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Why Do Christians Fast? - Religion - Nairaland

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Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 5:34am On Sep 10
The religious practice of staying hungry for some time in order to pray to God is very common among Muslims and for some reasons I can't ask why they do it. But as Christians, should we continue with such practice?
If prayer is the only thing we do during fasting, then why staying hungry to pray when we know that Gods only answers the prayers of a good man through FAITH? Elijah, Daniel, Paul, Silas and many other great men in the Bible didn't go hungry but they prayed and miracles happen.
The Bible hasn't commanded us anywhere to go hungry and pray before God can hear and answer us.
Fasting was a common practice among the ancient Jews but those who were close to Jesus(his disciples) never fasted. People once ask Jesus why his disciples don't fast and he replied "how can they fast when the bridegroom is still with them...?"
Today, we Christians believe that God is still with us through his spirit, so why should we fast?
God is merciful but Sometimes, we make it look like he is a hard hearted God who won't hear our prayers unless we stay hungry. I know some churches and Pastors who now gives fasting as a punishment to their members when they go wrong. I also heard how a Pastor died while attempting to fast for 40 days like Jesus did. With the way he died, do you think Jesus will congratulate him on the day of rapture for attempting to equal his record? Must we fast just because Jesus fasted?

3 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by chuks013: 5:44am On Sep 10
To gain God's favour



FTC AGAIN...NOW OFFICIALLY I'M TIRED OF DZ FTC...4TH 1 IN JUST THESE WEEK AND LIKE FIFTY SUMTYN OVERALL......FOR THOSE AIMING FOR FTC....TRY HARDER..

1 Like

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 6:17am On Sep 10
chuks013:
To gain God's favour
My dear you are wrong. Tell me about anyone in the Bible that gain God favour through fasting.
But here are 3 people in the Bible that gained God's favour without fasting...
Mary (Luke 1:30).
Joseph (Acts 7:9-10)
David (Acts 7:45-46).
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by Ololanla: 6:29am On Sep 10
Fasting is a spiritual thing. There are certain spiritual level you can't attain without fasting.
Fasting make you more alert in the spirit and thus get signals from heaven. As a Christian you can't grow without fasting.

16 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by Merryglad(f): 6:46am On Sep 10
Jesus taught his disciples that some situations wont change except through prayers and fasting. Fasting is starving your flesh and feeding your spirit, it may not be food, it may be staying away from things you like.

23 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by Redoil: 6:51am On Sep 10
Prayer and fasting is a double edge weapon

5 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by Tenkobos(m): 6:54am On Sep 10
gentlegenius:

My dear you are wrong. Tell me about anyone in the Bible that gain God favour through fasting.
But here are 3 people in the Bible that gained God's favour without fasting...
Mary (Luke 1:30).
Joseph (Acts 7:9-10)
David (Acts 7:45-46).
What are you saying??


Jesus started his mission with Fasting.



Luke 4:2-4

2 where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. 3 The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” 4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread


Then he taught us to fast.


Matthew 6:16-18
16 “When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.


Esther and the people of Israel fasted and she was rewarded.

Esther 4:16

16 “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.”


Now talking about Mary and Joseph.
You can't say that didn't fast because their activities prior to the coming of Jesus weren't recorded but fasting is a common practice in the religion that they were devoted to so it is safe to assume that they fasted.

Now here's one about David

2 Samuel 12:16 David therefore besought God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night upon the earth.


Because Esther fasted and prayed, the law was changed on her behalf and favour was unloaded upon her.

She used the weapon of fasting to turn the tables against her enemies.

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Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by DebbyChris(f): 7:04am On Sep 10
Fasting is a spiritual exercise and it is done for several purposes: to receive instruction as in the case of Moses, for restoration, for some difficult issue etc

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Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 7:04am On Sep 10
Ololanla:
Fasting is a spiritual thing. There are certain spiritual level you can't attain without fasting.
Fasting make you more alert in the spirit and thus get signals from heaven. As a Christian you can't grow without fasting.
The apostles always prayed but they never go Hungry in the name of fasting yet they were always filled with the Spirit. They were always guided and directed by the spirit. The church they formed were growing every day. So why are you raising baseless points?
I have seen people who never fast in their entire life yet they keep growing spiritually and otherwise but if you check around your environment, you'll observe that those who spent most of their time attending fasting are the ones that are not growing. You can never grow when you focus only on fasting and neglect the other things that are essential for spiritual growth.

