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| || Fasting || : : What is Spiritual Fasting?|
| || Fasting || : : Is Fasting Relevant in a Covenant of Grace?|
Many Christians are unfamiliar with spiritual fasting. Some believe that fasting is an Old Testament tradition neither required nor relevant to the New Testament grace under which we now live. In truth, however, fasting is a necessary though underutilized spiritual discipline that Jesus addressed right along with giving and prayer (reference Matthew 6). Fasting was never replaced, rescinded, or superseded in the New Testament, and it is not just Old Testament legalism. Jesus came to fulfill the Old Testament, not to render it irrelevant. As Randy Alcorn so eloquently stated in Money, Possessions & Eternity, "Being under grace does not mean living by lower standards than the law." In fact, Jesus assumed that we believers would fast. Jesus said, "When you fast" (Matthew 6:16) not "if you fast".
The verses below emphasize that we are saved by grace, not by works. Fasting, like prayer, is a spiritual tool that believers should use not to earn righteousness but to embrace it.
"I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing." (Galatians 2:21)
"For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men." (Romans 14:17-18)
"But food does not bring us near to God; we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do." (1 Corinthians 8:8)
| || Fasting || : : Fasting: Superficial or Supernatural?|
| || Fasting || : : Fast Unto the Lord, Not Unto Men|
| || Fasting || : : Who Fasted in the Bible?|
| || Fasting || : : Are There Different Kinds of Fasts?|
| || Fasting || : : How Do I Fast Unto the Lord in Today's World?|
| || Fasting || : : The Compassion of Jesus and the Purpose of this Fast |
| || Fasting || : : I'm Afraid to Fast!|
| || Fasting || : : How Fasting Relates to the The Great Commandment |
| || Fasting ||: : True Fasting as Detailed in Isaiah 58|
| ||1" 'Shout it aloud, do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet. Declare to My people their rebellion and to the house of Jacob their sins. 2For day after day they seek Me out; they seem eager to know My ways, as if they were a nation that does what is right and has not forsaken the commands of its God. They ask Me for just decisions and seem eager for God to come near them. 3'Why have we fasted,' they say, 'and You have not seen it? Why have we humbled ourselves, and You have not noticed?' 'Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please and exploit all your workers. 4Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife, and in striking each other with wicked fists. You cannot fast as you do today and expect your voice to be heard on high. 5Is this the kind of fast I have chosen, only a day for a man to humble himself? Is it only for bowing one's head like a reed and for lying on sackcloth and ashes? Is that what you call a fast, a day acceptable to the LORD? 6'Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? 7Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter--when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? 8Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard. 9Then you will call, and the LORD will answer; you will cry for help, and He will say: Here am I. 'If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, 10 if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. 11 LORD will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail. 12Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings. 13'If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath and from doing as you please on My Holy day, if you call the Sabbath a delight and the LORD's holy day honorable, and if you honor it by not going your own way and not doing as you please or speaking idle words, 14then you will find your joy in the LORD, and I will cause you to ride on the heights of the land and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob. The mouth of the LORD has spoken.' " |
| || Fasting ||: : Isn't Fasting Practiced by Other Religions (and By Those with No Religion?)|
| || Fasting ||: : Why Fast Now?|
| || Fasting ||: : Corporate and Intercessory Fasting|
| || Fasting ||: : 2008 Lenten Fast|
| || Fasting ||: : I'm a Pastor; How Do I Get My Congregation Involved?|
| || Fasting ||: : I'm a Parent; How Do I Include My Children in this 40-Day Journey?|
| || Fasting ||: : Have Additional Questions, or Need More Information?|
| || Fasting || : : Have Additional Questions or Need More Information?|
| || Fasting ||: : This is My First Fasting Experience; What Should I Expect?|
| || Fasting ||: : Legalism and the Liquid Fast|
| || Fasting ||: : I Feel So Weak! What Should I Do?|
| ||Some fleshly weakness is normal; extreme distress is not. Again, take it to the Lord in prayer, and truly submit to His leading. The Lord is good; He will guide you! Pride is the antithesis of fasting. You do not want to willfully decide for yourself how you are going to fast, and neither do you want to intentionally draw attention to your fast. Falling down the staircase is not a very compelling testimony for fasting unto the Lord!|
In Matthew 6:16-18, Jesus cautioned, " 'When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men that they are fasting. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, Who is unseen; and your Father, Who sees what is done in secret, will reward You.' "
You may have extenuating circumstances, which necessitate a modification of your fast. If youve been ill, for example, or if you have a physically demanding job, --whatever your circumstances--look to the Lord to lead you to the proper nutritional balance for your particular situation.
Our abstinence of food should not be the focus for us, or for anyone else who is witnessing our Christian walk. Our love of--and complete surrender to--Jesus Christ should be hallmark of our fast and the standard of our lives.
| || Fasting ||: : How to use this website for fasting and prayer|
| || Fasting ||: : Recommended Books on Fasting and Revival|
| || The Process of Repentance ||: : The Most Holy Week|
| || The Process of Repentance - The Most Holy Week |
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