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Heart Treatment On Its Head vs. Godís Perfect Package

There is hope for the sick. There is hope for the dying. There is hope for those suffering from psychological disorders.
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Heart Treatment On Its Head vs. Godís Perfect Package

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The true story basically goes like this: the black Christian scientist George Washington Carver asked God to show him all the secrets of the universe. God reportedly responded, “Little man, you’re too small to understand all the secrets of the universe, but I will teach you the secrets of the peanut.” The peanut didn’t appear to have such a prestigious quest, for in those days it was considered by many as a lowly food fit for hogs.

In 1897, Brother Carver was Director of the Tuskegee Institute. In his laboratory, he invented 325 uses for the lowly peanut, and 118 products from soybeans, pecans, and sweet potatoes. Only three patents were ever issued to Carver, because he believed his discoveries were a gift from God to be shared with all men. His discoveries include adhesives, axle grease, bleach, buttermilk, chili sauce, fuel briquettes, ink, instant coffee, linoleum, mayonnaise, meat tenderizer, metal polish, pavement, shaving cream, shoe polish, synthetic rubber, talcum powder, and wood stain.

It’s glorious and inspiring to see what God can do with a humbled servant and that servant’s obedience to God’s directive to search out the lowly, humble peanut. Surely the gospel song is true: “Little is much when God is in it.” NOW FOR TODAY’S SUBJECT.

GOD SAID, Proverbs 3:7-8:

7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.

8 It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

GOD SAID, Psalms 103:2-5:

2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:

3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;

4 Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;

5 Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

MAN SAID: Can you imagine that these naive, uneducated Bible-believing Christians actually believe in God and Jesus, angels and miracles, and faith healing? What a bunch of Neanderthals! Christianity is for the inferior.

Now THE RECORD. The medical industry has just received some very shocking news that is turning conventional wisdom on its head. In the June 2005 issue of Discover magazine, a “Q & A” interview was conducted with Dr. Nortin Hadler, a professor of medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Hadler is a medical research specialist who meticulously examines statistics produced by the medical field, and establishes the realities of their labors. His efforts in the past have caused serious rethinking of conventional medical treatment for back pain. He asserts that these treatments are excessive. Hadler also authored the 2004 book titled The Last Well Person: How To Stay Well Despite the Health-Care System. He testified before the Social Security Advisory Board and before Congress concerning the state of modern heart treatment in America, such as the ever medically popular bypass surgery and angioplasty.

Several of the question and answer segments from the Discover magazine article follow for your consideration:

QUESTION: Your book makes the case that too many people are having bypass surgery without much advantage. Under what circumstances do you think bypass surgery is appropriate?

ANSWER: None. I think bypass surgery belongs in the medical archives. There are only two reasons you’d ever want to do it: one, to save lives, the other to improve symptoms. But there’s only one subset of the population that’s been proved to derive a meaningful benefit from the surgery, and that’s people with a critical defect of the left main coronary artery who also have angina. If you take 100 60-year-old men with angina, only 3 of them will have that defect, and there’s no way to know without a coronary arteriogram. So you give that test to 100 people to find 3 solid candidates—but that procedure is not without complications. Chances are you’re going to do harm to at least one in that sample of 100. So you have to say, “I’m going to do this procedure with a 1 percent risk of catastrophe to find the 3 percent I know I can help a little.” That’s a very interesting trade-off.

QUESTION: So you believe the vast majority of those who have had this major surgery have suffered through it for no reason? That seems so counterintuitive. Everyone seems to know a father or uncle who’s been given a new lease on life after their bypass surgery, with more energy and less chest pain.

ANSWER: This analysis is upsetting for people to hear—feel free to yell at me if you need to. I’m really asking people to rethink common sense. But people don’t realize that angina is an intermittent illness. It comes and goes. You can have it for months and then months off. Classic cardiologists used to help people handle the symptoms by treating it like a chronic illness. Well into the 1960s and 1970s, they helped people cope with the anticipation of pain, prescribing drugs like nitroglycerine and helping patients learn to wait until things calmed down a little bit.

