Sunday, August 27, 2023

What’s the Bible For? The Biblical Authors. What Is TMAO and How Can We Reduce Our Levels?


What’s the Bible For?

2 Timothy 3:15-17

And that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

“The Holy Scriptures available to Timothy as a child would, of course, have been what we call the Old Testament today. The apostle Paul and the New Testament Church held the Old Testament in high esteem and quoted from it often in sermons and writings. The Old Testament revealed much about Jesus Christ, including both His first and second comings, and the salvation that is available because of His sacrifice.

All Scripture, which Peter later showed included Paul’s writings as well (2 Peter 3:16), was breathed—what we call inspired—by God. What is the Bible useful for?

  • Doctrine—teaching us God’s will.
  • Reproof—conviction or proof of wrongdoing.
  • Correction—setting us straight.
  • Instruction in righteousness—disciplining or training.

The Good News Translation puts it this way: All Scripture “is useful for teaching the truth, rebuking error, correcting faults, and giving instruction for right living, so that the person who serves God may be fully qualified and equipped to do every kind of good deed” (verses 16-17).”  

For more about this passage, see “What Is the Meaning of 2 Timothy 3:16?” For more about what the Bible can do for us, see “Why Study the Bible?”  From:


The Author Behind the Biblical Authors

Revelation 1:19

“Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this.”

The various books that make up the Bible make no secret that though they were written down by dozens of different men, they all were inspired by a single author (2 Timothy 3:16). In Revelation 1:19, Jesus Christ told the apostle John to write down these things that make up the last book of the Bible.

At the other end of the Bible, we see God telling Moses to write down what He revealed to him (Exodus 34:27). Moses went on to write the first five books of the Bible (the Law or the Pentateuch).

It’s interesting to note that the One who appeared to Moses is also revealed as the One who became Jesus Christ: “For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ” (1 Corinthians 10:4).

Jesus Christ, the Word of God (John 1:1), also inspired the written Word of God, from Genesis to Revelation, from Moses to John.”  From:

For more about the inspiration and accuracy of the Bible, see “Who Wrote the Bible?” “How Do We Know the Bible Is True?” and related articles. 


What Is TMAO and How Can We Reduce Our Levels?

Image Credit: Unsplash. This image has been modified.

“Trimethylamine oxide, more commonly known as TMAO, is considered the smoking gun of microbiome-disease interactions.

What Is TMAO?

When we eat foods with high concentrations of choline, a nutrient I discuss in more detail below, certain bacteria in our gut make trimethylamine, or TMA. Our system absorbs the compound, and our liver oxidizes it into TMAO. You can see a graphic illustrating this process below and at 2:19 in my video Egg Industry Response to Choline and TMAO.

chart showing how liver oxidizes choline into TMAO

Is TMAO Bad for You?

TMAO may be a key dietary component of an unhealthy diet that contributes to disease promotion.

Heart Disease

Researchers at the Cleveland Clinic screened blood from patients who had either had a heart attack or a stroke and compared the results with those from the blood of people who had not experienced either. Using an array of different technologies, the researchers determined that the more TMAO people had in their blood, the greater the odds they had heart disease and the worse their heart disease was.

Four thousand people were followed for three years, and, as you can see in the graph below and at 3:10 in my video Egg Industry Response to Choline and TMAO, those with the highest TMAO levels went on to have significantly more heart attacks, strokes, or even death.

chart showing correlation between tmao levels and heart disease

Artery Hardening

TMAO appears to increase the ability of inflammatory cells within the atherosclerotic plaque in our artery walls to bind to so-called bad LDL cholesterol. By making the inflammatory cells more prone to gobble up cholesterol, TMAO is another piece of the puzzle as to how cholesterol causes heart disease.

Failing Kidneys

When researchers followed kidney patients over time and assessed their freedom from death, they found that those with higher TMAO lived significantly shorter lives, even after controlling for kidney function. See more at 4:44 in my video How to Treat Heart Failure and Kidney Failure with Diet.


We’ve known about the troublesome transformation from choline into trimethylamine (TMA) for more than 40 years, but that was long before we learned about its connection to heart disease. Why were researchers concerned nearly a half-century ago? Because these methylamines might form nitrosamines, which have cancer-causing activity.

In the Women’s Health Initiative study, women with the highest TMAO levels in their blood had approximately three times greater risk of rectal cancer, suggesting that TMAO levels may serve as a potential predictor of increased colorectal cancer risk.

Which Foods Increase TMAO Levels?  Carnitine and choline are two components known to facilitate production of TMAO. Where do we get these in our diet?

Carnitine:  Within 24 hours of consumption of carnitine, certain gut bacteria metabolize it into TMA, which our liver then oxidizes into the TMAO that then circulates throughout our bloodstream. Where can we find carnitine? It is concentrated in red meat, certain energy drinks, and carnitine supplements.
Choline: As mentioned above, our gut bacteria can turn choline into TMAO, too. Major dietary sources of choline are eggs, milk, and meat, including liver, poultry, shellfish, and fish.  Choline is also present in lecithin supplements.

Can We Reduce Our TMAO Levels?

TMAO is a toxic compound that may increase our risk of heart failure, kidney failure, and atherosclerosis, but might there be nutritional or interventional prospects for prevention? That’s the topic of my video How to Reduce Your TMAO Levels.

Antibiotics and Probiotics

If our intestinal bacteria and liver can make TMAO from meat, dairy, and eggs, should we destroy our gut flora?

