The benefits of fasting
March 30, 2009
“And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.”
Fasting isn’t a practice many Christians do on a regular basis.
But here’s the deal. Prayer coupled with fasting is often a great source of power for the believer! Fasting strengthens our prayers. So it really is something every follower of Christ should consider including as a regular part of their lives.
I know so many believers today who are slaves to their appetite for food and other physical pleasures. Fasting helps us deny those things in our lives that seek to enslave us. Fasting is also great because it helps us defeat our enemies, those spiritual forces all around us that seek to destroy our lives and our testimony for Christ.
Why else is fasting commended in the Scripture? Because it helps us discern the will of God. And, it destroys strongholds!
And it isn’t just non-believers who have major strongholds in their lives. Many believers do too. And I’m talking about satanic, demonic strongholds that get rooted in our lives and riveted in our souls.
Now, you may be thinking, “That may be true for some people, but not me. There aren’t any strongholds like that in my life.”
Well, that could very well be true. But have you thought about the stronghold of fear? Or the stronghold of lust? Or the stronghold of anger?
Think about your relationships. What one bad habit of yours causes the most damage in those relationships? If you can think of a behavior pattern or habit that’s had a history of hurting the people you love, that one thing could very well be a stronghold that Satan is using to trip you up!
You’ve heard me say it before that we need to replace the bad things in our lives with the good things. And one of those good things is fasting.
So why not pray about whether or not you could spend some time this week fasting? Sure, you might have to skip a meal or two. But if it will help you deny yourself, defeat your enemies, discern the will of God, and destroy strongholds, why wouldn’t you give fasting a shot?
PRAYER COUPLED WITH FASTING IS OFTEN A GREAT SOURCE OF POWER FOR THE BELIEVER.