Seven Health Principles

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Seven Health Principles

Post by Believer »

Read about God's 7 natural laws of health here. ... yerndx.htm

Pure Air

"And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven, And the evening and the morning were the second day." Genesis 1:6-8.

Our atmosphere components

The "Heaven" mentioned here as being created by God on the second day refers to our atmospheric heaven. It includes the air we breathe, and upon which life on earth depends. A 12-mile-thick layer wrapped around our planet, the atmosphere consists of about 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen, and 1% argon, helium, carbon dioxide, and other gases. It also harbors a fair amount of water vapor and an unwarranted amount of pollution. As this mixture is inhaled into the lungs, about a fifth of the oxygen is retained while the rest is exhaled along with carbon dioxide and water vapor.

The human lung

The inside of the lung resembles a sponge. All of these tiny pockets (about 300 million) provide over seventy square yards of surface area for the exchange of gases in and out of the blood stream. An adult breathes about 16 times per minute, taking in about one pint of air per breath. This intake adds up to about 2,000 gallons of air per day. During normal breathing this air travels at about 50 miles per hour, but during a sneeze or cough it can reach speeds of 750 miles per hour. The maximum amount of air a person can inhale and exhale in one breath is called the vital capacity. A good vital capacity is related to a greater life expectancy. Several factors can affect a person's vital capacity: smoking, air pollution, posture, exercise, obesity, and shallow breathing.

Dangers of tobacco smoke pollution

For the person who smokes, the dangers are listed on the cigarette packages themselves. Lung cancer, emphysema, and carbon monoxide poisoning are among them. With every puff of smoke the air passageways narrow, making it more difficult to breathe. The cilia are paralyzed, thus preventing them from doing their job of cleansing the lungs. Mucus-clogged and irritated air passageways are ripe for emphysema and bronchitis. Carbon monoxide reduces the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood. Nicotine constricts the blood vessels, elevates the blood pressure and heart rate, and irritates the heart itself. In pregnant women these poisons cross the placenta and harm the fetus. Cancer-producing tars blacken the lungs. Marijuana smoke has many of the same health-damaging effects, plus some that are unique. Its active ingredient, THC, stays in the body longer than any other drug. With continued use it builds up in the fatty tissues, especially in the brain and in the gonads.

Cigarette smoke is also one of the main indoor-air pollutants. Those regularly exposed to second-hand smoke over an extended period of time are put at a significant risk for developing the same diseases and sharing some of the same physical impairments as the smoker. Small children, pregnant and lactating women, the elderly, and those with respiratory or heart diseases are the most vulnerable, and may not even be able to tolerate minimal exposure. These persons are also the ones most likely to be affected by other types of indoor pollution.
Sources of indoor pollution

With the awareness of the energy crisis, one of the adaptations in society was to "weatherize" homes. Tighter living quarters decrease the exchange rate between inside and outside air. Weatherizing is good for keeping the heat in, but it also keeps in polluted air.

Natural-gas ovens, hair sprays, disinfectants, cleaning materials, wall paint, floor wax, cigarette smoke, radon, insecticides, urea-formaldehyde foam insulation, particle-board construction, new furniture, and carpets are but a few of the sources of the fumes, gases, and particles that are emitted inside our homes. Solutions to the problem fall into three categories:

Indoor pollution solutions

The best solution is the removal or alteration of the problem at its source. For example: replace unvented kerosene heaters with electric heaters; quit smoking; et cetera.

The second solution is to increase the ventilation, which involves the sacrifice of some energy efficiency. One solution to this problem is to not overheat your home in the first place and to put on more clothing. One should keep several windows around the home open a few inches to ensure that a good supply of fresh air is in circulation and that the bad air can get out. Bacteria, molds, fungi, house mites, and other disease-producing organisms have a hard time multiplying in rooms that are kept well-aired and sunned.

The most comfortable temperature and relative humidity are 76-80° F and 40-50% respectively in summer and 72-76° F and 20-35% respectively in winter. Make sure your ceiling, walls, and floor are adequately insulated to minimize as much unnecessary heat loss as possible. Energy conservation need not be at the expense of one's health. Also to ensure a supply of fresh air while sleeping in bed, open the windows in another room and keep your bedroom door open. Thus the fresh night air can get in without your being in a draft and getting chilled. Of course, if it is warm outside you should keep the windows wide open. Homes that are located in "low spots" or are surrounded by dense vegetation may lack sunlight (driving up the heating requirements) and they do not get as much fresh-air circulation around them. Bedding and clothing should be aired out often. Clothesline drying is advantageous, as it freshens and further cleans the clothes and saves money.

The third move toward cleaner air indoors is the use of air-cleaning machines. There are various kinds—electrostatic, charcoal filtration, and negative ionization. Each may have its place in today's polluted world. Each has its advantages and disadvantages (electrostatic and negative ionization may emit some ozone.) Do your own research before you invest. Is the unit big enough to do the job? Is the expense warranted?

Symptions of indoor air pollution

How do you know if you have an air pollution problem inside your home? The symptoms may include headache; dizziness, cough, irritation of the eyes, nose, and/or throat, runny nose, difficulty in breathing, chest and/or abdominal pain, nausea, difficulty sleeping, diarrhea, and rashes. Only certain individuals may be affected. Since this list of symptoms contains some rather common complaints, a physician should be consulted.

Outdoor air pollution

But what if the outside air is polluted too? Unfortunately, this is a real problem in big cities and some other areas. About 150-200 million tons of pollutants are pumped into the air every year in the U.S. alone. Some types of air pollution come from evaporation, others from attrition (things grinding or wearing down). Most come from combustion. Heating units, power plants, incinerators, and industry are major sources of air pollution, but the number one cause is vehicular exhaust. Jets, airplanes, trains, buses, and automobiles have revolutionized transportation and our entire society. And they have ruined the air in many places in the process. Three out of five people in this country live in areas that do not meet the health standards set up by The Clean Air Act of 1970.

Symptoms caused by outdoor pollution

Effects of air pollution include eye irritation, respiratory symptoms and diseases, headaches, dizziness, shortness of breath, sore throat, chest pain, and nausea. The risks of major illness, all respiratory diseases, and colds go up. Susceptible persons may die during smog alerts. In addition to hurting people and animals, smog can kill plants and trees, and damage stone, metal, and fabrics.

Coping with outdoor air pollution

During a smog alert it is best to stay indoors, where there is about 50% less smog. Use air conditioners and recycle indoor air. Get more rest and sleep. Avoid cigarettes and unnecessary driving.

If you live in the city, the early morning hours usually have the cleanest air. It is also a good idea to take advantage of clear days by getting outdoors. The best way to escape air pollution is to live in the country. To give you an idea as to the potential differences in air quality, mid-Pacific ocean air contains about 15,000 particles per cubic inch of air as compared to 5,000,000 in big cities. In summary: "When the air is bad, try not to breathe it."

Negative ions of oxygen

There is something else that makes fresh air fresh besides oxygen and the absence of pollutants, and that is the type of ionization in the air. Ions are tiny, electrified particles of matter. Fresh air may contain between 2-3 million ions in each breath, which is 5-10 times more than stale air. (Oxygen usually carries a negative charge and carbon dioxide a positive charge.) Aerospace research and experience has suggested that air ionization is in itself a health factor apart from the oxygen content alone.

We do not yet understand how it works, but numerous studies have associated negative ions, specifically negatively ionized oxygen, with several health benefits. These include an increased rate and quality of growth in plants and in animals, dilation of the air passageways and improvement in the cleansing action of the lungs, heart rate, blood pressure, and metabolic rate. Mentally, one can experience a sense of exhilaration, or become more relaxed and mildly tranquilized. Hay fever and asthma symptoms may improve. Tumor growth was slowed in laboratory animals. Rats learned twice as fast. Positively charged air, on the other hand, produced the opposite responses and tends to be associated with headaches, dizziness, nausea, and fatigue.

Where negative ions come from and where they go

Negative ions are lost as they adhere to walls, fabric materials, and air-conditioning ducts; tobacco smoke, smog and crowds of people tend to use them up, too. Radiation from space, air, rocks, and even some soils adds negative ions back into the air, as do sunshine, living green trees, and the breakup of water droplets, as occurs around waterfalls and the ocean surf.

Use your nose (breath correctly)

Now that we've cleared the air, there is one more thing to do, and that is to breathe properly. Breathe in and out through the nose as much as possible. The nasal mucosa moisturizes, filters, and warms the air as it is breathed in. As it is breathed out some heat and moisture is returned to the membranes to affect the next breath.

Oxygen is the most crucial element for our survival. We can survive weeks without food, days without water; but only minutes without oxygen. Yet because of shallow breathing habits we can deny ourselves optimal levels of oxygen for better health. Early signs of insufficient oxygen are impaired judgment and memory, dulling of intellect, and a tendency to impatience and irritability. Slow, deep abdominal breathing is the correct way to breathe. This type of breathing is better understood if it is demonstrated. Any respiratory therapist would be delighted to show you. Basically, it involves using the diaphragm to "suck" air into the lower portion of the lungs and the abdominal muscles to "push" it out. One way to check yourself is to lie down with a book on your stomach. Now breathe in such a way as to make the hook go up and down each time you inhale and exhale.

Factors that assist proper breathing

Good posture while sitting and standing is necessary for proper breathing. There are several exercises that can help your posture. Bend your elbows and try to touch your shoulder blades together in back. Lie on your back and try to flatten your lower back to the floor by tilting your pelvis. Pretend a string is attached to the top of your head, pulling your head slightly up and beck. This eases stress on your lungs and vocal cords. Hold your arms straight out to the sides and make little circles, then raise them straight up and reach for the sky.

Many people are forced to stoop or sit for much of the day. This usually makes for poor posture and causes many back problems. Maintaining good posture, taking stretch breaks often, and getting exercise whenever you can will help. A good aerobic exercise program combined with muscle toning and stretching exercises is necessary for good health besides being an aid to proper breathing and maintaining a strong set of lungs.

