*WISDOM FOR TODAY.*
*FASTING AND PRAYER (2)*
Matt 17:18-21 *And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.*
*Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out?*
*And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.*
*Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.*
*Insight and Highlight.*
Prayer is more intensified when it is done with fasting.
Jesus explains in Matt 17:21 the power of prayer when it is combined with fasting.
Jesus teaches us a few things:
First, Jesus is teaching us that there are strongholds, and He may be telling us that there are battles that may be stronger than others.
Jesus described the deliverance of this boy possessed as, *'...this kind...'*
This description may teach us to know that a peculiar case of 'this kind' is of serious gravity.
To achieve the utmost deliverance enough to displace Satan would require the combination of fasting with prayer.
Second, Jesus may be saying there is commitment to prayer when fasting is involved. Stronghold or demonic possession is not difficult for God to move. Prayer alone can be effective, but to fast with prayer shows the commitment of a soul to afflict the soul or subdue the pleasure of the flesh.
There are Christians who are just lazy or uninterested in fasting. They love their belly. They can not negotiate it.
Paul says they *'......satisfy their own appetites...'* Rom 16:18.
Phillipians 3:19 (NIV) says, *'....their god is their stomach.'*
Third, Jesus may be telling us not only of the need to fast but also that God is calling us to fast because He had prepared us for it.
God will not call us to fast if He had not prepared us for it.
God often prepares and trains the believer in what he/she goes through in order to prepare his/her body for eventualities.
Going through the challenges of lack will teach us to fast. We may find ourselves in places that we know no one and have to face scarcity of food or a preferred source of it.
Paul says in 2 Cor 11:27 *'.....I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food;....'*
In 1 Cor 4:11, Paul says, *....To this very hour we are hungry and thirsty,....'*
Paul says we endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ, 2 Tim 2:3.
Any of Jesus' commands must never catch us unawares.
If He calls us to pray, war against Satan, fast, love our enemies, He must have prepared us for them.
The strength of the Christians is more than what He knows. They must put what they have learned of Christ into use.
Fast and pray!
What you set your mind on may determine how effective you will be at fighting warfare
*Call to Word action.*
Romans 8:5 *Those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh; but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit.*
*The Christian clarion duty.*
You are called to fast and pray because God knows you are capable of doing so.
Lord, help me not to live my life after the flesh but live according to the Spirit, in Jesus name.
Good morning all, and have a blessed day.
God bless you.