to renounce the religion of their nation and to unite with the worship of the Babylonians.” Prophets and Kings, 481.

“When the enemy thrusts into our souls his subtle doubts and temptations, we are to close the door quickly, and dispel the influence of his suggestion, by repeating the Scripture.” The Review and Herald, August 7, 1888.


  • How did God help those young Hebrews to be a shining light among the heathen during their difficult circumstances? Daniel 1:17.

Note: “In the land of their captivity these men [the children of Israel] were to carry out God’s purpose by giving to heathen nations the blessings that come through a knowledge of Jehovah. They were to be His representatives.” Prophets and Kings, 479.

  • What was their decision in view of the temptation surrounding them? James 1:12.

Note: “[Daniel 1:8 quoted.]

“In reaching this decision, the Hebrew youth did not act presumptuously but in firm reliance upon God. They did not choose to be singular, but they would be so rather than dishonor God. Should they compromise with wrong in this instance by yielding to the pressure of circumstances, their departure from principle would weaken their sense of right and their abhorrence of wrong. The first wrong step would lead to others, until, their connection with Heaven severed, they would be swept away by temptation.” Prophets and Kings, 483.

  • How did God bless their faithful efforts? Daniel 1:19.

Note: “For three years the Hebrew youth studied to acquire ‘the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans’ (Daniel 1:4). During this time they held fast their allegiance to God and depended constantly upon His power. With their habits of self-denial they united earnestness of purpose, diligence, and steadfastness. It was not pride or ambition that had brought them into the king’s court, into companionship with those who neither knew nor feared God; they were captives in a strange land, placed there by Infinite Wisdom. Separated from home influences and sacred associations, they sought to acquit themselves creditably, for the honor of their down-trodden people, and for the glory of Him Whose servants they were.” Prophets and Kings, 484.


  • How and why did the Hebrew youth excel? Daniel 1:20.

Note: “At the court of Babylon were gathered representatives from all lands, men of the highest talent, men the most richly endowed with natural gifts, and possessed of the broadest culture that the world could bestow; yet among them all, the Hebrew youth were without a peer. In physical strength and beauty, in mental vigor and literary attainment, they stood unrivaled. The erect form, the firm, elastic step, the fair countenance, the undimmed senses, the untainted breath—all were so many certificates of good habits, insignia of the nobility with which nature honors those who are obedient to her laws.

“In acquiring the wisdom of the Babylonians, Daniel and his companions were far more successful than their fellow students; but their learning did not come by chance. They obtained their knowledge by the faithful use of their powers, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.” Prophets and Kings, 485, 486.

  • What did they realize—and what should be likewise considered by all who are called to represent true religion? II Timothy 2:15.

Note: “They [Daniel and his companions] realized that in order to stand as representatives of true religion amid the false religions of heathenism they must have clearness of intellect and must perfect a Christian character.” Prophets and Kings, 486.

  • What method of successful evangelism did Jesus teach—especially since the world around us looks for something holier in us than in themselves? Matthew 5:13–16.

Note: “While God was working in Daniel and his companions ‘to will and to do of His good pleasure,’ they were working out their own salvation (Philippians 2:13).” Prophets and Kings, 486.


  • Soon after Daniel and his companions entered the service of the Babylonish king, what event offered Daniel an opportunity to testify in behalf of God? Daniel 2:1, 2.
  • In response to the revelation of the king’s dream through Daniel, how did Nebuchadnezzar acknowledge the God of heaven? Verse 47. What declaration did Nebuchadnezzar later make in response to the faithful witness that Daniel’s companions gave on the plain of Dura? Daniel 3:27–29.

Note: “The three Hebrews declared to the whole nation of Babylon their faith in Him Whom they worshiped. They relied on God. In the hour of their trial they remembered the promise, ‘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’ (Isaiah 43:2). And in a marvelous manner their faith in the living Word had been honored in the sight of all. The tidings of their wonderful deliverance were carried to many countries by the representatives of the different nations that had been invited by Nebuchadnezzar to the dedication.” Prophets and Kings, 512.

  • In His mercy and patience with Nebuchadnezzar, how did God warn the monarch? Daniel 4:5, 10–16, 19–22. After explaining the king’s second dream, what appeal did Daniel make to him? Verse 27. What humbling experience led to Nebuchadnezzar’s full conversion? Verses 30–34, 37.

Note: “Under the rebuke of God the proud heart of Nebuchadnezzar was humbled.” The Review and Herald, September 8, 1896.

“The once proud monarch had become a humble child of God; the tyrannical, overbearing ruler, a wise and compassionate king. … Under the rebuke of Him who is King of kings and Lord of lords, Nebuchadnezzar had learned at last the lesson which all rulers need to learn—that true greatness consists in true goodness.” Prophets and Kings, 521.


  • How was the faith of Daniel tested when he was serving under Darius, whom he had already influenced for the truth? Explain the snare prepared for him. Daniel 6:1, 2, 5–9.
  • How did Daniel respond to the decree? Daniel 6:10–13.
  • How did King Darius feel when he realized he had been deceived by the very men who pretended to be concerned for the safety of his throne? Daniel 6:14, 18–23. How did the heathen king exalt the God of Daniel as the only true God? Verses 25, 26.

Note: “From the story of Daniel’s deliverance we may learn that in seasons of trial and gloom God’s children should be just what they were when their prospects were bright with hope and their surroundings all that they could desire. Daniel in the lions’ den was the same Daniel who stood before the king as chief among the ministers of state and as a prophet of the Most High. A man whose heart is stayed upon God will be the same in the hour of his greatest trial as he is in prosperity, when the light and favor of God and of man beam upon him. …

“Heaven is very near those who suffer for righteousness’ sake.” Prophets and Kings, 545.


1 Explain how subtle snares are placed before us and our youth today, just as they were in the case of the three Hebrews in Babylon.

2 What was the secret of the young men’s success?

3 When the unholy multitudes meet us, for what are many hoping?

4 What lesson taught to Nebuchadnezzar must be enshrined in every one of us—whether or not we are prominent people?

5 Give evidence of the Holy Spirit’s working in the heart of Darius.

© 2014 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Extraordinary Ways to Reach the Worldly-Minded

November 14, 2015 – November 20, 2015

Key Text

“I will set My glory among the heathen.” Ezekiel 39:21.

Study Help: Prophets and Kings, 244–253.


“Even among the heathen there were men through whom Christ was working to uplift the people from their sin and degradation.” The Desire of Ages, 35.


  • What are some names mentioned in the Bible in connection with the right kind of home training? I Samuel 1:20; II Kings 5:2; Ruth 4:22; Daniel 1:6.

