Monday, November 26, 2012

The Principals of Fasting

Fasting is a way to temper our desires by denying ourselves. Biblically accurate fasting is not a dieting process. Skipping a few meals because you weren't hungry or didn't have time to eat does not count. Biblically accurate fasting is a mental declaration of doing without food to achieve spiritual strength, and an essential part of getting answers and direction. Many people have reported an elevated level of spiritual clarity while on or shortly after an extended fast. It also assists in receiving the Holy Ghost, spiritual deliverances, and in obtaining skills, understanding and wisdom. The premise is that through denying ourselves one of the fundamental pleasures of our flesh, we will achieve a heightened spirituality. Victories are won, and power is received through fasting. In the Bible, Kings, Priests, commoners, cities and whole nations fasted. It has been recorded that great revivals and renewals, occurred during or directly after fasting.
Clearly Christians are supposed to fast. Christians should fast when we feel moved by the Holy Spirit to do so. Inspiration is often the easiest time to fast because it becomes the driving force or motivation to do so. Fasting is also a commitment that all Christians should make simply because we are told to do so.
Jesus practiced fasting when He was tempted by Satan (Matt. 4:1-11; Mark 1:12-13; Luke 4:1-4). During these tumultuous 40 days of loneliness, satanic attack, and the presence of wild beasts, “He ate nothing”
If Jesus saw fit to fast during a time of spiritual crisis, and we as Christians are striving to be like Christ then we to must fast also.
There are 3 types of fasts, the normal fast during which do not consume food, but we drink water. The absolute fast, which is considered the most extreme because we don't eat or drink, and the partial fast in which certain foods are restricted as opposed to all food. The absolute fast is not the preferred version of fasting because water is needed to rid our bodies of modern day pollutants and toxins.
When we fast we must also pray, and as we seek the throne of grace during our fast, there are several do's and don't s. I'll start with the do's.
We should not substitute other pleasures for food. The whole idea in denying ourselves is to concentrate on our breakthrough. Substituting one pleasure for another is self defeating.
We should never boast about our fasting. Doing so is vainglorious, and self aggrandizing.
We should not sin. This is self explanatory but often made more difficult once you make a conscious decision not to do so. Sins must be cut out of our lives for our fasting to be pleasing to God. In other words during your time of fasting, you must refrain from doing anything that is not of God. Everything that you feed your mind must be free of the world, and you must resist every temptation that you normally fall prey to. If you deprive your body in order to gain clarity, your mind should not be steeped in sin. Fasting can help you conquer theses weaknesses in your life.
Here are some do's. We should lay aside all of our physical, and mental burdens if possible. The focus should be on God.
We should forgive all of those in our lives who have wronged or offended us. You cannot be free if you choose to hold someone else captive.
Break every yoke. Lay aside every sin that binds us and keeps us from realizing our true spiritual potential.
Shower, continue to smell sweet and fragrant, not giving the appearance of weakness.
Fast as discreetly as possible. Your fast is between you and God. Not you and everyone else.
When we fast:
• Our light shall break forth like the morning.
• Our healing shall spring forth speedily.
• Our righteousness shall go before us.
• The glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard.
• When we call, and the LORD will answer; when we cry, He will say, '“Here I am.”
• If we extend our souls to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted people, then our light shall ....dawn in the darkness, and our darkness shall be as the noonday.
• The LORD will guide us continually.
• He will satisfy our souls in drought.
• He will strengthen our bodies.
• We shall be like a watered garden and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.
• Those from among us shall build the old waste places.
• We shall raise up the foundations of many generations.
• And we shall be called the Repairer(s) of the Breach, the Restorer(s) of Streets to Dwell .....In.
Fasting and prayer works!


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