1. That Day
a. What special day is identified in prophecy? Isaiah 22:12, 20, 22.
b. How does the New Testament shed light on that day, relating it to the events just prior to Christ’s second coming? Revelation 3:7–11.
“[Revelation 3:7, 8 quoted.] Christ had opened the door, or ministration, of the most holy place, light was shining from that open door of the sanctuary in heaven, and the fourth commandment was shown to be included in the law which is there enshrined.”—The Great Controversy, p. 435.
“As Satan accuses the people of God on account of their sins, the Lord permits him to try them to the uttermost. Their confidence in God, their faith and firmness, will be severely tested. As they review the past, their hopes sink; for in their whole lives they can see little good. . . .
“If they could have the assurance of pardon they would not shrink from torture or death; but should they prove unworthy, and lose their lives because of their own defects of character, then God’s holy name would be reproached.”—Ibid., pp. 618, 619.
2. The Antitypical Day of Atonement
a. As we read the context of the open door, how do we know it is related to the temple of God in heaven? Revelation 3:12.
“I saw that Jesus had shut the door of the holy place, and no man can open it; and that He had opened the door into the most holy, and no man can shut it (Revelation 3:7, 8); and that since Jesus has opened the door into the most holy place, which contains the ark, the commandments have been shining out to God’s people, and they are being tested on the Sabbath question.”—Early Writings, p. 42.
b. Since Christ brings a reward with Him at His coming as a result of the investigative judgment (Revelation 22:12; 11:18), what must be opened in heaven, showing the authority of the Ten Commandments? Revelation 11:19.
“I saw that the present test on the Sabbath could not come until the mediation of Jesus in the holy place was finished and He had passed within the second veil; therefore Christians who fell asleep before the door was opened into the most holy, when the midnight cry was finished, at the seventh month, 1844, and who had not kept the true Sabbath, now rest in hope; for they had not the light and the test on the Sabbath which we now have since that door was opened. I saw that Satan was tempting some of God’s people on this point. Because so many good Christians have fallen asleep in the triumphs of faith and have not kept the true Sabbath, they were doubting about its being a test for us now.”—Ibid., pp. 42, 43.
c. What type of restrictions in diet do we see during this antitypical day of atonement? Isaiah 22:12, 13.
“Again and again I have been shown that God is trying to lead us back, step by step, to his original design—that man should subsist upon the natural products of the earth. Among those who are waiting for the coming of the Lord, meat-eating will eventually be done away; flesh will cease to form a part of their diet. We should ever keep this end in view, and endeavor to work steadily toward it. I cannot think that in the practice of flesh-eating we are in harmony with the light which God has been pleased to give us. All who are connected with our health institutions especially should be educating themselves to subsist on fruits, grains, and vegetables. If we move from principle in these things, if we as Christian reformers educate our own taste, and bring our diet to God’s plan, then we may exert an influence upon others in this matter, which will be pleasing to God.”—Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, p. 119.
a. Besides the type of food we eat, what are some other considerations as we prepare for the second advent? Luke 21:34–36.
“Ministers, teachers, and students do not become as intelligent as they should in regard to the necessity of physical exercise in the open air. They neglect this duty, which is most essential for the preservation of health. They closely apply their minds to books, and eat the allowance of a laboring man. Under such habits, some grow corpulent, because the system is clogged. Others become lean, feeble, and weak, because their vital powers are exhausted in throwing off the excess of food; the liver becomes burdened and unable to throw off the impurities in the blood, and sickness is the result. If physical exercise were combined with mental exertion, the blood would be quickened in its circulation, the action of the heart would be more perfect, impure matter would be thrown off, and new life and vigor would be experienced in every part of the body.”—Counsels on Health, p. 572.
“We should not provide for the Sabbath a more liberal supply or a greater variety of food than for other days. Instead of this the food should be more simple, and less should be eaten, in order that the mind may be clear and vigorous to comprehend spiritual things. Overeating befogs the brain. The most precious words may be heard and not appreciated, because the mind is confused by an improper diet. By overeating on the Sabbath, many have done more than they think to dishonor God.”—Child Guidance, p. 532.
b. How are overeating and drunkenness associated in the Bible? Proverbs 23:20, 21, 31, 32.
“Many mothers who deplore the intemperance which exists everywhere do not look deep enough to see the cause. They are daily preparing a variety of dishes and highly seasoned food which tempt the appetite and encourage overeating. . . . Whoever will indulge appetite in eating too often, and food not of a healthful quality, is weakening his power to resist the clamors of appetite and passion in other respects in proportion as he has strengthened the propensity to incorrect habits of eating. Mothers need to be impressed with their obligation to God and to the world to furnish society with children having well-developed characters. Men and women who come upon the stage of action with firm principles will be fitted to stand unsullied amid the moral pollutions of this corrupt age. It is the duty of mothers to improve their golden opportunities to correctly educate their children for usefulness and duty.”—Counsels on Health, pp. 606, 607.