Note: “God had commanded the Hebrews to teach their children His requirements and to make them acquainted with all His dealings with their fathers. This was one of the special duties of every parent—one that was not to be delegated to another. In the place of stranger lips the loving hearts of the father and mother were to give instruction to their children. Thoughts of God were to be associated with all the events of daily life.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 592.

  • What is the first duty of Christian parents? Proverbs 22:6.

Note: “Let us teach them [our children] the claims which God has upon them, that it is their duty to carry religion into every department of life, that they should love God supremely, and love their neighbor, not neglecting the little courtesies of life which are essential to happiness.” Child Guidance, 189.


  • How did a little girl, who had been properly educated by her parents, serve as one of God’s witnesses among the heathen? II Kings 5:2, 3.

Note: “The parents of that Hebrew maid, as they taught her of God, did not know the destiny that would be hers. But they were faithful to their trust; and in the home of the captain of the Syrian host, their child bore witness to the God whom she had learned to honor.” Prophets and Kings, 246.

  • Name the most precious gift with which we can endow our children. Deuteronomy 4:10.

Note: “There is no higher trust than that committed to fathers and mothers in the care and training of their children. Parents have to do with the very foundations of habit and character. By their example and teaching the future of their children is largely decided. …

“Parents who impart to the child such a gift have endowed him with a treasure more precious than the wealth of all the ages, a treasure as enduring as eternity.

“We know not in what line our children may be called to serve. They may spend their lives within the circle of the home; they may engage in life’s common vocations, or go as teachers of the gospel to heathen lands; but all are alike called to be missionaries for God, ministers of mercy to the world. They are to obtain an education that will help them to stand by the side of Christ in unselfish service.” Prophets and Kings, 245.

  • What must we sometimes realize when we think of the unusual things that happen to us? Jeremiah 10:23; Proverbs 16:9.

Note: “A slave, far from her home, this little maid was nevertheless one of God’s witnesses, unconsciously fulfilling the purpose for which God had chosen Israel as His people.” Prophets and Kings, 244.


  • How did Jehoram, the king of Israel, respond when he read a letter from the king of Syria, and how did Elisha seek to encourage him? II Kings 5:7, 8.
  • When Naaman came to the door of Elisha’s residence, how was his faith tested? II Kings 5:9–12. Describe the miracle that served to both heal Naaman and convert him to worship the God of Israel. Verses 13, 14.

Note: “Naaman had expected to see some wonderful manifestation of power from heaven. ‘I thought,’ he said, ‘he will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the Lord his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper.’ When told to wash in the Jordan, his pride was touched, and in mortification and disappointment he exclaimed, ‘Are not Abana and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? may I not wash in them, and be clean?’ ‘So he turned and went away in a rage’ (II Kings 5:11, 12).

“The proud spirit of Naaman rebelled against following the course outlined by Elisha. The rivers mentioned by the Syrian captain were beautified by surrounding groves, and many flocked to the banks of these pleasant streams to worship their idol gods. It would have cost Naaman no great humiliation of soul to descend into one of those streams. But it was only through following the specific directions of the prophet that he could find healing. Willing obedience alone would bring the desired result.” Prophets and Kings, 246, 249.

  • How did Naaman confess his conversion to the true God? II Kings 5:15, 16, 19. Many centuries later, in what way did Jesus commend the faith of Naaman? Luke 4:27.

Note: “Centuries after Naaman returned to his Syrian home, healed in body and converted in spirit, his wonderful faith was referred to and commended by the Saviour as a lesson for all who claim to serve God.” Prophets and Kings, 252, 253.


  • How was Gehazi used by the devil to put a stumbling block before those whom the Holy Spirit was working to save? II Kings 5:20–24.

Note: “Gehazi, Elisha’s servant, had had opportunity during the years to develop the spirit of self-denial characterizing his master’s lifework. It had been his privilege to become a noble standard-bearer in the army of the Lord. The best gifts of Heaven had long been within his reach; yet, turning from these, he had coveted instead the base alloy of worldly wealth. And now the hidden longings of his avaricious spirit led him to yield to an overmastering temptation.” Prophets and Kings, 250.

“This man [Gehazi] dwelt in the household of the holy prophet Elisha, saw his godly life, heard his fervent prayers, and his inculcation of correct principles. Yet he was not made better.” The Ellen G. White 1888 Materials, 1529.

  • What is required of every Christian, especially of those called to work as teachers, church officers, or evangelists? Hebrews 12:13.

Note: “Wrongs perpetrated by believers in the truth bring great weakness upon the church. They are stumbling blocks in the way of sinners and prevent them from coming to the light.” Testimonies, vol. 4, 252

“Those who claim to keep and teach the holy law of God, and yet are continually transgressing that law, are stumbling blocks both to sinners and to believers in the truth. The loose, lax way in which many regard the law of Jehovah and the gift of His Son, is an insult to God. The only way in which we can correct this wide-spread evil, is to examine closely every one who would become a teacher of the Word. Those upon whom this responsibility rests, should acquaint themselves with his history since he professed to believe the truth. His Christian experience and his knowledge of the Scriptures, the way in which he holds present truth, should all be understood. No one should be accepted as a laborer in the cause of God, until he makes it manifest that he has a real, living experience in the things of God.” Gospel Workers, 437, 438.

  • On what does our spiritual security depend? I Corinthians 10:12; II Corinthians 13:5.


  • What happened to Gehazi as soon as he uttered a second falsehood? II Kings 5:25–27.
  • What does the Bible say about those who speak lies? Proverbs 19:5; Colossians 3:25; Revelation 22:15.

Note: “Truth is of God; deception in all its myriad forms is of Satan, and whoever in any way departs from the straight line of truth is betraying himself into the power of the wicked one. Those who have learned of Christ will ‘have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness’ (Ephesians 5:11). In speech, as in life, they will be simple, straightforward, and true, for they are preparing for the fellowship of those holy ones in whose mouth is found no guile. (See Revelation 14:5.)” Prophets and Kings, 252.

“False speaking in any matter, every attempt or purpose to deceive our neighbor, is here included [in the ninth commandment]. An intention to deceive is what constitutes falsehood. By a glance of the eye, a motion of the hand, an expression of the countenance, a falsehood may be told as effectually as by words. All intentional overstatement, every hint or insinuation calculated to convey an erroneous or exaggerated impression, even the statement of facts in such a manner as to mislead, is falsehood. This precept forbids every effort to injure our neighbor’s reputation by misrepresentation or evil surmising, by slander or tale bearing. Even the intentional suppression of truth, by which injury may result to others, is a violation of the ninth commandment.” Patriarchs and Prophets, 309.