QUESTION: But for those people bypass surgery helps, it’s not intermittent—it makes the pain go away altogether. Isn’t that worth something?

ANSWER: You have to consider how much of that relief is a function of natural history and placebo effects. In one controlled trial of surgery for angina, half the people with the condition underwent an operation in which doctors merely made a skin incision and closed it up; in the other half, the patients had a particular kind of bypass. The numbers from each group whose symptoms were significantly alleviated were about the same. Angina is particularly susceptible to the placebo effect because the anticipation of pain adds to the intermittency of it. FDA-approved pharmaceuticals for alleviating angina have about a 55 percent effectiveness level in randomized controlled trials; the placebo runs about 45 percent. Even if surgery could be proved to alleviate the discomfort, you’d have to consider if that offsets the risks of bypass surgery—about half the patients suffer severe depression after the surgery, a third suffer measurable memory loss, and many never go back to work again. Then there are the added risks of any major surgery.

We make this short interruption of this interview to comment on the doctor’s observations concerning the placebo effect. The placebo effect is the ability of the mind to think oneself better. The nocebo effect, on the other hand, is the negative side of things that take place in one’s body as a result of thinking on the wrong words. It is common knowledge to students of the Scriptures that we have been made in the likeness and image of God, with a supernatural brain between our ears that has enormous capabilities. The thoughts that the brain thinks about dictate sundry outcomes. The power of thoughts, which are silent words, to affect life is firmly framed in the Word of God. Proverbs 18:20-21:

20 A man’s belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled.

21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

We are instructed in the Word of God to believe in the powerful hand of God in our lives. This faith harnesses God’s power in numerous ways including the power of the placebo effect. Jesus said in Mark 11:23-26:

23 For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.

24 Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

25 And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.

26 But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.

Science begins to understand this principle today but God’s Word declares it from the beginning. For more information, click on to “Nocebo, Placebo, and You.” Now, we’ll continue with the interview of Dr. Hadler:

QUESTION: You analyze the definitive studies and find that the number of people whose lives are saved by bypass surgery, angiograms, and cholesterol-lowering drugs is statistically insignificant—and yet life expectancy has risen since the advent of all three of those treatments. If it isn’t better cardiac care that’s extending lives, what is?

ANSWER: The start of the rise in longevity kicked in long before cardiac intervention became popular. Looking at life-course epidemiological studies, the secret lies in two questions: Are you comfortable in your socioeconomic status, and do you like your job? With regard to socioeconomic status, the central question relates to relative wealth—in other words, the smaller the income gap in a given area, the better the longevity. Where the income gap is larger, the poor die sooner. These are powerful associations. The answer does not lie in modern medicine but in modern society. [End of quote]

Again, diverting momentarily from the interview, Dr. Hadler attributes longevity not to the medical world of heart treatment, but to two very spiritual positions. One is being comfortable in your socioeconomic status. John the Baptist addressed this question in Luke 3:13-14:

13 And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you.

14 And the soldiers likewise demanded of him, saying, And what shall we do? And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely; and be content with your wages.

The Word of God, in a multitude of passages, teaches this principle. Another example is I Timothy 6:6-8:

6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.

7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.

The second key is also a spiritual one, and it is, “Do you like your job?” Christians are instructed to be content and thankful in all situations. Colossians 3:22-23:

22 Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:

23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;

And then in I Thessalonians 5:18:

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

Being thankful includes your beautiful job. The interview continues.

QUESTION: Surgery is obviously invasive, but why do you object to the widespread prescription of statins, the cholesterol-lowering drugs?

