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When You Give Pray And Fast

 

When You Give   When You Pray   When You Fast

 

Written by Kenneth Allan Clark

Copyright © 2006, 2013 by Kenneth Allan Clark.

Printed and published by VICTORIOUS CHRISTIAN MINISTRIES INTERNATIONAL.

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Scripture taken from the Clarks English Translation copyright © 2012, 2013 by Victorious Christian Ministries International. All rights reserved.
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In Matthew chapter 6 Jesus Christ teaches on “when you give, when you pray, when you fast”.

 

There is a strong close connection been giving, praying and fasting. Jesus teaches when you give, when you pray, when you fast. Jesus doesn’t teach “If you give, if you pray, if you fast.” Jesus Christ teaches when you give, when you pray, when you fast. 

 

If you are a disciple of Jesus Christ, this is not an option. Jesus expects you give, Jesus expects you to pray, Jesus expects fast. 

 

Matthew 9:14 Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples fast not? 15 And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bride chamber mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, and then shall they fast.

 

As long as Jesus Christ the bridegroom remained here on earth with his disciples, they did not fast. But after Jesus Christ their bridegroom was taken from them, then they fasted and they prayed. When we read the book of Acts, we find that almost as soon as Jesus Christ is taken from their midst, the disciples regularly fasted and prayed.

 

Jesus Christ said, when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, and then shall they fast.

 

Jesus Christ our bridegroom has given us our wedding dress, the robe of righteousness. And now he has been taken from us, but he shall return for his bride, then we will be wed to Jesus Christ our bridegroom. But what do we do while we wait for his return. 

 

What do most brides do while they wait for the return of their bridegroom? They praise their bridegroom, they pray and they fast and they read his love letters.

 

1: They praise their bridegroom to their family, their friends and all they meet. 

 

Is Jesus Christ your bridegroom? Then like any good bride you should be praising Jesus your bridegroom to all our family, friends and all you meet.

 

2: They will pray. 

 

Pray for what? 

 

A good bride is a woman of vision. She will not only pray for the speedy return of their bridegroom; she will also pray for their future well being and the good works they will do together; and she will also  pray for the future well being and good works of their children.

 

Is Jesus Christ your bridegroom? 

 

Then like any good bride you will be a person of vision, praying for the speedy return of your bridegroom. You will be praying for your future well being and good works you and Jesus Christ will be doing together in this life. And you will be praying for the future well being and good works of your spiritual children.

 

3: They will fast. 

 

I know of many brides who have fasted from the day they were engaged to till the day they were married. But I have never ever heard; or known of one single bride who has feasted and eaten in abundance from the day they were engaged till the day they were married.

 

4: And the bride will read the bridegrooms love letters, over and over and over again; letters that encourage her and build up her faith and belief in her bridegroom.

 

Why does the bride fast? 

 

Is Jesus Christ your bridegroom? 

 

Why does the bride fast? 

 

She fast because she wants to be sure her wedding dress will fit her perfectly. And she daily washes and irons her wedding dress, so that on her wedding day the dress will be clean, white and spotless; so she will look her best for her bridegroom on their wedding day. 

 

Is Jesus Christ your bridegroom? 

 

Then you will fast; for unless you fast your wedding dress, the robe of righteousness will not fit properly. And while you fast you will daily wash your wedding robe, by the daily reading the written Word of God. For the written Word of God, are love letters from Jesus Christ your bridegroom.

 

Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 

 

When we pray, fast and read God’s Word; we build up our faith and belief in God the Father and our faith and belief in God the Son our bridegroom.

 

You fast; for unless you fast your wedding dress, the robe of righteousness will not fit properly. And while you fast you will daily wash your wedding robe, by the daily reading the written Word of God. For the written Word of God, are love letters from Jesus Christ your bridegroom.

 

I know of many brides who have fasted from the day they were engaged to till the day they were married. But I have never ever heard; or known of one single bride who has feasted and eaten in abundance from the day they were engaged till the day they were married.

 

Matthew 9:14 Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples fast not? 15 And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bride chamber mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken from them, and then shall they fast.

