Christian Fasting - Christian Daily Devotions - April 12 2006

Christian Fasting - Verse of the Day :
As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, "Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work which I have called them." Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away.
-Acts 13:2-3

Daily Bible Reading Plan

Morning : Acts 13

Evening : Judges 17-18

Christian Fasting

The leaders in the Antioch church were ministering to the Lord with prayer and fasting. Christian fasting is often a neglected spiritual activity among believers. Yet it is referred to all throughout the pages of the Bible.

Fasting is defined as the voluntary abstaining from food for spiritual purposes. It is often done with prayer because fasting intensifies your praying.

The most natural thing for us to do everyday is to eat. When we give up eating, we deliberately turn away from the natural to invoke the supernatural. All throughout the Scriptures, we see how God attached tremendous importance to fasting as the appointed way for His people to humble themselves before Him.

When Ezra and Israel fasted and humbled their souls before God, the Lord protected them from their enemies (Ezra 8:21-23). When Jehoshaphat humbled himself before the Lord by fasting, God delivered the kingdom of Judah from destruction (2 Chr. 20:2-4).

April 12 - Christian Fasting - Christian Daily Devotions

Before Jesus entered His public ministry, He had to pass through two critical experiences:
(1) He had to be filled with the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit, and
(2) he had to fast for 40 days in the desert (Luke 4:1-2).

Even Jesus had to humble Himself and focus on the spiritual! The result of His fasting was the great personal victory He had over Satan's temptations.

Besides that, His fasting released the power of the Holy Spirit to flow without any hindrances through His life and ministry. If we want to follow in the other great works that Jesus did, then it seems logical that we must also begin where He began--by fasting!

In the Early Church, christian fasting and prayer were the standard ways by which the New Testament leadership operated. In the Antioch church, the sending of Barnabas and Saul for missions was entirely a miraculous work of the Holy Spirit (Acts 13:4).

But it was only through fasting that the leaders were able to move from the realm on the natural to the realm of the supernatural.

Finally, christian fasting is God's appointed way to bring your carnal nature into subjection. Your body makes a wonderful servant but a terrible master. If you really want to succeed in your Christian walk with the Holy Spirit, you must ensure that your body does not dictate you or control you (1 Cor. 9:27).

Rather, you are controlled by God's destiny and purpose for your life. By regular fasting, you serve notice to your body and your carnal nature: "Body, you don't control me. I'm not subject to you. You're my servant. You'll obey what the Holy Spirit in me declares I have to do!"

April 12 - Christian Fasting - Christian Daily Devotions

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