RZehr wrote:I’ve heard many people hold the idea that fasting gives your prayer extra oomph; or shows God that you are really serious. There may be some truth to this, and I am not completely dismissing it. However I wonder if perhaps what is going on more of a clearing of your mind in order to hear God, giving a chance for a clear small voice to penetrate mind.
I also wonder about the using of fasting as a tool to reach God. Is this correct thinking?
When Jesus says that His disciples would fast, was he saying that they would subscribe to fasting as a discipline? Or could it be that proper fasting is more organic than a discipline? Could He be saying that there will be trials of such magnitude for his followers that they will not be able to eat, that they will lose their appetite because of their distress? Is this organic fasting a byproduct of a heart crying out to God, and not a tool or discipline to get Gods attention? Or both? Your thoughts?
My friend recommended the book God’s Chosen Fast, by Arthur Wallis.
The disciples said (speaking about a demon they could not cast out) - "Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, "Why couldn't we drive it out?"" NIV
And Jesus replied - "He replied, "Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."" NIV
Then Mathew 17:21 the verse in the NIV is deleted. In the KJV, for instance, Jesus continues " Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting."
So, what do we make of this ? If they had the smallest amount of faith, then the demon should have come out as 'nothing will be impossible for you'. However, if the next verse is left in, is this not a contradiction and seems to say that even with the smallest amount of faith that can move mountains, in this case, they needed to pray and fast also ? From this KJV verse some have concluded then that there is special power in prayer if it is accompanied with fasting regardless of the seeming contradiction.