16 No man puts a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to mend it up tear from the garment, and the tear is made worse. 17 Neither do men put new wine into old wine skins: for the wine skin burst and the wine runs out, and the wine skins perish: but they put new wine into new wine skins, and both are preserved.

 

Straight after teaching on praying and fasting, Jesus teaches on the need for new garments and new wine skins.

 

Why is the bride praying and fasting? So she can put on new garments, new wine skins. New garments and wine skins are needed to receive and hold the infillings of the Holy Spirit which is about to be pour out upon her and through her. But if the bride does not pray and fast, the new garments will not fit, and the new wine skins will burst open, and the new wine of the Holy Spirit will quickly be dispersed and lost. 

 

How often to you come to the Lord for a fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit, and you receive that fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit; only to lose it all before you leave the building? Maybe you need to pray and fast, in order to receive new garments, new wine skins, so that you can hold on to and contain that fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit.  

 

Why do we need new garments? Why do we need new wine skins? 

 

Because we have been giving, and praying and fasting, and God is about to pour out his Holy Spirit upon us 

 

 

Healing the demon processed boy.

 
In Matthew chapter 17; we find a father, first bringing his son to Jesus Christ disciples for deliverance and healing; but they could not deliver him from the demon and heal him. So the father then takes his son to Jesus Christ.

 

But before we look closely at the deliverance and healing of this man’s son, we will turn back seven chapters to 

 

Matthew 10:1 And when He (Jesus Christ) had called unto him his twelve disciples, He gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease. 

 

And in Luke 9:1;

 

Luke 9:1 Then He called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases.

 

I want you to note here; Jesus Christ gave his disciples power and authority over all devils, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of diseases.

 

So this is the setting, Jesus Christ has given his disciples power and authority over all devils and all diseases. And they have been out there casting out demons and healing the sick.

 

Yet when this father brings his demon oppressed son to them, they could do nothing.

 

So the father brings his son to Jesus, pleading, Lord have mercy on my son.  

 

Matthew 17:15 Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is an epileptic, and suffers terribly: for many times he has fallen into the fire, and into the water. 16 I brought him to your disciples, and they could not cure him. 17 Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I suffer you? Bring him here to me. 18 And Jesus rebuked the demon; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour. 19 Then the disciples came to Jesus privately, and said, Why could we not cast him out? 20 And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you shall say unto this mountain, Be removed from here to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. 21 Howbeit this kind does not go out but by prayer and fasting.

 

Jesus tells the disciples they could not cast this demon out because of unbelief, and Jesus also says they lacked faith; telling them if they had faith as a gain of mustard seed they could move mountains. Howbeit this kind does not go out but by prayer and fasting. 

 

Howbeit!

 

As disciples of Jesus Christ you may have all power and authority to cast out demons and heal the sick. You may believe. You may have great faith. Howbeit, in order to cast out this kind of demon, that is not enough, for this kind does not go out but by prayer and fasting. 

 

Note!

 

When the father brought his son to Jesus Christ, Jesus did not say, “Go away for three days while I pray and fast, then bring your son back and then I will cast the demon out and heal your son”. 

 

Of cause not! Jesus just rebuked the demon and told it to go, and the son was healed. 

 

Praying and fasting is not something we do when we want to see someone healed. It is not a way of twisting God’s arm, in order to get God to do something for us.

 

It is a way of building up our belief in Christ and our faith in God our Father, thus when we pray and fast we are preparing ourselves for battle. 

 

There is a spiritual connection between the giving, praying and fasting.

 

Matthew 6:1 Take care that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen of them: otherwise you have no reward from your Father which is in the sky.

 

What are charitable deeds? Charitable deeds are giving to the poor and needy; giving of your time, your strength, your wealth, your love, your understanding and more.

 

Matthew 6:1 Take care that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen of them: otherwise you have no reward from your Father which is in the sky. 2 Therefore when you do your charitable deeds, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Truly I say unto you, they have their reward. 3 But when you do charitable deeds, let not your left hand know what your right hand does:  4 That your charitable deeds may be in secret: and your Father which sees in secret, himself shall reward you openly.