1 How can we prepare our children to be like the little Israelite maid?

2 What is the calling of our youth—in whatever area they serve?

3 How can people be touched today, just as Naaman was?

4 What spirit of Gehazi can spoil our best evangelistic efforts?

5 What is required of all Christians—especially when witnessing?

© 2014 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – Jonah

November 7, 2015 – November 13, 2015

Key Text

“Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.” Jonah 1:2.

Study Help: Prophets and Kings, 265–278.


“The responsibility placed upon Jonah, in the charge given him to warn the inhabitants of Nineveh, was indeed great; yet He who had bidden him go was well able to sustain His servant and give him success.” The Review and Herald, December 4, 1913.


  • What was the moral condition of Nineveh at the time Jonah was sent there? Nahum 3:1.

Note: “In the time of its temporal prosperity Nineveh was a center of crime and wickedness. …

“Yet Nineveh, wicked though it had become, was not wholly given over to evil. He who ‘beholdeth all the sons of men’ (Psalm 33:13) and ‘seeth every precious thing’ (Job 28:10) perceived in that city many who were reaching out after something better and higher, and who, if granted opportunity to learn of the living God, would put away their evil deeds and worship Him.” Prophets and Kings, 265, 266.

  • Comparing the cities of Sodom and Nineveh, how many souls were within the reach of the Holy Spirit? Genesis 18:32; Jonah 4:11. What warning echoes down to us today?

Note: “The sins of Sodom are repeated in our day, and the earth is destroyed and corrupted under the inhabitants thereof; but the worst feature of the iniquity of this day is a form of godliness without the power thereof. Those who profess to have great light are found among the careless and indifferent, and the cause of Christ is wounded in the house of its professed friends. Let those who would be saved, arouse from their lethargy, and give the trumpet a certain sound; for the end of all things is at hand.” The Signs of the Times, October 16, 1893.


  • Who was commissioned to call the Ninevites to repentance, and how did the devil tempt him to doubt, hesitate, and finally try to reject God’s call? Jonah 1:2, 3.

Note: “As the prophet thought of the difficulties and seeming impossibilities of this commission, he was tempted to question the wisdom of the call. From a human viewpoint it seemed as if nothing could be gained by proclaiming such a message in that proud city. He forgot for the moment that the God Whom he served was all-wise and all-powerful. While he hesitated, still doubting, Satan overwhelmed him with discouragement. The prophet was seized with a great dread, and he ‘rose up to flee unto Tarshish’ (Jonah 1:3). …

“In the charge given him, Jonah had been entrusted with a heavy responsibility; yet He who had bidden him go was able to sustain His servant and grant him success. Had the prophet obeyed unquestioningly, he would have been spared many bitter experiences, and would have been blessed abundantly.” Prophets and Kings, 266.

  • What happened while Jonah was sleeping under the impression that he was safely fleeing from his God-given responsibility? Jonah 1:4, 5.

Note: “If, when the call first came to him, Jonah had stopped to consider calmly, he might have known how foolish would be any effort on his part to escape the responsibility placed upon him. But not for long was he permitted to go on undisturbed in his mad flight.” Prophets and Kings, 267.

  • What should all learn from the captain’s rebuke with which he awakened the sleeping prophet? Jonah 1:6. What did the mariners do as a last resort to still the storm? Verse 7.

Note: “The prayers of the man who had turned aside from the path of duty brought no help.” Prophets and Kings, 267.


  • When the ship’s crew interrogated Jonah, how did the prophet identify himself? Jonah 1:8, 9.
  • How did those mariners finally become acquainted with the true God? Jonah 1:10–16.
  • What opportunities and privileges for witnessing do we often forfeit, and why? I Peter 3:15.

Note: “If the needs of the Lord’s work were set forth in a proper light before those who have means and influence, these men might do much to advance the cause of present truth. God’s people have lost many privileges of which they could have taken advantage, had they not chosen to stand independent of the world.

“In the providence of God, we are daily brought into connection with the unconverted. By His own right hand God is preparing the way before us, in order that His work may progress rapidly. As colaborers with Him, we have a sacred work to do. We are to have travail of soul for those who are in high places; we are to extend to them the gracious invitation to come to the marriage feast.” Counsels on Stewardship, 186.

“Many flatter themselves that they could do great things if they only had the opportunity, but something has always prevented them; Providence has hedged their way in so that they could not do what they desired to do. We expect no great opportunity will meet us on the road, but by prompt and vigorous action we must seize the opportunities, make opportunities and master difficulties.

“You are in need of vital energy from heaven. We must in our work not only strike the iron when it is hot but make the iron hot by striking. Slow, easy, indolent movements will do nothing for us in this work. We must be instant in season, out of season. These are critical times for work. By hesitation and delay we lose many good opportunities. …

“That which stands most in the way of your performing duty is irresolution, weakness of purpose, indecision.” Evangelism, 647.


  • After Jonah had been vomited upon the dry land, what command did he receive from the Lord the second time? Jonah 3:1, 2.
  • What did he do as soon as he entered the doomed city? Jonah 3:3.
  • In what way did God demonstrate His mercy towards Nineveh, and why? Jonah 3:5–10.

Note: “As Jonah entered the city, he began at once to ‘cry against’ it the message, ‘Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown’ (Jonah 3:4). From street to street he went, sounding the note of warning. …

“As king and nobles, with the common people, the high and the low, ‘repented at the preaching of Jonas’ (Matthew 12:41) and united in crying to the God of heaven, His mercy was granted them. … Their doom was averted, the God of Israel was exalted and honored throughout the heathen world, and His law was revered. Not until many years later was Nineveh to fall a prey to the surrounding nations through forgetfulness of God and through boastful pride.” Prophets and Kings, 270, 271.

  • What comparison did Jesus make between the repentant heathen and the Jews who refused to repent? Matthew 12:41.

Note: “God allows men a period of probation; but there is a point beyond which Divine patience is exhausted, and the judgments of God are sure to follow. The Lord bears long with men, and with cities, mercifully giving warnings to save them from divine wrath; but a time will come when pleadings for mercy will no longer be heard, and the rebellious element that continues to reject the light of truth will be blotted out, in mercy to themselves and to those who would otherwise be influenced by their example.” Prophets and Kings, 276.

“We shall not be held accountable for the light that has not reached our perception, but for that which we have resisted and refused.” The Review and Herald, April 25, 1893.


  • Instead of rejoicing over the repentance of Nineveh, how did Jonah complain to the Lord, and what excuse did Jonah make for his doubts and disobedience? Jonah 4:1–3.
  • What should we learn from the way God sought to bring Jonah to his senses? Jonah 4:5–11.

