The Romance of Fasting
*Title: The Romance of Fasting *Text: Matt. 9:14-15 14 Then John’s disciples came and asked him, “How is it that we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples do not fast?” 15 Jesus answered, “How can the guests of the bridegroom mourn while he is with them? The time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; then they will fast. *Fasting: *-The voluntary denial of an otherwise normal function for the sake of intense spiritual activity…such as prayer. There is no commandment in the Bible to fast! -Fasting is one of the Spiritual Disciplines…It takes work…Jesus fasted…>Matt. 4 *>Matt. 6:16-18 16 “When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. Trans: Jesus did not use this example of a wedding and others like it for no reason… He used this metaphor to express to us what fasting is to be like. A romantic expression of our love for God. *1. Why did Jesus put fasting and a wedding together? *A. Could it have been a lack of creativity on the part of the Creator of the universe? -Ex. Horse and chariot? No! Ex. Plant and soil? No! Not really a love relationship between a horse and chariot or between a plant and soil… *B. Could it have been that He sees everything through the eyes of love? -God is a romantic! God is LOVE! -He created us to be the objects of His love… -He created us to be in relationship… *C. Could it have been that God, who is love, wanted to show us how to be romantic? -Love has to be expressed… -Anything we do without love is nothing…I Cor. 13 >John 15:13 says, no greater love… >John 3:16 says, for God so loved the world… *Ill: The 5 Languages of Love… 1. Words of Affirmation 2. Quality Time 3. Receiving Gifts 4. Acts of Service 5. Physical Touch *2. Why do we need to be shown how to be Romantic? *A. Could it be we need help in the romance area? *B. God describes how we should be romantically in love with Him: >Hosea: Exclusive…committed… *>Eph. 5:25-27 Purified…Holy…Intimate… 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing[a] her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. *C. It’s a WEDDING! -Weddings are supposed to be joyful events…don’t mourn… *>John 3:27-29 says29 The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. -The only person who should be sad at a wedding is the groom’s father…He pays for it… Ill: When Jodi and I first started dating and were engaged…drove delivery truck… *3. Why should we fast? *A. Could it be that fasting is one of the best ways we can express our love for God? Ill: My wife would rather have all her kids together than have them buy her gifts…Do not give your wife a vacuum cleaner for an anniversary present…No, No, No! *B. Could it be that fasting is an action that shows our love for God to God? More than words! *C. Could it be that fasting show us what is the most important relationship we have?