Sabbath Afternoon


Memory Text: “And in all matters of wisdom [and] understanding, that the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians [and] astrologers that [were] in all his realm. And Daniel continued [even] unto the first year of king Cyrus.” Daniel 1:20, 21


Man was created with muscle, testosterone, drive, and intensity for efficient functioning, but all that will be lost if our health is compromised by our dietary practices and our lifestyle choices. When we are feeling sick or when we are tired our ability to think clearly, to resist evil thoughts, and to go hard at a task effectively is greatly diminished. Intemperance in eating, drinking, and other practices are the cause of so much inefficiency we experience personally and observe in our fellow human beings.


“What can be done to stay the tide of disease and crime that is sweeping our race down to ruin and to death? As the great cause of the evil is to be found in the indulgence of appetite and passion, so the first and great work of reform must be to learn and practice the lessons of temperance and self-control. {MYP 233.1}

To effect a permanent change for the better in society, the education of the masses must begin in early life. The habits formed in childhood and youth, the tastes acquired, the self-control gained, the principles inculcated from the cradle, are almost certain to determine the future of the man or woman. The crime and corruption occasioned by intemperance and lax morals might be prevented by the proper training of the youth.” (E. G. White, Messages to Young People p. 233.2)


This week we are exploring how to be healthy and efficient.



Sunday                                                                                                                                  May 1


Title: I am too sick and tired                                                       


Imagine that feeling we humans have after eating till we are full and then having an extra plate or half a plate of food. Now imagine having that overeating experience three times a day and having to work while under that mental fog or having to work while drowsy. The stupor like feeling has become a permanent state for many because after long years of abusing their bodies and minds their mental and physical function has decreased. Many continue to exist in such a state of decreased function because of ongoing abuse in eating, drinking, and other habits. Dealing with someone in this stupor like state is bad for us when we are dealing with important matters and the person we are dealing with wants to get rid of us because they can’t be bothered or mentally cannot process the information presented in order to give a right determination. Think about any of the professions listed below and how difficult it would be to work effectively without having the ability to mentally process information or not feeling like it because they are so drained from overeating, or drinking from the night before. Doctor, lawyer, judge, police, carpenter, plumber, mechanic, nurse, surgeon, engineer, etc. No matter what type of job a person does, diminished mental function will result in diminished service rendered. “Anything that lessens physical strength enfeebles the mind, and makes it less capable of discriminating between right and wrong.” {MYP 235.1}    


What is it about alcohol that would cause a king to forget the law and pervert judgment?

Proverbs 31:4 [It is] not for kings, O Lemuel, [it is] not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink: 

 31:5 Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted.




Can a ruler be just while partaking of alcohol?

2 Samuel 23:3 The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men [must be] just, ruling in the fear of God. 




Monday                                                                                                                                May 2


Title: Harmonious Development of mind and body                                                


“The time spent in physical exercise is not lost. The student who is constantly poring over his books, while he takes but little exercise in the open air, does himself an injury. A proportionate exercise of the various organs and faculties of the body is essential to the best work of each. When the brain is constantly taxed, while the other organs are left inactive, there is a loss of physical and mental strength. The physical powers are robbed of their healthy tone, the mind loses its freshness and vigor, and a morbid excitability is the result. { MYP 239.1}

In order for men and women to have well-balanced minds, all the powers of the being should be called into use and developed. There are in this world many who are one-sided because only one set of faculties has been cultivated, while others are dwarfed from inaction. The education of many youth is a failure. They overstudy, while they neglect that which pertains to the practical life. That the balance of the mind may be maintained, a judicious system of physical work should be combined with mental work, that there may be a harmonious development of all the powers.” (Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 295-296)


Why is it important to have balance in our lives?

Ecclesiastes 12:12, 13     



Have you ever wondered how much study can make the body tired?



Tuesday                                                                                                                                May 3


Title: Quality of Our Food


One of the important lessons we receive from the story of Daniel is what constitutes good quality food. The food that was provided for Daniel was the best food, similar to what the king would eat. The food that Daniel requested was the best quality food based upon the end result when he and his friends were tested and found ten times better than their peers. Daniel simply requested that he be fed what would normally be given to animals, in which the animals would eat to turn into food, then the animals would then be eaten as food, after the animals had used up the vital nutrients from the plant based diet they were fed. Hence the best quality food is food eaten first hand (legume, grains, etc.) instead of eating meat (second hand food). Also we can note from the story of Daniel that the meat he requested not to eat was of better quality than the meat sold for food today. Today we have the added danger of animals being fed hormones, antibiotics, poultry litter, and ground up animals, while being raised in very unsanitary conditions. To live a healthy and efficient life it is important to partake of a healthy plant-based diet.