Note: “Confused, humiliated, and unable to understand God’s purpose in sparing Nineveh, Jonah nevertheless had fulfilled the commission given him to warn that great city; and though the event predicted did not come to pass, yet the message of warning was nonetheless from God. And it accomplished the purpose God designed it should. The glory of His grace was revealed among the heathen.” Prophets and Kings, 272, 273.

“Our God is a God of mercy. With long-sufferance and tender compassion He deals with the transgressors of His law. And yet, in this our day, when men and women have so many opportunities for becoming familiar with the divine law as revealed in Holy Writ, the great Ruler of the universe cannot behold with any satisfaction the wicked cities, where reign violence and crime.” Ibid., 275, 276.

“Every angel in glory is interested in the work being done for the salvation of souls. We are not awake as we should be.” Evangelism, 282.


1 What was the main difference between Sodom and Nineveh?

2 Name some ways by which we may be in danger of imitating Jonah’s hesitation, doubt, and attempt to escape God’s voice.

3 How might God surprise us as He did Jonah after fulfilling his duty to warn of impending judgment?

4 How is our attitude too often like Jonah’s after the victory?

5 What kinds of illustrations to awaken us does God give us today?

© 2014 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Bible Study Guides – A Prophet of Peace

November 1, 2015 – November 7, 2015

Key Text

“I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.” II Kings 2:9.

Study Help: Prophets and Kings, 235–264.


“When the Lord in His providence sees fit to remove from His work those to whom He has given wisdom, He helps and strengthens their successors, if they will look to Him for aid and will walk in His ways.” Conflict and Courage, 223.


  • What happened to Elijah after his reformatory work in Judah and Israel? II Kings 2:11, 12.
  • In summary, how did Elisha benefit from the time spent with Elijah? II Kings 2:2. What was the basic difference between the work assigned them? I Kings 17:1; II Kings 2:20–22.

Note: “As Elijah’s successor, Elisha, by careful, patient instruction, must endeavor to guide Israel in safe paths. His association with Elijah, the greatest prophet since the days of Moses, prepared him for the work that he was soon to take up alone.” Prophets and Kings, 224.

“The work of Elisha as a prophet was in some respects very different from that of Elijah. To Elijah had been committed messages of condemnation and judgment; his was the voice of fearless reproof, calling king and people to turn from their evil ways. Elisha’s was a more peaceful mission; his it was to build up and strengthen the work that Elijah had begun; to teach the people the way of the Lord. Inspiration pictures him as coming into personal touch with the people, surrounded by the sons of the prophets, bringing by his miracles and his ministry healing and rejoicing.” Ibid., 235.


  • When the king of Syria suspected treason in his government, how did he try to figure out where it was coming from? II Kings 6:8–11. Who was the actual source of the information that was given to the king of Israel? Verse 12.
  • What order did the Syrian king issue to solve the difficulty that was bothering him? When the spy (or spies) found out the whereabouts of the prophet, what did the king do? Verses 13, 14.

Note: “In continued wars with the Syrians, Jehoahaz, Jehu’s successor, had lost some of the cities lying east of the Jordan. For a time it had seemed as if the Syrians might gain control of the entire kingdom.” Prophets and Kings, 254.

“On one occasion, during a Syrian invasion, the king of Syria sought to destroy Elisha because of his activity in apprising the king of Israel of the plans of the enemy. The Syrian king had taken counsel with his servants, saying, ‘In such and such a place shall be my camp’ (II Kings 6:8). This plan was revealed by the Lord to Elisha.” Ibid., 255, 256.

  • What promise should the servants of God claim when they are in a very serious difficulty or when their life is threatened? Psalm 34:7.

Note: “When the people of God are brought into strait places, and apparently there is no escape for them, the Lord alone must be their dependence.” Prophets and Kings, 257.

“Our heavenly Father has a thousand ways to provide for us of which we know nothing. Those who accept the one principle of making the service of God supreme, will find perplexities vanish and a plain path before their feet. …

“In the darkest days, when appearances seem most forbidding, have faith in God.” The Ministry of Healing, 481, 482.


  • What message did Elisha’s terrified servant bring to his master? II Kings 6:15. What answer did Elisha give his servant to calm him down? Verse 16.

Note: “Between the servant of God and the hosts of armed foemen was an encircling band of heavenly angels. They had come down in mighty power, not to destroy, not to exact homage, but to encamp round about and minister to the Lord’s weak and helpless ones.” Prophets and Kings, 257.

  • What incontrovertible truth does Elisha’s answer teach? Romans 8:31.

Note: “In comparison with the millions of the world, God’s people will be, as they have ever been, a little flock; but if they stand for the truth as revealed in His word, God will be their refuge. They stand under the broad shield of Omnipotence. God is always a majority.” The Acts of the Apostles, 590.

  • What should we thoughtfully ponder from the way Elisha treated the Syrian army? II Kings 6:17–20.

Note: “A single unrighteous act of will, or bitterness, envy, jealousy, or evil surmising will quench the Spirit of God and banish from your heart true happiness. …

“Even hatred to an evil worker will place you in a position where your judgment will be warped and you will not be a doer of the work of Christ to render good for evil. While you despise the sin, you should love the souls of those for whom Christ has paid the price of His own blood.

“The desire for revenge, or any emotion but that of tender, pitying love as Jesus exercises toward us, fallen sinful humanity, injures the soul and is registered against us in heaven.” Manuscript Releases, vol. 21, 164, 165.


  • What should we learn from the advice Elisha gave the king of Israel? II Kings 6:21–23. What is the best way to disarm an enemy? Romans 12:20.

Note: “Here is where many fail. We do not cultivate a disposition to kindness, we want everything to come in an easy way to ourselves. But the question of greatest importance to each one of us should be, not how we can carry our own plans against the plans of others, but how we can have the power to live Christ every day. Christ came to earth and gave His life that we might have eternal salvation. He wants to encircle each of us with the atmosphere of heaven, that we may give to the world an example that will honor the religion of Christ.” Loma Linda Messages, 602.

  • What happened to the Israelites after they turned farther from the Lord? How did the judgments predicted in Deuteronomy 5:9 fall upon them in the time of the kings of Syria? II Kings 6:24, 25.
  • What happened when the famine in Samaria drove the king and the people to desperate measures? II Kings 7:1–9, 16, 20.

Note: “It was because of His love for erring Israel that God permitted the Syrians to scourge them. It was because of His compassion for those whose moral power was weak that He raised up Jehu to slay wicked Jezebel and all the house of Ahab. Once more, through a merciful providence, the priests of Baal and of Ashtoreth were set aside and their heathen altars thrown down. God in His wisdom foresaw that if temptation were removed, some would forsake heathenism and turn their faces heavenward, and this is why He permitted calamity after calamity to befall them. His judgments were tempered with mercy; and when His purpose was accomplished, He turned the tide in favor of those who had learned to inquire after Him.” Prophets and Kings, 254, 255.


