Isaiah 58:1-12 Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. 2 Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness, and forsook not the ordinance of their God: they ask of me the ordinances of justice; they take delight in approaching to God. 3 Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold, in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labours. 4 Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high. 5 Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the LORD? 6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? 7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? 8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy rereward. 9 Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; 10 And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday: 11 And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not. 12 And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.
Here are some reasons to fast:
1. Jesus expects us to fast.
2. Fasting is part of humbling yourself before God.
Humbleness is important to God:
2 Chronicles 7:14
4. A sign of repentance
1 Samuel 7:6
5. For Spiritual strength. Overcoming temptation and dedicating yourself to God.
7. To strengthen prayers
8. To express love and worship to God.
9. For guidance and help making important decisions.
10. For intensity in prayer
2 Samuel 12
11. As a sign of mourning
12. To Show humility in the presence of God
What A Spiritual Fast Is Not?
1. A Spiritual fast is not a diet
2. A Spiritual fast is not a show off
3. A spiritual fast is not a tool to force God
So is it wrong to fast for material things such as a house, a car, money, etc? The answer is that if there is a real need in any of these areas then fasting in these areas is not wrong if you are truly seeking God’s directions.
Fasting for a material blessing in the form of a miracle for personal comfort only can only be seen as a selfish motive. But fasting for God’s guidance in how God will instruct us and then being willing to obey the leading of the Holy Spirit is the pattern we should adopt by faith. And if God decides to bless us by way of a miracle that would be His choice and not our demand.
Our fasting should be for the purpose that we may grow in the wisdom of God for every area of our lives.
Most people can go without food for a day, but I know there are some who have medical problems and can’t. Fasting is not always without food for the whole day. You can fast by skipping a meal such as breakfast or you can do a Daniel fast. You can fast by abstaining from sex (within marriage of course) or abstaining from TV. Allow the Holy Spirit to guide you and always remember that fasting without prayer is not a spiritual fast at all. A fast without the intent to seek God’s directions not a fast God can spiritually bless.
So as we fast for the next 3 weeks our focus should be on hearing God so we can align ourselves with God’s will so we can be who God wants us to be and do what God wants us to do as a Church and as individuals.
Alpha and Omega MBC was founded in Chicago as a church committed to promoting the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Alpha and Omega is a community minded and family friendly church where a stranger can find a friend and families can worship together.
As a community minded church we endeavor to bring community minded activities and resources to our members as well as the surrounding community.
Our goal is to expand our community projects to include and after school program as well as an adult continuing education center among our services that would be of value to our members and surrounding community.