Throughout the word of God we read about fasting and it's purposes. Although we see a variety of fast, and the physical aspect of it, we only see one set of rules and instructions on how to fast. No matter what you are fasting for, there are 9 principals to fasting successfully.
Jesus in (Matthew ch.6) put fasting in the category of prayer and forgiveness, making fasting just as important as these two. He did not say if we fast; but when we fast, (Matthew 6:16). Fasting is as important in the believers life just as breathing is. It is the key ingredient for spiritual breakthrough, deliverance and healing.
In (Isaiah ch.58) God is giving us direct instructions on the fast that he has chosen for us. In order to have a successful fast we must first learn what the principals are that make a God chosen fast. Below we have 9 principals that we will learn about. When applying these 9 principals you will be on your way to a God pleasing successful fast.
4. No selfish desires
5. No exploiting
6. No quarrels
9. Study God's word
Humbleness = To bow down before God.
Humbleness is the first step to a fast. In order for us to want God to honor our fast, we must first decrease so that he may increase,(John 3:30). You cannot say; Lord I want more of you, your blessings and favor, when you yourself is in the way. You must put away your self and all it's pride, so that he can come in and make his abode in you. (Isaiah 58:5 - Psalms 34:13 - Proverbs 29:23)
Worship = To respect, honor and love the Lord your God.
Worship goes side by side with fasting. In order for the Lord to bless us, hear our cry and heal our bodies, we must give worship to our maker. He deserves to glory and the praise and our respect! (Acts 13:2 - 1 Samuel 2:30 - Psalms 29:2)
Prayer = The act of addressing God.
Prayer must be shown during a fast. How else will you communicate with the Lord?When fasting you should find yourself on your knees quite often. Praying without stopping, (2 Timothy 2:8 - Acts 14:23).
No selfish desires = Will or one's own desire.
You cannot give an acceptable fast unto God while fulfilling your own selfish desires. God is a jealous God and requires your full attention unto himself. That is not to say that we can never do anything, just while we are fasting we must be fixed on him. The same goes for the Sabbath also, (Isaiah 58:3).
No exploiting = To take advantage of.
This will never be honored by God. Not just when fasting; but at anytime. We as children of the light are never to take advantage of anyone. How can you expect to receive from God when you are using and taking advantage of others, (Isaiah 58:3)?
No quarrels = Angry arguing.
Your fasting will be in vain at this. We are to be peacekeepers and gentle in our spirit, showing kindness unto all mankind. This is one of the fruits of the Spirit, (Colossians 3:12 - Galatians 5:12 - 2 Peter 1:7).
Give = Supply or afford.
We are to give to those who are in need, even though it is you who is in need the most at the time. Here we are through a fast wanting God to give to us no matter what the need is. Therefore we are to give even more during this time, so that our needs will be met, (Isaiah 58:7 - Luke 6:38)
Forgiveness = Taking no offense, despite of what happened.
This a rule when giving a fast unto God. If you do not forgive than neither will God have forgiveness towards you, therefore you prayers cannot be answered, your sins will separate you from God's ears and you will be in bondage from having a successful fast. This applies to all aspects of life, (Isaiah 58:6 - Matthew 6:15).
Study God's word = To take deep thought.
Meditate on the Lord and read his word greatly while fasting. This will give you strength and support during your fast. Stay in his word and your will walk by the Spirit, (Psalm 29:11 - Psalm 84:5 - Proverbs 24:5).
If you apply these simple principals to your life and fast, you will have a victorious life in the Lord!