  • What lesson did Elisha, during his last days, try to teach the king of Israel? II Kings 13:14–17.
  • How did the prophet expect the young king to show that he had understood the lesson? Verses 18, 19.

Note: “The lesson is for all in positions of trust. When God opens the way for the accomplishment of a certain work and gives assurance of success, the chosen instrumentality must do all in his power to bring about the promised result. In proportion to the enthusiasm and perseverance with which the work is carried forward will be the success given. God can work miracles for His people only as they act their part with untiring energy. He calls for men of devotion to His work, men of moral courage, with ardent love for souls, and with a zeal that never flags. Such workers will find no task too arduous, no prospect too hopeless; they will labor on, undaunted, until apparent defeat is turned into glorious victory. Not even prison walls nor the martyr’s stake beyond, will cause them to swerve from their purpose of laboring together with God for the upbuilding of His kingdom.” Prophets and Kings, 263.


1 Is God calling me to be more of an Elijah-type witness for Him right now or an Elisha-type?

2 Explain how God is willing to give divine insight to us today, just as He did in the days of Elisha.

3 Contrary to the king’s own hostile intention, what advice did Elisha give him—and why?

4 Name some examples by which we—in our circumstances today—can reflect Elisha’s approach toward the Syrian army.

5 Explain the formula for spiritual success as it was taught to Joash.

© 2014 Reformation Herald Publishing Association, 5240 Hollins Road, Roanoke, Virginia. Reprinted by permission.

Recipe – Healthy Mashed Cauliflower

Recipe – Healthy Mashed Cauliflower

1 small or medium head of cauliflower, washed, trimmed, and chopped roughly 2 Tbsp. almond or rice milk
1/4–1/2 tsp. salt 2 Tbsp. Earth Balance or oil
1 small clove garlic, minced 1/4 tsp. dried thyme
1. Chop cauliflower into smaller chunks – about bite-size pieces works well.

2. Peel garlic clove(s) and cut in half, lengthwise.

3. Steam cauliflower and garlic for 15 minutes, or until cauliflower and garlic are tender enough for a fork to easily pass through.

4. Drain and transfer to a food processor and pulse until the cauliflower is broken down in the processor.

5 Add salt, earth balance or oil, and, with the motor now running, add almond milk for a light, smooth texture.

6 Add thyme, and pulse till incorporated. Serve hot!

This mashed cauliflower recipe is a delicious and healthy substitute for traditional mashed potatoes.


Food – Cauliflower

“A cauliflower is nothing but a cabbage with a college education.” Mark Twain

Include cauliflower as one of the cruciferous vegetables you eat on a regular basis if you want to receive the fantastic health benefits provided by the cruciferous vegetable family. As with all vegetables be sure not to overcook cauliflower. As an excellent source of vitamin C, and a very good source of manganese, cauliflower provides us with two core conventional antioxidants. … Cauliflower provides us with one of the hallmark anti-inflammatory nutrients.

The fiber content of cauliflower—over 9 grams in every 100 calories—makes this cruciferous vegetable a great choice for digestive system support. Yet the fiber content of cauliflower is only one of its digestive support mechanisms. Researchers have determined that the sulforaphane made from a glucosinolate in cauliflower (glucoraphanin) can help protect the lining of your stomach. Sulforaphane provides you with this health benefit by preventing bacterial overgrowth of Helicobacter pylori in your stomach or too much clinging by this bacterium to your stomach wall.

Cauliflower, a cruciferous vegetable, is in the same plant family as broccoli, kale, cabbage and collards. It has a compact head (called a “curd”), with an average size of six inches in diameter, composed of undeveloped flower buds. The flowers are attached to a central stalk. When broken apart into separate buds, cauliflower looks like a little tree, something that many kids are fascinated by.

Choose cauliflower heads that are surrounded by many thick green leaves. Store uncooked cauliflower in a paper or plastic bag in the refrigerator, stem side down, where it will keep for up to a week. Cauliflower contains phytonutrients that release odorous sulfur compounds when heated. To retain the vegetable’s crisp texture, and reduce nutrient loss, cook the cauliflower for only a short time.

Cauliflower also contains vitamins B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine) and B9 (folic acid). It serves as a good source of proteins, phosphorus and potassium.

Children’s Story – The Errand Boy Martin

Little Martin was a poor boy, who earned his bread by doing errands. One day he was returning from a village, which was quite distant from his home, and feeling tired, he sat down under a large tree, near an inn, to rest. While he sat there, eating a piece of bread which he had taken for his dinner, he saw a handsome carriage driving up, in which sat a young gentleman and his teacher.

Martin looked at them very attentively, and then looked at his crust of bread and at his ragged clothes and old cap; and he could not help sighing as he said, half aloud, “Oh, dear! If I were but that young gentleman, instead of being poor Martin the errand boy! How I wish I could change places with him!”

The teacher chanced to overhear what Martin said, and he told it to his pupil, who, leaning out of the coach window, beckoned Martin to come near.

“So, little boy,” said he, “you would like to change places with me, would you?”

“I beg pardon, sir,” replied Martin; “I meant no harm by what I said.”

“I am not angry with you,” said the young gentleman; “on the contrary, I am quite willing to change places with you.”

“Oh, now you are joking!” cried Martin; “no one would wish to change places with me, and least of all, a gentleman like yourself. I am obliged to walk many miles every day and seldom have anything but dry bread or potatoes to eat, while you may ride in your nice carriage, and have whatever you desire.”

“Well,” said the young gentleman, “if you will give me all you have that I have not, I will in turn give you everything that belongs to me.”

Martin started, for he did not know what to say; but the teacher desired him to answer.

“Do you agree to change?” said he.

“Oh, yes,” said Martin, “I do indeed, if you are in earnest. How the people in the village will wonder to see me coming back in this grand coach.” And Martin laughed at the idea.

The young gentleman then called his servants, and they opened the coach door, and helped him to get out. But what was Martin’s surprise on seeing that both his legs were quite crooked, and of no use to him!

He was obliged to lean upon crutches for support; and on looking at him more closely, Martin saw that his face was pale and thin, like that of a person who is often ill. The young gentleman smiled kindly on Martin, and said, “Well, my lad, do you still wish to change situations with me? Would you, if you could, give up your rosy cheeks for the sake of driving in a carriage, and wearing a handsome coat?”

“Oh, no, not for the world!” said Martin.

