A Response to the Video:
by Bob Pickle
Health Counsel, Wigs, and the Reform Dress
#140: Mrs. White said non-vegetarians can't go to heaven. She never made such an extreme statement. In 1905 she wrote the following:
If she taught that those who aren't vegetarians when Jesus comes can't go to heaven, why would she say something like this so late in her life?
The documentation package under "Point 70," "substantiates" this charge with two statements. Let's look at the second one first:
While this statement most certainly says something, it doesn't say what Mrs. Martin said. Now let's look at the first one as it originally appeared in Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene:
Clearly, this is another one of Mrs. White's many predictions. Time will tell if this one too will prove true. It's not a condemnatory statement. It's a simple prediction of what God's people will be doing at the time of Christ's return.
That God's people will ultimately all be vegetarians is plain from Scripture:
Anyone who isn't a vegetarian the day before Christ's return will be one the day after. In the new earth, even the lions will be.
The immediate context of the selection from Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene will help us understand even better the biblical basis for Mrs. White's concepts on the matter. First of all, she mentions the original diet God gave Adam and Eve (p. 118). Indeed, according to the Genesis account, Adam and Eve were the very first vegetarians on the planet (Gen. 1:29; 3:18). Not until after the Flood did God permit the eating of flesh, after which man's life span drastically decreased (Gen. 9:3; 5:3-32; 11:10-32). Her point was that, in these last days, God is trying to lead us back to His original plan for mankind.
She also refers to the fact that God gave the Israelites a mostly vegetarian diet during their forty years in the wilderness. Six times a week manna was on the ground in the morning, a food made by angels (Ps. 78:24, 25). On only two occasions did God in a similarly miraculous fashion provide them with flesh. Regarding the second occasion Mrs. White writes: "They murmured at God's restrictions, and lusted after the fleshpots of Egypt. God let them have flesh, but it proved a curse to them."—Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, p. 119.
What was that second occasion? In Numbers 11 we find the Israelites being extremely rude, complaining about the food. So God declared:
As Mrs. White wrote, "it proved a curse to them," for some didn't live long enough to eat the flesh for a whole month: "And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the LORD was kindled against the people, and the LORD smote the people with a very great plague" (vs. 33).
Now all this happened on their trip from Mt. Sinai to Kadeshbarnea. How far is it between the two? Just an "eleven days' journey" (Deut. 1:2). [p. 93]
At Kadesh they sent twelve spies into the land of Canaan. After forty days, ten came back and said, "We can't conquer the land." Two, Caleb and Joshua, came back and said, "God is able to deliver the land into our hand." The people went with the majority report, rebelled once again, and tried to stone Caleb and Joshua (Num. 13:17-14:10). As a result, they had to wander around in the wilderness till all that generation was dead.
Why would the Israelites have rebelled when they were on the very borders of the promised land? Psalm 106 gives us the secret: "They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel: But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, and tempted God in the desert. And he gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul" (vss. 13-15).
Eating flesh for a whole month till it came out of their noses made their "souls" skinny. These effects were still wearing off when the spies returned and gave their report. If their souls had been fat in the Lord instead of lean, perhaps they would have gone forward in faith instead of sliding back in unbelief.
Flesh was not the best article of diet for the Israelites. It affected their dispositions to the point that they could not react properly when trials and tests came their way. Even so, God never told them, "If you don't stop eating flesh, you can't enter Canaan."
Let's take another look at the second of Mrs. White's two statements:
Preparing for translation? Is there a preparatory work to be done?
The First Epistle of John has a lot to say about overcoming sin. There is a work of preparation to be done, of giving all our sins to Jesus, and relying on Him for the power to overcome temptation. The eating of flesh does affect the disposition, and the hormones and chemicals in flesh do affect the body's processes in negative ways. Therefore, it is wise for those who are seeking to prepare for Christ's return to consider giving up eating flesh. It will only be a few days earlier than when we all will have to anyway.
Speaking of hormones and chemicals, man's original diet and what happened to the Israelites isn't the whole picture, according to Mrs. White:
While the animals get to ride instead of walk these days, there still is the question of how the ones that go to market get selected:
As the apostle Paul said, "The love of money is the root of all evil" (1 Tim. 6:10). What we will do to save a buck and to make a buck. It's pathetic, isn't it?
Still another problem is the following: "A very serious objection to the practice of meat eating is found in the fact that disease is becoming more and more widespread among the animal creation."—Manuscript Releases, vol. 7, p. 421. The Bible basically predicts the same (Rom. 8:19-22; Is. 51:6). As we get closer to Christ's return, disease in animals will become more and more of a problem. How bad had it gotten in her day?
How much better is it today? According to Mrs. White, things were going to get worse, not better:
Really, it would get that bad? Because of man's wickedness?
Most folk have no clue what is being done for a profit today. When this writer asked a chicken farmer in Alabama around 1988 what was in the feed he was giving his chickens, the farmer replied that there was arsenic in it. It stimulated the appetites of the chickens to make them eat more and grow faster, giving higher profits in less time.
Another farmer said that his chicken litter got shipped out west to the cattle feed lots. "The cows eat it like candy," he said. It saves money, and the cows get more nourishment from the pre-digested corn than from straight grain. How in the world do cows eat chicken litter like candy? "They mix it with oats and molasses," the farmer said. That explained it.
Oh, but it probably wasn't just pre-digested corn. The feet, feathers, and bills left over from the slaughtering process typically go to a plant that turns it all into chicken feed. Another way to cut costs. And all that ends up in the chicken-litter cattle feed.
It doesn't take too much intelligence to figure out that chickens aren't buzzards and cows aren't porkers. God didn't create them to eat such things. Are we not asking for trouble when we go so contrary to God's design just to make a buck?
Of course, some will disagree. But with that scary Mad Cow Disease around, it's a bit more difficult to be skeptical. Cows ate cows, and their brains turned into sponges. Can that happen to me if I eat the cows? "No way," said the British authorities, but they don't say that anymore.
So Mrs. White predicted that before the end, eating animal foods would become dangerous. To borrow some earlier wording from Sydney Cleveland, it either is or almost is "a matter of historical record that" this prophecy did "come true as she foretold."