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“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. 17 But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, 18 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."

Matthew 6:16-18

We have all heard and said ‘the Lord’s prayer’ many times, but we very often stop at v15.  This passage follows on immediately afterwards.  Notice, Jesus does not say ‘if you fast’ but ‘when you fast’; it is therefore His expectation that as His followers we will fast.  But why?

Firstly it is an act of obedience; Jesus told us to do it! Secondly there is a promise of reward if we do it rightly (v 18).  Thirdly it can achieve answers to prayer that would not otherwise be seen see Mark 9:18, 29.  Fasting is an important aspect of Spiritual warfare.

Remember too that Jesus fasted for forty days before confronting the devil at the start of His ministry.  If He needed to fast to take on the enemy, do we not need to do so also? Fasting is not easy but the rewards can be great.

Three positive aspects of fasting:-

1. Makes you more effective in Spiritual Warfare

2. Gives you more time to spend with God

3. Promises rewards in the Life to come

(If you have any medical conditions, or are on medication seek medical advice before fasting from all food.)

Pray today:

  • If you’re able commit to fast and pray one day during these 10 days.
  • Decide with the Lord on one prayer area to focus on with fasting.
- Paul Castle
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