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Why should christians fast?

Why should Christians fast?

by Toyosi Adegunle

A lot of people have a wrong perception of fasting, how and why it's done. For some, it is just a ritual, and many other reasons deduced based on background and upbringing. Irrespective of our preconceptions about fasting, Jesus remains the perfect example for anything and everything, including fasting. 

Luke 4:1-2, “Then Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan River. He was led by the Spirit in the wilderness, where he was tempted by the devil for forty days. Jesus ate nothing all that time and became very hungry”. 

After Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, he was full of the power of the Holy Spirit. This tells you that when you fast with your heart in tune with God and truthfully, your spirit, soul and body will be connected and you will be able to focus better and pray better. 

Our spirits, souls, and bodies are intimately connected. Fasting is a spiritual habit that involves learning to discipline your body by staying away from normal activities that seemingly may affect how you pray or how much you pray and communicate with God. Some of these activities include food, sex, entertainment, social media etc. Fasting has an effect on the discipline of your body. 

Fasting is done to seek the Lord in prayers or fellowship. It is believed that fasting helps you stay in touch with God better because you'd focus more. Fasting is not complete or right without the right heart posture. When you fast, you may feel weaker because you're without food or water but you’re basically allowing God’s grace to be revealed and his strength will take over in place of yours - your spirit, soul and body will be strengthened. 

Some people fast for a few hours, for days and some for months. Sometimes, when I fast based on compulsion, I check the time every second and minute and can not wait for break time. This way, my mind is really not on it, I’m not focused, I’m just on hunger strike in fact. Fasting becomes a hunger strike when it’s not done for the right reasons and the right manner. 

We're not fasting so God will forgive our sins, we know He doesn't keep records of our sins anymore neither do we fast to move God. You can learn more about how to effectively fast as a believer here.

The major reason for fasting is basically to connect better with God in a very peaceful and graceful manner and it is done with the right heart - a heart that is ready and focused on God. Philippians 2:13, “For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.” God will give you the power and uphold you when you probably feel weak. 

With or without fasting, it is very possible for you to maintain focus and connect with God anytime or anywhere. However, fasting is denying yourself worldly pleasures to stay focused on God and it's a very meaningful and powerful spiritual practice that you should cultivate a habit of doing at least once a week. 

Share your experiences of fasting and what you think the benefit of fasting is in the comment section.



  1. "The major reason for fasting is basically to connect better with God in a very peaceful and graceful manner and it is done with the right heart - a heart that is ready and focused on God."

    I really love this. Gastong is not to bribe God but to be in alignment with God...


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