1 Like

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by ysyowel(m): 7:10am On Sep 10
fasting help one to be MORE focus of the things that are of the Spirit, you will hardly see someone fighting, fornicating, killing, taking hot drinks/drugs etc while fasting.. so fasting help one to pray more.

1 Like

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 7:26am On Sep 10
DebbyChris:
Fasting is a spiritual exercise and it is done for several purposes: to receive instruction as in the case of Moses, for restoration, for some difficult issue etc
Why don't you back this up with the scriptures?
Moses received so many instructions from God at so many instances. He didn't have to fast at any instance before hearing from God. If you think he did, give me the Bible portion.
The problem I have here is that Many people came here to argue based on what they think and based on what they see as the general norm in our society but not based on the word of God.
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by DebbyChris(f): 7:33am On Sep 10
gentlegenius:

Why don't you back this up with the scriptures?
Moses received so many instructions from God at so many instances. He didn't have to fast at any instance before hearing from God. If you think he did, give me the Bible portion.
The problem I have here is that Many people came here to argue based on what they think and based on what they see as the general norm in our society but not based on the word of God.
Check deu.9:9
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by Wilgrea7(m): 7:47am On Sep 10
there are different types of fasting.. fasting during the Jewish times was not about just denying yourself food.. you'll notice that people who fasted didn't just abstain from food.. most times you'll find that they went into the desert.. fasting then was a way to deny all worldly things and try to connect with higher spiritual things.. the fasting of nowadays is mostly just starvation
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by asuustrike2009: 7:47am On Sep 10
Both the Old Testament and New Testament teach the value of fasting, which is abstaining from food or drink in order to focus on prayer and seeking God's will. Through many examples of people in the Bible who fasted, we can know that God grants supernatural revelation and wisdom through this practice. Scripture tells us that fasting will help us grow a more intimate relationship with Christ and will open our eyes to what He wants to teach us.
The following scripture back up fasting as a Christian
"5 Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control." 1 Cor 7:5
"They mourned and wept and fasted till evening for Saul and his son Jonathan, and for the army of the LORD and for the nation of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword." 2 Sam 1:2
Jesus the author and the finisher of our faith did likewise too "2 where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. 3 The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” 4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’” Luke 4:2-4


" and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying." Luke 2:37



"While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” Act 13:2


Paul and Barnabas appointed elders for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, committed them to the Lord, in whom they had put their trust. Act 14:23
.
"
3 So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off. 4 The two of them, sent on their way by the Holy Spirit, went down to Seleucia and sailed from there to Cyprus. Act 13:3-4

The above scriptures support fasting and prayers. There are situations were just prayers can't work except by fasting together with prayers as buttressed by our lord Jesus in Mark 9:29 "
And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.(KJV)

7 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 7:55am On Sep 10
Tenkobos:
What are you saying??


Jesus started his mission with Fasting.




Then he taught us to fast.



Esther and the people of Israel fasted and she was rewarded.


Now talking about Mary and Joseph.
You can't say that didn't fast because their activities prior to the coming of Jesus weren't recorded but fasting is a common practice in the religion that they were devoted to so it is safe to assume that they fasted.

Now here's one about David

You can assume whatever you like, I won't join you in making assumptions, but pls don't misrepresent the scriptures. David fasted and prayed because he wanted God to save his sick child from death. But the child still died. Isn't this a proof that fasting doesn't guarantee that we'll have what we ask God for? David stopped the fast and start eating the moment he realised that the child is dead(read up to verse 23). So in this case, where is the favour and reward that fasting brings? We may fast and pray as much as we like but it doesn't change the will of God.
Jesus taught us how to Pray and how to fast because he wanted us to know that fasting and prayers are things we should do in Secret. But today, Our Christians always do it openly and that is what I'm not comfortable with. I never said fasting is wrong practice. When I asked WHY DO CHRISTIANS FAST? I was refering to the open fasting that churches now engage in.
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 8:12am On Sep 10
DebbyChris:
Check deu.9:9
I read this and it says "I stayed up on the mountain for 40 days and 40 nights waiting to receive the covenant stone. In those days, I neither ate nor drink".
Now, there are times we stay hungry not because we are on fasting but just because we didn't see anything to eat. That passage never said that Moses was on fasting so there's no point to believe that God wouldn't have given him the covenant stone if he had eaten. There was a time Prophet Elisha was alone in a secluded place where he couldn't eat anything. God sent the ravens to take Food to him and that means he wasn't on fasting.

