Did You Know? April 2024

FASTING (Part 3)

by A Life In Spain
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FASTING (Part 3)

Did you know there are many recorded incidents where believers fasted and were blessed in Scripture?

Does fasting transform lives? How can fasting help you? When you encounter hardship, what can you do?

Who is an ever present help in times of trouble? Let us search the Scripture to find out how important fasting was to the believer.


Psalm chapter 37 and verse 39 outlines “But the Salvation of the righteous is of the Lord, he is their strength in the time of trouble”.

In the book of Mathew it records an incident where a man had a son who would often fall into the fire or water, because he was not of a sound mind. The disciples of Yeshua (Jesus) were unable to help him.

Why? Mathew chapter 17 and verses 15 to 21 says “Lord have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and often falls into the fire and into water. And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him.” Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I suffer you? Bring him hither to me.”

And Jesus rebuked the devil and he departed out of him and the child was cured from that very hour. Then came the disciples to Jesus apart and said, “why could not we cast him out?” And Jesus said unto them, “because of your unbelief, for verily I say unto you, if ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, remove hence to yonder place and it shall remove and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting”.

Anna, a Prophetess in the book of Luke is mentioned as someone who fasted and prayed often, for herself and for others. Luke chapter 2 and verses 36 to 38 notes “And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the

daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser. She was of a great age and had lived with her husband seven years from her virginity. And she was a widow of about four score and four years (84 years), which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem”. (she often spoke of the Lord to those who were seeking salvation).

Cornelius, a centurion had a vision whilst fasting and praying. In the book of Acts chapter 10 and verses 1 to 4, 30 “There was a certain man in caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian

band. He was a devout man who feared God with all his house, which gave alms to the people, and prayed to God always. He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying to him…. “thy prayers and thy alms are come up for a memorial before God”.

Cornelius said “four days ago I was fasting until this hour, and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing”.

During a period of fasting and praying Barnabas and Saul (also known as Paul) were called to work in the ministry of the Lord. Acts chapter 13 and verses 1 to 4 states “Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers, as Barnabas, Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Ghost said “separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them”. And when they had fasted and prayed and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.

So they being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia and from thence they sailed to Cyprus”. (note:The church is not the building, but the believers. A tetrarch was a governor of one of four

divisions of a country or province, in the ancient Roman empire. The holy ghost is the same as the holy spirit or spirit of holiness).

When Saul (Paul) and Barnabas were in Derbe they preached the gospel (or good news) to the people there. In Acts chapter 14 and verses 20 to 23 it describes “Howbeit, as the disciples stood round about

him, he rose up, and came into the city and the next day he departed with Barnabas to Derbe. And when they had preached the gospel to that city and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra and to

Iconium and Antioch, confirming the souls of the disciples and exhorting them to continue in the faith and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God. And when they had ordained them elders in every church and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they believed”.

When king David in 2nd Samuel chapter 12 and verse 16 was about to lose his child, he interceded through prayer and fasted. “David therefore besought God for the child and David fasted and went in and lay all night upon the earth”.

To conclude, fasting is all about the heart being transformed. There must be a change in attitude towards the words of God. The Scripture clearly defines how fasting helps the believer to have a better understanding of oneself through the process of humility. Proverbs chapter 15 and verse 33 explains “The fear (respect) of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom and before honour is humility”. In Proverbs chapter 22 and verse 4 it states “By humility and the fear (respect) of the Lord are riches, honour and life”. Also, 2nd Chronicles chapter 7 and verse 14 sums it up nicely “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from

Heaven  and will forgive their sin and will heal their land”.

When the heart is humbled and changed towards the Creator, Yehovah (Jehovah or God), it is through his holy spirit which enables the believer to obey his commandments (by changing our ways to his ways). 1st

John chapter 5 and verses 3 to 5 explains “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments and his commandments are not grievous. For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world and this is

the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God”.

Everyone has the opportunity to accept or reject the free gift

(invitation) of Salvation.

I hope you have learned more from the Scriptures. Next time I will look at ‘Righteousness’.

If you would like to know more, contact Sandra on 602 466 534.

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