Absolute Fast

This entry is part 122 of 329 in the series Inquiring Minds
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In Deuteronomy 9:9, how did Moses survive without food and water for 40 days?

This is called an absolute fast. The Bible presents several different types of fasts. For instance, Jesus fasted food in the wilderness before he began his ministry. The Bible says that he was hungry, not thirsty. He drank water during his food fast.

Moses was able to do an absolute fast, taking in neither food nor water, for 40 days because he was on Mount Sinai in the presence of God. God sustained him supernaturally for this time. Most of us don’t have this ability.

An absolute fast for a much shorter time is possible. Humans can survive without water for about three days. No one recommends an absolute fast for more than this. More common are food fasts that can be maintained for longer periods of time.

Probably the most common amounts of time are anywhere from three days to about three weeks. Moses was not only sustained by God’s presence for those 40 days of his absolute fast but God’s words also sustained him.

There are many resources on fasting. If you are a beginner, there are helpful resources to prepare you for your first fast or first type of fast that you haven’t tried yet. If you have underlying medical conditions, check with your physician before engaging in a fast that may affect you medically.

Fasting is one of the best ways to get close to God. It is also a requirement of Jesus. He expects Christians to fast as much as he expects us to pray. Be informed about fasting before you try it. Make a plan not only to fast but also what you do during your fast.

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