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| || Fasting || : : What is Spiritual Fasting?|
In a purely traditional spiritual sense, fasting is abstaining from solid food for the purposes of mourning, repenting, and seeking the Lord's favor. In rare and radical cases, heroes of the Bible fasted food and liquids, including water. The Bible mentions many kinds fasts of throughout the Old and New Testaments.
If you trust the Lord for your time of fasting, He will lead you on the type of fast that He desires for your particular circumstances and needs. You may fast solid food for the entire 40 days; you may fast one meal a day; you may fast one day a week. Your journey will be unique and can not be compared to anyone else's experience. However, it is important to enter into this sacred time with the Lord earnestly and with a pure heart, hopefully anticipating the journey on which He will lead you. According to your faithfulness and willing spirit, the Lord will bless your intentions and sustain you during your fast.
Please understand that the fasting referred to throughout the Trumpet and Torch website is purely a spiritual discipline; no fasting references are intended for physical, medical, or other purposes. While we believe that the Lord will take you on the type of fast that He intends for you, we encourage you to seek medical guidance before beginning a fast, especially if you are pregnant, nursing, or currently suffering an illness or disease.
"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." (Hebrews 11:1).
| || 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 Fasting was never replaced, rescinded, or superseded in the New Testament, and it is not just Old Testament legalism.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 is a sacred and special sacrifice; it is for the Lord, not for human approval or notice. In Matthew 6:16-18, Jesus cautions those who choose to fast for human admiration and approval, "When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men 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."
Please understand the spirit of Jesus' message. He is not saying that absolutely no one should know when we are fasting. In fact, it is very important to have a trusted Christian friend or a network of Christian friends who can pray for you while you are fasting. Jesus is cautioning against fasting for the approval and notice of man, just as He cautions against giving for sheer spectacle.
| || 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?|
Some wonder, "How do I fast while continuing to work, take care of my family, and just live life in general?" When you put the Lord first, He supernaturally and divinely orders your day so that you are able to accomplish the important things according to His will. The urgent no longer overshadows the important, and things that seemed pressing suddenly fall away, no longer significant in His great kingdom plan. This means that the Lord will give you the grace, energy, and sustenance to care for your essential responsibilities while you are fasting. Necessary work and caring for your family fits the category of "essential responsibilities". The key is to prioritize the Lord above all else, to seek His guidance in all things, and to trust Him every step of the way. You must also have the courage and obedience to forsake opportunities and tasks on your list if God's priorities prove different from yours.
"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways," declares the LORD. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts." (Isaiah 55:8-9)
| || 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 |
The Great Commandment, as Jesus replied to the Pharisees in Matthew 22:37-38 is to "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself."
Fasting, as outlined in Isaiah 58, accomplishes both the first and second greatest commandments and also highlights the "true" fast (indicated by actions representative of Christ's character) as opposed to the "legalistic" fast (indicated by actions representative of arrogant, sinful, and unrepentant human hearts).
| || Fasting ||: : True Fasting as Detailed in Isaiah 58|
| || Fasting ||: : Isn't Fasting Practiced by Other Religions (and By Those with No Religion?)|
| ||Trumpet and Torch promotes only Christian spiritual fasting. Yes, other religions do fast, and yes, some people fast for purposes that have nothing to do with faith of any kind.
While some may fast because their beliefs demand the discipline and others may fast for a variety of earthly reasons, Christians fast exclusively unto our Creator God, the Father of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. As such, our fasting intentions and efforts are divinely blessed for"... the LORD looks at the heart" (reference 1 Samuel 16:7) and "...motives are weighed by the LORD" (reference Proverbs 16:2).|
| || 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?|
| || 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 |