We could give people antibiotics to eliminate the production of TMAO, but that could also kill our good bacteria and foster the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains.

What about probiotic supplements? If we add good bacteria, might they crowd out the bad bacteria? That doesn’t work. Adding good bacteria doesn’t seem to get rid of the bad.

A New Methane-Producing Bacterium

What if we introduce new bacteria that could somehow siphon off the TMA made by the bad bacteria already in our gut? Well, there is a bacterium inside the guts of cows and sheep that turns trimethylamine into methane. Could we use that to get rid of some of the TMA in our gut? We could, but if it didn’t take, if our gut didn’t become colonized by the cow-and-sheep bacterium, we’d have to keep introducing it to our body. In that case, might the fact that Consumer Reports found fecal contamination in every sample of beef it tested be a good thing? Not at all. Methane-producing bacteria may be able to eat up our TMAO, but, unfortunately, these bacteria may be associated with a variety of diseases, from gum disease down to colorectal cancer, as you can see at 2:15 in my video.

Impairing Our Liver Function

If we can’t use antibiotics or probiotics to prevent our gut bacteria and liver from making TMAO out of the meat, dairy, and eggs we eat, should we cut down on our liver function?

That was the billion-dollar strategy employed by Big Pharma to lower our cholesterol. The same foods—meat, dairy, and eggs—raise our cholesterol, and changing our diet may lower it, but that isn’t very profitable. So, Big Pharma developed statin drugs that cripple the enzyme in our liver that makes cholesterol. Should we give that a try to lower our TMAO levels? Why not pharmacologically inhibit the enzymes in our liver that make TMAO and thereby possibly help reduce our risk of cardiovascular disease?

Trimethylaminuria is a genetic condition in which this enzyme is impaired naturally, so there is a build-up of trimethylamine in the bloodstream. The TMA just doesn’t get oxidized into TMAO. There is a problem, though. TMA is so stinky that it makes you smell like dead fish. So, “given the known adverse effects…from sufferers of fish odor syndrome, the untoward odorous side effects of inhibiting this enzyme make it a less attractive [drug] target.”


Do we have to choose between suffering from heart and kidney disease or smelling like dead fish? If only there were some other way we could stop this process from happening. There is. We could stop eating animal products, which is what those with trimethylaminuria often do to lower their TMA levels.

About a third of those who complain of bad body odor despite good personal hygiene test positive for the condition, but reducing or eliminating meat, egg, and dairy intake can be a real lifesaver. Given what we know about how toxic TMAO can be, cutting down on animal products may not just save the social lives of people with a rare genetic disorder, but it could help save everyone else’s actual lives.

Indeed, rather than trying to genetically engineer a bacterium that eats up trimethylamine or ingesting a gut enzyme from cows and sheep to convert it into methane, simply limiting the consumption of foods rich in choline and carnitine, perhaps specifically L-carnitine, may effectively limit the amount of TMAO circulating in our body. The easiest and safest recommendation? Eat more healthfully.

Our body makes all of the carnitine we need, so we can completely eliminate it from our diet. Choline, on the other hand, is an essential nutrient, so we do need some—but we don’t need to get it from eggs. Thankfully, we can get all we need from fruits, vegetables, beans, and nuts.

Can we get too much choline from plants? Do we need to worry about high-choline plant foods, like broccoli? No. In fact, consumption of cruciferous vegetables is associated with a significantly longer life and less cardiovascular disease mortality, as you can see at 5:34 in my video. To see what was going on, researchers took the vegetable highest in choline, brussels sprouts, and had people eat two cups a day for three weeks. What happened? Their TMAO levels actually went down. It turns out that brussels sprouts appear to naturally downregulate the TMAO liver enzyme—not enough to make you stinky, but just enough to drop TMAO.

Fecal Transplants

People who eat completely plant-based may not make any TMAO at all—even if they try. You can give a vegan a steak, which contains both choline and carnitine, and there will not even be a bump in TMAO. Why not? Vegetarians and vegans have different gut microbial communities. If we don’t eat steak, then we don’t foster the growth of steak-eating bacteria in our gut. So, forget the cow. How about getting a fecal transplant from a vegan? From a TMAO standpoint, we may not have to eat like a vegan as long as we poop like one.


Can you sense my frustration as I read paper after paper proposing ridiculous  strategies for reducing or inhibiting TMAO production? Pills, supplements, and the like may be profitable for Big Pharma, but we already have a safe, simple, and side-effect-free solution: a plant-based diet. 

And, plant-based eating gives us other benefits:

For more on TMAO, the smoking gun of diet-microbiome-disease interactions, see:

In health,   Michael Greger, M.D.”  From:


Sunday, August 20, 2023

Effects of Baptism: A Clean Start. Sin’s Payday. Human-Made Stuff Now Outweighs All Life on Earth.


Effects of Baptism: A Clean Start

“Is water baptism essential for salvation? God wants 21st-century Christians to understand the effects of baptism in providing a clean start to a new life.

Effects of Baptism: A Clean StartJennifer stood waiting at the steps of the pool, giving her friends and family time to gather around in order to witness her baptism. She had been thinking and praying about this commitment to God for quite some time. And she had gone through a series of counselings with her pastor that helped her understand and further convicted her about the step she was taking.

Jennifer felt good about her decision and was confident that it was the right course of action. It was just about time for her to step into the water and formally make her covenant relationship with God.

Is baptism necessary today?

But was it really necessary for Jennifer to undergo this ancient practice that originated in type under the Old Covenant (Hebrews 9:10)? Must Christians be baptized today to have a clean start?

