The Word of Wisdom – Warned and Forewarned (D&C 89:4)

“4 Behold, verily, thus saith the Lord unto you: In consequence of evils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts of conspiring men in the last days, I have warned you, and forewarn you, by giving unto you this word of wisdom by revelation—” – Doctrine and Covenants 89:4

A few things that I learned while studying this verse:

i)
While most people are good and trustworthy, there are some people who knowingly choose wickedness over righteousness. There are people who have no desire to do good to others or build up society in any way.

I don’t think that we need to be skeptical of everyone, but we do have to be careful.

ii)
There are people who seek extreme wealth and power over others. They have no scruples with going about such ambitions through ways that are directly harmful to us. In fact, we can see that this is true in both the “drug industry” and, unfortunately, the food industry.

The drug-lords are obviously conspiring against people for their own gain. We have seen a recent uptick in violence in Mexico because of the drug trade. These people don’t care about their own peers. They don’t care about those who use drugs. Obviously. They only care about getting richer and more powerful. Why would we trust them in any way?

I don’t want to sound like a conspiracy-theorist, but I believe that there are also people who head up some major food companies that don’t exactly have our best interest in mind. They may not be as socio-pathic as drug-lords, but it seems like they care about their bottom line more than the general health of the population.

It is easy to see why. If their companies don’t make money, they don’t make money. Read here (an excerpt from David A. Kessler’s, The End of Overeating for some examples of how our food industry (especially processed foods) may not be as innocent and nice as they seem in the commercials.

iii)
We don’t need to be fooled by the wealth and power of those who have amassed such assets wickedly. They have received such “abundance” at the expense of others, not because God has blessed them.

Instead of allowing ourselves to be fooled, we need to be sure that we are not buying into these bad products. Obviously, staying away from drugs and alcohol is a good place to start. Additionally, I know that I can do a better job at staying away from fast food restaurants. Choose to actually cook! Shop at farmer’s markets. Grow a garden. And if you are eating out, make healthy choices. Speak in a way that these conspiring men will understand – with your moolah!

iv)
I find it interesting that the Lord is giving us a warning about food here. Recently, I’ve been trying to take off baby weight. There are many diets available that focus on cutting out entire food groups. There is advice from the government. There are movie stars, weight loss companies, and even pills that will help to do the trick.

Each seems to claim the best results and that their plans are “safe”.

And I feel confused, yet, as I think about the Word of Wisdom, I become increasingly grateful. Even though the Lord has only given us a guideline on how to treat our bodies, it is enough to give us guidance in this sea of “information.”

Not all of the advice we hear is clear or even believable. Again, there are conspiring men who know that they can lose billions of dollars if we don’t buy into what they are selling. They have a lot at stake, and will do what it takes to get us to believe them.

So…Instead, I will trust the Lord. I will look to the Word of Wisdom, I will prayerfully study other advice that is available from all sources, and let the Spirit guide me in my quest to treat my body like a temple.

v)
The Word of Wisdom was given to us, specifically us – in the last days, by revelation. Dietary codes have existed before, but these codes haven’t had the same advice or requirements. The Word of Wisdom, as contained in Doctrine and Covenants 89 is for us now.

I don’t think that we have a new dietary code because we suddenly have a new biochemistry or physiology than in generations past. I think that the reason why the code is different now is because we now face different advantages and threats. For example, thanks to modern refrigeration and preservation, many meats don’t pose a threat to us the way that they did in the past. We understand the implications with improperly stored food. (ie – salmonella, food poisoning, etc!)

However, we also have new-found threats. We have cars, planes, guns – all types of machinery that have a minuscule margin of error. Having a word of wisdom that forbids alcohol is quite helpful in keeping our lives safer because of these new technologies. Now, many of us have ample supplies of safe drinking water (or easy ways to make it safe), where alcohol has become increasingly stronger. Anciently, drunkenness was frowned upon, but even if you did get drunk, worst case scenario: you fall off your donkey. Now, there are more very dangerous threats.

Many people who live in developed countries have access to an oversupply of food. Also, many of us don’t have to grow our own food. Perhaps this is why the revelation also includes information on how we ought to eat. I know that I am quite disconnected from my food sources. I mean, don’t tomatoes grow at the supermarket, year round? 😉

Anyways…nothing I say here is meant to be the word on the word (of wisdom). As usual, I’m just thinking…and sharing these crazy thoughts with you. However, such an exercise is helping me to be a little more thoughtful about what I put into my mouth.

I’ve been thinking about health a lot lately. My brother passed away a few weeks ago. He was a young, healthy 18 year-old boy. Five people’s lives were saved because he took care of his body. Think of that! What we do really matters. Maybe we’ll never be organ donors. And hopefully, if we take care of our bodies, we’ll never need someone else’s organs. The Lord wants us to be happy, and a big part of our happiness is based on our physical health – so he has warned us and forewarned us.

What have you noticed in the world around you concerning the warnings that the Lord has given in D&C 89:4? Are there tips you have that will help to better discern the many types of information we face?

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2 Comments

  1. Barbara

     /  July 2, 2011

    I am so sorry for the loss of your brother, but grateful he was able to help so many. Thanks for your thoughts on the Word of Wisdom.

    Reply

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