by winston davenport, june 11 2014
Many people ask me my viewpoint on fasting. They want to know when I fast, what I fast, and how long I fast. My life is a constant demonstration of power, love, and redemption. Naturally, other Christians want to know my "secret." Many of them assume it's because I live a fasted lifestyle.
It is time to reveal to the world my "secret." I want to use this week's teaching blog to explain how important fasting is to me, and the extent to which it undergirds the supernatural lifestyle I live. If you will take note and start fasting the same number of days I do each year, you are certain to witness a similar breakthrough in your own life.
Ever since 2008, I began fasting ZERO days a year.
And if you will dedicate your life to fasting the same number of days that I do, I guarantee things will begin to improve for you!
The truth is, fasting is not the key to spiritual power. It is not the key to breakthrough. In fact, in this article, I will show you that fasting is spiritually irrelevant to a Kingdom believer in the 21st century.
That being said, I'd like to remind my readers that if you like fasting, if you feel that it is an important part of your life, don't let me stop you! Go for it! Who am I to tell you what you should or shouldn't do? This blog is simply an explanation of the conclusions that I have personally arrived at in regard to this subject.
The biggest problem with fasting is that it is works-based. The general idea of depriving oneself of (usually) food is that, if I fast, God will either be motivated to give me something or talk to me, or I will be positioning myself to better receive from God. Friends, let me state it simply: If God's voice, blessings, revival, or whatever is contingent upon me-doing-anything, grace is being amended by works. Either everything we have or could have is because of what Jesus already accomplished, or what He did wasn't enough and we need to supplement it with something as ridiculous as "not eating."
Is God really so persnickety that He is incapable of talking to me or giving me revelation on a full stomach?
Jesus said, "My sheep hear My voice, and they will turn away from the voice of a stranger."
Answer this: Why do we hear from God? Is it because we fast and deprive ourselves of sustenance? Or because we are His sheep? One is works-based, behavioral, and conditional, the other is a matter of identity.
If you study the Bible, you will see fasting in many places, especially in the Old Testament. Biblically, fasting is almost always a sign of mourning. When the Jews would get captured and their kids slaughtered, they would cover themselves with sackcloth and ash, and they would fast.
Yet fasting is taught in today's church in a different context. No one fasts because they are sad today; they fast as a means toward attaining spiritual breakthrough.
This concept is not Christian; it is pagan. Eastern religions and philosophies teach that fasting is the way to spiritual breakthrough. Native American tradition teaches the same thing.
If another Christian is teaching you to fast, or trying to encourage others to fast, they are subscribing to eastern philosophy. Just so you know.
Our breakthrough as Christians does not come by fasting, taking communion, tithing, submitting to authority, confessing our sins, or any other of the hot-button, Barnes & Noble bestseller shelf nonsense. Our breakthrough came once for all time because of the Cross and the Resurrection. Trying to add anything to the finality of Jesus's work is self-righteousness and vanity. Christian authors and pastors have been peddling superstitious periphery for centuries, whether Catholic indulgences, penances; or Protestant next-best-thing, Sid Roth-featured hype.
And none of it works.
The only thing required of us is, as Jesus said, "to believe."
In Matthew 9:14, John the Baptizer's disciples asked, "Jesus, how come everyone else fasts, but you nor your disciples fast?" Jesus answered, "How can the guests of the Bridegroom mourn while He is with them?"
If you believe Jesus is with you, right now, my question to you is the same as Jesus's: How can you fast?!
Biblically, fasting is a sign of mourning, not of spiritual seeking. Jesus Himself taught His disciples that this was the purpose of fasting. Before He ascended back to Heaven, here's what He said would happen:
"It's a good thing that I am leaving you, because after I go, another will come in my place, and He will teach you all things concerning me. For a time, the Bridegroom will be gone, and they will fast, but when He is returned to them, they will fast no more."
Jesus, in referencing the procession of a traditional Jewish wedding, explained that, when He was gone, everyone would be filled with longing, and they would fast because they missed him so much. But when He returned, there would be feasting and celebration.
We see that, for the next forty days after Jesus ascended, the disciples did indeed fast. They waited in the Upper Room for Jesus to send the Holy Spirit that He had promised. And as most of you know, forty days later, Jesus returned as the Holy Spirit, and He has never left since!
Friends, we are not without Jesus. We are filled up with Jesus. Ephesians says, "The fullness of the Godhead indwells us bodily." The only way you could make a case for being "without the Bridegroom" right now, is if you had absolutely no faith. Jesus could not be with us any more than He is right now. It would be inappropriate to fast.
Finally, people ask me about Jesus's saying in Mark 9:29. The disciples had a difficult time casting out a demon. Jesus said, "This kind will not come out except by prayer and fasting." Sound familiar? Well, read it in your Bible. Unless you are reading the KJV, the words "and fasting" won't be there. Perhaps in a footnote you will see that some manuscripts add those words in, but the earliest manuscripts say nothing about fasting. Those words were added in; Jesus did not say them.
In the majority of instances where fasting is mentioned in the Bible, it is with a negative connotation. The Old Testament prophets, Jesus, and the apostles all condemned those who fasted, because they were doing it for religious purposes, trying to get the attention of God or man.
I am not against fasting. In fact, I think educated fasts for nutritional or cleansing purposes can be a helpful process. But let's not confuse a helpful natural process with a Buddhist-Hindu philosophy that depriving oneself of food will lead to spiritual breakthrough. (It might be helpful to note that, if you deprive yourself of food for long enough, you will definitely have visions! However, LSD can produce the same results in less time.)
Jesus did it all. It is finished. You have been sozoed, meaning that all well-being has been restored to you! Jesus is with you one hundred percent, and you could never have more of Him than you do right now. You have the Holy Spirit of truth, and "you know all things." The Kingdom of Heaven, which is righteousness, peace, and joy has already come, and it is inside you. This is not a time for fasting; this is a time for feasting!
Faith (alignment with the truth of what Jesus has already accomplished) is the only secret you need. What Jesus did was enough. He doesn't also need your empty stomach.
by winston davenport, june 11 2014