According to some groups, including Christian Scientists, Quakers, the Salvation Army and Unitarians, the answers to these questions are both “No.”

Those who do not practice baptism vary in their explanations as to why they do not, but in general, they consider baptism to be an outdated ritual that is no longer necessary under the New Covenant. Reasons given often include:

  • What one experiences in his or her heart is what is most important.
  • External actions to reflect one’s inner thoughts are superfluous.
  • The scriptures on baptism are ambiguous.
  • People can live holy lives without being baptized.

So are the Scriptures really that vague? Is there any value to being baptized? What are the effects of baptism? Instead of relying on human opinions and reasoning, let’s see what the biblical record shows.

Christ’s example and instruction on baptism

A quick review of Christ’s actions just before the beginning of His ministry is insightful as a lesson for us today. As we will soon see, Jesus taught that baptism was very important.

When John the Baptist began preaching in the wilderness of Judea, people from “Jerusalem, all Judea, and all the region around the Jordan went out to him and were baptized by him in the Jordan, confessing their sins” (Matthew 3:5-6). Though Jesus had no sins to confess, He asked John to baptize Him (verse 13).     Baptism is far more than a symbolic exercise.

After being baptized, the Spirit of God descended upon Jesus and a voice from heaven said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (verse 17).

Why did God the Father make this statement after Jesus was baptized? And, of special concern to us, will the Father be pleased if we are baptized? It seems obvious that He thinks baptism is important!

Scriptures such as 1 Peter 2:21 and 1 John 2:6 show that Christians are to follow the example of Jesus Christ. We are to walk as He walked, do as He did. We are indeed to be baptized as He was. When we follow Christ’s example, God the Father is, no doubt, pleased with us as well.

Jesus’ teaching on baptism was not limited to His personal example. During His earthly ministry, He had His disciples baptize those who believed (John 3:22). It is also insightful to note that Christ’s disciples baptized more people than John the Baptist (John 4:1-2).

After His crucifixion and resurrection, Jesus appeared to His disciples and gave them instructions on how they were to take His message to the world.

Note that His instructions, which are sometimes referred to as the commission of the Church, include baptizing those who respond: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19, emphasis added throughout).

Jesus also pointedly stated, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16). Christ’s teaching on the importance and effects of baptism is quite clear!

Since Jesus clearly taught baptism, let’s now consider what we learn by following His instruction.

Effects of baptism: what we learn and receive from baptism

Repentance. When people in Peter’s audience on the Day of Pentecost in A.D. 31 asked the apostle what they should do, he told them to “repent, and let every one of you be baptized” (Acts 2:38). Repentance, which is the initial step toward baptism, means changing our way of life because of a change in our thinking. It means that in hindsight, we realize that the way we had been living was not in accordance with God’s good and beneficial laws.

The process of repentance—which we are led to by God (Romans 2:4)—helps us understand the seriousness of sin. It is marked by a strong desire on our part to be forgiven of our sins, to stop sinning and to change our sinful nature (Jeremiah 17:9). It includes the recognition of the value of Christ’s sacrifice—His blood that covers our sins (Ephesians 1:7).

Repentance is part of the message that Jesus told His disciples to preach (Luke 24:47). Why? Because, as Jesus had earlier said, “Unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3).

To learn more about this important subject, see the articles in the section “Repentance.”

Death, burial and resurrection. After one repents of his or her sins, the next step is to be baptized—which means being immersed in water. This act symbolizes three important concepts.

First, baptism represents the death of the old man—the way we lived before repenting. Paul twice described this concept as being “crucified” with Christ (Romans 6:6; Galatians 2:20).

Next, after someone dies, he is generally buried. Baptism pictures the burial of the old man with all of his sins, which earn one the death penalty. This reminds us to put away the old way of life completely. As Paul explained, “We were buried with Him through baptism into death” (Romans 6:4).

The third concept symbolized by baptism is resurrection. Coming up from under the water after being baptized represents our resurrection to a new life in Christ. As Paul further noted, “If we have been united together in the likeness of His [Christ’s] death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection” (verse 5).

Baptism helps impress these three important concepts within our minds. This physical act helps us realize the spiritual significance of baptism.

For further study, see the article “What Do the Symbols of Baptism Mean?

Forgiveness of sins. Baptism is far more than a symbolic exercise. Indeed, there are two very significant beneficial effects of baptism in addition to the spiritual understanding we gain from obeying Christ’s command to be baptized.

The first is the forgiveness of our sins. Indeed, this is one of the key reasons for being baptized. As Peter said, “Let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins” (Acts 2:38). Through baptism we accept the sacrifice of Christ, which washes our sins away (Acts 22:16) and gives us a clean start.

Receiving the Holy Spirit. A second important effect of baptism is the opportunity to receive the Holy Spirit. Again, Peter’s teaching was: “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38).

Baptism, accompanied by the laying on of hands (Acts 19:6), is the way God has established for us to receive this precious gift.

Romans 8 documents several important benefits that come to us because we have God’s Holy Spirit.

First, this power from God allows us to set aside ungodly activities and live “according to the Spirit” (verse 4). When we allow this Spirit to lead us, we are called the “children of God” (verse 16).

Furthermore, having God’s Holy Spirit is our guarantee of eternal life (verses 11, 13, 23).

To learn more about this baptismal promise, see the articles in the section “Holy Spirit.”

Action required: should you be baptized? 

