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The Importance of Fasting

Pastor Nate Brosher

Jan 11, 2024

The Importance of Fasting

Matthew 17:14-21 NKJV

14 And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling to Him and saying, 15 "Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water. 16 So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him." 17 Then Jesus answered and said, "O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me." 18 And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour. 19 Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, "Why could we not cast it out?" 20 So Jesus said to them, "Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you. 21 "However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting."

  • The disciples asked; “Why couldn’t we cast it out?" And his response was “because of your unbelief” faithlessness!

The statutory definition of corruption is a dishonest, fraudulent, or even criminal act of an individual or organization, using entrusted authority or power to make a personal gain or other unethical or illegal benefits.

Act 8:9 NLT

A man named Simon had been a sorcerer there for many years, amazing the people of Samaria and claiming to be someone great.

Acts 8:18-19 NLT

18 When Simon saw that the Spirit was given when the apostles laid their hands on people, he offered them money to buy this power. 19 "Let me have this power, too," he exclaimed, "so that when I lay my hands on people, they will receive the Holy Spirit!"

  • Many Greek manuscripts have left out verse 21 in Matthew because it closely resembles Mark 9:29 so it has been believed to be added because it wasn’t in the original text of Matthew.

Mark 9:28-29 NKJV

28 And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, "Why could we not cast it out?" 29 So He said to them, "This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting."

  • Fasting releases God's supernatural power. It is a tool we can use when there is opposition to God's will. Satan would like nothing better than to cause division, discouragement, defeat, depression, and doubt among us. United prayer and fasting has always been used by God to deal a decisive blow to the enemy!

  • St. Augustine said, “Fasting cleanses the soul, raises the mind, subjects one's flesh to the spirit, renders the heart contrite and humble, [and] scatters the clouds of concupiscence.” (strong desires/sinful lust)

Matthew 6:16-18 NLT

16 "And when you fast, don't make it obvious, as the hypocrites do, for they try to look miserable and disheveled so people will admire them for their fasting. I tell you the truth, that is the only reward they will ever get. 17 But when you fast, comb your hair and wash your face. 18 Then no one will notice that you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in private. And your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.

  • Jesus assumes that His followers will fast. Notice, that it's “whennotif.” Fasting is an essential part of the Christian life, and Jesus understands that the absence of fasting will make us spiritually feeble.

  • For God to honor our fasting, we must be seeking to please the Lord and not ourselves. If we want our fasting to honor God, we must prioritize personal righteousness and ministry to others. Prioritizing personal righteousness means uprooting sin while also seeking a solution from God.

In its deeper spiritual meaning, righteousness is the quality of being right in the eyes of God, including character (nature), conscience (attitude), conduct (action), and command (word). Righteousness is, therefore, based upon God's standard because He is the ultimate Lawgiver.

Isaiah 33:22 NLT

For the LORD is our judge, our lawgiver, and our king. He will care for us and save us.

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