3 John 2

It has been clearly demonstrated that humans function in three phases—physical, mental, and spiritual. We were intelligently and harmoniously designed by our Creator in His own image (Gen. 1:20). Naturalism, vegetarianism, and faith—the lifestyle that pleases God—are to be considered as the best choices to reap a prosperous health that glorifies God (see Gal. 6:7, 8).

If we want to reap wholistic health, we must follow some rules. Let’s briefly study some of these rules.

I. Fresh air (Gen. 2:7)

Oxygen and atmospheric gases help to sustain life, but they are not life. A person can live for weeks without food, a few days without water, but only minutes without air. Lack of oxygen even for a short time can lead to irreversible brain damage and can cause death in just a few minutes. Oxygen, brain cells, and thoughts are inseparable.

Breathing is indispensable, and this process determines if we are sick or healthy. It is divided into two parts: inspiration and expiration. Inspiration is a function that is governed by the subconscious part of the brain, and it consists of the rhythmic and steady flow of air through the respiratory tract toward the lungs, where metabolic changes occur. Expiration is the expulsion of the air in our lungs that is saturated with carbon dioxide, a byproduct of organic combustion.

II. Sunlight (Mal. 4:2)

All living beings on Planet Earth depend on the sun. Sunlight is a source of energy for the vegetable kingdom, and humans can obtain energy directly from the rays of the sun. The human body can synthesize its own cholesterol from fats, oils, and proteins.

Hypertension is one of the leading indicators of potential heart disease. The fact the exposure to sunlight can reduce cholesterol, hypertension, and glycemia is an indication that heliotherapy can be used effectively for these purposes. Sunlight is also capable of fighting cancer by stimulating the immune system and increasing the flow of oxygen in the tissues. A strong immune system not only protects us from the common cold, flu, and other infectious diseases; it can also inhibit the development of cancer.

III. Water (John 4:14)

The process of using water to cure diseases is known as hydrotherapy. Remember that perfect circulation is perfect health, and the use of water as a treatment is one of the best ways to regulate circulation. The change that occurs when cold water is applied to the skin is called a “reaction.” The application of heat followed by cold will immediately increase the number of red and white cells in the blood. The external application of water is an easy and satisfactory method of regulating blood circulation. A cold shower is excellent for toning the body. A warm shower will calm the nerves and balance the circulation.

IV. Exercise (Eccl. 5:12)

Human beings were created to be active. They were given limbs that can bend and muscles that can move. A muscle is a group of fibers. These fibers derive energy from what a person eats. Muscles, including the heart, are strengthened by exercise. Inactive people are twice as likely to suffer heart attacks than those who are physically active.

Exercise is not only a valuable preventive measure; it can also be restorative. In addition to helping to develop and maintain the cardiovascular, respiratory and muscular systems, exercise also helps to relax all the body’s systems and maintain homeostasis.

V. Appropriate diet and nutrition (Eccl. 10:17)

Good nutrition based on a balanced diet is essential to good health. What is a diet? It is a nutritional regime regulated by medical norms, not by choice or desire. What is nutrition? It is the act of nourishment. In other words, it is the art of “eating to live,” not “living to eat.”

Hippocrates, the father of medicine, once said: “May your food be your medicine and your medicine your food.” Health derives from what we eat. Food is divided into two groups: natural and artificial. Natural foods are those that are taken from nature just as they are. Artificial foods are those that suffer transformation due to commercial, humandriven processes. Good nutrition is based on the consumption of appropriate substances and nutrients such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and water. To enjoy good health, our intake should be 80 percent alkaline foods and 20 percent acidic foods. And the fewer refined (processed) foods, we consume, the better.

VI. Temperance (1 Cor. 9:25)

Temperance or self-control is a mental process that helps human beings not to abuse good things and to abstain from what is not good; in other words, it works as the balancing force between good and bad.

VII. Rest (Mark 6:31)

To rest is to voluntarily cease all bodily activity. In His wisdom, God determined that every workday would lead to a night of rest. All the organs in our body require rest. Physical and mental labor produces fatigue. The principal mode of rest is sleep. Other forms of rest include napping, a change of activities, or taking a vacation.

One-third of the human existence is spent sleeping. Individuals who sleep less than 6 hours and those who sleep more than 9 hours usually live shorter lives than those who sleep between 7-8 hours.

VIII. Confidence in divine power (Jer. 17:7)

The Bible says that without faith, it is impossible to please God, and without faith, many healing blessings will be detained. The weight of sin, with its greediness and anxieties that are never satisfied, is the fundamental cause of sickness.

What physicians can only attempt, Christ will complete. Physicians try to stimulate nature’s healing powers, but only Jesus can heal. Physicians try to conserve life, and Christ gives life.

For humanity, God’s health principles are the confidence that lies in the power that comes from above and which God is continually supplying. The decision to balance your life and keep it under control is an individual responsibility.

Many will ask, where can we obtain help to gain victory over degrading and destructive lifestyle habits? This is where self-control, rooted in the confidence in divine power, comes into play.

This sermon, prepared by Dr. R. Pérez Santos and published on the North Jamaica Conference Health Ministries Department Website, has been edited by the General Conference Ministerial Association for Elder’s Digest.