 

Where possible; as much as practicable your giving to the poor and needy should be done secret. For if your giving to the poor and needy, is not done in secret but done for all to see, your only reward will be the praise of man. But if you give to the poor and needy in secret, your Father in the sky who sees in secret will reward you openly.

 

Matthew 6:5 And when you pray, And when you pray you shall not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Truly I say unto you, They have their reward. 6 But you, when you pray, enter into your closet, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father which is in secret; and your Father which sees in secret shall reward you openly.

 

We are not to make a show of our giving, our praying and our fasting, for if we do we will only receive praise from man. However if we humble ourselves by giving in secret, praying in secret and fasting in secret God our Father will see and reward us openly.

 

Isaiah 58:1 Cry aloud, spare not, lift up your voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. 2 Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness, and forsook not the ordinance of their God: they ask of me the ordinance of justice; and they take delight in approaching to God. 

 

Here God is calling to the prophet Isaiah to “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up your voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” For despite their transgression and their sins, they still daily seek God and delighted to know His ways, as would a righteous nation who had not forsaken the ways of God: 

 

God’s people were overflowing with transgression and sins; yet their eyes and their ears were closed to the truth, so they could not see the wickedness of their own ways. Therefore they would not repent; but rather they took delight in boldly approaching the throne of God seeking righteous justice; asking “Why have we fasted?” 

 

Isaiah 58:3 Why have we fasted, they say, and you do not see? Why have we afflicted our soul, and you take no knowledge? 

 

God’s people were so full of pride and so full of the sin of self righteousness, that they could not see their own sin. Therefore they would not repent and it seemed to them God could neither see them fast, nor hear them pray.

 

2 Chronicles 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from the sky, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

 

We the western nations of the world are full of pride and the sin of self righteousness, so full of sin yet we cannot see our own sin

 

Are the nations of the world any better?

 

Is your nation any better?

 

Isaiah 58:3 Why have we fasted, they say, and God why do you do not see? Why have we afflicted our soul, and you take no knowledge? Though in the day of your fast you find pleasure, and work hard all your labours. 

 

Although I would not say it is wrong to work while we fast, I do however believe as much as it is both possible and practical during the days of our fasting we should refrain from hard labour and seeking pleasure, and as much as possible our days of fasting should be spent seeking and listening to God. 

 

Psalm 133:1 Look and see, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! 2 It is like the precious ointment upon the head that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that descended down to the skirts of his garments; 3 as the dew of Hermon that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, life for evermore.

 

Isaiah 58:4 Look at yourself, you fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: you shall not fast as you do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high. 

 

Is there love and unity between you and your brothers and sisters in the Lord? When we dwell together in unity, God will hear our prayers and he will bless us. But where there is no unity among the brethren, God will neither hear our prayers nor bless us.

 

Isaiah 58:5 Is it such a fast that I have chosen, a day for a man to afflict his soul, to bow down his head as a bulrush and to spread sackcloth and ashes?  Will you call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the LORD? 

 

Fasting is not a time of mourning. Yes we should repent of our sinful ways and humble ourselves before Almighty God. Yes we should plead for mercy and deliverance from whatever comes against us, but why are we mourning? Why do we cover ourselves with sackcloth and ashes?  Do you not believe God is capable of delivering you? 

 

Do you have no faith in the love of God our Father? Why do we mourn, when with expectant hearts we should be worshiping and praising God for our coming deliverance? For our God is good and his love and mercy endures towards us forever. 

 

Having told us how not to fast, God first tells us why he has chosen for us to fast.

 

Isaiah 58:6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? To lose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke? 

 

The number one reason why God calls his people to fast is to set them free. Free from the bands of wickedness, free from heavy burdens, free from very oppression and free every yoke that enslaves us.

 

Jesus Christ taught his disciples to pray in this manner. 

 

Matthew 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.  12 And release us from our debts, as we forgive our debtors.  13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen. 

 

14 For if you release men from their faults, your Father in the sky will also release you: 15 But if you do not release men from their faults, neither will your Father release you from your faults. 

