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Instructions on Fasting

Read: Isaiah 58:1-14 & Matthew 6:16-18

Fasting should be accompanied by:

Self denial
Deuteronomy 9:18 and Nehemiah 9:6

Confession of Sin
I Samuel 7:6 and Nehemiah 9:1-2

Mourning
Joel 2:12-13

Reading of Scriptures
Jeremiah 36:6

Prayer
Daniel 9:3; Matthew 17:2 and Luke 12:37

Illustrations of fasting appear all through the Scriptures. Moses practiced fasting; so did Elijah, Nehemiah, and Isaiah. The New Testament carries many stories of fasting. Jesus abstained forty days, you remember, when he prepared himself for his ministry. Anna was fasting when she held the Christ child. In the context of life, Jesus said, When you fast . . . It was a habit, a part of the curriculum of the faithful. Before Saul and Barnabas began their missionary travels, they fasted with the church.

Last, but not least, fasting cannot be undertaken without a serious commitment and a desire to see your fast through to its conclusion.

For when you commit yourself, you will receive . . .
• Divine Guidance (Judges 20:26)
• Victory Over Temptation (Matthew 4:1-11)

Remember while fasting to safe guard yourself and . . .
1. Avoid Display (Matthew 6:16-18)
2. Remember God (Zecheriah 7:5-7)
3. Chasten the Soul (Psalm 69:10)
4. Humble the Soul (Psalm 35:13)
5. Consider the True Meaning of Fasting (Isaiah 58:1-14)

Passages to Read and Meditate on While Fasting
1. Should Christians fast? (Luke 5:33-35)
2. What should be a Christian's attitude when fasting? (Matthew 6:16-18/Mark 11:24)
3. What can praying and fasting do for believers? (Matthew 17:20-21)

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