Following the biblical instruction to be baptized underscores an important biblical principle: What we do is very important to God. The true, timeless religion of the Bible calls for physical action—not just knowledge and understanding. As Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).

The author of Psalm 111 made this insightful observation: “A good understanding have all those who do His commandments” (verse 10). Echoing this principle and the teaching of Jesus, James emphasized that “faith without works is dead” (James 2:20). The actions we take before and during baptism set the stage for continued obedience to God afterwards.

Jennifer’s baptism

After everyone had gathered around, Jennifer was baptized by being completely immersed in the pool. She entered into a covenant relationship with Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior. She had hands laid on her with a prayer for the receiving of the Holy Spirit, and she has been given a clean start and has begun her spiritual journey toward eternal life as a child of God in His Kingdom.

Looking back on her decision, she says it is the best one she has ever made. The decision to respond to God’s calling to be baptized was a good one for Jennifer. It can be the same for you!

The Teaching of the Apostles About Baptism

Only a few days after receiving the commission to make disciples of all the nations and baptize them, Jesus’ disciples gathered in Jerusalem for the Feast of Pentecost—one of God’s annual festivals (Acts 2:1). It was there on this holy day that the Holy Spirit was poured out on the believers (verses 2-4). Jesus had told His disciples that He would send this special power that proceeds from the Father to them after He left them (John 15:26; 16:7).

Empowered by this special gift from God, Peter—the disciple who had previously denied Christ three times—now publicly explained that Jesus Christ was responsible for sending the Holy Spirit that day (Acts 2:14-33). Peter also advised those who were listening to repent “and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ” (verse 38). Peter didn’t present baptism as simply an option.

The approximately 3,000 people who were baptized following Peter’s preaching also received the Holy Spirit that day (verse 41). As Christ’s apostles preached the gospel of the Kingdom and the Church grew, baptism was the common practice and expectation of those who responded (Acts 8:12, 36, 38; 16:15, 33; 18:8; 19:5; 22:16). When Paul was called by God, he responded by being baptized (Acts 9:18).

Jesus’ disciples taught others as they had been taught by Christ. And this teaching included baptism. When we respond to God, we, too, need to be baptized!”  From:

Looking for the church behind Life, Hope & Truth? See our “Who We Are” page.


Sin’s Payday

Romans 6:23

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

“We have all earned eternal death (Romans 3:23), but absolutely nothing we can do will earn us eternal life. It is a free gift God offers to those who humbly repent, showing that we understand the magnitude of our sin, and thankfully believe that God’s way is best (Acts 2:38; 8:37).

Desiring Jesus Christ to live in us and transform our lives is the only reasonable decision we can make when we are offered such a priceless gift (Galatians 2:20; Romans 12:1-2).     Listen to the "Verse by Verse" episode covering this scripture at:

To learn more about the many deep truths found in this verse, read “What Is the Meaning of Romans 6:23?

Study more about the response God wants from us by downloading the free booklet Change Your Life! and studying the biblical passages it presents about repentance and conversion.”


Human-Made Stuff Now Outweighs All Life on Earth

Human-Made Stuff Now Outweighs All Life on Earth“The sheer scale of buildings, infrastructure and other anthropogenic objects underscores our impact on the planet.

  • Global Biomass versus Human-made mass. Credit: Itai Raveh

Humanity has reached a new milestone in its dominance of the planet: human-made objects may now outweigh all of the living beings on Earth.

Roads, houses, shopping malls, fishing vessels, printer paper, coffee mugs, smartphones and all the other infrastructure of daily life now weigh in at approximately 1.1 trillion metric tons—equal to the combined dry weight of all plants, animals, fungi, bacteria, archaea and protists on the planet. The creation of this human-made mass has rapidly accelerated over the past 120 years: Artificial objects have gone from just 3 percent of the world’s biomass in 1900 to on par with it today. And the amount of new stuff being produced every week is equivalent to the average body weight of all 7.7 billion people.

The implications of these findings, published on Wednesday in Nature, are staggering. The world’s plastics alone now weigh twice as much as the planet’s marine and terrestrial animals. Buildings and infrastructure outweigh trees and shrubs. “We cannot hide behind the feeling that we’re just a small species, one out of many,” says study co-author Ron Milo, who researches plant and environmental sciences at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. These numbers should be a wake-up call, he adds. They tell us “something about the responsibility that we have, given that we have become a dominant force,” Milo says.

He and his team had previously published an estimate of the amount of biomass on Earth, which led to the question of how it compared with the mass of artificial objects. Emily Elhacham, then a graduate student at the Weizmann Institute, led the effort to pull together disparate data sets on the flow of materials around the world. The researchers found that human-made, or anthropogenic, mass has doubled every 20 years since 1900. Total biomass remained more stable in that time period, though plant biomass has declined by approximately half since the dawn of agriculture some 12,000 years ago. The team estimates that anthropogenic mass crossed over to exceed biomass this year, plus or minus six years.”  More at:


How Long Does It Take To Decompose…_

Human-Made Materials


Sunday, August 13, 2023

Should a Christian Avoid Euphemisms for God? Avoiding Vain Repetitions in Prayer. Chronic Headaches and Pork Tapeworms.


Should a Christian Avoid Euphemisms for God?

Should a Christian Avoid Euphemisms for God?“What is a euphemism? What euphemisms should Christians be concerned about? Do euphemisms for God’s name break the Third Commandment, taking His name in vain?

What is a euphemism?

Webster’s Dictionary has this definition of euphemism: “The use of a less direct word or phrase for one considered offensive.”

