Fasting Because Only God Can Do It!

Posted: January 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

And the reason why I called it this,  Is because I want us to understand when you are in a situation where you don’t know what to do or you don’t see how it can be done you fast.

When you’re in a situation where you need God to do a miracle You fast

I have been telling God the reason why I am fasting is because its beyond me I have done all I can do know God show me do a miracle help us because I don’t know what to do God.

We see a great example of this.  Ezra proclaimed a fast and God moved ..Ezra 8:21-23“Then I proclaimed a fast there at the river of Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, to seek from Him the right way for us and our little ones and all our possessions. 22 For I was ashamed to request of the king an escort of soldiers and horsemen to help us against the enemy on the road, because we had spoken to the king, saying,”The hand of our God is upon all those for good who seek Him, but His power and His wrath are against all those who forsake Him.” 23 So we fasted and entreated our God for this, and He answered our prayer.”NKJV

Ezra’s whole approach to this trip was a spiritual one; because he knew and told God if you hand of God wasn’t with them, everything would fail. But to receive the blessing and help of God, they had to humble themselves and seek His face, so Ezra called for three days of fasting and prayer, asking God to protect them on their long journey.

He had already told Artaxerxes that God’s good hand was upon him and the Jews, so how could he then ask for human help? Ezra was relying on God’s covenant with Abraham

The Lord gave Ezra special faith for this journey because He knew that Ezra’s desire was only to glorify God.

And church that’s our desire so that God would be glorified

When you consider the factors involved in this expedition, you can see what great faith Ezra possessed. Here were several thousand Jews, inexperienced in travel and warfare, carrying a fortune in gold and silver, led by a scholar, not a soldier, and planning to travel through dangerous territory that was infested with enemies , and yet their leader didn’t want an army to protect them! If anybody deserves the “Great Faith Award,” it’s Ezra!

Moses was the first recorded faster in the Bible

God’s Word assumes that fasting will be a regular part of a Christian’s life.

The root word for fasting means not to eat

But what does this “not eating” food mean? Why did people in the Bible “not eat?” We find a clue in Leviticus 16:29. This verse says that fasting “afflicting one’s soul.”

We gain some insight here about how the Hebrews viewed fasting. Fasting is more than just “afflicting one’s body”. It is “afflicting one’s soul.”

In other words, fasting in the Hebrew mind is something my soul participates in.

Fasting is denying myself. It is denying not only my own body, but also my own wants. It is a way of saying that food and my desires are secondary to something else. Fasting is “afflicting one’s soul” — an act of self-denial.

Of course, denying yourself food to focus on God and His program shows humility. That is why fasting is also the equivalent of the phrase “to humble oneself before the Lord” (Psalm 35:13; 1 Kings 21:29; Ezra 8:21). When a person is really concerned about the things of God, he will humble himself. There will be times when he will abstain from the enjoyment of food to continue concentration and focus on that which is important to God.

Jesus spoke about fasting, he didn’t say if you fast, but “when you fast” (Matthew 6:16). Our Lord assumes that Christians will fast.

‘When is it appropriate to fast?‘ We find more occasions when the people of God fasted. God’s people fasted in these situations:

Mourning someone’s death: We see fasting and mourning connected in 1 Samuel 31:13; 1 Chronicles 10:12; 2 Samuel 1:12; and 2 Samuel 3:35. In these situations fasting showed the sorrow that the people felt over the loss of someone God used in their lives.

Mourning sin in repentance and confession: Examples of this are found in Deuteronomy 9:18; 1 Samuel 7:6; 1 Kings 21:27; Ezra 10:6; Jonah 3:5; and Acts 9:3-9. When people wished to demonstrate that they were serious about repenting from their sin, they fasted. Our willingness to sacrifice shows the depth of our commitment and in this case fasting is a pictorial way of saying to the Lord, “I care more about getting right with You, God, than I do about even my own life.” So a good occasion for fasting is when we are truly grieving over our sins.

A situation of impending danger; for protection: There are occasions when death or danger threaten us.

Direction: Fasting helps us find God’s will. If we expect God to reveal his direction for our lives, we must put Him first. Often this means putting aside the fulfillment of our physical appetites, so that we can focus our attention on Him.

Sickness: There are two examples in Scripture of fasting on behalf of those who are sick: 2 Samuel 12:15-23; Psalm 35:13. Both of these examples come from the life of David. In Psalm 35:13 David says, “Yet when they were sick, I put on clothes of sadness and showed my sorrow by going without food.” David saw fasting as a way to ask God for physical healing in the lives of other people.

The ordination of missionaries or church leaders: Fasting appears to have been a regular part of the ordination of church leaders and missionaries. Acts 13, the calling of Paul and Barnabas for missionary service. Verse 3 tells us that after they received this direction from the Lord, then they ordained them for missionary service by prayer, fasting and laying their hands upon them.

Special revelation: The final occasion for fasting is for special revelation. Exceptional insights from God were sometimes given to the prophets and others during periods of fasting.

Neh 1:3-4 ”And they said to me, “The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.” 4 So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven.”NKJV

Est 4:16″Go, gather all the Jews who are present in Shushan, and fast for me; neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will fast likewise. And so I will go to the king, which is against the law; and if I perish, I perish!” NKJV

Respectfully Pastor Tim Echevarria

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