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What The Bible Says About Fasting

Beneficial Effects Of Fasting

The bible teaches us about the benefits of fasting for the soul and for physical health. Fasting is abstaining from all food, beverages, and sometimes additional things, for a set period of time. In the bible, fasting is seen as an expression of sorrow, humility and devotion to God. In Matthew 6:16-18, it says: “When you fast, don’t look sad like the hypocrites. They make their faces look sad so people will know they are fasting. I can guarantee this truth: They will have their reward. When you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face. Then people won’t know that you’re fasting. Only your Father, who knows everything, will know. Your Father, who knows everything, will reward you.” This scripture highlights the true nature of fasting and the importance of humility and the right attitude when we do it.
According to medical experts, fasting can have a range of beneficial physical effects, such as sparking weight loss, calming inflammation and improving metabolic health. It is important to note, however, that fasting must be done in the correct way to be beneficial, and done in moderation will not lead to health benefits.

Fasting In The Bible

The Bible talks about many different uses of fasting. In the Old Testament, Daniel fasted for either of two reasons: either for the purification of his soul or for the obtaining of divine revelations. He fasted for 21 days in a row, consuming only water. In Esther and Saul’s story from the Bible, we can read about their fasting for the accomplishment of a special political purpose. There were also various Hebrew fasts mentioned in the Old Testament. The fasts were observed by Jews to get over their distress and ailments.
In the New Testament, Jesus’ disciples used fasting or abstinence to prepare for their encounters with evil and persecution. They wanted to be protected against temptations and the lure of evil spirits. They needed to mortify their bodies to be strengthened spiritually. In the case of Jesus, fasting was also a time of intense prayer and powerful deliberation by him. He fasted for forty days and nights and emerged victorious over sin, temptation and evil.

Why Fasting?

Fasting is practiced by many religions, but it has its roots in the Bible and is strongly connected to our spiritual journey with God. Fasting has a positive effect on our soul and our body as it serves to empty our soul and mind from all the worldly desires, and renew our spiritual resolve. It can purify the physical body by giving it a break from the constant cycle of digestion and detoxification. Fasting has also been known to help with weight loss and improving metabolic health.
Fasting is an expression of sorrow and repentance, and a great way to draw nearer to God and seek forgiveness. The fasting mindset helps us focus on God, to recognize our weaknesses and need for Him, and to gain clarity of mind and spirit. Fasting helps us to open our heart to Him and to develop a desirable relationship with Him.

The Discipline Of Fasting

Fasting can be challenging and uncomfortable, but it can also be a rewarding experience. As with anything, fasting should be done in moderation. Too much fasting can lead to burning out and can be detrimental to our health.
It is important to remember that fasting does not mean cutting out food altogether but reducing our intake. We can start off by eating smaller portions or abstaining from snacks and drinks, or cutting out entire meals. Fasting should never be done to starve the body or cause harm. Our body is the temple of the Lord, and it should be cared for and loved.

Mind Fasting

Though fasting is traditionally seen as a physical acitivity, it need not always be so. There is also the practice of ‘mind fasting’, where one can abstain from activities such as television, social media and other mental sources of distraction. Engaging in ‘mind fasting’ can help to relax the mind and expand one’s capacity for creative thought and reflection. It can be helpful in creating a space for us to connect more deeply with the divine.

Spiritual Fasting

Spiritual fasting is different to physical fasting. It is abstaining from things that distract us from our encounter with God and give us a chance to concentrate on Him. During spiritual fasting we should watch our behaviours and thoughts. Anything that detrimental to our relationship with God, such as bad habits, negative thought patterns and unhealthy activities, should be put aside and fasted from.

The Power of Prayer and Fasting

The bible teaches us that fasting has power when combined with prayer. Prayer combined with fasting can break the chains of habit and addiction. When we turn to God in prayer combined with fasting, He will answer our prayers and grant us peace and joy.
The Bible says: “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?” (Isaiah 58:6). When we fast with prayer, we can be assured that God will do what is best for us and help us to break free from our chains of bondage.

The Role Of The Church

The church plays an important role in encouraging believers to fast and pray. The church needs to be the fountainhead of faith and should encourage believers to be purposeful in their fasting and prayer. The church is a place of refuge and a place to seek comfort during difficult times. They should also provide support and resources to those who engage in fasting and prayer.

The Benefits Of Fasting

Fasting not only reduces our physical cravings and desires, but it also has godly benefits for our soul. It can help us refocus and reframe our thinking, and it can open up our hearts to the presence of God in our lives. Fasting also opens us up to spiritual renewal and growth. Spiritual renewal can result in our becoming more sensitive to God’s calling and presence in our lives, and it can bring us greater trust and faith in God’s promises.

Fasting Is A Personal Affair

Fasting should be a personal affair and no one should ever feel pressured to do it. If one chooses to fast, then they should do it out of love for God and to seek forgiveness and renewal. There are no specific rules as to how fasting should be observed. Every individual can personalize their own fasting journey, as long as they do it with a humble heart, and in accordance with their own personal circumstances.

Conclusion

The Bible teaches us many things about fasting, and it encourages believers to fast regularly and to have the right attitude when they do it. Fasting can have physical and spiritual benefits, and whether it is physical fasting, mind fasting or spiritual fasting, it can be a great way to draw nearer to God.

Hilda Scott is an avid explorer of the Bible and inteprator of its gospel. She is passionate about researching and uncovering the mysteries that lie in this sacred book. She hopes to use her knowledge and expertise to bring faith and God closer to people all around the world.

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