OPEN HEAVENS FOR TEENS 16 FEBRUARY 2020: FRUITLESS FASTING
MEMORISE: Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the LORD? Isaiah 58:5
READ: ISAIAH 58:3-5
3. Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold, in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labours.
4. Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high.
5. Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the LORD?
Fasting can be very beneficial to any child of God, but then it has to be done according to the scriptures.
In today’s passage, the Israelites in Isaiah’s days were asking God why their fasting yielded no result.
They were quite convinced that the problem was that God didn’t want to grant their request, but God told them that wasn’t the case.
If you have been fasting for a particular reason and the situation is yet to change, then you need to check yourself.
There are attitudes that can make your fast fruitless.
For instance, do you get touchy to the extent that you pick fights with everyone around you while fasting?
Do you spend the whole time watching television or browse through your phone just to kill time?
Do you constantly check the clock to know what time it is and how soon you will break your fast?
Do you tell everyone that cares to listen that you are fasting? Then you need to change.
Fasting is supposed to be a time of self denial; a time to abstain from food in order to weaken the flesh and empower the spirit.
So fasting without praying, studying the word of God, forgiveness and self control will be fruitless.
Identify the things that can make your fast fruitless and avoid them when next you fast.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR:
Leviticus 22-23 ; Mark 1:1-22
1. My faith looks up to Thee,
Thou Lamb of Calvary,
Now hear me while I pray,
Take all my guilt away,
Oh, let me from this day
Be wholly Thine!
2. May Thy rich grace impart
Strength to my fainting heart,
My zeal inspire!
As Thou hast died for me,
Oh, may my love to Thee
Pure, warm and changeless be,
A living fire!
3. While life’s dark maze I tread,
And griefs around me spread,
Be Thou my guide;
Bid darkness turn to day,
Wipe sorrow’s tears away,
Nor let me ever stray
From Thee aside.
4. When ends life’s transient dream,
When death’s cold sullen stream
Shall o’er me roll;
Blest Savior, then, in love,
Fear and distrust remove;
Oh, bear me safe above,
A ransomed soul.
AUTHORS: Pastor E.A. Adeboye
Pastor (Mrs.) Folu Adeboye