Tight clothing around the chest or abdomen makes proper breathing difficult, as does restrictive clothing that does not allow the free movement of the arms above the head.

Deep breathing

Normal deep breathing aids digestion by massaging the abdominal organs. Blood is assisted in its return to the chest by the negative pressure that is developed with each deep breath. This pressure helps to reduce the chances of congestion headaches, the pooling of blood in the legs, and aids in the digestive process. Deep breathing gets more oxygen into the blood with each breath, allowing the heart to slow down a little.

A good habit is to go outside in the fresh air and take 1~20 slow, deep, abdominal breaths after each meal and just before retiring for the night. And as we enjoy this time of relaxation, we can give thanks to our Creator God "that giveth breath unto the people." Remembering that "He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things." So, "let every thing that bath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD." Isaiah 42:5; Acts 17:25; Psalm 150:6
Last edited by Cynthia on Fri Feb 13, 2009 7:03 am America/Denver, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: split topic


Post by Believer »


"And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years: and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the fourth day." Genesis 1:1-19

This is the Bible's description of the creation of the sun, moon, and stars. The sun is 1.3 million times bigger than the earth. Sunlight coming to earth represents only about one part in 2 billion of the total amount of energy radiating from the sun, and yet this is sufficient to supply our planet with about 4.69-million horsepower per square mile.

These waves of electromagnetic energy, traveling at 186,000 miles per second, take about 8 minutes to cover the 93 million miles to earth. Sunlight consists of several types of energy, including cosmic, gamma, and x-rays, ultraviolet and infrared light, and visible light of many colors. The rainbow colors of visible light make our earth and the things God created beautiful to look at.

The sun's rays vaporize the water which will eventually fall as rain and snow, filling our rivers and reservoirs and making possible the generation of hydroelectric energy. Solar energy is also stored in wood, coal, oil, and natural gas, providing us with heat and energy when we need it. We also have photovoltaic and passive solar systems that allow us to harness sunlight directly.

Warming Infrared

The warming infrared rays of the sun, or heat from various sources, is useful in the treatment of neuralgia, neuritis, arthritis, and sinusitis. Heat is usually good in the treatment of any pain. Warmth also helps bring healthful, natural body oils to the surface of the skin, keeping it smooth and protected.

Almost all of the food we eat depends upon sunlight to grow. In fact, the energy our bodies receive from the food we eat is, in a sense, solar energy that the plant has stored in the form of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins.

Antiseptic Ultraviolet

The ultraviolet rays are antiseptic and are capable of killing bacteria, viruses, fungi, yeasts, molds, and mites in air and water, and on surfaces. Even reflected light from north windows can destroy bacteria in the dust on window sills and floors. Since most window glass filters about 95 per cent of the ultraviolet rays, it would be well if they could be opened and the curtains pulled back for a period of time each day. Ultraviolet light also kills germs on our skin. This makes sunbathing a useful treatment for many skin diseases, such as diaper rash, athlete's foot, psoriasis, acne, boils, or impetigo.

Sunlight also toughens and thickens the skin, making it less susceptible to injury and infection. Regular, controlled, moderate exposure to sunlight, instead of damaging the skin and aging it, actually protects the skin by building up a natural resistance to the harmful effects of ultraviolet light, while giving it a nice velvety texture. Later on we will discuss some precautions, but first, more benefits.

Vitamin D

Ultraviolet light converts cholesterol in the skin to vitamin D. This vitamin is essential for the proper handling of calcium in the body and thus in the prevention of rickets and adult osteomalacia. Vitamin D is also added to some of the food we eat. It might be possible to get too much of the vitamin this way; but not when we get it from sunlight, since the body makes only what we need. Getting out in the sun, therefore, is a good way to lower cholesterol levels in our bodies. If we expose six square inches of our skin to direct sunlight for one hour per day, we will obtain our minimum daily requirement for vitamin D.

Body Regulation

Sunlight helps to regulate almost all our bodily processes. Starting from the top (our minds) and working down, sunlight has been shown to increase our sense of well-being and to improve sleep. Ultraviolet light coming into our eyes stimulates the pineal gland, which helps to regulate our activity cycles. It has bean said, "Dark nights and bright days will help keep the hormones in the body functioning properly." In one experiment hyperactivity in school children was decreased when the classroom's fluorescent lights were changed to full spectrum lighting. Thyroid function may improve. Hormone imbalances tend to level out.

Resting heart rate, blood pressure, and respiration rates are all decreased after a sunbath. This result is especially true if any of them were high to begin with. Blood sugar levels can be stabilized. (NOTE: Diabetics must use extra caution in the sun, as they are at greater risk of permanent injury from sunburn.)

Sunlight stimulates the production of more red blood cells, increasing the oxygen content of the blood, and thus increasing muscular endurance. It also stimulates production of more white blood cells and enhances oxygen utilization, which helps the body maintain its defense against disease. While certain skin cancers are associated with exposure to sunlight, the incidence of some of the more serious internal cancers seems to decrease.

Appetite may be improved, along with our assimilation, elimination, and metabolic processes. Poisonous chemicals and heavy metals are removed from the bloodstream faster, while levels of healthy trace minerals are actually increased in the blood. Muscular strength has been increased, even in those unable to exercise. Sunlight has even been found helpful in the treatment of stomach ulcers.


As with most good things, there are some precautions to consider. The main concern is that of burning the skin. Normally, invisible pigment in the inner layer of the skin is converted to melanin, a much darker pigment that tends to reflect the sun's rays. But this process takes time. Blue-eyed blonds and red-haired people are not as adept at this, and these are the very ones who tend to bum easiest. The amount of natural pigment in the skin is the most important factor. For this reason Blacks have only about 20 percent as much skin cancer as Whites. For this same reason they also have more rickets, due to a lessened vitamin D production. The amount of tan acquired from previous exposure is a factor, too. A good tan may screen out up to 90 percent of the burning rays. Also, there are persons who for some reason are supersensitive to even a brief exposure to the sun. Some drugs, deodorants, soaps, cosmetics, and beverage alcohol can sensitize the skin to sunlight, making it more sensitive.

Excessive unsaturated or polyunsaturated, refined fat in the diet and in suntan oils and skin lotions can lead to the formation of free radicals. These may be contributing factors in the formation of some cancer. An abundance of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in the diet provides substances that help to prevent the formation of free radicals and protect against their harmful effects, and are thus important in order for the body to properly handle exposure to sunlight.

Overexposure to sunlight promotes scaliness, dryness, reddening, roughness, leatheriness of the skin, and wrinkles. These conditions are not due to any normal aging process, because the unexposed areas on the same individuals do not show these signs. In fact, no aging normally occurs in the skin until up to age 50. The capillaries in the skin are fifty times thinner than hair and can be permanently injured from sunburn, suffering some loss of their elasticity, bruising and breaking easier.

Overheating can lead to heat exhaustion or sunstroke. The big concern, though, is skin cancer. This is the most common cancer, and 80 percent occur on exposed areas of the face, head, neck, arms, and hands. Ultraviolet light from sunlight is believed by many to be the chief culprit. The National Cancer Institute estimates 300,000 cases of two types (basal cell and squamous cell) and 9,000 of the more deadly type (malignant melanoma). Malignant melanoma tends to occur on the lesser exposed parts of the body and is, thus, not clearly linked to sun exposure. These three combined lead to between 6,500 and 7,500 deaths every year-about 2 percent of all cancer deaths. Incidents and deaths for the first two are increasing in certain areas due to increased sun exposure. The key to prevention is to avoid sunburn and overexposure.

Wet skin burns more easily than dry. Sweating is good, however, as it cleanses and cools the skin. Although water is a poor reflector (reflecting ~5 percent, the same as grass), ultraviolet light does pass through it, so you can burn in the water. Dry sand reflects about 17 percent, white sand considerably more. Snow reflects up to 85 percent. Combine snow with high altitudes, where the atmosphere is thinner, allowing more sunlight through, and you have the makings of a good sunburn while you are skiing or mountain climbing. Only 1/3 of burning rays come directly from the sun, the other 2/3 come to us reflected from all directions.

Early detection is the next line of defense against skin cancer. If you suspect a precancerous condition, such as a mole or any other lesion that grows, changes color, spreads, or bleeds, get in touch with a physician for evaluation. He or she can best determine the type of lesion and the most effective form of treatment.

Remember, even if you burn only once a year, in fifty years you have tallied 50 burns. This accumulated effect increases the risk of skin cancer. Any excessive exposure can he considered as setting up precancerous conditions in the skin.
Max Benefit, Minimum Risk

How can we best use sunlight to obtain the benefits while minimizing the risks? The first rule is tan, don't burn. Take into consideration the time of year and the hour of the day. As the sun moves more directly overhead, its intensity increases.

Ordinary glass does not allow much of the ultraviolet light to pass through. Smoke, smog, and clothing block a large proportion of these rays. However, since clouds filter only about 20 percent, one needs to beware of sunburn even on a cloudy day, if it is during the season and time of day when the sun is directly overhead. When sunbathing, unaccustomed persons should plan their exposures, keeping them short at first (2 minutes per side) and gradually increasing the duration and frequency of exposure.

Any color change in the skin beyond the slightly pink stage is a sign you have overdone it. The therapeutic effects occur just below the level of turning red. Remember that it takes time for skin color to change. Get out of the sun before you turn pink. If you don't, it may be too late. Also the benefits are enhanced with shorter, more frequent exposures. When you've decided that you have had enough sun, the best sunscreen to wear is clothing. Chemical sunscreens applied to the skin may also be used. They are not necessary when sunbathing, and neither are creams or oils. Clean, dry skin is best for sunbathing. Opaque ointments like zinc oxide are the best for total blockage to susceptible areas like the nose, and they do not wash off in water like other screens that usually need to be reapplied.