 

Giving and releasing go hand and hand. Do you expect God your father to foregive you and to release you from your sin, your faults and depts? Then you should, as a son of God your Father should also willingly foregive to others and release them.

 

The fast God has chosen for you;

 

Isaiah 58:7 Is it not to give your bread to the hungry and that you bring the poor that are cast out, into your house? When you see the naked, that you cloth him; and that you hide not yourself from your own flesh? 8 Then 

 

When? 

 

When you fast by giving your bread to the hungry; when bring the homeless into your house; when you cloth the naked; when you provide food, shelter and clothing for your own extended family in their time of need.

 

Isaiah 58:8 Then shall your light break forth as the morning, your healing shall spring forth speedily, your righteousness shall go before you and the glory of the LORD shall be your rearguard. 9 Then you shall call, and the LORD shall answer; you shall cry, and he shall say, here I am. - - - - - -

 

When you fast the fast that God has chosen, then:

 

1: Your light shall break forth as the morning.

 

2: Your healing shall spring forth speedily.

 

3: Your righteousness shall go before you and the glory of the LORD shall be your rearguard.

 

Then: 

 

4: You shall call, and the LORD shall answer.

 

5: You shall cry, and he shall say, here I am.

 

No 1: Your light shall break forth as the morning.

 

Romans 8:19 For the earnest expectation of creation eagerly awaits the revealing of the sons of God.

 

As sons of God we are the manifestation of Christ in the earth to all creation. All creation with earnest expectation is eagerly waiting for us, the sons of God to be revealed to them. 

 

We are the body of Christ; we are his hands, his feet, his eyes, his voice; we are the manifestation of Christ in the earth.

 

When we fast the fast God has chosen for us, then shall our light break forth as the morning.

 

Isaiah 60:1 Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. 

 

This is why God has chosen for us to fast, that the glory of the Lord shall rise upon you.

 

Isaiah 60:2 For look and see; darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon you, and his glory shall be seen upon you. 3 And the nations shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.

 

The world all around you is covered in darkness, thick darkness covers to people, but the glory of the Lord shall been seen upon you, and the people of the world will come to your light. Not only will the poor and lowly come to your light, but kings, governors, presidents, generals, those in power and authority will come to the brightness of your rising.

 

And when you approach those in power and authority, you will be able to approach them boldly, because your righteousness shall go before you and the glory of the LORD shall be your rearguard.

 

 

Isaiah 58:9 Then you shall call, and the LORD shall answer; you shall cry, and he shall say, here I am. - - - - - -

 

When you fast the fast God has chosen for you, then you call on God in your hour of need He will answer you. When things go wrong and you just feel like crying and weeping, God your Father will wrap his arms around you and comfort you.

 

Isaiah 58:9b If you take away from the midst of you the yoke of oppression, the putting forth of the finger and speaking wickedly; 10 And if you pour out your soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; 

 

We are not to oppress those we rule over or those who serve us. We are not to put forth our finger in anger to accuse, to judge or condemn, nor are we to speak wickedly of anyone. But rather we are to pour out our soul to the hungry and the afflicted. In other words we are to pour out love, mercy and compassion. 

 

If you study the miracles of Jesus Christ, you will find Jesus Christ was motivated out of a heart fill of love, mercy and compassion. Giving to the poor and needy develops and strengthens your faith in God your Father, your belief in Jesus Christ, and your love, mercy and compassion towards others. 

 

Do you want to be used of God to deliver the oppressed and heal the sick? Then fast the fast that God as chosen for you.

 

When we take away from the midst of us the yoke of oppression, and pour out our soul to hungry;

 

Then (as it says in Isaiah 58:10b) your light shall rise in obscurity, and your darkness shall be as the noonday: 

 

We are the light of Christ in the world, if we oppress the poor and don’t pour out our soul to the needy, it is like hiding our light under a bowl, but when we set the oppressed free and pour out our soul to the poor, it is like placing our light upon a table.

 

Matthew 5:14 You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick and it gives light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in the sky.

 

When you fast the fast that God has chosen, then:

 

No 2: Your healing shall spring forth speedily.

