Insights On Fasting


On your ‘Fasting & Prayer Guide’ sheet, you see the verse from Zechariah, “When you fasted…did you at all fast unto me?”  I want to share some thoughts on that verse and Acts 13:2, “They ministered to the Lord, and fasted.”  In Authur Wallis’ book, “God’s Chosen Fast,” he gives some wonderful insight on fasting unto God.  Here are some thoughts adapted from his book.

So much of our thinking is ruled by that self-centered principle, “What do I get out of it?”  Even in our spiritual desires and aspirations, self may still be enthroned.  The cross must work in us if the life is to be centered on God.  “He died for all, that they which live should no longer live unto themselves, but unto Him” (2 Cor. 5:15 RV).

It is deeply significant that in the Jesus’ first statement on fasting, He dealt with the question of motive. (Matt. 6:16-18)

God is not merely concerned with what we do, but why we do it.  A right act may be robbed of all its value in the sight of God if it is done with a wrong motive. 

Fasting must be done unto God.  While avoiding the brazen conceit of the Pharisee, we may still act out selfish motives unawares, without the basic motive being the glory of God. Fasting and prayer that originates with God always returns to God. 

We must recognize the rightness and need of fasting as well as the willingness for self-discipline.  The spiritual objectives we have before us are all God’s choice, to which we, as obedient disciples, gladly respond.

Our fast is one He has appointed, set apart for Him to minister to Him, and accomplish His sovereign will.  Then, our God who sees in secret is graciously pleased to reward us openly.  In this way, we are preserved from ever permitting the blessing to mean more to us than the Blesser, “For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things.  To Him be glory for ever. Amen.” (Rom. 11:36)

Love in Christ, 
Pastor Gary