Want a Tan?

If you cannot tan—don't try. Cover the body or use sun screens. If you can tan—do it gradually, and never allow yourself to bum. Solariums may be built that allow for privacy and protection from winds, so that you can sunbathe even in winter. Clear plexiglas, acrylite, or other plastics that are ultraviolet transmitting (UVT) labeled, as thin as possible (preferably less than one-eighth inch thick), would be the materials to use if a roof is needed.

Ultraviolet lamps may be used indoors. Fluorescent-type tubes are best. They should emit between 295 and 4,000 nanometers, not below 295, as this is detrimental. Always protect the eyes, genitals, and nipples, and be careful not to fall asleep under the lamp. Follow the instructions carefully. Use a timer or alarm clock for safety.

A helpful motto to remember when sunbathing is "Not too much—as often as possible." Combine productive exercise in the fresh air and sunshine for a really healthful trio.

The Scriptures Say:

The Scriptures declare, "Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun." Ecclesiastes 11:7

Our Saviour, God's Son, is linked with the sun and all of its benefits. As we see the sun in the sky above, let us also remember that "unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings." Malachi 4:2


Post by Believer »


"And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." Genesis 2:16-17

The dictionary defines this strange word "abstemiousness" as being sparing or moderate in eating and drinking. We have all heard the motto, "Moderation in all things." Usually it is understood that all "good things" are what is referred to. Surely we cannot endorse the moderate use of heroin, moderation in adultery or being moderately disposed to negative attitudes like hate, bigotry or deceit. A precise definition of abstemiousness would be "moderation (avoiding extremes) in those things that are good, and avoiding or totally abstaining from those things that are harmful."

Basis for Temperance

In the introductory scripture God gives us the principle of abstemiousness upon which the right to enjoy eternal life is based. Adam and Eve were created in the image of God and had no disposition toward selfish self-gratification and so would naturally practice self-control or temperance. They had no tendencies toward the extremes. They were to practice moderation in their free eating of every tree in the garden. But they were not to eat from one certain tree—the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God wanted them to experience only good. Satan suggested that they ought to find out what a little evil would be like, too. They distrusted God and ate of the forbidden fruit. They broke the health principle of abstemiousness and decided to go beyond the moderate use of those things that are good and also throw in a little of the bad. Their disregard caused a change to take place in their very natures. Once giving in to a selfish desire, they had now opened the floodgate of intemperance and eventual death. God had warned them, "In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."

If God in His great love and mercy had not intervened, their situation would have been hopeless. God had a plan already in store just in case such an emergency should arise. This plan to save not only Adam and Eve from eternal death, but also all their descendants as well, is the main theme of the entire Bible. It is God's way to restore to the human race perfect self-control, just as Adam and Eve had in the beginning. That way is Jesus Christ, the Son of God. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16. "And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life." 1 John 5:11-12. The evidence that a person has received the Spirit of God in Christ is described in Galatians 5:22-23, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law."

We can summarize what has been said up to this point as follows:

1. Abstemiousness is the moderate use of those things that are good, while abstaining from those things that are harmful.

2. This abstention requires self-control or temperance.

3. Temperance is a gift from God that comes to us only as we receive Christ.
Balanced Self-control

Temperance, then, is required in order to build a lifestyle that is in balance physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually. After all, without self-control we could not put into practice the knowledge that we have. Unless we have the power to carry out all our good intentions, they are not of much use.

Once we have the power of God working in us, we can practice moderation in those things that are good. We will avoid extremes—the "over/unders."

Overeating leads to stomach-upset and/or obesity. Undereating leads to malnutrition or starvation.

Overwork leads to exhaustion or injury. Underwork leads to atrophy and weakness.

Over-rest leads to weakness and laziness. Under-rest breeds mental confusion and exhaustion.

We also need a balanced intake of air, water, and sunlight-not too much and not too little.

Mental and Social Aspects

Abstemiousness should regulate not only our physical health habits, but the mental and social aspects of life as well. Too much reading, too much talking, too much thinking, too much entertainment, too much sports, tea much television, materialism, and fashion—all of these things, if not properly regulated, can overtax the mental powers and even lead to physical breakdown somewhere in the body. It could even be said that they are, in a way, intoxicating when carried to excess. We're familiar with the expressions "glued to the TV" or "sports fan" (short for fanatic). These examples serve to illustrate how one's entire life can become unbalanced and the mind somewhat intoxicated or warped by overstimulation. The Bible teaches us, "Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." Philippians 4:8. This antidote would certainly be effective for many of society's mental and social ills.

Common Addictive Substances

Alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine, as commonly used (excluding rare medicinal usages), do no good whatsoever and have been proved to trigger many harmful side effects, depending on the pattern of use. Each one has its place to some degree in the lineup of prime suspects contributing to the epidemic of the degenerative diseases-atherosclerosis, osteoporosis, cancer, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and so on. They also play a role in violent behavior, accidents and fires. There is almost always some degree of dependence involved in their use. Aside from the physical harm done, this dependency is detrimental mentally and socially, as the user is subconsciously conditioned to use them as crutches. The development of important problem-solving skills and everyday coping skills is retarded to the extent that the chemical crutch is used as a substitute. All that the user need do to discover the extent of their dependency is to stop their use.

Legal and Illegal Drugs

Illegal drugs should be rejected for the same reasons. They carry the additional drawback of moral guilt and possible civil punishment. Even over-the-counter prescription drugs should be avoided. They always carry side effects, many times do not work as they should, and usually there are safer alternative remedies that could be used instead.'

Sometimes strong medications are the lesser of two evils, and in such cases their use is justified. Until something better is found, their use may be necessary.
Official Recommendations

While we need to practice moderation in the eating of any food, we need to be more moderate in the use of some foods than in others. The U.S. Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs in 1977 issued these recommendations to all Americans:

1. Eat less sugars and sweets. 2. Eat less fat and cholesterol. 3. Eat less salt. 4. Eat more fruits, vegetables and starches. 5. Keep your weight normal.

In practical, everyday language these guidelines mean we need to eat less refined, processed foods, and less animal products of all kinds. A basically vegetarian diet composed mostly of natural, simple foods eaten in quantities to maintain a healthy body weight is ideal.

Some food additives, irritating spices, condiments, vinegar, baking powder and soda should also be avoided, as they are upsetting to the stomach and/or nervous system.

Temperance Fosters Safety

Temperance and abstemiousness foster safety as well. Most accidents are either caused by law-breaking, human error (miscalculation), or unsafe conditions. Almost all automobile accidents and injuries could be prevented if alcohol were eliminated, seat belts worn, laws obeyed, and vehicles maintained. Around the home the main danger areas are gardens, paths and steps, roads, machinery, and water. Inside the home consider toys, flammable clothing, fires, electricity, medicine, chemicals, and kitchen appliances and implements as potential threats. The old adage certainly is true, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Learning Good Habits

One of the differences between people and animals is the way that they acquire behavior patterns. Most of the things animals do, they do because of instinct. This knowledge and behavior is inherited by the animal. The capacity to learn or be taught anything varies considerably, depending on the type of animal.

In contrast, man has very few instincts, although tendencies are inherited. Most of what we do, we do because we learned it somewhere. Through various learning processes we acquire habits. Habits are convenient, since once we have them, we don't have to deliberate about every little thing we do. They can also be a nuisance if we don't like them or try to change them. Some habits are hard to get rid of. It is easier to learn good habits than to unlearn bad ones.

Every time we do or think something, a specific nerve pathway is activated in the brain. These pathways become permanent fixtures in the brain and are strengthened the more they are activated. In breaking a habit we need to deactivate the nerve pathway. This is done in two ways. By saying "NO" to the habit, inhibitory nerve fibers begin to form on the old pathway which tend to weaken the strength of the habit. Then by substituting something else in place of the old habit, a new pathway is formed which acts as kind of an alternative route over which the strength of the old habit can be directed. Even though it may be deactivated, the old pathway is still there, making it easy to reactivate if we revert back to it even once.

To break a habit, then, one must be decisive. Don't be ambivalent or indecisive. This tends only to excite both the inhibitory and excitatory nerves at the same time. Instead, be firm. Starve that old habit and begin feeding a new one. Concentrate on a positive substitute, and you won't have to expend as much energy fighting the negative one. For example, substitute deep breathing or water drinking for smoking. Every time you have an urge to smoke, do some deep breathing or get a drink of water instead. But the most important thing is to make up your mind. Strengthening any positive lifestyle habit always tends to weaken the negative ones. For example: a good exercise program is one of the best antidotes to smoking. Good habits tend to foster more good habits, and bad habits to promulgate more bad habits. "Birds of a feather..."

When attempting to eliminate a habit, anticipate trouble spots. Be prepared for the time when you are likely to experience that old habit clamoring for attention. Plan ahead. Rehearse in your mind how you will successfully overcome it. Try to avoid situations where the habit will be aroused. Don't make exceptions. Remember, one exception reactivates that dormant habit. Be honest about your weaknesses. Acknowledge them, but do not dwell on them. Dwell on the positive and practice the good habits you wish to keep and strengthen often.
Self-control a Gift From God

It must be remembered that genuine self-control is a gift from God that we can receive only in Christ. Jesus said, "I am the vine, ye are the branches: he that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing." John 15:5. We often in this life find ourselves at the end of our rope. But in God we have an infinite store of resources. So much so that the apostle Paul could say, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." Philippians 4:13


Post by Believer »


"And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made." Genesis 2:2-3

Of course God did not rest on the seventh day because He was tired or fatigued to rest simply means to cease a particular activity In this case God had ceased His work of creation and was sanctifying (setting apart) the seventh day for something else, namely fellowship with Adam and Eve as they enjoyed the newly created earth together. Thus, the seventh day was set apart for all time, and ever after was to be kept holy as a reminder of the truth about our earth's creation and as a day to worship God.