Some examples of English euphemisms include “powder your nose” for go to the toilet, “negative cash flow” for broke, and “passed away” for died.

Examples of euphemisms in the Bible

The King James Version says King Saul went into a cave “to cover his feet” (1 Samuel 24:3). This is a euphemism for, how shall we say it, to powder his nose? The New King James Version says “attend to his needs,” which you could say is another English euphemism for defecation.

Many times the Bible describes someone who died as being asleep. For example, Jesus told His disciples, “Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up” (John 11:11). Since they misunderstood, He had to tell them plainly, “Lazarus is dead” (verse 14).

Though sleep is a euphemism for death, we also learn that from God’s perspective, death is like sleep since the dead person is unconscious and God has the power to wake the dead through the resurrection from the dead.

Types of euphemisms

Some euphemisms are considered polite. Some are funny. But some can just be a way to try to say something considered wrong or offensive without being punished.

Alternative swear words, while seeming less offensive or even funny, can still, at their heart, be profanity, swearing or taking God’s name in vain.

Christians and euphemisms

There are many categories of euphemisms, but the two Christians are most concerned with are those that violate the Third Commandment and those that ask God to condemn others. Unfortunately, many who claim to be Christian unknowingly use these types of euphemisms that disobey His instructions.

Euphemisms misusing God’s name

The Third Commandment states, “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain” (Exodus 20:7; Deuteronomy 5:11).

“In vain” literally means to use God’s name in an empty or trifling way, without appropriate reverence for God.

In our modern world we hear this commandment violated overtly and frequently all around us, with “God,” “Jesus,” “Christ” or “Lord” uttered merely as filler words, exclamations, expressions of anger or contempt or in conjunction with cursing or profanity. One of the most pervasive abuses of the name of God is the phrase “oh my …!,” which has become so commonplace it now has its own abbreviation (OMG) for text messaging.

In addition to blatantly saying God’s names, there are euphemisms that have modified the same names into less explicit or softened forms; but because they are merely modifications of God’s name(s), they likewise are violations of the intent of the Third Commandment.

The euphemism list below is provided to help you identify common euphemisms for God’s name, in order to avoid inadvertently making irreverent references to God’s holy name. (You can find more information in many dictionaries that include slang words and euphemisms.)

Euphemism list:

Direct Word       Euphemisms

God                    Gol, Golly, Gosh, Gad, ye gad/s, by George, by Jove, Almighty

Jesus or Christ  Geez, Gee, Sheez, Gee-wiz (Jesus-wizard), cripes (Christ), Jeepers, by Jingo, Jeezers, bejeezers (by Jesus)  initials of Jesus Christ, Jiminy Cricket, Jiminy Christmas, Jumpin’ Catfish, Jeepers Creepers, Jeezy Creezy, Judas Christopher, Jason Crisp, etc.

Lord                    Lordy, Lawd, Lawdy

Holy                    Holy is a word that refers to God’s nature, works or anything God is present or involved in. Any use of this word in conjunction with any other word (outside of its correct and proper context) is a violation of the Third Commandment.

Euphemisms for eternal judgment

Another category of euphemisms that is inappropriate for Christians to use is those asking God to condemn (“damn”) a person or thing. Euphemisms for condemn include darn, durn, dang, doggone (a euphemism for both the words “God” and “damn”) and any other combination of these words with euphemisms for God.

Are the words we speak important to God? Jesus Christ said, “But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” (Matthew 12:36-37). While the Bible teaches that Christians should learn to discern good from evil (Hebrews 5:14), it also teaches that we should not condemn others in the sense of trying to determine their ultimate fate. God the Father has given the judgment of mankind to the Son (John 5:22; 2 Corinthians 5:10), and it is His prerogative to judge—not ours.

Referring to this ultimate judgment, Jesus said: “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven” (Luke 6:37).

Jesus also cautions us: “For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you” (Matthew 7:2) and “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy” (Matthew 5:7).

Every idle word

Are the words we speak important to God? Jesus Christ said, “But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” (Matthew 12:36-37).

Euphemisms that were coined to utter God’s name without proper reverence or to judge another’s ultimate fate are inappropriate for a Christian. “Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification” (Ephesians 4:29). As lights in a dark world, we are to set the example not only in our conduct, but in pure speech as well.”     From:     LEARN MORE ABOUT 10 COMMANDMENTS


Avoiding Vain Repetitions in Prayer 

Matthew 6:7

“And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.”

“God does not give us prayers to memorize and repeat mindlessly as a ritual. He is not interested in babble and hearing certain syllables intoned repetitiously, as it seems the pagans believed their “gods” did. He wants His followers to “avoid meaningless, repetitive prayers offered under the misconception that mere length will make prayers efficacious” (Zondervan NIV Bible Commentary on Matthew 6:7-8).

God is interested in us having an actual conversation with Him, listening to what He says in the Bible and sharing our thoughts, requests, cares and praise with Him in a focused and meaningful way. Repeating someone else’s words over and over again can’t help but become rote and ritual rather than building the relationship God desires.”    See more about the communication God desires in our articles “How to Avoid Repetitious Prayer” and “How to Pray.”  From:


Leviticus 11   Clean and Unclean Food

“11 The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, 2 “Say to the Israelites: ‘Of all the animals that live on land, these are the ones you may eat: 3 You may eat any animal that has a divided hoof and that chews the cud.