2 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 8:49am On Sep 10
asuustrike2009:
Both the Old Testament and New Testament teach the value of fasting, which is abstaining from food or drink in order to focus on prayer and seeking God's will. Through many examples of people in the Bible who fasted, we can know that God grants supernatural revelation and wisdom through this practice. Scripture tells us that fasting will help us grow a more intimate relationship with Christ and will open our eyes to what He wants to teach us.
The following scripture back up fasting as a Christian
"5 Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control." 1 Cor 7:5
"They mourned and wept and fasted till evening for Saul and his son Jonathan, and for the army of the LORD and for the nation of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword." 2 Sam 1:2
Jesus the author and the finisher of our faith did likewise too "2 where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. 3 The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” 4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’” Luke 4:2-4


" and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying." Luke 2:37



"While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” Act 13:2


Paul and Barnabas appointed elders for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, committed them to the Lord, in whom they had put their trust. Act 14:23
.
"
3 So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off. 4 The two of them, sent on their way by the Holy Spirit, went down to Seleucia and sailed from there to Cyprus. Act 13:3-4

The above scriptures support fasting and prayers. There are situations were just prayers can't work except by fasting together with prayers as buttressed by our lord Jesus in Mark 9:29 "
And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.(KJV)




I have never said that people didn't fast in the Bible. They fasted for different reasons. But there are others who just prayed without fasting yet still achieve great results. Faith is what makes things work not just prayers and fasting.
Fasting doesn't bring wisdom as you said above. Solomon didn't fast to receive wisdom. He only prayed and God gave him options to choose, he chose wisdom.
Now what human beings viewed as fasting is completely different from the True fasting in God's perspective. Todays Christians believe wrongly that when you fast, God will hear you prayers because you stayed hungry. But Isaiah 58: 3-10 says "‘Why have we fasted,’ they say, ‘and you have not seen it? Why have we humbled ourselves, and you have not noticed?’ “Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please and exploit all your workers.
4
Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife, and in striking each other with wicked fists. You cannot fast as you do today and expect your voice to be heard on high.
5
Is this the kind of fast I have chosen, only a day for people to humble themselves? Is it only for bowing one’s head like a reed and for lying in sackcloth and ashes? Is that what you call a fast, a day acceptable to the Lord?
6
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?
7
Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter— when you see the Unclad, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
8
Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.
9
Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I. “If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk,
10
and if you spend yourselves on behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday".
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by gentlegenius(m): 8:54am On Sep 10
Redoil:
Prayer and fasting is a double edge weapon
There are about 5 weapons of warfare... Prayer and fasting is among the least of them.
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by joceey(m): 10:33am On Sep 10
Why do xtian fast?
Are you a Christian in practical not just professing one?if truly you are a genuine Christian ,you don't need to ask why Christian fast the Bible is your guide even Daniel, Elijah and so on in the Bible fasted including David....anybody or pastor that tell you not to fast is an enemy of your soul quote me well...except if you are having health issues like ulcer and so on there are some health issue that even need fasting...even animal knows the benefit of fasting,they abstain from food n water when they are sick....Pls read your Bible it's your best guide. Jesus said in the book of Mark 9:29 and I quote..This kind can come forth by nothing but prayer and fasting

2 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by zoboking: 10:47am On Sep 10
Just like in most religions, for purity
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by DickDastardLION(m): 10:49am On Sep 10
Self deceit
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by MhizzAJ(f): 10:49am On Sep 10
...
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by steveyoungwealth: 10:50am On Sep 10
okay you want to know
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by tropaz(m): 10:51am On Sep 10
Please why is it so easy on this platform to post anything by anybody that tends to antagonise Christianity

I have never seen such stuffs happen to other religions...

Just my observation!!!

4 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by opius: 10:59am On Sep 10
gentlegenius:
The religious practice of staying hungry for some time in order to pray to God is very common among Muslims and for some reasons I can't ask why they do it. But as Christians, should we continue with such practice?
If prayer is the only thing we do during fasting, then why staying hungry to pray when we know that Gods only answers the prayers of a good man through FAITH? Elijah, Daniel, Paul, Silas and many other great men in the Bible didn't go hungry but they prayed and miracles happen.
The Bible hasn't commanded us anywhere to go hungry and pray before God can hear and answer us.
Fasting was a common practice among the ancient Jews but those who were close to Jesus(his disciples) never fasted. People once ask Jesus why his disciples don't fast and he replied "how can they fast when the bridegroom is still with them...?"
Today, we Christians believe that God is still with us through his spirit, so why should we fast?
God is merciful but Sometimes, we make it look like he is a hard hearted God who won't hear our prayers unless we stay hungry. I know some churches and Pastors who now gives fasting as a punishment to their members when they go wrong. I also heard how a Pastor died while attempting to fast for 40 days like Jesus did. With the way he died, do you think Jesus will congratulate him on the day of rapture for attempting to equal his record? Must we fast just because Jesus fasted?