“And I,” said the young gentleman, “would gladly be poor, if I only had the use of my limbs; but as it is God’s will that I should be lame and sickly, I try to be patient and cheerful, and to be thankful for the blessings He has left me.

“And you, my young friend, must do the same, and remember that if you have poor clothes and hard fare, you have health and strength, which are far better than a coach and horses, and what money can buy.” Selected.

The Youth’s Instructor, April 14, 1886.

Lord’s Prayer Series – Deliverance from Evil

Proper guidance is vital to success in any endeavor. Many people are open to accepting guidance for their physical and mental lives, but, tragically, when it comes to their spiritual life, they depend on faulty, erring guidance systems.

In the gospel of Luke, as the Lord’s model prayer comes to a conclusion, we read these words of Jesus: “And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” Luke 11:4. The phrase, “lead us not into temptation …’’ is a prayer for divine leadership. Not only are we to ask for our daily bread and ask to be forgiven, but we also need daily guidance and leadership as we face life’s daily temptations.

A woman taken in the act of adultery was brought to Jesus with the accusation, ‘Now Moses said that a person taken in adultery like this should be stoned. But what do You say?’ They said this to lay a trap for Jesus, because if He said, ‘No, give mercy to her,’ then they would go to the people and say, ‘He doesn’t believe in the law of Moses.’ But if He said, ‘She should be stoned,’ then they would go to the Romans and say, ‘This man said that this woman should be stoned.’ ” The Jews did not have authority on their own to use capital punishment without the Roman’s permission. Either way that Jesus answered their question would get Him in trouble.

Scripture continues that Jesus stooped down and started to write on the ground the sins of the people who had brought this woman to Him, beginning with the oldest. As He wrote they became embarrassed. The Bible says, “… beginning with the eldest until the last and there was nobody left.” “When Jesus had raised himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, ‘Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?’ She said, ‘No one, Lord.’ And Jesus said to her, ‘Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more.’ ” (See John 8:1–11.)

Notice the blessed assurance that Jesus provided the sinner. He assured her that “Neither do I condemn you.” Your sins are forgiven. It was immediately followed by the command to go, sin no more. The command to “go,” calls for progress and advancement, which always requires guidance. All moving things need to be directed. Unless directed in their proper course, they will come to a tragic end. That is true for airplanes, ships, cars, or any moving object. They must be directed. We are not left to travel alone, undirected, down the dark pathway of life. God has promised that if we ask Him, He will guide us, directing us with His eye.

The consciousness that human wisdom is faulty, causing us to make mistakes, leads us to request divine guidance for the future. The phrase, “lead us not into temptation” is considered by many Bible students to be the most difficult of all the petitions of the Lord’s prayer. In fact, some theologians believe that the early church, consisting of the early Christians in the first century, misunderstood it. As a result, the apostle James corrected their misunderstanding.

To impress the fact that it was not God Who was the source of our temptations, He said, “Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been proved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am tempted of God’; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” James 1:12–17.

God is not tempted with evil and He does not tempt anyone. Part of the problem comes because of the faultiness of human language. An example of this is Genesis 22.1. Some versions of the Bible read, “It came to pass after these things that God tempted Abraham.” So people have been confused when in one place it says that God tempted Abraham and in the New Testament it says that God does not tempt anybody. Most modern translations say in Genesis 22 that God tested Abraham. There are many places in the Bible where God tests people. However, He does not tempt people or try to persuade or entice them to sin. That is the work of the devil and of the fallen human nature of man.

The main source of temptation is within us as we read in James 1. Therefore, a mere prayer for pardon is not sufficient; we need guidance or direction in our life. The original word for temptation used in the Lord’s Prayer literally means trial or test as it is translated in many other places in the Bible. For example, in James the 1:2–4 it says, “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”

This is not a prayer that we will be kept from temptation, but that we will be divinely led during our temptation so that we will be kept from yielding to it. If we were to ask not to have temptation, we would be making a request that is impossible to be fulfilled in this world of sin. God never asks for us to do the impossible. Even Jesus Christ did not escape temptation. Notice what it says about His temptations in Hebrews 4:14–16, speaking of Jesus Christ: “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest Who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest Who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

Notice that even Jesus had temptations. The Bible speaks of His being tempted by the devil. He was in all points tempted as we are (Hebrews 4:15). Temptation must not be confused with sin. “He was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin …” Jesus did not yield to the temptation. There is no other way that you and I can develop the moral character that we need to enter the kingdom of heaven except through overcoming temptation.

As the gospel song says, “Yield not to temptation, for yielding is sin.” [Yield Not To Temptation, Horatio R. Palmer, 1868.] All people are tempted, but all people do not yield to the temptation. It is through this process of resisting temptation that we grow in grace (II Peter 3:18). In Revelation 2 and 3 to each one of the Christian churches the promise of eternal life is given on the basis of being an overcomer. Even right at the end of the Bible in Revelation 21:6, 7 it says, “He said to me, ‘It is done! I am the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts. He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.’ ” To turn away from sin and overcome is a principle that is repeated throughout the Bible.

In the Bible, sometimes the Lord is spoken of as doing something Himself that He just permits someone else to do. God does not originate or approve of all the things that He allows to happen in this world but He does permit trials and afflictions to come to both good and evil people. The reason for this is so that we might overcome the temptation and become partakers of His holiness (see Hebrews 12).

The tests, the trials, the afflictions that we have in this life sometimes turn out to be blessings in disguise. In fact, in Romans 8:28, there is a promise that is so wonderful that it is very hard to believe while going through the trial. It says, “We know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Now, it doesn’t say that all things are good, but that He can work all things, even those most difficult for us, into something that ultimately results in good, according to His purpose.

God allows the trials to come so that we can discern the impurities of our character so that they, through His grace, can be removed. Often we do not recognize the divine leadership and purpose in our trials and temptations that God allows to come to us, but someday it will all be made plain. We read many stories in the Bible of people who experienced terrible trials and discouragements and could not understand why God allowed such things to happen to them. Jacob once lamented that, “All these things are against me” (Genesis 42:36). He had lost Joseph and now Benjamin was going to be taken away. He thought that he was going to lose the only children he had from the one woman that he really loved. Although he thought that all these were against him, in a few weeks he not only had Benjamin back, but Joseph as well.

The Lord worked out all things together for good, although Jacob thought for a time everything was against him and it would all work out terribly. The same thing happened with David. For approximately ten years, David fled for his life before an infuriated king who stirred up the people against him, forcing him to live in caves and haunts in many desolate places wondering how he would ever become the king of Israel, as the Lord had promised him. But in spite of all those things, God eventually worked it out.

