Fasting for spiritual reasons usually involves abstaining from all food, eating very little food, or avoiding specific types of food for a predetermined length of time. In the Old Covenant, there were specific days set aside for fasting.
Jesus began His ministry by observing a 40 day fast. Prior to the fast, he was “filled with the Holy Spirit” according to Luke 4:1.
Following the time of fasting, “…Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit” as recorded in Luke 4:14.
5 links to articles on fasting:
- Fasting and Prayer
- The Power of Prayer and Fasting written by Marilyn Hickey, excerpt from her book by the same name.
- Prayer and Fasting – Focusing on God
- Day Fourteen: Fasting for Wisdom and Insight (Daniel fast)
- What Type of Fast Are You on This New Year?
- 21 Day Daniel Fast
7 Books on fasting:
- Shaping History through Prayer and Fasting by Derek Prince or Kindle Version
- The Hidden Power of Prayer and Fasting by Mahesh Chavda or Kindle Version
- How To Fast Successfully By Derek Prince or Kindle Version
- Prayer and Fasting By Fletcher Kingsley
- 7 Basic Steps to Successful Fasting and Prayer By Bill Bright
- God’s Chosen Fast By Arthur Wallis
- A Hunger For God By John Piper
13 Things to fast:
- All food and drink – Total fast
- All food, drinking only water – Water only fast
- All food, drinking juice and water – Juice only fast
- All food except fruits and vegetables (Sometimes called a Daniel fast)
- All meat
- Red meat
- Specific types of food or ingredients such as sugar, caffeine, desserts, chocolate, treats, soft drinks, alcohol, etc.
- Eating out, fast food, etc.
- Total media fast (television, movies, secular music) including online activities – blogging, social networking, etc. Could also include all reading material other than the Bible
- Secular television, movies, and music
- Unnecessary online activities
- Social networking i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, instant messaging, chat rooms, forums
- Shopping for non-essentials
Based on Isaiah 58 as listed in The Hidden Power of Prayer and Fasting by Mahesh Chavdah (page 40)
- Healing and wholeness
- The presence of the shekinah glory of God
- Answered prayers
- Continual guidance
- Work that endures (like an every-flowing spring)
- Raising up of future generations