By Greg Robbins ( e-mail: email@example.com )
Matthew 9:14-17 “Then came to him the disciples of John, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast oft, but thy disciples fast not? And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bridechamber 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. No man puts a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up takes from the garment, and the rent is made worse. Neither do men put new wine into old bottles; else the bottles break, and the wine runs out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.”
When the disciples of John came to Jesus with this question, they were asking out of an old testament mentality. The were asking about old testament fasting. He attempted to educate them a bit about this. The disciples didn’t fast in the old testament sense because Jesus was with them. When Jesus was taken from them, then they began to fast in a new testament type of fasting.
In the old testament fasting was primarily used for their voices to be heard on high. They fasted, repented, and mourned over their sins so that God would hear them. In the new testament, fasting is more to keep the flesh under control, so as to be able to live in the spirit realm. Now fasting is not so much that God hears us, but that we can hear God.
Living a fasted life enables a disciple of Jesus to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit more clearly. I personally believe that the fasting that best pleases the Lord, is when we don’t plan it and it just happens.
I keep very busy for Jesus. I put in 60-80 hour work weeks for the Lord. So many times, almost daily in fact, I just don’t feel like eating in the morning. I might even be hungry, but something on the inside keeps me from eating until early or late afternoon. This was never my habit before. That something on the inside is the Lord himself causing me to live a fasted life.
It is not I doing it, although I am very conscious of what is going on. My mind sometimes rebels against it, not understanding why I don’t just go ahead and eat. You see, there is something called living in the Spirit. God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit all live inside of you if you truly are born of God. They don’t dwell inside of a disciple just to go along for the ride. The throne of the heart is yielded to them in the lives of true disciples. They are allowed to make decisions and to implement them.
The Bible has much to say about demon possession. Jesus told the Pharisees that they are of their father the devil, and the works of their father they do. Well, a true disciple of Jesus is of his Father in heaven and the works of his Father he will do. In a very real sense a disciple of Jesus is God possessed.
Since the time that I was truly born of God, in March of 2009, I am not able to backslide. Something inside of me arrests me and stops me EVERY SINGLE TIME. Before, it was very easy to backslide and there was nothing to stop me from doing so. There is something on the inside of me now that keeps me living a holy life. Perfect? Far from it. But there really is nothing on the outside that people can truly accuse me of being a hypocrite for.
You see, God living inside of a disciple is a very real thing. Today very few people are disciples of Jesus Christ, so very few experience what it is to be Spirit led, guided, and possessed. The heart of man has a throne on which he himself sits. The whole idea behind a new birth or conversion, is to get man off of this throne and God to sit on it.