Romans 8:28 says that if you love God, all things will work together. It is not our responsibility to work it all out. God will work it out so that all things, even the evil things that happen to us, will be pulled together to work it out for our good in the end. This is very difficult to believe while going through severe tests and trials, but that is the Bible promise. The prophets Malachi and Isaiah have said that all of God’s children have to go through the furnace of affliction or trial. Trust God, for He has a purpose in our trials. When they are over, something wonderful is going to happen.

In this world, with our limited human vision, we struggle to see through the confusion, broken promises, disappointment and thwarted plans, but the Bible promises that when we reach the end of the Christian journey, we will be able to see in all of it a grand and overruling purpose and divine harmony. Malachi prophesied what the Lord will do in the last days. “He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness.” Malachi 3:3.

The Bible clearly predicts that God’s remnant people, His children in the very last days of earth’s history, will go through a great tribulation, but it also promises that the Lord will bring them out of it.

Notice what John wrote in Revelation 7:9, 10: “After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues [languages], standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Salvation belongs to our God Who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’ ”

Then it says in verses 13, 14 that one of the elders answered and asked the apostle John, who was having this vision, “Who are these?” “Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, ‘Who are these arrayed in white robes, and where did they come from?’ And I said to him, ‘Sir, you know.’ So he said to me, ‘These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.’ ”

You see, God is going to lead His children out of the great tribulation that is coming upon this world. The Bible says that the devil has come down to this world having great wrath. In Revelation 12:12, it says, “Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows he has a short time.”

The devil knows that his days are numbered and that he has a short time to work out his plans of wickedness. He does have control of the majority of human beings in this world but in an effort to have full control of the world, he puts forth his last effort to take out those who claim Christ. If you have read the rest of the story you know that he does not win, for there will be a multitude that nobody can number that have come out of the great tribulation and washed their robes of character and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. It may not appear that way at present, but Satan is a loser.

We are not left alone to fight our adversary. Jesus said, “Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell upon the earth.” Revelation 3:10. The promise here made is that during the refining and purifying process, there will be divine guidance that we will be kept from falling. Temptation is always inspired by the devil, but it was the Spirit of God that led Jesus Christ into the wilderness to meet the temptation and to conquer it.

The person who asks for pardon for past offenses against God will then make every effort to avoid future transgressions and seek for the blessing of holiness or sanctification. The Bible tells us what the devil uses to tempt people. Understanding the source of the temptations will help to know how to meet them. The Bible says, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust [or craving] of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.” I John 2:15–17.

Divine assistance is needed in meeting these trials or temptations, but the Bible pronounces a blessing on the person who endures. Notice this text again in James 1:12: “Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been proved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”

If we expect God to keep us when we are in temptation, we need to see to it that we do not deliberately walk into temptation. It is an interesting thing that some people pray and say, “Lord, lead me not into temptation” then presume to be protected when they deliberately walk in temptation’s way.

In the Garden of Gethsemane on the night that Jesus was betrayed, He gave some advise to His disciples that they neglected at that time. He said, “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:41.

Notice, it is because we are in constant danger of entering into temptation that we should pray not to be led where we will be tempted to sin. If we are sincere in our prayer, we will avoid walking directly into the allurements of the flesh which so easily tempt us.

The Bible predicts that a multitude of people in the last days will lose eternal life because, instead of praying to be guided away from temptation, they deliberately walk into temptation and have pleasure in unrighteousness. Paul says to these people, “God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” II Thessalonians 2:11, 12.

How is it with you friend? Are you praying that the Lord will guide you and lead you so that you will not walk into the way of temptation, or do you seek pleasure in unrighteousness? The choice is ours; help is only a prayer away. All the resources of heaven have been commissioned to save lost man so put your trust in Jesus today. Reflect on the words of the gospel song:

So I thank God for the mountains,

And I thank Him for the valleys,

I thank Him for the storms He’s brought me through.

‘Cause if I never had a problem,

I wouldn’t know that He could solve them,

I wouldn’t know what faith in His Word could do.

Through it all, through it all,

I’ve learned to trust in Jesus,

I’ve learned to trust in God.

Through it all, through it all,

I’ve learned to depend upon His Word.

Andrea Crouch

Pastor John J. Grosboll is Director of Steps to Life and pastors the Prairie Meadows Church of Free Seventh-day Adventists in Wichita, Kansas. He may be contacted by email at:, or by telephone at: 316-788-5559.

Current Events – Pope Francis Allows Priests to Forgive Women Who Had Abortions

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis declared Tuesday he is allowing all priests in the church’s upcoming Year of Mercy to absolve women of the “sin of abortion” if they repent with a “contrite heart.”

Reflecting his papacy’s central theme of mercy, Francis said in letter published Tuesday by the Vatican that he has met many women bearing “the scar of this agonizing” decision to abort. He said God’s forgiveness cannot be denied to those who repent, and thus is giving all priests the discretion to absolve the sin in the Holy Year of Mercy running December 8, 2015 until November 20, 2016.

The church views abortion as such as grave sin that, until now, a Catholic woman who wanted to repent for an abortion could not simply go to her local parish priest. Instead, her diocese’s bishop needed to delegate a priest, expert at dealing with such confessions, to hear the woman’s confession.

Francis is making it possible for women to bypass this complicated process and confess directly to any Catholic priest, who can grant absolution if he determines the woman is contrite.

The pontiff said having an abortion is “an existential and moral ordeal. I have met so many women who bear in their heart the scar of this agonizing and painful decision.” The comments draw on Francis’ decades of pastoral experience with rank-and-file faithful in his native Argentina.

“The forgiveness of God cannot be denied to one who has repented, especially when that person approaches the Sacrament of Confession with a sincere heart in order to obtain reconciliation with the Father,” the pope said.

He said that is why he has decided to concede to all priests “the discretion to absolve of the sin of abortion those who have procured it and who, with contrite heart, seek forgiveness for it.”

In Catholic Church teaching, abortion is such a grave sin that those who procure or perform it incur an automatic excommunication. Usually only designated clergy and missionaries can formally forgive abortions. But not so from December 8, 2015 to November 20, 2016, during an extraordinary Holy Year or “Jubilee” on the theme of mercy, all priests will be authorized to do so.

“Remission of sins can be obtained only through the merits of Christ. On no man, priest or pope, but on God alone, rests the power to forgive sins. ‘Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world’ (John 1:29). ‘As many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God’ (John 1:12). ‘If we say we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth. … But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected’ (I John 1:6; 2:5). This is the message that is to be borne. On this basis Christians are free.” The Review and Herald, June 13, 1899.