Activity and rest

Notice that with the creation of our world activity preceded rest. The principle of activity preceding rest is an important one for our health. Physical and mental activity both require energy and create waste products. As our energy level goes down and wastes accumulate, we experience fatigue and a desire for rest. During rest, energy is restored, and the waste buildup is diminished. An important difference between physical and mental activity is that physical activity usually leaves the muscles relaxed, whereas prolonged mental activity alone leaves the muscles tense. Rest and sleep are dependent upon our ability to relax; the person who is tense is not relaxing, and therefore cannot really test. In our sedentary society, unbalanced by too much mental and not enough physical activity, we need more muscular exercise in order to truly relax, rest, and counteract fatigue.

Fatigue is protective in that it serves to make us aware of our need of rest. It is not a good idea to ignore this signal or to try to counteract it with drugs. The "coffee break" is anything but restful. Coffee and cigarettes provide an artificial stimulation, but without any recuperation. The underlying fatigue is still there. As fatigue increases, efficiency and performance decrease.

Relaxing with tobacco, alcohol, or other drugs is not recommended. They all have dangerous side effects and do not teach one how to relax naturally or how to avoid the causes of tension. They do not supply any energy, but actually cause the person to borrow excessive amounts of energy from his own emergency reserves, some of which are never replenished. Fatigue is actually increased instead of decreased by the use of these drugs.

There are many other factors that can produce fatigue, such as overeating, lack of exercise, stress, stale air, and not drinking enough water. There is also "pathological fatigue" that may be caused by diseases like anemia, heart failure, depressed thyroid or adrenal function, cancer, or any chronic infection. Unaccountable or persistent fatigue should be reported to a physician.

"Wreckreation" or "re-creation?"

In spite of our fatigue we are a very recreational society. We have recreational vehicles, recreation halls, recreation parks, and on and on. The work week has shortened over the years. Some industries are moving toward a 30-hour work week and experimenting with 20. Our leisure time is lengthening, and there is more money to spend—or at least there is credit. Is all our recreating helping us obtain the rest we need? To help ourselves, let's first learn to pronounce the word a new way. Instead of "wreckreation," let's say "re-creation." For those who are tired of feeling "wrecked" after their recreation here are some suggestions for "re-creative" activities. Make them something different from your usual work, done at your own pace—no deadlines. Of course, you should enjoy them. Something of a practical or creative nature is ideal. Having the activity be something outdoors with the family is nice, but it needs to be engaged in with the heart (cheerfully, not grudgingly), and It should be noncompetitive. The less expensive the better. It should be engaged in more frequently for shorter durations, rather than saving it all up for a two-week annual vacation. How many come home from their vacation needing a vacation to recuperate from their vacation? Our "re-creation" could even come on a weekly basis. After all, God Himself worked six days, then rested the seventh. He invites us to do the same today.

Have a Break

We all need a rest, or break, from the routine of our major activity. For the person felling trees or doing construction work a rest could mean sitting down with a good book. But for the salesman or secretary, resting might mean an invigorating hike in the mountains. Our ability to rest also depends upon our ability to shift gears. Some people take their work home. They can pick up work, but they can't lay it down. They seem unable to cease. We should be able to say along with the one-hundred-year-old man, who, when asked the secret of long life, responded, "When ah works, ah works hard, and when ah sits, ah sits loose-like."

Other ways to help bring relaxation include taking a warm bath or a shower, sitting or reclining comfortably while listening to soothing music or reading something uplifting. Enjoyable, nonstressful hobbies, being out in nature, doing some simple deed for somebody else, and prayer are also forms of relaxation.

Physical work usually makes muscular relaxation automatic afterward. But it is surprising how much useless muscular tension we can maintain. Clenched fists and set jaws, furrowed brows and jumpy knees, even squinting eyes are tension-producing habits to overcome. Progressive muscle relaxation exercises can help in breaking these habits, as long as they are used to illustrate the difference between how a tense and a relaxed muscle feels and to practice relaxing areas of tension.

"Alpha-state" relaxation

However, many teachers today use progressive muscle relaxation, as well as transcendental meditation, autogenic training, hypnosis, biofeedback, deep-breathing exercises, and visualization exercises to elicit the "relaxation response." The so-called relaxation response is basically another name for a particular altered state of consciousness with a high alpha brainwave index. When we train ourselves to enter into this state to help us relax, there may be some unhealthful side effects, such as brain damage, insanity, and spiritualistic or psychic phenomena. These techniques that overtly or covertly teach people to enter into an "alpha state" are not necessary for health or to relax, especially when there are equally effective and safe methods such as we have already recommended.

Our need for sleep

Rest is so important to life that the vital organs are designed with built-in rest periods. The heart rests between each heat, and the lungs between each breath. The stomach rests between each meal if it is given time. The central nervous system is recharged during sleep.

Rest and relaxation cannot take the place of sleep. Human beings were designed to be awake during the day and asleep at night. We are "larks," not "owls." Wakefulness and sleepiness are normally controlled by enzymes and hormone systems within the body which remain fairly fixed, even if one were to remain isolated in total darkness or total light. These "internal clocks" can be nudged forward or backward a few degrees. They may also be ignored, but not without negative consequences.

Shift work and sleep

It is better to avoid rotating-shift work. These workers are twice as likely to have trouble sleeping. They report less job satisfaction and have lower work productivity. They tend to use more coffee to get going and more alcohol and sleeping pills to go to sleep. Many shifts rotate in the wrong direction. It is better to go from days, to evening, to nights (rotating clockwise), not the other way (days to nights to evening—rotating counterclockwise.) Also, most shifts rotate too frequently. Workers should stay on a shift at least ten days, since it takes about five days to adapt. The more slowly the shift rotates the better. Here are some additional suggestions. Gradually change the hours of sleep when nearing the end of the shift, and on days off between shifts, adjusting clockwise three hours per day in anticipation of the next shift so that the change isn't quite so drastic. Eliminate alcohol, caffeine, and other drugs that complicate and confuse the body's normal functioning. Practice strict regularity in all aspects of the daily schedule, even on the days off.

Jet lag

With increased air travel, jet lag becomes a problem for many. To reduce jet lag, get enough sleep before you leave; in flight, eat little, and take no alcohol or caffeine; reset your watch to your new time zone; and adapt to your new time by walking, talking, and keeping occupied till bedtime.
How to get good sleep

As a rule, plan to go to bed early (before 10 p.m.). It has been estimated that every hour of sleep before midnight is worth two after midnight. Studies have shown 7-9 hours of sleep per night to be most healthful. Nine or more hours have been associated with decreased health and six or less with the poorest health.

The first prerequisite for a good night's sleep is daily exercise. Remember, activity precedes rest. In our sedentary society imbalances between physical and mental activity are common. Too much brain work and not enough physical work cause the muscles to be in a state of tension. (However, too much exercise too near bedtime can keep you awake.) Tension lessens the depth and soundness of sleep. The quality of sleep depends on the ability to relax. City living, with all its light and sound, is not very conducive to sleep or rest. Noise pollution is doubling about every 10 years. We may not even be aware of all the sounds that are around us, but they can still affect us by producing tension and nervousness.

It is better to wear pajamas or a warm nightgown and use lighter weight covers, than to use heavy blankets. Do not cover the head while sleeping. Leave the windows open several inches to allow fresh air in the room. Beds should not sag or be too soft. Pillows should be flat, except in cases of hiatus hernia or heart failure where the head should be elevated a few inches. Avoid starting new activities late in the day.

Allow yourself time to wind down. Have an evening ritual. Avoid stimulants such as television, drugs, and rich, spicy food at night before going to bed. Big evening meals interfere with good sleep, especially in children. If needed, naps should be taken before lunch, not in the evening. Even a fifteen-minute rest before lunch is worth about forty-five minutes of nightime sleep. Keep well hydrated. Stay alert and active during the waking hours. The quieter and darker the room, the better the sleep. Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease may do better sleeping on their stomach with a pillow under their chest. People with back problems can try sleeping on their side. All these suggestions should improve the quality of sleep.

What about sleeping pills?

Sleeping pills alter the sleep cycle and decrease REM sleep. As the body tries to make up the lost REM sleep, too-frequent dreaming and nightmares occur which disturb the sleep even further. Thus, the regular use of sleeping pills does not promote good sleep and can make insomnia worse. Sleep complaints should be considered as any other health problem. They are only symptoms. The cause should be ascertained and corrected. Is the problem acute or chronic? Keep a weekly 24-hour log. Compare your living habits with ones that promote good sleep, such as those suggested in this article. Not following good "sleep hygiene" habits is responsible for 60 percent of all disorders. Daytime drugs affect us at night too. Anxiety is the chief cause of insomnia, whereas depression tends to cut sleep short in the mornings.

Signs of sleep loss

The most outstanding symptoms of sleep loss are depression and apathy, interspersed with irritability and aggression. The best way to recover from a bad night is to resume the normal schedule. If a nap is needed, it should be short, no more than 30 minutes, and not in the evening.

Those who still have trouble falling asleep can try a little hops or catnip tea before bedtime. Slow, deep breathing or soaking in a neutral bath for ten minutes may help. Blot the skin dry and move slowly and quietly. Don't panic. Worrying and concentrating on sleeping will drive it from you. Just resting in bed will do you good anyway.

Deal with stress generators

But let's face it, when there's a serious concern on our minds, these tactics are like aiming a pea shooter at a charging elephant. The cause of the concern must be squarely dealt with. If it is an interpersonal problem, then make things right as fast as you can. "let not the sun go down on your wrath." Ephesians 4:26. If it is a financial problem or some other circumstance that is threatening, we need to do our part and leave the remainder with God. Remember, to rest means to cease our activity. It also means to cease from our worries and the cares of the day. We are given only one day at a time, and no one knows what the next day will bring. It could be better than we think, especially if we heed the invitation of a loving God:

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." Matthew 11:18-30

Pleasant Dreams!


