5. Healthy Imagination

By John Thiel, Let This Mind Be in You Conference, Study 5, mp3

We have gained the important appreciation that we need to admit God as the monarch upon the throne of our most holy place in our body temple. That the Shekinah glory should shine forth from within. He needed to be enthroned there. What did we identify was the ensuing exercise thereafter?

What voice will you acknowledge as the voice of God? What power has the Lord in reserve to correct your errors and show you your course as it is? What power to work in the church? If you refuse to believe until every shadow of uncertainty and every possibility of doubt is removed you will never believe. The doubt that demands perfect knowledge will never yield to faith. Faith rests upon evidence, not demonstration. The Lord requires us to obey the voice of duty, when there are other voices all around us urging us to pursue an opposite course. It requires earnest attention from us to distinguish the voice which speaks from God. We must resist and conquer inclination, and obey the voice of conscience without parleying or compromise, lest its promptings cease and will and impulse control. The word of the Lord comes to us all who have not resisted His Spirit by determining not to hear and obey. This voice is heard in warnings, in counsels, in reproof. It is the Lord’s message of light to His people. {5T 68.4}

We have come to the understanding that the brain has multiple facets which want to communicate to my mind. The intellect, the emotional thalamus, the moral and the animal.

The brain is the organ and instrument of the mind and controls the whole body. {CH 586.3}

In your mind many messages come for assessment and decision making. When we come to our meetings to deliberate together there are many voices and thoughts but we must come to one conclusion. That is what happens in our brain. There are many voices in our brain but the mind must come to one conclusion. Which voice I’m going to conclude is for me to follow. It requires earnest attention from us to distinguish the voice which speaks from God. We need to understand the source of our impressions and subordinate them to the monarch.

It is the lack of harmonious action in the human organism that brings disease. The imagination may control the other parts of the body to their injury. All parts of the system must work harmoniously. The different parts of the body, especially those remote from the heart, should receive a free circulation of blood. The limbs act an important part and should receive proper attention. {CH 587.1}

God is the great caretaker of the human machinery. In the care of our bodies we must co-operate with Him. Love for God is essential for life and health. In order to have perfect health our hearts must be filled with hope and love and joy. {CH 587.2}

What are we to have if we will have perfect health? We don’t concentrate on this as much as we do on perfect health. In this package of statements the imagination has a part that we need to understand so that it is not the imagination that governs or impacts me but God is the great caretaker of my human machinery because if my imagination is too operative it may control the other parts of the body to their injury.

A Healthy Imagination

The imagination controls parts of the body to their injury? How does that work. You can actually listen to your imagination. That is one of the voices.

There are many invalids today who will ever remain so because they cannot be convinced that their experience is not reliable. The brain is the capital of the body, the seat of all the nervous forces and of mental action. The nerves proceeding from the brain control the body. By the brain nerves, mental impressions are conveyed to all the nerves of the body as by telegraph wires; and they control the vital action of every part of the system. All the organs of motion are governed by the communications they receive from the brain. {3T 69.3}

If your mind is impressed and fixed that a bath will injure you, the mental impression is communicated to all the nerves of the body. The nerves control the circulation of the blood; therefore the blood is, through the impression of the mind, confined to the blood vessels, and the good effects of the bath are lost. All this is because the blood is prevented by the mind and will from flowing readily, and from coming to the surface to stimulate, arouse, and promote the circulation. For instance, you are impressed that if you bathe you will become chilly. The brain sends this intelligence to the nerves of the body, and the blood vessels, held in obedience to your will, cannot perform their office and cause a reaction after the bath. There is no reason in science or philosophy why an occasional bath, taken with studious care, should do you anything but real good. Especially is this the case where there is but little exercise to keep the muscles in action and to aid the circulation of the blood through the system. Bathing frees the skin from the accumulation of impurities which are constantly collecting, and keeps the skin moist and supple, thereby increasing and equalizing the circulation. {3T 69.4}

This is a token of what the imagination can do to your system. The imagination controls parts of the body to their injury. Let this enlarge in your mind on any other subject.

Disease is sometimes produced, and is often greatly aggravated, by the imagination. Many are lifelong invalids who might be well if they only thought so. Many imagine that every slight exposure will cause illness, and the evil effect is produced because it is expected. Many die from disease the cause of which is wholly imaginary. {MH 241.2}

The pointing of the bone is true. It is a fact. People who believe the pointing of the bone will cause you to die will die because the mind says I’m dying and does in three days. Many people die because their imagination tells them. This is an immense disaster that if we do not understand this, what sort of effects can my imagination have upon me on any other subject.

The Lord has shown me that many who are always complaining, and are apparently feeble, are not in so bad a condition as they think. Some of them have a powerful will, which, if exercised in the right direction, would control the imagination, and be a potent means of resisting disease; but it is too frequently the case that the will is on the wrong side, and stubbornly refuses to yield to reason. That will has settled the matter: invalids they are, and the attention given to invalids they will have, irrespective of the judgment of others. {CTBH 102.1}

Where is reason? In the forehead where God wants to see it.