What is the first step you should take to avoid eating a bad diet?

Daniel 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself. 



How much self-control should you practice?

1 Corinthians 9:24 - 27 



Explain the main difference between works of the flesh and the fruit of the Spirit?

Galatians 5:19 - 23




Wednesday                                                                                                                         May 4


Title: Digestion                                           


Now that we are eating only what is necessary, exercising, drinking good drinks, and partaking of the best quality foods, another important aspect of achieving efficiency is to not partake of anything (or do anything) that will negatively affect our digestive track. The process of digestion is to break food down to their individual nutrients to be used as building blocks in our bodies. The process starts with us chewing our food thoroughly and not drinking fluids while eating. Next is waiting at least four to five hours between meals depending on the makeup of the meal to allow each meal to properly digest. Then there are foods that irritate the digestive track such as vinegar, cheese, liquor, tea, coffee, rich pastries, sodas, chemical flavor enhancers, chemical sweeteners, toxic preservatives, and greasy foods. So much of the modern diseases like irritable bowel syndrome are caused in large part by partaking of irritants. Hence to function efficiently we must do what allows our digestive tract to function efficiently. 


What is the difference between a living sacrifice and a human sacrifice and how does it relate to the above discussion?

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, [which is] your reasonable service.  




Thursday                                                                                                                              May 5


Title: Being more efficient                                              


Efficiency (especially in a system or machine) is achieving maximum productivity with minimum wasted effort or expense, a person working in a well-organized and competent way. In order for our bodies and minds to function efficiently we must take care of our health. It makes no sense to expend extra energy to carry out any task we are doing because we are exhausted from overeating, drinking stupefying liquor, haven’t exercised in a while, or our digestive track is inflamed because irritants are being eaten. Life requires of us to do hard labor to earn a living or to learn how to earn a living. Why make it even harder by destroying the beautiful machinery God gave us? Being healthy will only make us more effective at our daily task and we will be able to render to God and man our best.


What is another way to be efficient? Explain how being fervent helps us to become efficient?

Romans 12:11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; 





Insight: Poultry Litter traditionally used as fertilizer, it is now also used as a livestock feed as a cost-saving measure compared with other feedstock materials, particularly for beef animals. The use of poultry litter as food for beef cattle is legal in the United States. Poultry litter is a mixture of poultry excreta, spilled feed, feathers, and material used as bedding in poultry operations. Common bedding materials include wood shavings, sawdust, peanut hulls, shredded sugar cane, straw, and other dry, absorbent, low-cost organic materials. Sand is also occasionally used as bedding.



Friday                                                                                                                                        May 6


“God always honors the right. The most promising youths from all the lands subdued by the great conqueror had been gathered at Babylon, yet amid them all the Hebrew captives were without a rival. The erect form, the firm, elastic step, the fair countenance, the undimmed senses, the untainted breath,—all these were insignia of the nobility with which nature honors those who are obedient to her laws.” { MYP 241.2}


“There is much sterling in the adage, “Every man is the architect of his own fortune.” While parents are responsible for the stamp of character, as well as for the education and training, of their sons and daughters, it is still true that our position and usefulness in the world depend, to a great degree, upon our own course of action. {MYP 242.3}

Daniel and his companions enjoyed the benefits of correct training and education in early life, but these advantages alone would not have made them what they were. The time came when they must act for themselves,—when their future depended upon their own course. Then they decided to be true to the lessons given them in childhood. The fear of God, which is the beginning of wisdom, was the foundation of their greatness. {MYP 243.1}

The history of Daniel and his youthful companions has been recorded on the pages of the inspired word for the benefit of the youth of all succeeding ages. Through the record of their fidelity to the principles of temperance, God is speaking today to young men and young women, bidding them gather up the precious rays of light He has given on the subject of Christian temperance, and place themselves in right relation to the laws of health.” (E. G. White, Messages to Young People p. 243.2)


Discussion questions

Share with the class what section of this week’s study you find inspiring, challenging, and difficult to understand.


Prepare to discuss with the class what you consider to be some of the best quality foods and why.


What is your understanding of the importance of not partaking of irritants?