Post by Believer »


"And the LORD God took the man [Adam], and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it." Genesis 2:15. God's original plan was for people to be active. Physical activity is necessary to maintain all our functional body units and to keep a reserve physical capacity to handle emergency situations.

Use or lose

Today, in many parts of the world people are forced to be physically active just to survive. They must obtain food and clothing, build shelters, travel great distances on foot, and work with their hands in a variety of life-sustaining occupations. In our society, however, we have found ways to get around most of these problems. Automobiles carry us where we want to go, and machines do much of our work for us. Society has become specialized to the point that most people are involved in occupations not requiring very much physical labor.

Some vigorous physical activity on a regular basis is needed in order to prevent our bodies from deteriorating. Syndromes of disuse include obesity, lack of endurance, general muscle weakness, protruding abdomen, chronic low-back pain, muscle stiffness and soreness, low breathing capacity, intolerance to stress, elevated resting pulse rate and blood pressure, increased blood-fat levels, and increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

What is "physical fitness?"

Physical fitness comprises several components. Endurance is the ability to perform work for sustained periods of time without undue fatigue. It is dependent upon several factors. Chief among them is the ability of the cardiovascular system to supply oxygen-rich blood to the muscle cells and for these cells to utilize oxygen and fuel to produce energy.

Building endurance

Endurance is best improved by increasing systematically, but gradually, the time one spends in regular periods of mild to moderate exercise. Mild to moderate exercise might be, 15-60 minutes of walking, jogging, bicycling, swimming, or doing manual labor at a pace that causes the heart rate to increase and be maintained at from 50-85 per cent of its capacity for the duration of the exercise period. A 37-year-old with a resting heart rate of 72 wanting to exercise at 70 percent capacity would calculate his target heart rate with this equation.

(220 - 37 - 72) x 70% +72=150

In this example 150 beats per minute would be the target heart rate. For those less adept at math there is always the "talk test" to guide you. It works like this, "If you can't carry on a conversation, you're exercising too hard. If you can sing, you're exercising too easy." When you exercise this way you are maintaining a "steady state." This continuity is necessary to develop endurance and the "training effect." Such endurance training must occur about every other day.

Muscle strength

Another component of physical fitness is muscle strength. The bigger the muscle the larger the muscle fibers are to do the work. This is comparable to a wire cable-the larger the wires, the stronger the cable you have. However, a muscle may look big on the outside, but may actually contain a great deal of fat. Size can be deceptive when it comes to strength.

Physical strength also involves the bone-mineral density. Brittle bones could give way simply from the stress of one's own muscles pulling hard on them.

Muscle mass is increased and strength developed by systematically and gradually increasing the resistance against which a muscle is made to work. Common methods include weights, isometrics, dynamic tension, and manual labor.


Flexibility involves the degree to which our muscles, joints, ligaments and tendons allow us to move in our full range of motion. Common problem areas include the low back, shoulders, and chest-muscle groups, and the back of the legs. These muscles become tight, and we lose mobility because of prolonged periods of sitting, improper body alignment or posture, and lack of exercise.

There are specific stretching exercises that can be done to correct and maintain our full range of motion of all the muscle groups. Also the habit of maintaining proper posture at all times needs to be learned.

Whichever stretches you are doing, it is always best to stretch slowly and easily. Gradually allow the muscle to relax and reach a full stretch. Never jerk, bounce, or force a stretch. You could do serious injury. In time the muscle will lengthen to its full potential. Back pain or any persistent pain could be serious and should be evaluated by a physician so that the cause may be determined and appropriate treatment given.

Body composition

Body composition can be considered as an element of physical fitness. This term commonly refers to the percentage of body fat. Maximum levels for health might be 15 per cent fat in men and 22 per cent fat in women. Many men are averaging 24 per cent and women 35 per cent. Ideally, we should strive to maintain a healthy percentage of body fat, as well as a good overall weight that suits our occupation, height, and frame.

The amount of exercise necessary for most people to achieve metabolic body fat changes exceeds that which would be required to simply get in shape. Take at least one month to slowly work up to about an hour of continuous moderate exercise five or six times per week. This should be enough time to burn the recommended 500 calories' worth of exercise per day or 2,000-3,000 extra calories per week that seems to be the average amount required for a weight-loss program.

Before starting a physical fitness program

Now that you know what physical fitness is and what exercise can do for you, you're ready to blast off! Right? Just a minute. The conservative approach would be to have medical clearance if any of these apply: past age 30 and have not been exercising, overweight, have a history of high blood pressure or heart trouble, or you have not had a checkup in the past year.

The liberal approach would be, if there are no obvious warning signs, to go ahead and start exercising. Just make sure you start out easy and progress gradually. Learn how to exercise correctly and take care of yourself.

Some general guidelines and precautions include not engaging in strenuous exercise for an hour or two after eating. (Light exercise after eating is good, though, as it aids digestion.) The same holds true when you are sick or not up to par—vigorous exercise is out, but light exercise might be beneficial in some cases. Aches and pains may be avoided by not attempting to do too much too soon, using proper form, and having good shoes, clothing, and other equipment you need.

Serious warning signs during exercise may include unusual shortness of breath, weakness, heart irregularities, or pressure or pain sensations that can be anywhere from the wrists to the pit of the stomach to the jaws and between the shoulder blades. In these instances you should discontinue exercising and see a physician right away. Other signs such as dizziness, nausea, side aches, prolonged recovery, and miscellaneous aches and pains may be attended to by yourself first. if no relief is obtained or if in doubt see a physician.

Program outline

A good, streamlined overall exercise routine might look something like this. First, have a five-minute warm-up period consisting of stretching and a few calisthenics. This will get the body prepared for what is to follow and help prevent injuries. Then, do five minutes of some muscle-toning exercises. Work the upper body and abdomen if your main endurance exercise is going to be mostly using the leg muscles as in walking, jogging, or cycling. Now get into your endurance-building phase. Start out easy for the first few minutes, and progress up to your training level of intensity. Keep it up for 15-30 minutes.

Some exercises that are aimed only at working the muscles and not the cardiovascular system do not qualify for fulfilling this phase of the exercise program. Also, exercises that are too short, too intense, or too easy will not allow you to reach your training heart-rate level in a reasonable length of time and maintain it for the duration of the training phase.

Stop gently

Don't stop abruptly when you are done. Slow down and keep moving at an easy pace. This cooling-off period should last five to ten minutes. Your pulse rate should he below 100 beats per minute within three to five minutes after entering the cool-down part. If it is not, you may be overdoing it. You can easily feel your pulse at your wrist or side of the throat. You can count for ten seconds and multiply by six to get your heart rate for one minute. An exercise program like this should be done at least three to four times per week or every other day.

It takes time and effort!

Each time we exercise we place a demand on the body. The body will adapt to those demands. This is known as the "overload principle" and is the basis for maintaining and improving fitness. In short, to get anything out of it, you have to put something in—that spells work.

The idea of "work" turns many people away from exercise. Many people feel that they are already overworked, so why go out looking for more? But, as has already been explained, few people's work is the kind of work that will promote physical fitness. For these people especially, a fitness program would give them more energy in the long run by helping their bodies to become stronger and function more efficiently.

Still, there are others who do not think they have the time. But we simply need to make time, because we need exercise for health. Cut down on other things. If our own physical well-being is not a high enough priority, what is?

Getting and staying motivated

Many people are ready and willing to exercise, but they lack motivation. They can't seem to start, or once they start, they don't stick with It. Fear of death prevents some from exercising while it encourages others to exercise. If an exercise program is properly entered into and carried out, we need not be afraid. The vast majority have much more to fear from not exercising than from exercising. But fear is really a poor source of motivation. Knowledge of the benefits helps some, but it doesn't seem to work in motivating people who are not interested.

For most people the essential ingredients to get started on an exercise program are that it needs to be fun, convenient, and not too difficult. Injuries turn people off, so they should be avoided by taking necessary precautions.

Consider the exerciser, the environment, and the exercise. Strive for a happy union of all three. Other motivating factors include having a regular routine that you stick to, joining an organized program with trained leadership, or having group participation. Obtaining positive feedback from other people, getting results, and charting your progress so that you can see and keep track of how you are doing are all helpful. The approval of your doctor and doing better on your physical exam this year than last year are good incentives.

Self-disciplined individuals and people who lead well-regulated lives find sticking to any program, including exercise, easier. These qualities are largely picked up in childhood. People who don't acquire them early in life may have a more difficult time, but nevertheless it can be done. After all, everything we do in life is ultimately a daily decision. We are always making decisions. Making the right ones can be made easier if we concentrate more on living one day at a time. As we do this, we will find ourselves taking advantage of opportunities more, and reacting to the consequences of our neglect less.

Beyond this life

Many people have found a "fountain of youth" for themselves in their exercise program, and that is enough to keep them motivated. But neither exercise, diet, stress management, or anything else will keep us going forever. Everyone knows that these bodies of ours are slowly wearing Out. We can slow down significantly the rate of decline, but someday the silver cord will break. "Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was." Ecclesiastes 12:7. This ending would be sad except that it is not the end.

Soon, when Jesus comes, all the righteous who have ever lived will come forth from the grave, and, together with the living righteous, will receive perfect, immortal bodies. "For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words." 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18


Post by Believer »

Proper Diet

"And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat." Genesis 1:29

Why do we eat? Because we enjoy it. And we enjoy it enough that very few would want to give up the habit if they could. Thank God He created us with the ability to taste and smell and that He put such delightful flavors and aromas into the food He has appointed for us to eat. But even if we didn't enjoy it, we would still have to eat. Food is needed to furnish fuel to supply energy to the body, to provide material to repair and build tissues, and to supply substances that act to regulate body processes.