YOUR IGNORANCE IS OVERWHELMING , STOP PREACHING WHAT YOU DON'T KNOW
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by indoorscholar(m): 11:00am On Sep 10
gentlegenius:

You can assume whatever you like, I won't join you in making assumptions, but pls don't misrepresent the scriptures. David fasted and prayed because he wanted God to save his sick child from death. But the child still died. Isn't this a proof that fasting doesn't guarantee that we'll have what we ask God for? David stopped the fast and start eating the moment he realised that the child is dead(read up to verse 23). So in this case, where is the favour and reward that fasting brings?.

Can't the same be said about prayer?
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by PrecisionFx: 11:02am On Sep 10
gentlegenius:
The religious practice of staying hungry for some time in order to pray to God is very common among Muslims and for some reasons I can't ask why they do it. But as Christians, should we continue with such practice?
If prayer is the only thing we do during fasting, then why staying hungry to pray when we know that Gods only answers the prayers of a good man through FAITH? Elijah, Daniel, Paul, Silas and many other great men in the Bible didn't go hungry but they prayed and miracles happen.
The Bible hasn't commanded us anywhere to go hungry and pray before God can hear and answer us.
Fasting was a common practice among the ancient Jews but those who were close to Jesus(his disciples) never fasted. People once ask Jesus why his disciples don't fast and he replied "how can they fast when the bridegroom is still with them...?"
Today, we Christians believe that God is still with us through his spirit, so why should we fast?
God is merciful but Sometimes, we make it look like he is a hard hearted God who won't hear our prayers unless we stay hungry. I know some churches and Pastors who now gives fasting as a punishment to their members when they go wrong. I also heard how a Pastor died while attempting to fast for 40 days like Jesus did. With the way he died, do you think Jesus will congratulate him on the day of rapture for attempting to equal his record? Must we fast just because Jesus fasted?


To slim down.
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by PrecisionFx: 11:03am On Sep 10
To slim down.

1 Like

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by blackbeau1(f): 11:04am On Sep 10
It's biblical. There's a portion of the bible where the disciples tried to cast out demons but couldn't and jesus replied them that 'this kind can't go out except by prayer and fasting' Matthew 17: 21. Implying that some situations in your life need a higher amount of discipline than is found in just praying and believing.

2 Likes

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by ocelot2006(m): 11:04am On Sep 10
In my opinion Fasting is a form of penance/sacrifice before the Lord. We deprive ourselves of a necessity for a few hours for a limited number of days in a bid to show sincere remorse for our sins or in a bid to move Heaven to come to our aid in times of need. Personally I view it to be similar to the wearing of sack clothes & ash by the Israelites in the Old Testament. Again, my opinion.

1 Like

Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by DrDope(m): 11:07am On Sep 10
dd
Re: Why Do Christians Fast? by Batam(m): 11:11am On Sep 10
gentlegenius:
The religious practice of staying hungry for some time in order to pray to God is very common among Muslims and for some reasons I can't ask why they do it. But as Christians, should we continue with such practice?
If prayer is the only thing we do during fasting, then why staying hungry to pray when we know that Gods only answers the prayers of a good man through FAITH? Elijah, Daniel, Paul, Silas and many other great men in the Bible didn't go hungry but they prayed and miracles happen.
The Bible hasn't commanded us anywhere to go hungry and pray before God can hear and answer us.
Fasting was a common practice among the ancient Jews but those who were close to Jesus(his disciples) never fasted. People once ask Jesus why his disciples don't fast and he replied "how can they fast when the bridegroom is still with them...?"
Today, we Christians believe that God is still with us through his spirit, so why should we fast?
God is merciful but Sometimes, we make it look like he is a hard hearted God who won't hear our prayers unless we stay hungry. I know some churches and Pastors who now gives fasting as a punishment to their members when they go wrong. I also heard how a Pastor died while attempting to fast for 40 days like Jesus did. With the waoy he died, do you think Jesus will congratulate him on the day of rapture for attempting to equal his record? Must we fast just because Jesus fasted?
You are an ignoramus christian who is looking for the lazy ones like you who is afraid of fasting.
Isaiah 58: 1-6 explained what fasting can do. You inner may not be strengthened if you cannot fast Isaiah 40:31 and you may not grow spiritually.
Any pastor that is telling not to fast is an enemy of your spiritual growth

1 Like

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