Abiding and Abounding, Session 2

Session 2 Notes – Spiritual Formation, Solitude, and Fasting

Additional Thoughts on Spiritual Formation
In-class comments

On Solitude
  In-class comments

Practical Tips for Fasting
by Allen Reger


ON FASTING

Definition of Fasting

Fasting is a Christian’s voluntary abstinence from eating, drinking, and/or other activities for ______________  _______________.

What Fasting Is NOT

  1. Fasting is not dieting.
  2. Fasting is not about you (in a sense). It should be God-centered.
  3. Fasting is not a means of _____________________ God.
  4. Fasting is not an end in itself.
  5. Fasting is not _________________ or self-punishment.
  6. Fasting is not required religious ritual.

Types and Lengths of Fasts

  1. Supernatural: no food or water for unnaturally possible lengths
    Examples: Moses (Ex. 34:28), Elijah (1Ki. 19:8), Jesus (Mt. 4)?
  2. Absolute: no food or water for periods of time the body can take
    Examples: Ezra (10:6), Esther (4:16), Saul/Paul (Acts 9:9)
  3. Normal: abstaining from food, but not water
    Example: Daniel (10:3)?
  4. Partial: limiting your diet to certain types or amounts of food
    Examples: Daniel and friends (1:8-21), John the Baptist (Mt. 3:4)

The Bible mentions fasts that lasted from just part of a day to 40 days, though the majority of them are of unspecified length.

Reasons for Fasting

Biblical Reasons:

  1. It is a Scriptural _____________ for God’s people.
  2. It was taught (more assumed) by Jesus (Matt. 6:16-18; 9:14-15).
  3. It was practiced by Jesus (Matt. 4:1-2).
  4. It was practiced by the early __________ (Acts 13:1-2; 14:23).

Historical Reasons:

It has been the historic practice of the Church (writ large) to fast.

Spiritual Reasons: Some Spiritual Benefits of Fasting

  1. A focus on God
  2. ____________ in hearing from God
  3. A reminder of our __________________ upon God
  4. Identification of sin or temptation in our lives
  5. Identification with the poor and needy

ANSWERS

The following answers appear in order of the blanks in the notes above.

spiritual purposes
manipulating
penitence
pattern
church
Clarity
dependence

 

Advertisements

Comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s