Summary: Fasting!! Ahhh the Pastor said fasting, run quick. This is a very simple look at what fasting is and how to do it.

Mathew 6:16-18



A. Fast! Ohh no the preacher said fast!

B. Great we are going to have a church wide fast

C. Relax folks. This is not going to be bad.

D. We are going to explain biblical fasting

E. Let look at our Scripture Passage

F. Read Mathew 6:16-18

G. I want you to notice something hear

H. Jesus says, “When You Fast” – Not if – When

I. Jesus also uses the same When you Pray, and When Your Give

J. Obviously Jesus expects us to fast

K. Today we are going to look at

a. How Not to Fast

b. How To Fast

c. How practically this all works

I. How Not To Do It

A. Explanation

1. It was commonplace in the Jewish culture to fast

2. In fact most Jews would fast twice a week

3. Now fasting is a concept that you can trace all the way back to the numbers and Deuteronomy

4. Like a lot of customs, the act of fasting had become more important the purpose behind customs

5. What you had is pharasissees walking around saying wow is me

6. They would stop putting oil on there head to cause there skin to dry

7. They would get ashes and with the sweat and tears would smear it all over there face

8. They would not bath, they would not wash there clothes, they would look horrible

9. They did this to appear more spiritual

10. They wanted the attention of men when there were fasting, they wanted to make sure that everyone knew there were fasting

B. Application

1. What can we learn from this bad example and apply it to our lives?

2. Fasting we know is a good thing, but only when we do it for the right reasons

C. Illustration

1. Let me give you an example. A long time ago people decide that they wanted to show God how much they love and respect him they were going to we dressy clothes to church. Not a bad idea. However what began to happen is that people turned it into a completion and the whole reason behind doing it was lost. If you want to dress up, dress up. If you dress up it is you honoring God, that does not mean your neighbor who isn’t dressed up is not honoring God

2. The same thing is true with fasting

3. If you go around make a big deal about it your doing it for the wrong reason

4. Corporate prayer is a good thing, Corporate Worship is a good thing. Connecting with one another is a good thing.

5. Fasting is not a corporate activity

6. Fasting is something between you an God

7. Now understand it is ok to tell people you are fasting, especially your wife, imagine if she cook you a nice big juicy steak and you did not eat it and did not tell her why, your marriage would start to fall apart

8. Don’t purposefully look like a starving child in Africa

9. Your NOT! The truth of the matter is that fasting could be very beneficial to all of us

10. We have so much extra food stored up it would do us some good

II. How To do it

A. Explanation

1. In Verse 17-18 Jesus gives us the proper way to fast

2. Jesus tells us that when we fast we are to put oil on our head and wash our face

3. This is not Jesus telling us how much makeup to wear

4. This is not Jesus telling giving us a good hygiene lesson

5. This is Jesus saying, don’t profusely show that you are fasting

6. Don’t advertise the fact that you are fasting

7. There reason is focus

8. Your focus should not been on man acceptance,

9. The point of Fasting is to get closer to God

10. Not Closer to man

11. Therefore, God is the only one who needs to see what you are doing

B. Application

1. What does this mean for our lives?

2. When you fast remember why you are fasting

3. If you are not fasting to grow closer to God

4. STOP! Don’t do it

5. If you are fasting to win the approve of man


7. If your reasons are correct

8. You will not want to put on a public display

9. You will do it for God

10. Not for man

C. Illustration

1. Sometimes, Ill be completely honest, I will do things at home so that I can get something from it. You know maybe I need a shirt ironed so I will do the dishes quickly before Heather gets home and say Hi Honey. Look I did the dishes, ohh by the way can you Iron my shirt?

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