Types of Fasts
There are three types of fasts mentioned in the Bible. The first one we’ll look at is a Normal Fast. This type of fast is where an individual would abstain from all food or liquid, but not from water. An example of this can be found in Matthew 4:2, where Jesus fasted for 40 days.
The next fast we see in scripture is an Absolute Fast. This fast is abstaining from both food and water. We see an example of this in Esther 4:16, where God used Esther to deliver Israel from total destruction. She called all the Jews in Susa to fast, “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.” This is quite amazing that all the Jews in that region fasted for three days, with no food or drink. The results were extraordinary!
The last fast we see in scripture is a Partial Fast. This fast consists of a restriction of diet rather than completely abstaining from food and drink. An example of this can be found in Daniel 10:3. After Daniel was given a vision from God regarding a great war, it caused him to mourn and be moved to fast for three weeks, “I ate no choice food; no meat or wine touched my lips…” Some people, during our 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting, may choose to do a Daniel Fast as outlined in Daniel 1:11.
Throughout 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting, we invite you to fast every Wednesday for the entire day as we look forward to the promises of God for our church!
In addition to fasting on Wednesdays, you can choose to fast more. Some people choose to fast breakfast or lunch throughout the entire duration of 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting. We encourage you to spend time with the Lord and pray about how you can participate in fasting throughout the next 21 days.
We also realize that some may be restricted for health reasons to fast. If that is the case, fasting from social media or a regular activity is also effective. During the time you would normally participate in that activity, replace it with personal devotion to God.
We encourage you to download the River Valley app and journey through the next 21 days alongside the River Valley community. Within the app, you can access a complete 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting plan with guided prayers, scriptures and River Valley Worship’s newest EP, “Attention.” You can also visit rivervalley.org/21days for more information.