My bones and muscles were devoid of purposeful energy today. I feel a slight presence of exhaustion permeating from every limb even to the night hour. Before my eyes opened, to see the new dawn, this morn, I knew my excursions to neighbouring churches had taken a toll. I doubt it is so much what I did in the physical, as it is what I have been doing in the spiritual.
I am a new woman and purpose-filled and purpose driven. My days of ‘spectating’ at church services are done. Now, I am actively scaling valleys, climbing mountains interceding and fighting the adversary on behalf of others on a regular basis; all in the spirit realm. This is an exhausting feat on the human body. If I hope to continue and have an effective ministry, I must apply the principles of God to endure the race.
From now on, it is not business as usual but I am certain it will be diet-interrupted. Fasting. There is a reason why fasting was introduced; this was so that the flesh would be weakened and the spirit, spirituality and communication of man to God, strengthened. This is what is required for a fully engaged spirit life.
The bible is rife with examples of men and women who sought God’s counsel and used the powerful tool of spiritual warfare, that of prayer and fasting.
Moses Fasted Before Receiving the Commandments – Deuteronomy 9:9-18
- Moses fasted for 40 days when he went up to the mountain to receive the commandments. When he came down and broke the commandments because the people sinned, he went back up and fasted 40 more days.
Elijah Fasted While Escaping Jezebel – 1 Kings 19:4-8
- Elijah after his confrontation and victory over Jezebel’s false prophets, was fed by an angel twice and then he journeyed to Mount Horeb for 40 days without food.
Esther Fasted for the Safety of the Jews – Esther 4:15-17
- When the entire Jewish race was threatened by genocide, Queen Esther fasted before approaching the King and asking for his help in saving the Jewish people.
Darius Fasted For the Safety of Daniel – Daniel 6:18-23
- When Daniel was accused of breaking King Darius’ law and was throne into the lion’s den; the king himself did not sup that night and fasted until he was assured of Daniel’s safety the next day.
Daniel Fasted for an Answer to Prayer – Daniel 10:1-3
- Daniel fasted many times, especially in seeking an answer from God, for the visions he saw. He received a direct answer via the Angel Gabriel.
Jesus Fasted before He commenced His ministry – Matthew 4:1-2
- Before the devil approached Jesus, He fasted for 40 days in the desert. After which he begun His ministry here on earth.
Apart from seeking spiritual strength, power and authority; there are many more reasons for fasting.
Here are a few reasons why people fasted in the bible, courtesy of Rock Church:
- In times of war: The Benjamites fasted and defeated the other Israelites. Judges 20:26
- Repentance: The King of Nineveh ordered the whole city to fast and repent. Consequently, they were forgiven of their sin. Jonah 3:5
- When facing danger: Ezra fasted as he prayed for wisdom and protection when he prepared the people to return to Jerusalem from Babylon. Ezra 8:21, 23
- Courage and Wisdom: Esther and the Jews of Shushan fasted when faced with their destruction planned by Haman. Esther 4:3,16; 9:31
- In times of grief: A seven-day fast was held when the bones of Saul and his sons were buried. 1 Samuel 31:13; 1 Chronicles 10:12
- In times of distress: David fasted after hearing that Saul and Jonathan were dead. 2 Samuel 1:12
- Ultimate denial of the flesh: Jesus fasted 40 days and 40 nights before being tempted by Satan. Matthew 4:2
- Spiritual Power: Jesus said this kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting. Mark 9:29
- Wisdom: Paul and Barnabas prayed and fasted at the appointment of elders for the churches. Acts 14:23
- Set aside self for holiness: Paul suggested that husbands and wives abstain from sexual relations to give themselves to fasting and prayer. 1 Corinthians 7:5
- Answered prayer: Cornelius fasted four days, after which time an angel appeared to him. Consequently, he and his family received the gospel and were baptized. Acts 10:30-31
- Mourning: During his time of mourning, Daniel fasted three weeks, after which time he received a vision. Daniel 10:1-3
- Special revelation: Moses fasted for 40 days and received the law. Exodus 34:27-28
- Spiritual Recuperation: Elijah fasted 40 days after killing prophets of Baal. 1 Kings 19:1-9
So with this new knowledge, I am sure like me, you will embark on a new journey and understanding of what is required of us and also what is given to us; to help us endure as God’s children and servants here on earth.
Copyright © 2015 · All Rights Reserved · Denise N. Fyffe