Any chemical substance found in foods that functions in one or more of these ways is known as a nutrient. The seven basic classes of nutrients are carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals, fiber, and water.

Only carbohydrates, fats, and proteins provide energy or calories. Sugars and starches are both carbohydrates. Carbohydrates and proteins yield about four calories per gram, and fats yield about nine calories per gram. As these figures show, fats are a much more concentrated source of energy. Fiber, long regarded as a nonessential, is now recognized as an important body regulator. It helps to control blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and also aids in colon hygiene. A low-fiber diet is associated with increased risk of colon cancer, as well as other bowel diseases.

When food is properly selected and prepared, so that the basic nutrients are consumed in the correct ratios and amounts, we can be assured of good nutrition. All natural foods contain all seven essential nutrients. However, the different amino acids (the building blocks of proteins), fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals are found in varying amounts in different foods. So we need to eat a variety of food to get all the nutrients in sufficient quantities.

Malnutrition means we are not getting the proper intake of nutrients, or in some cases that the nutrients are not utilized as they should be in the body. Undernutrition means there is a lack of certain nutrients. In under-developed countries the most common problem is simply not getting enough food to eat or not enough variety. Starvation is a tragic health problem for millions of people in the world. less frequent, but equally serious, are the problems of protein or vitamin/mineral deficiency diseases. Usually, as long as people are getting enough unrefined calories to eat, these diseases are not common.

Overnutrition means too many nutrients. In developed countries it is usually related to the excess consumption of refined foods. For millions of the well-fed people of the world overnutrition is the root cause of much premature death and disease. The top three killer diseases in the U.S. each have strong contributing dietary factors. They are heart disease, cancer, and strokes. Hypertension and diabetes also have strong dietary links. The specific dietary excesses that tend to promote or cause these diseases involve cholesterol, animal fat, too much total dietary fat, too much sugar, too much protein, and too much salt. Basically, just too many calories in general. It is possible to get a toxic overdose of specific vitamins or minerals. Usually one would have to be taking vitamin/mineral pills or highly concentrated foods for this to happen.

Obesity is one of the most common side effects of overnutrition. A combination of proper diet and exercise is needed to correct the problem. Briefly, the food in the diet should be low in fat and high in fiber. High-protein diets are no more effective than any other diet except that there is rapid initial water loss. Excess protein is harmful to the body in several ways; in time it weakens the kidneys, heart, bones, and immune system. Instead, eat a regular, balanced diet that is low in fat and sugar and high in fiber. In terms of food this regimen means sticking to mainly fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes. Most people who are obese need to eat less. They probably need to learn to accept being slightly hungry most of the time-at least until their body adjusts to less food, and they become physically fit through an exercise program.

We can briefly summarize what we have learned about proper nutrition thus: "With a calm, thankful attitude and at proper times, eat a wide variety of mostly unrefined foods, prepared in a simple, attractive, and palatable way, in sufficient quantity to maintain ideal body weight and good health."

Our attitude about the food we eat and our attitude while eating is important. If we are nervous or in a hurry or upset about something, the digestive process is impaired. It is better not to eat at all, unless we can do so in a positive frame of mind and take our time. Hurried eating tends to overeating. Since digestion begins in the mouth, it is important to chew your food slowly and well.

A good breakfast should come early in the day. There is no such thing as "breakfast food" either. Many people enjoy potatoes, or beans, or other vegetables, and a main entree at breakfast. Why not? Such food gives your body the nutrients it needs to restore itself after the night's fast and sets the nutritional tone for the day. Usually, another main meal should be consumed no sooner than five hours later. Most people could get by very well on two meals per day. Those who do not need many calories for their daily occupation or who are overweight should try this two-meal-a-day plan. If a third meal is necessary it should be lighter and smaller and at least two hours before bedtime. Eating big meals late at night or before going to bed is not a good practice. Digestion during sleep is not efficient because the metabolic rate is falling. Sleep can be disturbed, and often one feels the effects the next morning. The same amount of calories eaten in the evening are more fattening than if they were eaten in the morning. This fact can easily be explained on the basis of the rise and fall in the metabolic rate between morning and evening. Also, most bodies are energy-conservation conscious, meaning that it is easier to store fat than to get rid of it once it is there.

Eating between meals or having too many meals in a day interferes with digestion. Sour stomachs and sour attitudes are often the result. Smaller, lighter meals do digest more rapidly. The rule is that the stomach should be allowed sufficient time to completely empty itself of one meal and rest for maybe an hour before more food is eaten.

Factors that slow the stomach's emptying time are the fat content of the meal, amount of food eaten, liquid drunk with the meal, and sedentary occupations. Fruit or vegetable meals usually leave the stomach in about two hours, whereas higher fat and protein meals take four to five hours.

To prevent overeating and indigestion there should not be too many varieties of food eaten at once. It is true that we should eat a wide variety of food from meal to meal and from day to day, but three or four different kinds of food at one time is plenty.

A good variety of plain, unrefined plant food is more nutritionally balanced than the animal products and manmade processed foods. Whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, peas, nuts, and seeds contain high-quality protein, a better fatty-acid profile (thus decreasing the risk of heart disease and cancer), no cholesterol, plenty of complex carbohydrates and fiber, and are rich in vitamins and minerals and water. Animal products and man-made foods are often high in fat, cholesterol, sugar, salt, and harmful additives, and are lacking in fiber. Sometimes we cannot obtain an ideal diet. People shouldn't be made to feel guilty about what they eat if they are doing the best that they can with what knowledge and resources they have. Certainly it is not unhealthful to use some refined products like white flour, sugar, or oil in small amounts to prepare healthful and tasty dishes. A moderate amount of salt can be used by most people. The problem is that the average American taste bud has been conditioned through overuse to expect and demand far too much of these things. It would be well to gradually re-educate people to require much less.

The U.S. Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs in 1977 issued these recommendations to all Americans: Reduce salt intake by about 50-85 percent, cut fat consumption by at least 10 percent, slash sugar ingestion by 40 percent, and limit cholesterol to 300 mg. daily (equivalent to one egg).

These guidelines suggest that major changes are in order for the average American diet. The benefits of making such significant changes in the types of food in the diet are amazing. The Adventist Health study has shown that pure vegetarians (no animal products) have only one-third as many deaths from cancer and one-fourth as many deaths from coronary heart disease as non-vegetarians. In these studies other variables such as tobacco and alcohol were accounted for, so that we know that the tremendous health advantage of the pure vegetarian group is due to the fact that they are not using animal products in their diet. These same studies have shown that the vegetarians who do not smoke or drink have only 14 percent as many heart-attack deaths and 9 percent as many cancer deaths and live an average of l2 years longer than the general population.

Traditionally, most people measure the nutritional status of their diet by the Four Food Group Plan. The four food groups are: Milk and milk products, meat or protein, fruits and vegetables, and bread and cereals. The idea is to eat a certain number of servings from each group every day to ensure balanced nutrition. This plan does ensure that we will meet the daily requirements for all nutrients. Its chief drawback is that it does not guard very well against overnutrition, which is the greatest nutritional problem in the U.S. today. We can easily consume too much protein, fat, cholesterol, and salt on this plan. Do we really need four food groups when we can obtain all our nutrients from just two groups-the fruit and vegetable and bread and cereal group—just as the vegetarians do who are so much healthier than the nonvegetarians? It is an elemental fact of nutrition science that there is no such thing as an essential food. There are only essential nutrients. We can get them all from two groups or four.

The chief concern then should be "What are the best sources available to me to get the nutrients I need?" We now know the answer to that question, "A well-balanced vegetarian diet that includes a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds."

Although vitamin B12 deficiencies are very rare, even among vegetarians, there is still a question as to whether or not there are any good vegetarian sources of this vitamin. Small amounts of low-fat dairy products or a vitamin supplement would take care of this. But there is evidence that the vitamin is produced in the human body, and vitamin B12 is also found in some drinking water, which may account for the rarity of such vitamin deficiencies.

The case in favor of the vegetarian diet can be summarized by the American Dietetic Association, "The (ADA) affirms that a well-planned diet, consisting of a variety of largely unrefined plant foods supplemented with some milk and eggs (lacto-ovo vegetarian diet), meets all known nutrient needs. Furthermore, a total plant dietary can be made adequate by careful planning, giving proper attention to specific nutrients which may be in a less available form or in lower concentrations or absent in plant foods. The (ADA) recognizes that a growing body of scientific evidence supports a positive relationship between consumption of a plant-based dietary and the prevention of certain diseases."

For people who want a better diet it is better to make changes gradually so that the body has time to adapt. Other family members who are not so eager to change their diet need time to adapt, too. A good strategy would be to start decreasing and eliminating some of the worst junk food first and add in their place more fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Switch to low-fat dairy products and omit fatty and processed meats. Cut out more of the refined, processed foods like instant dinners, pastries, snack foods, and soft drinks. Buy whole-grain breads and cereals instead of the refined ones. Use less of the unnecessary toppings, dressings, and gravies that add so many calories to the meal, and when you do use them look for low-fat or reduced-calorie varieties. Eat at home more often, pack your own lunches and simplify your eating. Get some good health-conscious, vegetarian cookbooks (some are not that healthful, as they overuse cheese, eggs, and nuts) and start practicing and experimenting with new dishes. But keep it simple.

"Blessed art thou, 0 land, when... thy princes eat in due season, for strength, and not for drunkenness!" Ecclesiastes 10:17


Post by Believer »


"And God said, let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear and it was so. And God called the dry land earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he seas: and God saw that it was good." Genesis 1:9, 10

The earth's reservoir of water

We have about 326 million cubic miles of water covering 70 percent of our planet. There is in addition an untold amount of ground water and water vapor in the atmosphere. For the last 6,000 years of earth's history this same water supply has been recycling itself through an endless process of evaporation, condensation, and precipitation. All along the way it services and nourishes every form of plant and animal life. It unselfishly brings its blessings, lingers until its job is done and then departs, many times carrying a load of waste materials which it kindly delivers to some other life form down the line as useful food.

