Fasting and Humbling

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There is a way to fast and there is a way not to fast. One sure way to fast is humbling ourselves.

In the Scriptures, fasting and humbling are related closely. Fasting is expected to be a time when we humble ourselves and seek God. Humbling in the light of the scriptures has been connected with repenting (2 chronicles 33:12), doing the right things, or obeying as in Jesus humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death, even death of the cross (Phil 2:8).

Fasting will not do much good when it is not done in repentance and humbling. Many times, we just fast to get something from God. We brush off the fact that God has said in his word how he expects us to fast and to be heard in heaven. He says in Isaiah 58:5 NLT

“You humble yourselves by going through the motions of penance, bowing your heads like reeds bending in the wind. You dress in burlap and cover yourselves with ashes. Is this what you call fasting? Do you really think this will please the LORD?”

Fasting without repentance or obedience is just going through the motions of penance. Humbling takes work. It is a work that we have to initiate because God says in his word “humble yourself.” So we should take the first step to bring ourselves into obedience with God’s word or His will in whatever way we have erred.

When we do that, God promises in 2 Chronicles 7:14 “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven…”

“God makes his forgiving, healing and protecting work contingent upon our humbling ourselves, turning from sin and seeking him in prayer.” John Piper

Jesus, help us to find out where we have erred, where we are far from your scriptures. Help us to do the work of humbling ourselves, search our hearts, repent and confess our sins. As we do it, we pray that you would come and hear our prayers. In Jesus name, Amen.


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