4 “‘There are some that only chew the cud or only have a divided hoof, but you must not eat them. The camel, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided hoof; it is ceremonially unclean for you. 5 The hyrax, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided hoof; it is unclean for you. 6 The rabbit, though it chews the cud, does not have a divided hoof; it is unclean for you. 7 And the pig, though it has a divided hoof, does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you. 8 You must not eat their meat or touch their carcasses; they are unclean for you.”    From: NIV Bible, but the other Bibles all say the same thing!


Chronic Headaches and Pork Tapeworms

Transcript of video at:

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“Chronic headaches such as migraines or “tension” headache symptoms may be a sign of pork tapeworms in the brain.

Neurocysticercosis is the infection of the human central nervous system by pork tapeworm larvae. Little baby pork tapeworms invading one’s brain “has become an increasingly important emerging infection in the United States,” and it is the #1 cause of epilepsy in the world. It is the most common “parasitic disease of the human brain,” and used to only be found throughout the developing world—”with the exception of Muslim countries,” of course. That all changed about 30 years ago, and now it’s increasingly found throughout North America.

Besides seizures, the pork parasites may actually trigger brain tumors, cause an aneurism, or psychiatric manifestations, like depression. But, who wouldn’t be depressed, having worms in their brain? It can also result in dementia. But, the good news is, with deworming drugs, it’s often reversible. Only rarely do you have to open one’s skull, and extract the larvae surgically—once they get into your eyeballs, though, you really do have to remove them, dead or alive.

I’ve talked about pork tapeworms before, but what’s new is that we now know that they may present as chronic headaches—either migraines or so-called tension-headaches—even when the worms in your head are dead. What they think is happening is that our body tries to chip away at their calcified bodies, and it may release bits of them into the rest of the brain, causing inflammation that could be contributing to headaches.

Now, it’s still rare, and even if you live in an endemic area, you can avoid getting infested with an adult tapeworm in the first place by “cooking pork thoroughly.” But what does that mean, exactly? Well, first of all, it’s found in some parts of pig carcasses more than others. And, you can freeze the little suckers to death, no matter how infested the muscles are, by storing pork, cut up into small pieces, for a month at subzero temperatures. Then, cook the meat for more than two hours. That is one well-done pork chop.

The New England Journal of Medicine recently featured a case of some guy who must have had thousands of pork tapeworm larvae wriggling through his muscles. See all those little white streaks? Each one is a baby tapeworm. But that’s why you can get infected by pork, since they get into the muscles. So, cannibals might want to cook for two hours, too.

Not all parasites are associated with meat, though. “An anxious but healthy 32-year-old male physician presented to the family medicine clinic with a sample of suspected parasites from his stools, which had been retrieved from the toilet that same day.” And here they are. They look to be about an inch long. He had previously traveled to India; had Chinese food the night before—who knows what they were. Maybe it was hookworms? “The sample was sent to the microbiology laboratory for analysis. Later that day, the microbiology physician called to report positive identification of Vigna radiata (previously known as Phaseolus aureus) in the stool sample.” Or, “[i]n common parlance,…a bean sprout.” They were bean sprouts!

“The patient was called and gently but firmly informed of the diagnosis. Given the nature of the identified specimen, the information was presented in a non-judgmental, respectful manner so as not to offend the sensibilities or sensitivities of the patient.”

“[Their] parting advice to fellow physicians in cases of this nature would be as follows:…as comical as the findings might seem, try not to laugh!”  From:


Should We Be Concerned About the Effects of Ochratoxin?

“Ochratoxin was detected, for example, in 44 percent of tested pork.

Read article at:


Ochratoxin A in Slaughtered Pigs and Pork Products

“Pigs are the most susceptible animals to OTA exposure as compared to other productive animals [14,15]. High OTA occurrence has been recorded in feed ingredients and finished swine feeds in various countries [16,17,18,19], highlighting the pig exposure to the toxin. OTA can accumulate in several pig tissues, with the highest concentrations found in blood, followed by the kidneys and liver, whereas lower concentrations have been found in muscles and fat [20,21,22,23].

The contamination of pork meat/edible offal with OTA is mainly derived from the consumption of OTA-contaminated feed by the pigs [24,25]. Additionally, the presence of OTA in pork meat products (ham muscle, cured meats, salami or dry-cured ham) could be derived from the direct growth of OTA-producing fungi, such as Penicillium nordicum and Penicillium verrucosum [26,27,28,29,30], or from the addition of OTA-contaminated materials such as contaminated spices [31,32].

Pork meat and meat products are amongst the important sources of chronic dietary exposure to OTA in humans [14]. Nevertheless, the EU has not established maximum OTA levels in pork meat and pork-derived products. Some European countries have adopted regulations or guidelines on OTA concentrations in meat and/or meat products, such as Denmark, Estonia, Romania, Slovakia and Italy [33]. No binding limits on OTA in meat and meat products have been set in the USA, Australia, Canada and Asia [34,35].”  From:


Sunday, August 6, 2023

The Uniqueness of the Human Body. Don’t Copy Pagan Ways of Worship. Heart Disease Starts in Childhood.


The Uniqueness of the Human Body

A sculpture forming a human head out of clay.“Many believe that life on earth arose by chance, with human beings as merely more-evolved apes. But the evidence in our makeup says otherwise—pointing to human beings as a special creation.


“In the absence of any other proof, the thumb alone would convince me of God’s existence.” —Sir Isaac Newton

King David once described his own human body as being “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14). Although it’s now common for biology textbooks to consider people as simply animals, many features make the human body unique.

