3 Reasons Why Fasting is Important
By Mei Manuel, March 16, 2017 00:03 AM
Fasting is a habit that has many benefits and importance. It allows us to receive the Lord and leave less for ourselves in order to achieve something we cannot usually attain through other methods.
Unlike medical fasting and weight-loss fasting, religious fasting enables us to seek God and also develop one's discipline which is why some do it every once in a while even if it is not lent season.
Here are some reasons why fasting as a discipline is very important.
1. It Allows Us To Deny Ourselves
"Then Jesus said to His disciples, 'If anyone will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.'" (Matthew 16:24)
When we fast, we deny ourselves of things we cannot usually deny such as food and our luxury desires. Food is often the thing we fast so we can seek God.
The Bible warns us about turning our stomach into a god, saying such people are enemies of God:
"For many are walking in such a way that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ. I have told you of them often and tell you again, even weeping. Their destination is destruction, their god is their appetite, their glory is in their shame, their minds are set on earthly things." (Philippians 3:18-19)
Fasting without the intention to seek God isn't fasting. It's merely skipping a meal for weightloss and other objectives.
2. It Strengthens Our Spirit And Weakens The Flesh
It's a known Biblical principle that those who walk in the flesh, fulfilling its desires, won't be strong in the Spirit. Galatians 5:16 tells us,
"I say then, walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh."
While the acts of the flesh mentioned after that verse do not stress what food should be fasted, it does include selfishness (verse 20), which is a possible reason why people cannot stop eating. It lets people to feel good and we tend to want more than what our bodies can take.
When we fast, we train our stomach to submit to God's Spirit.
3. It Shows Our Desire To Seek God
Lastly, fasting is a simple way to show how much we long for God. In Luke 5:34-35, it said:
"Can you make the attendants of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them. Then in those days they will fast."
Simply put, we, who are longing for His return, fast and pray for Him to return. Fasting lets God know we are serious with our prayers.
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