4. Christ Overcame
a. How was diet involved in the sin in Eden? Genesis 2:16, 17; 3:1–6.
“[Satan in the form of the serpent] exulted that Adam and Eve in Eden could not resist his insinuations when he appealed to their appetite. The inhabitants of the old world he overcame in the same manner, through the indulgence of lustful appetite and corrupt passions. Through the gratification of appetite he had overthrown the Israelites. . . . David and Solomon, who had been especially favored of God, he had induced through the indulgence of appetite and passion to incur God’s displeasure. And he boasted that he could yet succeed in thwarting the purpose of God in the salvation of man through Jesus Christ.”—Confrontation, pp. 33, 34.
b. On what point was Christ similarly tested and how did He decidedly overcome? Matthew 4:3, 4.
“The strength of the temptation to indulge appetite can be measured only by the inexpressible anguish of our Redeemer in that long fast in the wilderness. He knew that the indulgence of perverted appetite would so deaden man’s perceptions that sacred things could not be discerned. Adam fell by the indulgence of appetite; Christ overcame by the denial of appetite. And our only hope of regaining Eden is through firm self-control. If the power of indulged appetite was so strong upon the race, that, in order to break its hold, the divine Son of God, in man’s behalf, had to endure a fast of nearly six weeks, what a work is before the Christian! Yet, however great the struggle, he may overcome. By the help of that divine power which withstood the fiercest temptations that Satan could invent, he too may be entirely successful in his warfare with evil, and at last may wear the victor’s crown in the kingdom of God.”—Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, p. 54.
“In the wilderness of temptation, Christ was without food forty days. Moses had on especial occasions been thus long without food. But he felt not the pangs of hunger. He was not tempted and harassed by a vile and powerful foe as was the Son of God.”—Confrontation, p. 34.
“Man now has the advantage over Adam in his warfare with Satan; for he has Adam’s experience in disobedience and his consequent fall to warn him to shun his example. Man also has Christ’s example in overcoming appetite and the manifold temptations of Satan, and in vanquishing the mighty foe upon every point and coming off victor in every contest. If man stumbles and falls under the temptations of Satan, he is without excuse; for he has the disobedience of Adam as a warning, and the life of the world’s Redeemer as an example of obedience and self-denial.”—Ibid., p. 64.
a. What happens if we are still using flesh foods and consuming alcoholic beverages on the modern day of atonement? Isaiah 22:14.
“When the message comes to those who have not heard the truth for this time, they see that a great reformation must take place in their diet. They see that they must put away flesh food, because it creates an appetite for liquor, and fills the system with disease. By meat eating, the physical, mental, and moral powers are weakened. Man is built up from that which he eats. Animal passions bear sway as the result of meat eating, tobacco using, and liquor drinking. The Lord will give His people wisdom to prepare from that which the earth yields, foods that will take the place of flesh meat. Simple combinations of nuts and grains and fruits, manufactured with taste and skill, will commend themselves to unbelievers. But as a usual thing, too many nuts are used in the combinations made.”—Counsels on Diet and Foods, pp. 268, 269.
“A positive injury is done to the system by continuous meat-eating. There is no excuse for it but a depraved, perverted appetite. You may ask, would you do away entirely with meat-eating? I answer, it will eventually come to this, but we are not prepared for this step just now. Meat-eating will eventually be done away. The flesh of animals will no longer compose a part of our diet; and we shall look upon a butcher’s shop with disgust. Again and again I have been shown that God is bringing His people back to His original design, that is not to subsist upon the flesh of dead animals.”—Testimony Studies on Diet and Foods, p. 69.
b. What will happen to us if we comply with God’s conditions on the day of atonement? Leviticus 16:29, 30.
c. What final pronouncement is made to the faithful just before Jesus comes—and to what should that lead us? Revelation 22:11–14; 2 Peter 1:10.
PERSONAL REVIEW QUESTIONS
1. How do we relate Isaiah 22 with the day of atonement?
2. What happened when Jesus opened the door into the most holy place?
3. Why is controlling our body so important, including eating and drinking?
4. Why did Christ have to be tempted and overcome on the point of appetite?
5. How do we know that flesh food cannot be a part of the diet of God’s people who are waiting for the second coming of Christ?