Health – God’s Answer

GOD’S ANSWER is an acronym. Each letter stands for a word. These are basic health principles, which, if incorporated into the life with the help of God, will not only prevent much of the stress and lifestyle diseases that are so prevalent in our country today, but will also work to bring healing and restoration to worried minds, diseased bodies and broken down immune systems.

G = Gratitute

O = Obedience

D = Divine Help

S = Self Control

A = Air

N = Nutrition

S = Sunshine

W = Water

E = Exercise

R = Rest


Health depends a lot on having a good attitude. Worry, anxiety, anger, hostility, grief, negativism, fear and mental stress depress the immune system. Those who allow everything to revolve around their own lives and their health directing their anxiety and tension inward, are more susceptible to an early death.

Anger affects more than the person who is the target of the emotions. It suppresses the immune system. It is often implicated in sudden stroke and can double the risk of a heart attack after an outburst of anger, the danger lasting up to two hours.

Hostility increases the risk of atherosclerosis and early death.

Stress, depression and guilt can also depress the immune system, and lead to heart disease, memory impairment, dementia, and early death. Pessimism, an unpleasant by-product of brooding over real or imaginary troubles, has an even worse effect on killer “T” cells of the immune system than depression.

The Bible says in Ephesians 4:26 to not let the sun go down on your wrath.

Examples of positive attitudes that are linked to better success in fighting stress and to higher survival rates when disease does occur include the following:

  • Gratitude
  • Optimism
  • Perseverance
  • Diligence under stress
  • Absence of malice (benevolence or giving heart)

Having a cheery attitude is vital to good health, yet we need not wait for a good mood to “hit” us. Recent psychological research suggests that deciding to have a cheerful countenance can also create a merry heart, and generates amazing changes in the brain itself. Deliberate decisions to smile actually generate the same positive brain activity in the frontal cortex as a spontaneously happy smile. It is possible to cheer ourselves up, as well as others around us, simply by “putting on a happy face.”

Mood changing strategies:

  • Pray; find a Bible promise and claim it for yourself
  • Listen to soothing music
  • Take some exercise
  • If fatigued, take time out to rest, relax and calm down
  • Help others; focus away from yourself
  • Think things out clearly and don’t jump to conclusions


From the Garden of Eden until the Flood, man’s diet consisted of God’s original diet as given to man in the Garden of Eden; nuts, fruits, seeds, grains and herbs (Genesis 1:29; 3:17–19).

The Bible gives the age of many of our patriarchs, revealing a pre-flood average age of over 900 years. Then, after the flood, because there was no vegetation, God gave man permission to eat meat. It took another ten generations for the average age to drop to 291. About 430 years after the flood, when Moses led the children of Israel out of Egypt, life expectancy had dropped to 70 or 80 years.

Meat was classified into two categories, “clean” and “unclean.” These lists are to be found in detail in Deuteronomy 14 and Leviticus 11. “Unclean” animals store toxins in their tissues, eat wastes and decaying matter, eat poisonous plants, and harbor many diseases in their flesh.

God also gave specific instruction that even when “clean” animals were eaten, the fat and the blood were never to be eaten (Leviticus 17:10, 11; 7:24–27; 3:17). God gave the Israelites a health program designed to restore them to a pure and healthy state.

He promised them: “If you diligently heed the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the Lord Who heals you.” Exodus 15:26 NJKV.

It has ever been God’s desire that we be in health. John wrote, “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.” III John 1:2 NJKV.

An analysis of 212 different studies revealed that 75% of the people studied indicated that religious commitment has a beneficial impact on a variety of health conditions. Reports stated that those who had faith had 50% fewer deaths from coronary disease, 56% fewer deaths from emphysema, 74% fewer deaths from cirrhosis and 53% fewer suicides. After undergoing surgery, those without any religion were three times more likely to die. In conclusion to this we can see that religion is healthy.

Cardiologist Randolph Byrd, formerly a professor at the University of California, has shown that prayer works and can be a powerful force in healing. In a ten month randomized, double blind study, a computer assigned 393 patients in a coronary unit to three groups. Two groups were prayed for, one by a Roman Catholic and the other by Protestant prayer groups and one group was not remembered in prayer.

The results were striking. The group that was prayed for was five times less likely to require antibiotics and three times less likely to develop pulmonary edema. None required breathing tubes, and fewer died. If this were a new drug or surgical procedure, it would have been heralded as a breakthrough.

Divine Power

Many people are living lives of despair and emptiness. There seems to be an emptiness that material things just do not fill. Others are all stressed out trying to keep pace with modern living. Many are lonely, some sinking into depression that affects not only their lives, but the lives of friends and family.

Clearly there is a void in the lives of millions – and an urgent need for this void to be filled. Can anything or anyone fill this void? Man tries his hardest to fill his life with all manner of inventions, but still comes up empty.

We were created with a God-shaped void that only He can fill. When we surrender our lives to Him we can have peace, contentment and even joy in an unstable, inconsistent world. Learning to trust in God completely, in all situations, brings a peace of mind that will keep us calm, promote health and prolong life. A contented mind and a cheerful spirit are health to the body and strength to the soul.

Trust in God, faith, and prayer provide a significant boost to mental as well as physical health. If stricken down with a serious illness, they positively influence your chance of recovery. Grief, discontent, remorse, guilt, distrust, bitterness, all tend to break down the life forces and invite decay and death.

Jesus says “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle … and you will find rest (contentment) for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28–30 NKJV.

There is no heavier burden than the burden of sin and selfishness. Jesus says “Come. Give me your burden of sin. I will give you My righteousness – My peace – in return.”

God’s own book tells of the wisdom, instruction, and power that is given to all who take the first step and “Come” to Jesus. As we learn more of Him, we see that learning of Him is the highway to health. This is the answer to all the problems that perplex and annoy, the answer to the great void in the human heart.

Self Control

Another word for self-control is temperance. This can be defined as “abstaining from that which is harmful, and using wisely that which is good.”

Many have made resolutions to give up bad habits. Sometimes these last for a few days but most have the same result – temporary success that leads to ultimate defeat and discouragement. Many people force themselves to reform in one area of their life by sheer willpower.

True self-control is not making an isolated effort in one area of your life, but is a divinely implanted principle, or character trait which permeates the whole life. It affects all areas of our lives.

God will give us strength to give up our bad habits, but we have to CHOOSE to do so. This will be on-going. All through our lives we will have to choose those things that will build up our health and not break it down.

Most people are familiar with the last part of this acronym, ANSWER which is:

A = Air

N = Nutrition

S = Sunshine

W = Water

E = Exercise

R = Rest

This acronym makes it very easy to remember these basic health principles. Now is a good time to incorporate into our lives GOD’S ANSWER to both physical, mental and spiritual health.