CATEGORY: Doctrine & Exposition
God's Chosen Fast
If I said that this is the best book on the topic of fasting I have ever
read it would not be implying an injustice to the author with my follow up line
of – actually it is the only book on this topic I have ever read! In fact the
sheer rarity of Christian writing on this subject automatically qualifies the
few books that do address this topic as – special. The introduction starts with
the author’s own experience of how difficult he found it to obtain anything on
this subject when enquiring in a big city Christian bookshop. He did apparently
manage to find other writings on this eventually as he makes reference to one or
two in this book.
Anyway, even if I had seen other books of this nature I’m sure that I would
still be very happy to recommend this one. It has considerably and very
helpfully informed me of much on this issue. Not only from a standpoint of ‘why’
Christians should fast but also ‘how’. It is an extremely sensible combination
of simple Bible exposition and practical/medical advice, which we cannot afford
to ignore. The cover of the edition I have states that it is “A spiritual and
practical guide to fasting.” The author states clearly that he is indebted to
medical professionals for help on the physical elements involved.
‘God’s Chosen Fast’ covers all the various types of fast – i.e. all food, food
and water, partial fasts, personal and public, long and short fasts etc. All of
these are drawn from the many examples we have in Scripture. Some interesting
patterns seem to emerge as the book unfolds the different occasions that led to
the different variations of seeking God with fasting.
There is absolutely no question in Scripture as to whether we should fast. This
book clearly points out that Jesus’ references to this subject were ‘When’ not
‘if’. That is, Jesus said, “When you pray.” “When you give alms.” “When you
fast.” Seeing that this topic is both deeply spiritual and necessarily practical
a book such as this is very valuable to us.