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Want and Wasting Diseases

Monday, February 6, 2023

In the desert they gave in to their craving; in the wasteland they put God to the test. So he gave them what they asked for, but sent a wasting disease upon them. Ps. 106:14, 15, NIV.

After more than 400 years as slaves in Egypt the Jews finally experienced God’s deliverance. He led and sheltered them by a cloud during the day and guarded them with a pillar of fire at night. God gave them manna—the very best food for their journey to Canaan. Yet God’s people weren’t satisfied—they craved flesh food!

God answered their grumbling by sending a massive flock of quail. All that day and night and all the next day the people went out and gathered quail. No one collected less than 60 bushels. Self-satisfied, they sat down to eat their gluttonous feast. What was the result? Their ravenous eating caused a “wasting disease,” and they ended up burying those who had craved meat (Num. 11).

Today God has once again given us the very best for our journey to the heavenly Canaan, yet many are craving a meat diet rather than being satisfied with God’s original diet of fruits, nuts, grains, and vegetables.

Will we suffer from “wasting diseases” like the Israelites? Reputable scientific researchers have linked cancer, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes—today’s four leading “wasting diseases”—with the high-fat, high-protein intake associated with a flesh-based diet.

“When God led the children of Israel out of Egypt, it was His purpose to establish them in the land of Canaan a pure, happy, healthy people” (Counsels on Diet and Foods, pp. 377, 378). He did this by removing flesh from their diet and giving them manna. “Had they been willing to deny appetite in obedience to His restrictions, feebleness and disease would have been unknown among them. Their descendants would have possessed physical and mental strength. They would have had clear perceptions of truth and duty, keen discrimination, and sound judgment. But they were unwilling to submit to God’s requirements, and they failed to reach the standard He had set for them, and to receive the blessings that might have been theirs. They murmured at God’s restrictions, and lusted after the fleshpots of Egypt” (ibid., p. 378).

Are you praising God for His modern manna—a flesh-free, cholesterol-free diet? Or are you grumbling after the fleshpots of Egypt? What could be the consequences of your choice?


Used by permission of Health Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.


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