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Why Fast? Reason #10: To Petition for Help

Are you facing a crisis in your life? Is there a problem in your family? In your country? Is there a crisis in your financial situation or in your physical body? Do you desperately need wisdom?

Years ago, my father faced a physical crisis. His body began to show symptoms of diabetes, which is a hereditary disease in his family. He decided to petition God for healing by fasting for three days. At the end of the fast, he threw up a foul substance; it was a symbol of the demonic power that was attacking him. After the fast, he was completely healed and never struggled with diabetes again.

Fasting during a time of crisis show God you are serious about getting your prayers answered. Here are some examples of people who fasted during times of crisis in the Bible.

  1. Hanna was barren. She could not have children. She fasted and prayed for a child (1 Samuel 1:7) and God answered her prayer. To say thanks, she dedicated her son to the Lord. Her son grew up to be Samuel, one of the most significant prophets of the Old Testament.
  2. When Saul and Jonathan were killed in battle, Israel fasted in mourning (1 Samuel 31:15; 2 Samuel 1:12; 1 Chronicles 10:12).
  3. When David’s baby son was sick, he fasted and prayed for God to heal the boy (2 Samuel 12:16).
  4. King Jehoshaphat was faced with three armies coming to attack him, in response; he declared a fast(2 Chronicles 20:1‑4). God heard the prayers of the people and all three of the invading armies were miraculously destroyed.
  5. The Holocaust was not the first time Satan tried to wipe out the Jews. Five centuries before Christ, evil Haman tried to kill every Jew. He tricked the king into signing a death warrant for all of God’s chosen people. When Queen Esther, a Jew, heard about the plot, she asked all the Jews to fast and pray for three days. She sent a message to her uncle Mordecai, “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maids will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish”(Esther 4:15‑16). Queen Esther risked her life by approaching the king to ask for clemency for the Jews, but because of the fasting and prayer, she had favor with the king and God saved the lives of her people.