 

Isaiah58:11 And the LORD shall guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and make fat your bones: and you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not. 

 

When we fast the fast the LORD has chosen, our soul, even in times of drought will be satisfied, our bones will be fat. That is to say our inner most being will be healthy. Like a well watered garden, a garden of trees, both in the natural and spiritual we will not stop producing in abundance and rivers of living will flow from our inner most being.

 

John 7:38 He that believes in me, as the scripture has said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. 

 

Isaiah 61:3 To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

 

We are a garden of trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.

 

Revelation 22:1 And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.

 

Where is the throne of God and of the Lamb? 

 

It is in our belly, it is in our inner most being, and from our belly flow rivers of living waters.

 

Revelation 22:2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, the tree of life, which bare twelve types fruits, and produced her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 

 

We are the revelation of Christ to the world. We are trees of righteousness, the tree of life, and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations, that the LORD may be glorified.

 

When you fast the fast that God has chosen, then:

 

No 3: Your righteousness shall go before you and the glory of the LORD shall be your rearguard.

 

God word is clear, There is none righteous, no, not one (Romans 3:10). So it is not our righteous, but rather Christ who is our righteousness who goes before those who fast the LORD’s fast, and the glory of the Lord shall be their rearguard.

 

Then: When we fast the LORD’s fast;

 

4: You shall call, and the LORD shall answer.

 

When the poor and the needy call to you, if you show them love and compassion by answering their call, then so will God your Father show love and compassion towards you and answer your call.

 

5: You shall cry, and He shall say, here I am.

 

Do you comfort those who morn, cry with those who are hurting, then with the comfort you comfort others, God your Father will comfort you.

 

II Corinthians 1:3 Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;  4 Who comforts us in all our troubles, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.

 

Before Jesus Christ departed from this world he said to His disciples

 

John 14:12 Truly, truly, I say unto you, he that believes in me, the works that I do, he shall also do; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. 13 And whatsoever you shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. 

 

Jesus Christ said, “he that believes in me, the works that I do, he shall also do; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father”. Therefore it must somehow be possible for us to not only do the works Jesus Christ did, it should also be possible for us to do greater works. 

 

I shared with you the truth, that at our believer’s baptism in water we receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit, and God our Father declared us to be His sons.

 

Then just like the twelve and the seventy disciples we have power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease (Matthew 10:1). 

 

Yet there was that demon oppressed boy, from whom they could not cast out the demon, nor could they heal him.

 

When they asked Jesus, why we could not cast the demon out of the boy and heal him, Jesus blames their unbelief and lack of faith. Then He adds; howbeit this kind only comes out by prayer and fasting.

 

When we pray and fast it test and strengthens our belief in Jesus Christ; it test and strengthens our faith in God, and it also test and strengthens our love, mercy and compassion for the poor and needy.

 

After Jesus Christ was baptized, he went into the wilderness, then after praying and fasting for 40 days, He returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee.  

 

Yes Jesus Christ received power and authority at His baptism, yet during that time prayer and fasting that power and authority was tested and strengthened.

 

But wait! That is not all. Praying and fasting just doesn’t just test and strengthen our belief in Jesus Christ and our faith in God, it often precedes spiritual break through.

 

Moses prayed and fasted 40 days, and then God gave the children of Israel the Ten Commandments.

 

Hannah, a woman who was baron, after praying and fasting conceived a son, whom she named Samuel (1 Samuel 1:7).

 

When the king and the people of Nineveh prayed and fasted, the wrath of God was turned away from them (Jonah 3:4 – 10)

 

In Daniel chapter 10 we read; for 21 days Daniel prayed and fasted, and on the 24 day an angel of the Lord, who had fought with the Prince of Persia for 20 days came to tell Daniel of the things which would happen in the Last Days. So while Daniel was praying and fasting there was a battle going on in the spiritual realms resulting in spiritual breakthrough.  

 

When Esther was queen of Persia, and the Jews faceddestruction by the kings royal decree, Esther called all the Jews to pray and fast for three days. On the night of the third day the king could not sleep, and in the morning he examined the royal records. The three days of praying and fasting resulted in spiritual breakthrough, which in turn resulted in the Jews being released from destruction.   