Let’s look at five of these singular differences.

The astounding geometric proportions of the human body

Consider, for instance, the geometric symmetry of the human body. Leonardo da Vinci, the great artist, inventor and mathematician, made a famous drawing of it.

It’s called the “Vitruvian Man”, in which Leonardo drew a man’s figure with arms and legs extended. He found it fit perfectly into both a square and a circle, the span of the arms being approximately the same as the man’s height.

In addition, when the legs were measured, they were approximately half the man’s height, and his navel was located at the center of the circle. Could all of this precise symmetry have been a result of chance? Or doesn’t it show how truly carefully designed and proportioned the human body was made?

As David went on to say, “You even formed every bone in my body when you created me in the secret place, carefully, skillfully shaping me from nothing to something” (Psalm 139:15, The Passion Translation, emphasis added).

The erectness of the human skeleton

We tend to take for granted how easily we can stand straight and walk erectly on two legs. Yet there is a uniqueness to how the human body can effortlessly balance itself while walking or running.

Some believe apes and human beings have similar gaits, but they don’t. People are designed to walk upright, while apes were created to live mainly in and among trees, being able to grasp branches with all four limbs. That’s why humans are classified as bipeds (walking on two feet), while apes and monkeys are classified as quadrupeds (walking on four limbs). Apes and monkeys also are ungainly when they walk on two feet, while human beings can gracefully walk erect or speedily run long distances.

Why is there such a difference? Human beings have several anatomical components that are unique. Three of these are the backbone, with its three curves to reduce the load level of the body, the upright knee and the hip joint. Also, the neck and skull joints allow people to carry their heads erect and to face forward without great effort. Lastly, the human foot has a special arch that’s not found in other creatures. It allows one to push either from the front or the back of the foot, giving it tremendous power and balance to lift, jump, twist or run.

Again we have the testimony of Leonardo da Vinci, who knew human anatomy so well. He wrote in his notebooks, “The human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art.”

Stuart Burgess, who taught engineering design at leading United Kingdom universities, states: “Creationists believe that the upright human skeleton could not have evolved step by step from a four-limbed creature because many features are required simultaneously. If an ape-like creature had only some of the features required for an upright stature, it would not be able to move properly on either two or four limbs” (In God’s Image: The Divine Origins of Humans, 2008, p. 7).

The skillful abilities of the human hand

In contrast to an ape’s hand, the human hand has a long and fully opposable thumb, where each finger can make direct contact with the tip of the thumb. This allows for carefully grasping objects, like holding a pen for writing, having a delicate touch for typing, playing the piano or performing surgery. Apes don’t have these abilities since their fingers are curved for gripping tree branches.

Furthermore, human fingers have a wider range of motion and can swivel in many angles, allowing them to sculpt fine works of art and participate in many types of sports where balls can be thrown, caught or hit with great precision.

It was another genius like Da Vinci, Sir Isaac Newton, who is quoted as saying, “In the absence of any other proof, the thumb alone would convince me of God’s existence” (Charles Dickens’ literary magazine All the Year Round, 1864, Vol. 10, p. 346).

Remarkable human speech and language

There are numerous features of human anatomy that permit people to speak, laugh and sing that apes and monkeys don’t have.

First, human beings have long and deep throats that are essential for producing varied speech and act like a wind instrument. Apes and monkeys, on the other hand, have shallow throats that hinder precise articulation. Our vocal cords are also unique, with some 100 muscles involved overall in the fine-tuning of the voice.

Next are human lips and tongues, which are likewise unique. The lips have the ability to tighten or loosen their muscles to enunciate short or long syllables and act like an adjustable valve of a trumpet. The versatile tongue can fine-tune the articulation of sounds by varying the amount of air coming from the lungs. It does it so rapidly that it can produce up to 90 words per minute!

As Professor Burgess brings out: “Humans have the unique ability to communicate through intricate language. There are approximately 5,000 different languages currently used around the world. Each of these languages involves intricate sounds, sophisticated grammar and a large number of words . . . The ability to speak and sing is just what would be expected if humans had been created, but is not what would be expected if humans had evolved from an ape-like creature” (p. 13).

God, in fact, once stated in regard to speaking, “Who has made man’s mouth? . . . Have not I, the Lord?” (Exodus 4:11).

Our supercomputer brain

“The human brain,” Burgess further notes, “is the most intricately designed structure known to man. The capacity of the human brain is astounding. The brain receives millions of pieces of information every second from sensors around the body” (p. 19).

How does the brain do it?

Inside our heads we have, on average, 86 billion neuronsup to three times more neurons than those of apes. Each neuron can have up to 10,000 signal-connecting gaps called synapses, meaning the brain has some 860 trillion neural connections. It needs all these connections to manage the multiple tasks the human body needs to operate and remain healthy.

We are also endowed with consciousness or sentience, the capacity for abstract thinking, self-awareness and human emotions. The Bible reveals we have a spiritual component to our existence that imparts our marvelous ability to reason to our brains. As Job 32:8 says, “There is a spirit in man, and the breath of the Almighty gives him understanding” (compare 1 Corinthians 2:11).

The human spirit and brain together form the human mind. This gift from God has enabled people to, for example, compose music, build architectural masterpieces, write books and explore the moon. No other physical creature has the capacity to do any of these things.

Created for a higher purpose

Our human mind shows we were created for a purpose beyond just surviving here on earth. We were made to communicate with not only our fellow man, but also with our Creator God. This comes through the spiritual element in our existence, although many seek to deny it.