Water in the human body

Water is the most common molecule in the human body. Adults are about 45-75 percent water, depending on the percentage of body fat—fat cells contain less water than muscle cells. Muscle tissue, about 50-70 percent water, contains approximately ½ of the water found in the body. No wonder one feels weak when short of water. Blood is up to 80 percent water, brain grey matter 70-85 percent and bones 20-33 percent. Approximately five eighths of the body water is inside the cells and three eighths is outside, between the cells and in the circulation.

Respiration, digestion, circulation, glandular secretion, temperature regulation, waste elimination, and virtually every body function, require water. Water helps to lubricate, insulate, protect, and give flexibility to the muscles, ligaments, and joints.

Water for the outside of the human body

We also need water on the outside. The days of the "weekly bath, whether needed or not," are gone. Even if we do not get obviously dirty from manual labor outdoors, our pores are constantly at work secreting perspiration, body oils, and wastes. Thus our skin is benefited and our overall health improved by daily bathing, either in a tub or shower. Even washing the body with a washcloth while standing at the sink will do.

Water is even more than a nutrient and a cleanser. Its many uses externally as a tonic, stimulant, sedative, and healing agent make it nature's elixir, if there ever was one. Warm water is relaxing. A short, cold bath or shower tends to stimulate. Prolonged cold depresses.

Water therapies

Water, in all its forms, (ice, liquid, and steam) can he used to make thermic impressions on the skin. As these temperature changes are sensed by the nerves in the skin, they cause profound reactions all through the body that have a direct effect on health and healing. There are whole books written on the subject of "hydrotherapy" or "water treatment," as it is often called.

One example of such a treatment is the use of ice packs to lessen the swelling of an acute strain or sprain. After the initial trauma has subsided, alternating hot and cold applications to the affected area increase the circulation, thus bringing in fresh blood to repair the damage and to carry away wastes, speeding up the healing process and lessening pain.

Infections and inflammations can also he treated with alternating hot and cold. The hot and cold also stimulates the action of the germ-killing white blood cells, helping them to do their job better.

A congestion headache, or almost any pain caused by congestion or swelling, can be treated by applying cold over the affected area while at the same time immersing the feet in hot water up over the ankles. The cold tends to "push" the congestion away while the heat draws or "pulls" it away, thus equalizing the circulation and reducing the swelling and pain.

The human body recycling effort and making up the gap

The body recycles all but about 10 of the 40,000 glasses of water that it uses every day. About 400 gallons of blood pass through the kidneys each day, and about 50 gallons is actually filtered. Of this amount only about 5-6 cups of water are lost in the urine. Another 2 cups is exhaled through the lungs in the form of water vapor, ½ cup is lost through the bowels and 2 cups are evaporated from the skin through the 2 million sweat glands located there. Of the 10 cups of water lost per day, we gain about three cups in the food we eat and another one and a half is available as a byproduct of energy metabolism. This leaves five and a half cups of water per day that must be replaced by drinking water. Of course this is the minimum requirement. It is a healthful idea to drink more than that to insure that we have all we need.

Several factors can increase our daily need of water. living in a hot, dry climate or at higher altitudes, as well as physical exercise and sickness, can increase our need by 80% percent or more. An excessive amount of salt, sugar, or protein in the diet requires more water to process. Vomiting, diarrhea, lactation, and even a runny nose increase water loss and must be replaced by drinking water.

Symptoms of dehydration (not having enough water) include thirst, dry mouth, lethargy, mental confusion, reduced skin elasticity, sunken eyes, fever, scanty dark urine, accumulation of urea, creatinine and sodium in the blood, thickening of the blood, shock, constipation, kidney and bladder infections and stones, and elevated hemoglobin/hematocrit readings. A 20 percent water loss usually spells death. Thirst is not necessarily a good guide in insuring that we are drinking enough. We usually need more water than we realize.

How to get enough water down

A systematic approach to water drinking is best. Here is one suggestion. Drink 2 glasses (16 oz.) upon arising. This is a good internal cleanser first thing in the morning. Then, another 2 glasses midmorning and 2 more mid afternoon. Another way is to take a quart with you in the morning and sip it all morning and then another quart in the afternoon and do the same. More water than this amount may be needed, depending on the circumstances.

By increasing our water consumption we decrease the work load on the kidneys, whose job it is to cleanse the blood. It's like washing a load of dishes in a full kitchen sink versus doing the job in a small bowl. Much of the so-called tired blood is probably dirty blood in need of a good internal bath.

It is best to avoid drinking anything for 10-15 minutes before eating and for 1-2 hours after meals. This practice improves digestion, as the digestive juices are not diluted. Also, very cold water is not good to drink with meals because it arrests digestion temporarily. Very cold water also deadens the thirst signals so that one would tend not to drink enough. The best water to drink is slightly warm or cool. Hot water just before meals is a good medicine when one is sick.

Plain water alternatives—bad and better

However, drinks like tea, coffee, cocoa, soft drinks, and alcoholic beverages, are better avoided, as they contain some unhealthful ingredients and actually increase thirst by acting as diuretics. Many people prefer these beverages to the taste of their drinking water. Bad taste is usually due to algae, minerals, gases, or organic chemicals in the water. However, small amounts of impurities in the water are less harmful than either reliance upon these substitute fluids, or not drinking enough water.

There are healthful herb teas that are much better than regular tea. Cereal beverages such as "Postum", "Pero", and "Roma" have a coffee-like taste and can take the place of regular coffee. 'These products contain no caffeine at all and no caffeol (a stomach irritant) which even decaf coffee still contains.

Carob is a naturally sweet and nutritious substitute for chocolate. It can be made into a hot-cocoa type of drink. Carob candy may or may not be a health treat, depending on the other ingredients added to it.

For alcoholic beverages there are nonalcoholic sparkling fruit juices, or sparkling mineral waters. These drinks will not mar that special occasion as alcohol so often does.

Soft drinks can't win. If you take out the added caffeine, there is still the sugar. Remove the sugar and caffeine, and there are still the acids that contribute to calcium excretion and bone demineralization. How about good old water in place of the pop? An occasional fruit juice may do. But these should not be overused because they are really a refined product. You get a heavy dose of the fruit sugar, and sometimes a lot of added sugar as well, without the fiber. Remember, it takes five oranges to make a glass of orange juice. Watch out for the sodium content of some vegetable juices. Pure water is still the best choice to drink. A little lemon or mint in a pitcher of cool water makes normal tap water quite pleasant to drink.

Sources of drinking water

There are four sources of water: precipitation (rain, snow, et cetera), groundwater (underground reservoirs and springs), surface water (lakes, rivers, et cetera), and sea water. Only about 3 percent of the earth's water is fresh, but most of it is frozen in glaciers and icecaps. There is plenty of fresh water up in the sky—about 326 million cubic miles of it. Little drinking water is obtained directly from the sky or the oceans. We get about half from surface sources and half from ground sources. We are almost entirely dependent upon precipitation filling our rivers and lakes. It is estimated that around 4.2 million million gallons of rain fall on the United States each year, only 6 percent of which is used by man; 70 percent evaporates or is used where it falls, and 24 percent returns to the sea.

Surface water tends to have more suspended matter, plants and microorganisms; but fewer minerals than ground water. Ground water is usually more potable than surface water, and there is much more of it—twenty times more, the equivalent of 20 years of solid rain on this country. About 30 percent of the surface water comes from ground water percolating up to the top. Although only about 2 percent may be currently considered polluted, most of it is near population centers, where it is used for drinking. And when it does get contaminated, it takes much longer to cleanse itself due to the lack of oxygen, sun, and movement.

Sources of water pollution

About half of the water pollution problem stems from leaking gasoline storage tanks, storm sewers, sewage treatment plants, septic tanks, and industry. The rest comes from parking lot runoff; lawns, agriculture, and construction sites. These sources not only affect surface water, but solvents and pesticides are also able to slowly trickle down through the ground to the aquifers deep beneath the earth's surface.

The age-old pollutants, viruses, bacteria, and other microbes are still with us, producing polio, colds, flu, hepatitis, cancer, typhoid, salmonella, cholera, amebic dysentery, shigella, myelitis, and other diseases. Many of these organisms get into the water supply through public bathing, cesspools, outhouses, septic leach, inadequate water treatment, and the lack of good sanitation. Most of the time these can be controlled by proper sanitation and chlorination. Chlorine, for all the good it has done in controlling microorganisms, may facilitate later chronic ailments. The chlorine combines with various organic chemicals, producing chloroform and trihalogenated methanes, which may promote atherosclerosis and cancer of the rectum, colon, and bladder. The risk-to-benefit ratio of adding fluoride to our water (to prevent tooth decay) is still being debated.

In view of the sheer volume of contaminants now being introduced daily into our water supply, nature is overwhelmed in her purification efforts. Our efforts toward cleaning up our water have not kept pace with our polluting.

Purification—small scale and large

Hopefully, we will see more innovative solutions to the water-pollution problem. At least there are methods of insuring pure drinking water with home-treatment units if these are needed or desired. But how long can we survive if we continue to pollute at the present rate? Whatever the answer to that question and whichever way we decide to go with our management of earth's resources, we do have this assurance from God: Our abused earth is going to undergo a colossal remake in which the polluted oceans will be a thing of the past, and only pure, clear water will flow through it.

"And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. . . . And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb." Revelation 21:1; 22:1
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Trust in Divine Power

Post by Cynthia »

From Project Restore

# 7...
Trust In Divine Power

The national mental status in the U.S. appears to be shaky. Depression, despair, stress, anxiety, anger, revenge, prolonged grief, jealousy, and apathy abound. Many others could be listed. These can be powerful disease triggers. The results of a national survey by the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare indicated that 25 percent of the population admitted to being under a major degree of stress. One source estimated that perhaps one-third of Americans could be considered mentally healthy.