ANSWER: In men with normal cholesterol levels, the risk of death for those between ages 45 and 65 over the course of the next five years is only a fraction of 1 percent lower than it is for men with high serum cholesterol in the same category. The most thorough study to date had some 3,000 men with “high” cholesterol levels take a statin every day for five years, while 3,000 similar men took a placebo. When all was said and done, there was no difference in cardiovascular deaths between the two groups. Statins do reduce the risk of heart attack in those who have a strong family history of people in their family having heart attacks very young—but that’s a small percentage of the population. You could argue, looking at the data, that they’re helpful for people who’ve already had one heart attack. But for everyone else, the possible advantage is marginally and clinically insignificant.

QUESTION: You’re 62—do you get your cholesterol checked?

ANSWER: I don’t want to know. We have data that tell me if you stigmatize me by labeling me somehow, it will change my sense of well-being. I have nothing to gain from that in this case. I would be infuriated if any doctor checked my cholesterol without my asking and told me if it was up or down. I would think that would be an abuse of science that offered me a chance of feeling less well for no good reason.

QUESTION: If the data are not prompting so much interventional cardiology, what is?

ANSWER: Money. Interventional cardiology is what supports almost every hospital in America—it’s an enormous part of our gross domestic product. Every year in this country we do about half a million bypass grafts and 650,000 coronary angioplasties, with the mean cost of the procedures ranging from $28,000 to $60,000. There are a lot of people involved in this transfer of wealth. But no Western European nation has such a high rate of those procedures—and their longevity is higher than ours. [End of interview]

A very positive review of Dr. Hadler’s book was printed in The Journal of the American Medical Association.

The practice of medicine continues to seek solutions for man’s many physical and psychological problems. The medical field has enjoyed numerous successes and has been applauded, but unfortunately, the applause is seriously dimmed due to the annual wake—in the U.S. alone, hundreds of thousands die as a result of errors, misdiagnosis, nosocomial infections (infections originating from a hospital visit), shoddy workmanship, incorrect science, and other errors.

But, you must know that God offers His Word in the person of Christ Jesus as an alternative to the practice of medicine. The Holy Bible is the perfect health manual laden with instructions and abounding in life. Those who apply themselves to His directives enjoy more abundant life.

God’s Word declares in I Peter 2:24:

Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

James 5:14-16:

14 Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:

15 And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.

16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

Mark 16:17-18:

17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

God’s Word makes this promise concerning fasting in Isaiah 58:6-8:

6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?

7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?

8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy rereward.

On this website, there are over 40 feature subjects (listed below) that deal with God’s perfect health plan. God’s Word is true. You can trust His counsel.

There is hope for the sick. There is hope for the dying. There is hope for those suffering from psychological disorders. That hope is unquestionably Jesus Christ the Lord of Glory, the Messiah and soon-coming champion of the great battle of Armageddon. If you have yet to make your peace with God, click on to “Further With Jesus” and do it now.

Read or listen to several of these listed subjects every day. Your health depends on it.

A Merry Heart or a Broken Spirit

Grudges vs Forgiveness -- Death vs Life

It’s Not What Goes In But What Comes Out That Defiles

Kiss Those Panic Attacks Goodbye Series

Let Not the Sun Go Down Upon Your Wrath

Murmuring, Griping, Complaining, and the Curse

Perfect Diet Series

Rest From Stress

Secrets and Demonstrations of Power-Speaking

Shifting Stress

Solution for Killer Stress

The Formula for Killing Stress

The Heart Series

The Power of Prayer

The Secret of Self-Destruction

The Yoke, the Burden, and the Stress

GOD SAID, Proverbs 3:7-8:

7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.

8 It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

GOD SAID, Psalms 103:2-5:

2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:

3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;

4 Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;

5 Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

MAN SAID: Can you imagine that these naive, uneducated Bible-believing Christians actually believe in God and Jesus, angels and miracles, and faith healing? What a bunch of Neanderthals! Christianity is for the inferior.

Now you have THE RECORD.




References:

King James Bible

Dominus, S., “The Doctor Who Doesn’t Check His Cholesterol,” Discover magazine, 6/05, pp16-17

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