Friday, December 22, 2017

Daily Bible Reading - December 22, 2017

Today's Reading:

Luke 1:26-56

Ezekiel 34

Isaiah 58

Listen to the Bible







Thoughts and Commentary on Today's Reading   

Isaiah 58 is a powerful chapter on fasting. This is an important spiritual discipline, which we need to empower our prayer lives. The picture which we find in Isaiah is one of heartfelt humility and contrition. Fasting for the spiritual show of it is of no value whatsoever. So what does make fasting effective? And when should we do it?

In his book Fasting for Breakthrough and Deliverance, John Eckhardt explains:
You've commanded (in Christ's Name), rebuked (again in Messiah's Name), prayed prayers, done warfare...  but there's more that needs to be broken off your life. It's time to add some fasting to your warfare strategy. There is no other way around some demonic strongholds. No shortcuts. You have to fast and humble yourself until that things breaks and leaves your life.
"This kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting." Matthew 17:21
Demons are different in terms of their wickedness. There are demons that are stronger, more wicked, unclean, and stubborn, and higher (lower) in rank, ability, and intelligence. The longer a demon has been in your family and in your life, the harder it is to remove because its roots go very deep. Demons such as rebellion, pride, witchcraft, Jezebel, poverty, and lack may only come out with a high level of faith.
Sometimes it seems as if they cannot be dislodged, and people will get discouraged and frustrated and feel they have failed. In Matthew 17, the disciples of Yahshua encountered a demon in a young boy and could not cure him because of their unbelief. Unbelief hinders us from dealing with strongholds. It takes faith to dislodge the enemy. Fasting helps you overcome unbelief and build strong faith.
This is the supernatural combination that Yahshua gave His disciples in Matthew 17: prayer and fasting. I am not saying that when you fast you will earn brownie points with God or that you are working your way to enjoying God's blessings... There is no law that says if you don't fast today you will go to hell. We fast for breakthrough and revival, for family and loved ones. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty through God!...
Sometimes you have to do something unusual, extraordinary, and beyond... to see breakthrough. Normal church, normal Christianity, normal preaching, and normal praying are not going to get the job done. Some little sweet prayer is not going to do... It is going to take an anointing that destroys the yoke. When you fast, the anointing increases in your life because you are so into the Spirit. The Authority of God, power of God, and faith (in) God comes alive when you lay aside some things and fast. You find yourself (spiritually) getting stronger and stronger....
Isaiah 58 talks about how we can fast to break every yoke and undo the heavy burdens. Fasting makes room so that the oppressed go free. Fasting breaks bondages and causes revival. When you are dealing with a serious issue-maybe you are dealing with something you don't know how to handle-the best thing to do sometimes is to let go of some food for a little while. Pray against that thing. Man may not be able to help you, and you may not know how to defeat it, but with God all things are possible!
As you fast and humble yourself, the grace of God will come upon your life. Yahweh will be the strength of your life. What you could not do in the flesh, you can do by the Spirit of God. Because it's not by might nor power, but by the Spirit of Yahweh that every mountain is removed!
...Fasting is beneficial whether you fast partially or fully. One-day fasts on a consistent basis will strengthen your spirit over time and give you the ability to discipline yourself for longer fasts. Three-day fasts with just water are a powerful way to see breakthroughs. Esther and the people of Israel went into a three-day fast when they were seeking deliverance from death at the hand of Haman, the king's evil advisor (Esther 4:16). Fasts longer than three days should be done by people with more experience in fasting.
I do not recommend long fasts unless there is an emergency or if one is led by the Holy Spirit to do so. Daniel fasted twenty-one days and saw a great breakthrough for his people (Daniel 9-10)... Yahshua fasted forty days before beginning His ministry (Matthew 4:1-2). Moses and Elijah also fasted forty days (Exodus 32:28, Deuteronomy 9:9 & 18, 1 Kings 19:8)...
A partial fast can include some food such as vegetables and can be done for long lengths. Complete fasts consist of only water, and water is important to cleanse the system of toxins that are released through fasting. The Holy Spirit will reveal to you when you need to fast. A fasted lifestyle is a powerful lifestyle.