 

During the reign of King Jehoshaphat the nations of the world came upon the kingdom of Judah. So Jehoshaphat called a fast, and as the people prayed and fasted something broke in the spiritual realm, for as the army of the Judah marched into battle with the singers in front of them, the armies of the nations turned on each other (II Chronicles chapter 20). The battle is not ours it is the Lord’s, and often when we do it God’s way, all we have to do on the day is show up and praise the Lord for our deliverance. 

 

Before Peter took the gospel of the kingdom to the Gentiles, both he and Cornelius prayed and fasted (Acts 10). 

 

Before Jesus Christ sent out the twelve he give then power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease (Matthew 10:1). Yet they could not deliver and heal the demon oppressed boy, for they had not fasted, because Jesus Christ their bridegroom was still with them. But when their bridegroom was taken from them they prayed and fasted 10 days in the upper roam, during which time their belief in Jesus Christ and their faith in God was tested and strengthen. Then on the Day of Pentecost they came forth in the power of the Holy Spirit, to not only do the works Jesus did but greater works. 

 

The disciples had been in the upper room praying and fasting for ten days and the Holy Spirit came upon them and filled them all. They come down and started preaching the gospel of the kingdom, people from all over the world heard the gospel in their own language and many suppose them to be drunk.

 

Acts 2:14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Men of Judea, and all that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and listen to my words:  15 For these are not drunken, as you suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.  16 But this is that which was spoken of by the prophet Joel; 

 

What had the prophet Joel spoken about? He had spoken time yet to come when God would pour out of his Spirit upon all flesh in the later days. Pentecost was like the out pouring of the former rain of the Holy Spirit; while Joel had spoken of the out pouring of the later rain of the Holy Spirit.

 

You could say that the out pouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost was a part fulfilment or type picture of the total fulfilment of the prophecy that is still to come. 

 

Peter continues by quoting part of Joel’s prophecy. But let us go straight to the prophecy of Joel, picking it up a few verses before Peter does.

 

Joel 2:15 Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, and call a solemn assembly: 16 Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet. 

 

These two verses tell me; our times of praying and fasting should not be just for the few, but for all of the congregation, the elders, the children, and those that suck the breasts.

 

So the call goes out to the people, not just too fast, but also gather together. Before the out pouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost, the saint gathered together to pray and fast for ten days. Then came the promise of the former rain of the Holy Spirit. 

 

Joel 2:23 Be glad then, you children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he has given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month.

 

This prophecy is not just talking of the natural rains, it is also pointing ahead to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon all flesh, both the former and the latter rains. And it is events that will happen around this latter outpouring of the Holy Spirit that Joel focuses in verses 28 – 32.

 

Joel 2:28 “And it shall come to pass afterwards that I will pour My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions. 29 And also upon the bondservants both men and women I will pour out My Spirit in those days. 30 And I will show wonders in the sky and in the earth: Blood and fire and pillars of smoke. 31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the LORD.” 32 And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be delivered. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance, as the LORD has said, among the remnant whom the LORD shall call.

 

So both the outpouring of the former and latter rain of the Holy Spirit are preceded by a coming together of God’s people to pray and fast.

 

AfterJesus Christ prayed and fasted alone for 40 days, he quickly gathered 12 disciples.

 

After 200 prayed and fasted for 10 days, on the Day of Pentecost they added 3,000 disciples.

 

After the believing Children of Israel gather together to pray and fast, 144,000 will be added to their number.

 

It is well worth while for one disciple of Jesus Christ to pray and fast; but the more of you who come together the better the results. 

Written by Kenneth Allan Clark and printed and published by

VICTORIOUS CHRISTIAN MINISTRIES INTERNATIONAL. P.O. BOX 144 WYNNUM QLD 4178 AUSTRALIA.
e-mail: ken@endtimes-tribulations.com web: www.endtimes-tribulations.com
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Scripture taken from the “Clarks English Translation” © Copyright 2011 by Victorious Christian Ministries International. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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