When searching the sacred scriptures we find the example of great characters who fasted and prayed in very specific moments of their lives. They fasted for very special reasons in which they needed the divine help of God. Father Celestial in order to obtain strength, relief or the great help of God. Here are some of these people who by their example lead us to fasting to be closer to God.
Jesus Christ consecrated forty nights and forty days with the purpose of offering a fasting and pray with constancy and faith. He began this great fast just after being baptized by John the Baptist and before undertaking his ministry. He abstained from food during this time in preparation for the mission that God had entrusted to him.
Because in reality his spirit was so strong he knew the importance of fasting and praying in order to strengthen himself and fulfill his mission. Aware of this, he successfully carried out his mission of fasting. As it is related in when it is said that upon returning to the Jordan he was led in the spirit into the desert for this period of time and was also tempted by the devil and did not eat food for 40 days and after these, he was hungry, as Luke 4:1-2 relates in spite of the stings of the devil, Jesus was firm in his mission of fasting and praying and was able to overcome all the incitements of the devil to fulfill his mission.
Leader and great man of God who guided the Israelite people on their way to the land God had promised them, working tirelessly to bring them out of the Egyptian yoke. God asked Moses to go up to the mountain of Sinai and thus to receive the 10 commandments of God.
Exodus 24:12 states that Moses went up the mountain at the command of the Lord and told him to wait there and He would give him tablets with the commandments that he should show to his people.
Clearly, Moses understood the significance of that moment and the transcendence he was going to have on the covenant people. So much so that he fasted for a period of forty days both day and night because he was going to receive a very special law from Heavenly Father for his people. This law would serve to draw near to Him if taken with faith and devotion. He was so sure that he would see God that he fasted with humility and this prepared him for that great moment.
As is well known David had failed the Heavenly Father because he had fornicated with the woman of Uriah and in a premeditated way had sent to assassinate him. David sent Uriah with the power he had to make him at the front of the battle to be an easy and vulnerable target. This way he could keep his wife Bathsheba. Thus, Uriah dies and after his death David keeps Bathsheba, the woman he intended. At that moment David showed no repentance and that is when his friend and prophet Nathan went to visit him.
In 2nd Samuel chapter 12 we can see that the fruit of his relationship with Bathsheba had already been born. Nathan addressed a teaching to his friend David to challenge him about his sin of having had Urias killed and having committed adultery with his wife Bathsheba. It is then that David recognizes that he did wrong and feels repentant.
Nathan tells David that God could forgive him but that he would have serious consequences for his sin. Then Nathan tells David that his son would die and David, saddened by the news, returns home and learns that his little son was seriously ill. At that moment he decided to fast, abstaining from food and drink for 7 days during which his son was very sick. He asked God for compassion, but in the same way he asked God for mercy. child died just as Nathan had prophesied.
Daniel, a young man from family In a twist of fate, the nobleman was confined with his friends so that they could learn the literature, language and traditions of the Babylonian people. Daniel being a very serious young man in his convictions and having a great belief in God defends himself from the attacks. enemies.
Thus, he dares to oppose eating the King's food and wine and requests with three of them young people Despite the fact that the food they had asked to eat was much simpler, their countenances were much healthier than those of the other young people.
Daniel feared God and read the scriptures constantly what Jeremiah had predicted some time before in which he prophesied about the 70 years of devastation in Jerusalem. It is then, when Daniel responds to this prophecy by praying and fasting and so he sets aside a day to fast and pray for Jerusalem, asking God to forgive the transgressions of his people, requesting mercy for them.
This character is included in one of the most fascinating stories from the bible. Esther, a Jewish woman, was forced to mediate with Ahasuerus, the Persian King to protect and save her people from imminent death. This king had ordered by decree that all Jews should honor Haman, but neither his people nor his cousin Mordecai were in a position to do so. obey this order. Their deep-rooted belief in God only allowed them to bow to Him and so Haman became enraged and sought to annihilate his people.
Her cousin Mordecai, who was also her adoptive father, asked Esther to mediate for his people before Ahasuerus the Persian king, since she, because of her position in the Persian kingdom, could do so. For this reason they fasted so that the king would consider this request. Esther and her people fasted for three days since the commitment and joint work required unity. Thus, after three days of fasting, Esther presented herself before the king and managed to save her countrymen from certain annihilation.
As we can see, fasting is very important to strengthen the spirit, it helps us to approach God who in His infinite wisdom will grant us according to His holy will and our just desires what we ask of Him through prayer and fasting. It is a very special opportunity to get closer to God, humble ourselves before Him with true intention and to obtain the blessings required by our just desires.