Mental state influence on physical problems

If a partial list were to be composed of physical diseases with apparent psychological components, it would look something like this: allergies, asthma, angina, arthritis, back pain, cancer, hair and scalp problems, headaches, heart disease, hypertension, insomnia, impotence, irritable bowel syndrome, skin problems, and ulcers. It has been estimated that 75 percent of all complaints that patients present are stress related.

How does our mind contribute to disease? Negative emotions trigger the release of certain hormones and stimulate the nervous system in such a way as to put stress on the various organs in the body. As these organs are subjected to this stress over long periods of time they become weakened. Once weakened they are more susceptible to disease processes invading from without or being triggered from within. Which organs are affected first, and to what degree, depends upon the person's heredity, constitution, environment, and lifestyle. By the time symptoms of disease occur it is often difficult to trace them from cause to effect and to know for sure which risk factors played the primary role in the disease process.

God's remedy for mankind's problems

The third chapter of Genesis in the Bible tells us the origin of mankind's problems and God's remedy for our situation. Genesis, chapter 3, begins with Eve being led into disobedience. She was deceived, yet the decision was hers to go against what God had said. She then proceeded to involve Adam in disobeying God. Adam was not deceived, yet he, too, chose to join his wife in disobeying his Creator.

Immediately they sensed a change in themselves. It was not the change for the better that their deceiver had promised. Instead, it was a change for the worse. For the first time they felt shame and guilt. They tried to cover themselves by making aprons out of fig leaves. They hid themselves from God and were afraid. When God found them and started questioning them, they began shifting the blame. They would not admit any personal responsibility.

The desire to escape guilt

Does this little scenario sound familiar? It should. Feelings of guilt, fear, and inadequacy accurately portray the sad condition of humanity. These feelings lead us to want to escape. We blame others, all the while seeking to cover up our own deficiencies. Our futile attempts at escapism and coping do not always degenerate to the lowest levels of physical combat, tongue lashings, promiscuity, or criminal behavior. They may assume an air of respectfulness—a little pride, a little self-indulgence, a white lie, a cutting remark that we really didn't mean to be taken seriously.

Just like Adam and Eve, our disobedience to God's will has broken our peace with Him. Unless we are at peace with God we can never be at peace with ourselves or with our fellow human beings. The worst deception that could befall a person then, would be to think he is at peace with God when he is not, to think he has the solution to life's problems when he really doesn't. Many do not recognize it, but they themselves, along with the whole human family, have repeated our first parents' failure and are terminally ill. The Bible defines this illness as sin, but many seem not to be interested in the Remedy.

But for those who do recognize that they have a need and who desire the remedy, God has just the solution. The solution is contained in a promise. In Genesis, chapter 3, God said that He would plant within us a hatred of evil, and that one day good would win over evil. He appointed toil and suffering as a means of developing self-discipline in us so that the evil results of sin already set in motion might be curtailed to some extent. And finally God did an interesting thing. Out of animal skins He made Adam and Eve a suit of clothes and dressed them Himself.

The inadequacy of fig leaves

Wouldn't fig leaves work just as well as animal skins for clothes? Not too many people would think so today. God wanted them (and us) to realize that what they (we) had lost could not be replaced by anything of their (our) own design or devising. They (we) needed a covering crafted by God Himself. In sinning they had lost their righteousness. They had sold out their integrity. A divine plan, rather than a human plan, was needed to resolve the problems.

Now, recall that it was God who created Adam and Eve in the beginning. Therefore everything they had originally came from God, including their righteousness or goodness—a pure, untainted, heaven-inclined mind with no gap between knowing what should be done and doing it. Since what they had lost had been put in them by God, it is clear that only God could put it back. They could no more recreate their minds than they could call a world into existence. They were totally helpless and dependent upon God to restore them.

A conditional restoration

And God did restore them on the spot. No sooner was there an emergency than God was there with the remedy. However, this restoration was conditional upon two things. First, faith in a Redeemer that was to come, and second, their own willingness to render continuing obedience in the future. Every person ever born would have to meet these same two conditions laid down for Adam and Eve in order to be restored. This restoration cannot be inherited; it must be accepted by each person individually.

The Bible evidence

This beautiful truth about God's rescue efforts in our behalf is recorded all through the Bible. Prophets have seen it in vision and poets have written about it.

"And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. And the Lord said unto Satan, the Lord rebuke thee, O Satan; even the Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with a change of raiment. And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the Lord stood by." Zechariah 3:1-5

"I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was a robe and a diadem." Job 29:14

This same truth, that God restores us to moral uprightness, is illustrated in the New Testament Scriptures as well. In the Gospel of Matthew there is recorded a parable Jesus told about a king who sent his servants out to invite everyone they could find to come to his son's marriage.

"And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he said unto him, Friend, how comest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless." Matthew 22:11-12

The parable may seem absurd until one realizes the reason for the king's displeasure. There was no excuse for the guest not to have a wedding garment on because the king himself had provided wedding garments for all the guests. The only thing they had to do was to put them on. There was no excuse to neglect the gift.

"Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth." Matthew 22:13. Just as the ungrateful guest was excluded from the king's wedding, so all those who neglect to put on Christ's righteousness, and instead depend upon their own fig-leaf garments, their good deeds, will meet with similar tragic consequences.

The righteousness of Christ . . . for us

All of the human inventions to make us better people are insufficient to remake one soul into the image of God, much less save an entire planet. Only Christ's righteousness, the covering crafted for us by God Himself, is able to heal the wounds caused by sin and to change the course of our life.

There is one other aspect of God's act in clothing Adam and Eve with skins that must be mentioned. It is the crux of the whole transaction. In fact, it is the center and focus of the whole Bible. You see, in order for God to obtain those skins, some animal must die. An innocent creature had to give its life so that Adam and Eve could be clothed. What did it mean? The lamb was a symbol of God's Son, Jesus Christ. The apostle Paul describes it simply:

"But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8

In order to be able to forgive our sins, to clothe us in His righteousness and to provide us the grace necessary to keep God's law, Christ had to become a man, live a perfect life of obedience on this earth and then suffer the punishment for our sins. Christ succeeded in His mission, just as the Old Testament prophecies said that He would. Christ's victorious life means that we also can have victory over sin by exercising faith in Him. Christ's resurrection is the Christian's assurance of receiving immortality and a perfectly whole body at the resurrection of the just when Jesus returns in the near future.

Anciently these truths were taught by means of a system of sacrificial types and symbols. These "shadows" pointed forward to Christ's incarnation, life, death, resurrection, and heavenly ministry. Now our faith can he based on the reality of an accomplished fact, not just a shadow of something to look forward to.

Shall we trust Him?

There are many questions that come to mind, such as "Why?" To answer them all here would not be possible. If you have questions, write to us. We'd love to hear from you. The answers are in the Bible. What we have dealt with here, in a small way, is the issue of trust. Trusting God enough to surrender your life to Him. Trusting Him with your fig-leaf, bandaid, do-it-yourself, patchwork of human inventions and self-help theories, and letting Him place upon you His perfect royal robe of His own righteousness.

Being thus clothed means we have His mind in us. We have His power to overcome sin, and all the problems that sin causes. The gap between knowing and doing is bridged. We can carry out our good intentions. Positive thoughts and emotions replace the negative.

"Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." Galatians 5:19-25

Christ's sacrifice and reward

God's Son suffered intensely, more than we can know, so that He could have the joy of seeing us clothed in His righteousness. His entire life was one of self-sacrifice. Finally, He was tortured and crucified on a cruel cross. What reward does He want for this sacrifice? All He ever desired was the joy of providing a way for us to live new lives now and at last to be reunited with Him on that brighter shore of eternity. Then God's original plan in creating Adam and Eve will be realized. We with them will enjoy the heavenly reward unhindered and uninterrupted forever.

It is not too late

Perhaps some will think it is too late for them, or that their problems are too complicated, or that they could never be Christians. Away with such thinking. Trust Him all the way and see the salvation of your God. "Let Him take hold of my strength, that he may make peace with me; and he shall make peace with me." Isaiah 27:5

"And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst . . . . All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out." John 6:35, 37

"And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." Revelation 22:17
~ Cindy
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Re: Seven Health Principles

Post by Cynthia »

Welcome Believer

I think we may already be acquainted from another forum.

I am also acquainted with Project Restore as our church handed out many of their publications. Good people and good info..

I hope you don't mind but I split your topic thinking it might make your topics easier for readers to follow.

I also noticed you didn't include part seven of the health series, and wasn't sure whether you forgot or were planning on coming back to do so.. but anyway I copied and pasted it here myself. ;)

Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health,
even as thy soul prospereth.
-- 3John 1:2

~ Cindy
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Re: Seven Health Principles

Post by Believer2 »

The ever lovely and gracious but ferocious "truth"? I should have known! ROFLOL! I tried to email you when you disappeared since you managed to take most of the sunlight and fun and hits with you, but the contact data I had was wrong. You and your voice are still sorely missed! Does "your church" know that you have now moved on to yet another "worthy cause"? ;) ;) I still have that most interesting picture of you____ in my mind. ;) ;)

In our shared appreciation of fair play you should be aware that I registered first at the other forum but when I did not receive any confirmation from them I registered here. Since I am well acquainted with that unexpected left hook of yours from nowhere, and those heavy size thirteen boots then you should also know I will be respecting but dodging them. ;) ;)

Your friend, ( who is really not a Jesuit)

Many accolades in noticing and posting part seven in the "adventist" health series! Trust you to notice! LOL! My login timed out and I could not log back in to do it myself. I have had to register a second time. Could you delete my other registration to prevent me from disobeying your rules or interrupting your dedicated and orderly work of housecleaning? (sweep! sweep!) ;) ;)
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