The Concise Oxford Dictionary definition of fasting is – ‘To fast is to abstain from food, as a religious observance.’
It is a denial of food before the Lord with prayer regarding personal devotion or affliction of the soul and to ask the Lord to move regarding some issue or a particular problem be it spiritual or physical.
It is not always necessary to abstain from water as well as food. Extremism is to be avoided and is not asked for by God in anything as the Scriptures teach us. Water is normally necessary after several days and only if the Lord anoints can someone go beyond this time period, as with Moses and the Lord Jesus.
Secondly, fasting is a personal religious discipline that for many Christians has become a neglected discipline. The benefits of fasting are not only purposeful spiritually but also physically.
The Purpose – “fast not unto men, but unto thy Father.”
When we look at the following scripture passages we can see why –
Acts 9:9 – Shows Paul was without food and water for 3 days. Why?
2 Corinthians 6:4-5 – Shows fasting was a way of life for Paul.
The Discipline – “they ministered unto the Lord and fasted.”
Matthew 6:16-18 – Shows us fasting is a duty expected by our Lord Jesus.
Matthew 9:14-15 – Shows us that we will fast after Jesus is taken to Heaven.
Matthew 17:21 – Shows fasting is necessary in spiritual warfare.
The Benefits – “thy Father shall recompense thee openly”
To receive guidance and/or an increase in our faith, wisdom and knowledge.
To see growth in the Lord’s grace within our lives.
To seek discernment or an answer to a situation.
To see the Lord deal with the enemy of our souls or someone else.
To see demons leave possessed unsaved people.
To seek God’s power over carnality.
To seek physical restoration/well being/loss of weight.
To be able to cope with crises, persecutions, tribulations, tests and trials.
Date : 30/11/-0001