As is stated in Genesis 1, God created the various animals each “according to its kind” (verse 25). But then He said: “Let Us make man in our image, according to our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (verses 26-27, emphasis added).

Here is the reason for the uniqueness of humanity. We are not made in accordance with the various animal kinds, but according to the “God” kind—that is, in His image, although initially created at a physical and much lower level (Hebrews 2:6-8).

Mindful of all this, may we all join with David in concluding with the words of Psalm 100:3: “Know that the Lord, He is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture.” From:


Don’t Copy Pagan Ways of Worship

Deuteronomy 12:29-32

“When the LORD your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.’ You shall not worship the LORD your God in that way; for every abomination to the LORD which He hates they have done to their gods; for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods. Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.”

God knew the traps that Satan lays with alluring ways of worship. He warned His people not to neglect His clear instructions about how He wants to be worshipped. He tells us to never assume that He would like to be worshipped in the way those who worship other gods worship them.

Yet Israel continually fell into this trap, creating a syncretistic religion that combined some elements of biblical commands with the religious customs of the people around them.

Looking at the history of Christianity, it becomes evident that a similar process took place, as pre-Christian customs and celebrations were accepted by much of Christianity, though rejected by those who remained faithful to the teachings of the apostles and prophets.”

For more about how pagan holidays began to eclipse God’s true and meaningful holy days, see From Holidays to Holy Days: God’s Plan for You.”  From:


Heart Disease Starts in Childhood

Transcript of video at:

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“By age 10, nearly all kids have fatty streaks in their arteries. This is the first sign of atherosclerosis, the leading cause of death in the United States. So the question for most of us is not whether we should eat healthy to prevent heart disease, but whether we want to reverse the heart disease we may already have.

It was this landmark article, published in 1953, that radically changed our view about the development of heart disease forever. A series of 300 autopsies performed on U.S. battle casualties of the Korean War, average age 22. 22 years old, but 77% of their hearts had “gross evidence”—meaning visible-to-the-eye evidence—of coronary atherosclerosis, hardening of their arteries. Some of them had vessels that were clogged off 90% or more.

As an editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded, “This widely cited publication dramatically showed that atherosclerotic changes appear in the coronary arteries years and decades before the age at which coronary heart disease…becomes a clinically recognized problem”—before symptoms arise. Follow-up studies on the hearts of thousands more soldiers over the subsequent years confirmed their results.

How young does it go? Fatty streaks, the first stage of atherosclerosis [were] found in the arteries of 100% of kids by age ten. What’s accounting for this buildup of plaque, even in childhood? In the 80s, we got our first clue, with the now-famous Bogalusa heart study, looking at autopsies of those dying between the ages of 3 years old to age 26, and the #1 risk factor was cholesterol.

You could see the stepwise increase in the amount of their arteries covered in fatty streaks as the level of bad cholesterol in the blood increased. As powerful as this was, this was only looking at 30 kids. So, they decided to study three thousand—3,000 accidental death victims, ages 15 through 34.

After thousands of autopsies, there were able to produce a scoring system, able to predict advanced atherosclerotic lesions in the coronary arteries of young people. The higher your score, the higher the likelihood you have these lesions growing in your heart.

So, if you’re in your teens, twenties, early thirties, and you smoke, your risk goes up a point. If you have high blood pressure at such a young age, that’s four points. If you’re an obese male; six points. But, high cholesterol was the worst. If your non-HDL cholesterol (meaning your total cholesterol minus your good cholesterol) is above, like, 220, that’s like eight times worse than smoking.

So, let’s say you’re a young woman with relatively high cholesterol, but you don’t smoke, you’re not overweight, your blood pressure and blood sugars are fine. At your sweet sixteen, there’s just a few percent chance you already have an advanced atherosclerotic lesion in your heart. But, if you don’t improve your diet, by your 30th birthday, there may be like a one in five chance you have some serious heart disease. And, if you have really high cholesterol, it could be closer to one in three.

Bringing your cholesterol down to even just that of a lacto-ovo vegetarian, and you’re down to here. And, if you exercise to boost your HDL, you can extrapolate down a little further. So, what this shows us is that: “Even in 15- to 19-year-olds, atherosclerosis has begun in a substantial number of individuals, and this observation suggests beginning primary prevention at least by the late teenage years, to ameliorate every stage of atherosclerosis and to prevent or retard progression to more advanced lesions.”

You start kids out on a low-saturated fat diet, and you may see a significant improvement in their arterial function by 11 years old. “Exposure to high serum cholesterol concentration [even] in childhood may accelerate the development of atherosclerosis. Consequently, the long-term prevention of atherosclerosis might be most effective when initiated early in life”—as in seven months of age.

“Atherosclerosis [hardening of the arteries] begins in childhood…” Remember, by age 10, nearly all kids have fatty streaks, the first stage of the disease. Then, the plaques start forming in our 20s, get worse in our 30s, and then can start killing us off. In our hearts, it’s a heart attack. In our brains, it’s a stroke. In our extremities, it can mean gangrene. In our aorta, an aneurism.

If there is anyone watching this video that is older than ten years of age, the choice likely isn’t whether or not to eat healthy to prevent heart disease; it’s whether or not you want to reverse the heart disease you already have.

Ornish and Esselstyn proved you can reverse heart disease with a plant-based diet. But we don’t have to wait until our first heart attack to reverse the clogging of our arteries. We can start reversing our heart disease right now. We can start reversing heart disease in our kids, tonight.”  From: