Bible Verses On Fasting
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9 Bible Verses on Fasting Scripture to show us the value of fasting, praying, seeking, and longing for closeness with God through biblical
Every Lent, I dive a little bit deeper into the idea of fasting.
- Is fasting still relevant today?
- How does fasting bring me closer to God?
- What should I be fasting for anyways?
Fasting As A Metaphor For Sacrificial Love
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. Your 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.
Is this the kind of fast I have chosen, only a day for people to humble themselves? Is it only for bowing ones head like a reed and for lying in sackcloth and ashes? Is that what you call a fast, a day acceptable to the LORD?
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? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
Important Bible Verses About Fasting And Prayer
Fasting and Prayer are two important spiritual disciplines that every Christian should practice. When we pray, we are communicating with God and seeking His guidance and wisdom. When we fast, we are denying ourselves earthly pleasures in order to focus on our relationship with God.
The Bible has a lot to say about prayer and fasting. In these verses, we see that prayer and fasting are to be done with a humble and sincere heart for the purpose of drawing closer to God.
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Which Book In The Bible Talks About Prayer And Fasting
One of the most telling passages in which fasting is mentioned is Matthew 6:16, where Jesus is teaching His disciples basic principles of godly living. When speaking on fasting, He begins with, When you fast, not If you fast. Jesus’ words imply that fasting will be a regular practice in His followers’ lives.
Return To God With Repentance
Even now, declares the Lord, return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.
Return to me.
What a powerful phrase coming from our Almighty God.
This was a call to repentance, for the people to return to Gods mercy and steadfast love.
And one of the ways to show their truly repentant heart was through fasting.
Even here in the Old Testament, God was not asking for the act of fasting alone. Fasting was a way to show that they desired to return to God with all of their heart.
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Fasting For Guidance And Direction
6. Acts 14:23 Paul and Barnabas also appointed elders in every church. With prayer and fasting, they turned the elders over to the care of the Lord, in whom they had put their trust.
7. Acts 13:2-4 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them. So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off. The two of them, sent on their way by the Holy Spirit, went down to Seleucia and sailed from there to Cyprus.
Fast For Intimacy With God Not Praise From Man
When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 1so that it will not be obvious to others 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.
As Christians, our intentions matter. Our faith takes life to a level unseen. It is possible to do everything right on the outside, but without the proper heart, it doesnt serve its purpose.
Fasting is one of those things.
If you are fasting to be seen by others as a good Christian,youre doing it wrong.
If youre fasting with a heart that can only focus on the things you lack and not a hunger that drives you into the arms of your Savior to satisfy your needs, youre doing it wrong.
Dont fast for attention, recognition, or the sake of not-so-silent suffering through the 40 days of Lent.
Fast to draw nearer to God and rely on Him on deeper levels than you have before.
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Fasting To Accompany Repentance
When you fast, you show that you have nothing to offer but your own weakness. You humble yourself before God and make known to Him your need for forgiveness and redemption. Fasting thus becomes a way to express sorrow for sin, a means of humbling ourselves as we acknowledge our utter inadequacy before God, who alone is worthy of our adoration and worship.
“Yet even now,” declares the LORD, “Return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.
The Ninevites believed God. A fast was proclaimed, and all of them, from the greatest to the least, put on sackcloth. When Jonahs warning reached the king of Nineveh, he rose from his throne, took off his royal robes, covered himself with sackcloth and sat down in the dust. This is the proclamation he issued in Nineveh: By the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let people or animals, herds or flocks, taste anything do not let them eat or drink. But let people and animals be covered with sackcloth. Let everyone call urgently on God. Let them give up their evil ways and their violence. Who knows? God may yet relent and with compassion turn from his fierce anger so that we will not perish.
Bible Verses That Tell Us More About Prayer And Fasting
As Christians, prayer and fasting should be a very important part of our lives. Jesus was the Son of God but still started His ministry with fasting and prayer. The Bible says He fasted and prayed for forty days and forty nights. This is because as a human He needed to subject His body to God through fasting and prayer to accomplish the will of God for His life on earth.
Fasting and prayer help us to draw closer to God and enables us to receive spiritual strength to achieve the things that He has ordained for us. When we fast and pray our spirit, soul and body are attuned toward God. We can overcome sins and bad habits through fasting and prayer.
These Bible verses will help to understand more about fasting and prayer:
1). Joel 2:12 Yet even now, declares the Lord, return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.
2). Acts 14:23And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting they committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed.
3). Isaiah 58:6 Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?
4). Acts 13:2While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.
5). And he said to them, This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.
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Types Of Fasting People Use Today
People today use many of the same fasts people used in the Bible.
- Complete fasts are still used today. Most people undertaking this type of fast choose to do so for 1 to 3 days. Due to the extreme nature of a full fast, one should consult the advice of a medical professional before undertaking this type of fast, especially if you plan to fast for an extended period of time.
- Partial fasts are quite common today. It is a very flexible way to fast, as there are many ways to do a partial fast. Someone might forgo their morning coffee or their afternoon soda. A person could decide to consume only fruits and vegetables or to eliminate processed foods, fast foods, or sugar. The possibilities are endless, really.
- A popular type of partial fast used today is the Daniel Fast. Used by many seeking spiritual revelation and breakthrough, it focuses on limiting the types of food consumed. While on the Daniel fast, people consume only fruits, vegetables, beans and legumes, unleavened grains, and water. It typically lasts 21 days but can be for any length of time. Churches commonly use the Daniel Fast corporately, praying and fasting together for answered prayer or spiritual revelation.
- Fasting often centers around food, but it doesnt have to. Today many people fast other things instead. Some non-food things people might forgo during a fast are social media, electronics, hobbies, or any other worldly thing or activity that takes up time that could be used for seeking God.
Grow In Spiritual Strength
After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.
Jesus fasted for forty days.
Its hard for me to fathom what His body would have felt like during that time.
Im imagining His human form felt quite weak.
Yet, He stood strong against the relentless temptation Satan kept shoving in His face.
He wasnt relying on a protein-filled breakfast or a good night of sleep for his mental sharpness to stand up to the devil.
He relied completely on Gods strength during His fast.
Fasting can strengthen us spiritually when we choose to stand on Gods Word in our own human frailty.
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What Does The Bible Say About Prayer And Fasting
Fasting was a fairly common part of life during Bible times. Found in both the Old and New Testaments, common reasons for fasting included mourning, seeking spiritual revelation, seeking Gods favor, increased sensitivity to Gods voice, an indication of humility, and needing breakthrough or answered prayer for some circumstance of life. The Bible contains direction and many examples to learn from when it comes to prayer and fasting.
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Why Should You Fast
According to Dr. Bill Bright, who produced a guide to fasting for cru.org, there are a number of reasons why the practice of fasting can be spiritually beneficial.
- Fasting is biblical. We see examples of biblical fasting in the lives of figures like Moses, Jesus, and King David.
- Fasting and prayer can restore or strengthen your intimacy with God. Many longtime Christians find that fasting helps them rediscover their first love for God again.
- Fasting is a way to humble yourself in the sight of God . King David said, I humbled my soul with fasting . You may find yourself relying on God more fully for strength when you fast.
- Fasting and prayer can help us hear God more clearly. To listen to God as you fast, consider combining a time of fasting with a practice of listening prayer. Together, fasting and prayer can transform your prayer life into a richer and more personal experience of God.
- Fasting enables the Holy Spirit to reveal your true spiritual condition. When you see your own brokenness more clearly, youre able to move toward repentance.
- When you experience revival in your own life through fasting, the grace and love of God can shine through you into the lives of others.
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Fasting Can Help Us To Become More Like Christ
As we deny ourselves and take up our cross daily, we are following in Jesus footsteps. As we do this, we can expect to see His character formed in us. We will become more patient, kind, humble, and self-controlled.
These are just a few of the advantages of fasting. If you have never tried it, why not give it a try? You may be surprised at how God will use it in your life!
Free Pdf Fasting Prayers Printable
Print and use these prayers again and again for different times of life when you fast, such as fasting from specific foods or fasting during Lent.
Are you currently fasting or have you fasted in the past? Did you use prayer as part of your practice? Tell us about it in the comments below.
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What Does Jesus Say About Fasting
Fast For Intimacy With God, Not Praise From Man But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 1so that it will not be obvious to others 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. As Christians, our intentions matter.
How To Fast As A Christian
Matthew 6:17-18 tells us what we need to do before we fast. "But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you."
1. First set a time and date to seek the face of God
2. Ensure you abstain from eating that morning of your fasting
3. Go to a quite place or in your room away from any distraction
4. Switch off your mobile phone or put in silence and store it away from you
5. Start by worshiping and praising God in your dialect
6. Go on your knees before God and first repent of your sins
7. When praying, abstain from shouting so no one else knows that you are fasting and praying
8. When praying avoid vain repetitions just like the heathens do Matthew 6:7
9. Fasting is not the place for you to be asking God for wealth or riches etc. but rather pray to God for wisdom, open encounter, pray for God to show you your future, pray for divine direction, pray for God to kill any sinful habit in your life like sexual immorality, evil thoughts in your heart, and so on
10. When fasting, humble yourself before God Almighty
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What Are Three Biblical Reasons To Fast
While there is a number of reasons for Christian fasting, the three primary categories fall under Biblical mandates, spiritual disciplines, and health benefits. Reasons for Christian fasting include nearness to God, spiritual freedom, guidance, waiting for Jesus’ return and of course, a healthy body.
Seeking The Holy Spirits Guidance
So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.
It would seem that the church here fasted for guidance from the Holy Spirit. They didnt know what to do next, but they ached for Gods direction.
And this particular instance of fasting happened after Christs coming.
This fasting was not about legalism.
This was a deep hunger in these people searching for guidance of the churchs next steps.
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The Imitation Of Christ
He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, saith the Lord. These are the words of Christ and they direct us to imitate his life and character. The Imitation of Christ is a guide to following the example of Jesus Christ. It should be our most earnest study to dwell upon the life of Jesus Christ. The Imitation of Christ.
What Does The New Testament Say About Fasting
New Testament fasting is an integral part of our faith. When we fast, we open ourselves up to Godâs work in our lives. As a result, we become more sensitive to His voice and expect Him to do amazing things in and through us.
Itâs a way for us to consecrate ourselves to the Lord, prepare for ministry, and hear His voice for clarity and direction. New Testament fasting scriptures also remind us of the heart of Christian fasting. Itâs not for show, and itâs not about perfect performance. When we fast, we humble ourselves before God, open our hearts to Him, and receive His grace and mercy.
Fasting is a powerful way to connect with God. These New Testament fasting scriptures offer encouragement and insight into this spiritual discipline.
These are just a few of the New Testament fasting scriptures. As you can see, New Testament fasting is about much more than just denying ourselves food. Itâs about giving ourselves entirely to God and serving Him with our whole hearts. As we fast and pray together, we can come to understand this even better!
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