Thousands are sick and dying around us who might get well and live, if they would. But their imagination controls them. They fear they will be made worse if they engage in any physical labor, when this is just the change they need. They should exercise their will-power and rise above their difficulties, engage in useful employment suited to their strength, and forget that they have aching backs, sides, lungs, and heads. {CTBH 102.2}

We are admonished to exercise the will to bring the imagination under control. Do we need to do that even in the reading of the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy or the acquiring of knowledge?

Philippians 3:4 Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: 5 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, [of] the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; 6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.  

Philippians 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things [but] loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them [but] dung, that I may win Christ,

What was he counting as dung? What he imagined he was. What did he imagine? He was according to the law blameless. He was living in total denial as all the Pharisees and Laodiceans do. Total denial. They live in an imaginary world. Lord, Lord, we are your church and why are we your church? We know everything. We are living in a diseased imagination.

A pure and holy faith is to be gained only by a diligent searching of the Scriptures; and there is danger even in this, unless the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit shall shine into the chambers of the mind. {RH, December 2, 1884 par. 9}

There is danger in reading the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy as the Apostle Paul was doing as a devout Jew. Jesus said salvation of the Jews and Paul said in his imagination, it is what I’m doing.

There are many things apparently difficult or obscure, which God will make plain and simple to those who thus seek an understanding of them. But without the guidance of the Holy Spirit we shall be continually liable to wrest the Scriptures or to misinterpret them. There is much reading of the Bible that is without profit and in many cases a positive injury. When the word of God is opened without reverence and without prayer; when the thoughts and affections are not fixed upon God, {SC 110.1}

How many times we go to the study of the Bible from a purely academic approach. I want to know what the information is and that is injurious. When I come to the Bible I must open it with my thoughts and affections fixed upon God.

…or in harmony with His will, the mind is clouded with doubts; and in the very study of the Bible, skepticism strengthens. The enemy takes control of the thoughts, and he suggests interpretations that are not correct. Whenever men are not in word and deed seeking to be in harmony with God, then, however learned they may be, they are liable to err in their understanding of Scripture, and it is not safe to trust to their explanations. {SC 110.1}

We are getting answers here. How can I trust them? I can if they demonstrate a total willingness to submit to everything God says. My personal reading needs to be under the understanding that I must not read it from my own perception. What this learned Gamael student saw was deluded by the reading of the Torah. Can you be? My thoughts and affections must be fixed upon God. I see a lot of people who thoughts and affections are not fixed upon God. You know I can tell? When they are in church and walk out and come back inside.

Their thoughts and affections are not fixed upon God. if you want your children to grow up to do that, you must train them to come into the presence of God with complete awe. That is an effort so they can grow up and say I have to pay attention. The bible is not just a text book. It is Gods voice speaking to me and I must put my affections on the God who inspired those words. With much information that we gain by the reading of the Bible and the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy, the information merely and assessments of that reading will cause me to run ahead of my God. My own imagination of what I’m reading I will pick up on and say I’ve got it Lord and I’m right. I don’t ‘know yet as I ought to know. I need to know it as God meant it not as my imagination picks it up. My imagination will play tricks on me in reference to the knowledge I’m gaining. It must be rightly applied.

Proverbs 15:2 The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.

Oh that we don’t become fools in the reading of the word. The churches around us are in that terrible dilemma. They really have Jesus and the truth but have they? Why should I be any different? As I grew up within the SDA church and I asked that very question. In my own mind all churches say they are right and I’ve been brought up SDA what makes me think I’m right. I’ve done it ever since. I don’t trust myself. I don’t trust any teaching. I trust only a thus saith the Lord and when it came to the confusions I went through, the Lord had to show me that Ellen White was a prophet. When I discovered that I knew I would have to make changes in my life. Then I learnt that the SDA church wasn’t Gods church. I learnt it at 21 by going to the Sydney Sanitarium. I said Lord where are you? I permitted my mind to understand that my perceptions where not to be trusted. I lived in an imaginary world like most young people do but I realised that isn’t trustworthy. To apply this principle we will apply it again in regards to health. I had to do this in my training as a nurse. I studied anatomy. This is knowledge. I studied diseases, psychology and all their symptoms and my imagination was stirred and I really believed I have this pain, this could be cancer of the liver. My imagination was really troubled and when it came to psychology I thought dear Lord where are you in all this? You have no idea what happens to a person who studies all these things without letting God screen it all in your mind. You know what it’s called? It’s called hypochondria? What is hypochondria? An exaggerated uneasiness and anxiety mainly as to what concerns the health. Christians who understand the health reform message in the great majority are hypochondriacs as they are continually concerned about their health. We need the sun of righteousness to arise with healing in his wings. The imagination must be screened by God. Information of health reform and other sources must be screened by God in the monarch room. We must take care to not listen to naturopathic knowledge without God screening it or any other science. God must screen the information you receive and he must be followed.

Teachers that Teach Today

1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

4:2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

4:3 Forbidding to marry, [and commanding] to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

Have you heard them? You mustn’t eat wheat as it’s not the best grain when the Bible says bread is the staff of life. Can you see the insanity that Satan has got the world in today? I’ve given up on the human race. The only way we can get out of it is by letting God rule. God created fruits, grains and nuts for food and after sin vegetables. Any meddling around with that is the doctrines of devils.

1 Timothy 4:4 For every creature of God [is] good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:

4:5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

You won’t talk about this or that food doing you bad, it is what God has created for food and is not to be refused. If you think that certain thing you have been taught under scientific research is going to do you harm, follow carefully.

We are not to make the world’s manner of dealing ours. We are to give to the world a nobler example, showing that our faith is of a high and elevated character. Do unto others as you would that others should do unto you. Let every action reveal the nobility of truth. Be true to your faith, and you will be true to God. Come close to the Word, that you may learn what its claims really are. When God speaks, it is your duty to listen and obey. Remember that everything in the world is judged by appearances; therefore, study carefully the Word of God, and see that the words of instruction given to ancient Israel affect your arrangements and plans. {TSA 11.3}

Everything is judged by appearances. When they look out into space they judge by appearances. When they look into your health and study scientifically, they are drawing proof from appearances, not from inspiration.

While you shall not conform to the world, remember that our faith bears the stamp of singularity, and makes us a peculiar people. Therefore, all odd notions and individual peculiarities and narrow plans that would give false impressions of the greatness of the work, should be avoided. None of the workers should manufacture crosses and duties; for the Bible has given the rule, the cross, the way. {TSA 11.3}

The spirit speaks expressly that this has penetrated many different areas of our lives and it affects our imagination. Our health reform is very simple and very uncomplicated. It is a situation where you understand what it says, you do it and forget about it.

The Simplicity of Our Health Reform

We can enlarge it and say God created food in the beginning and we can only eat raw and grains. Only eat raw and don’t cook anything and so on and so on. When God gave them manna, what did he say he could do with it? Seethe it and bake it.

Isaiah 22:12 And in that day did the Lord GOD of hosts call to weeping, and to mourning, and to baldness, and to girding with sackcloth:

What day is this? The day of atonement. The kingdom of heaven is not food and drink, it is righteousness and truth.

22:13 And behold joy and gladness, slaying oxen, and killing sheep, eating flesh, and drinking wine: let us eat and drink; for to morrow we shall die.

22:14 And it was revealed in mine ears by the LORD of hosts, Surely this iniquity shall not be purged from you till ye die, saith the Lord GOD of hosts.

What is this? This is the fast.

The spirit of true fasting and prayer is the spirit which yields mind, heart, and will to God. {CD 189.2}

The heart, mind and will is to be subject to the monarch.

The true fasting which should be recommended to all, is abstinence from every stimulating kind of food, and the proper use of wholesome, simple food, which God has provided in abundance. Men need to think less about what they shall eat and drink, of temporal food, and much more in regard to the food from heaven, that will give tone and vitality to the whole religious experience. {CD 90.1}

What am I to study in regards to health reform? The direct counsels of God. Food analysis is not part of the agenda. If we venture into food analysis and its influences upon our body, simply doing that instead of doing what God tells us to do, if we venture into that, look at this;

It is impossible to prescribe by weight the quantity of food which should be eaten. It is not advisable to follow this process, for by so doing the mind becomes self-centered. Eating and drinking become altogether too much a matter of thought. . . . There are many who have carried a heavy weight of responsibility as to the quantity and quality of food best adapted to nourish the system. Some, especially dyspeptics, have worried so much in regard to their bill of fare that they have not taken sufficient food to nourish the system. They have done great injury to the house they live in, and we fear have spoiled themselves for this life. {CD 108.4}

Here is the danger, hypochondria. If you are in constant fear that your food will hurt you, what will your imagination do. It most assuredly will.

The less the attention is called to the stomach after a meal, the better. If you are in constant fear that your food will hurt you, it most assuredly will. Forget self, and think of something cheerful. {2T 530.1}

Some are continually anxious lest their food, however simple and healthful, may hurt them. To these let me say: Do not think that your food will injure you; do not think about it at all. Eat according to your best judgment; and when you have asked the Lord to bless the food for the strengthening of your body, believe that He hears your prayer, and be at rest. {CD 109.1}

Then when your system is at rest it will digest healthfully but if the message comes from the imagination trained by false teachings and science falsely so called it will affect you. When you sit at the table and the food before you is the health reform that we practise, do as the monarch of your mind prescribes.

What to Do at the Table

The people of God are to turn every action into devotion. They are to partake of every meal as if they knew it was a token of the love of the infinite God expressed to them. {HP 201.3}

Our thoughts and imaginations and the information gathered in our brain may God grant to preside over them and we submit to his sound mind and his wisdom to pervade and to balance all of our life.


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Posted on 07/05/2011, in Health Studies, Let This Mind Be in You (Seminar), The Power of Godly Thinking. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. John,

    You said in this sermon “Then I learnt that the SDA church wasn’t Gods church”. If you are talking about those amongst us who are not willing to submit to the Spirit of God, I can understand.

    But please explain?

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