Monday 7 August 2017

Why is there a Need to Fast and Pray?

Reasons to Fast and Pray

Another round of fasting and praying for our nation will start officially from 7 August 2017 for a consecutive 40-day period. Why do we need to set apart our time (40 days yearly) to fast and pray as a nation?  It is not for God to be informed of what He needs to do with our nation, for He already knows His plan for us.  Yet, we need to come humbly and earnestly before Him to seek His face to discover the plans that He has in mind for our nation, plans to prosper us and to give us a hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11-13).

The Bible is replete with examples of characters that fast and pray before they embark on any given task by God.  Moses fasted for forty days, abstaining himself from food and water when he went up to Mount Sinai in response to God’s call.  God did note confer to him the Ten Commandments until he ended his fast (Deuteronomy 9:9-12).  The Author of Life had His Law in mind beforehand, yet He waited patiently for the carrier of His all surpassing glory to be prepared in order to launch His long term project of nation building.

Jesus was empowered by the Spirit of God when he went through 40 days of fasting in the wilderness right before he embarked on his glorious ministry roadshow (Matthew 4:2, Luke 4:2).  Indeed, it was the Spirit of God that led Him to the desert (Matthew 4:1, Luke 4:1), a desolate place where all the comforts, certainties and necessities of life were stripped off completely, and one could rely on no one else but God alone.

Jesus prevailed over the temptations with complete confidence in God, as we see a hungry man refuse to yield to His physical quest, but instead declared firmly that, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).
The church in Antioch was fasting and worshiping the Lord, when the Lord instructed them to set apart Paul and Barnabas for the work He had called them to do (Acts 13:1-3).  Paul soared in his missionary thrust ever since.  It was the Spirit of God who had ignited the missionary fire in the early church, but it was Paul, the vessel who was ever-ready since then to transport the weight of His presence.

Moses rose up from his fast the humblest servant who did the will of God.  Jesus came out from His trial at the wilderness ready to crush the kingdom of darkness head on.  Paul was filled with His power and set out on a journey of turning the cities of the Roman Empire right-side up with the Gospel of Christ Jesus.  Fasting and prayer allows us the time to empty ourselves, to avail ourselves to be filled with His Presence, to know His heartbeat and to say “yes” to the Master whenever He confers His will on us.

God has to change us before He uses us to make an effectual impact on our nation. Transformation and revival does not occur when we present our fervent petitions out of a fleshly and carnal mind, though sometimes we do move the hands of God out of His mercy for us. Transformation comes when we do the will of God in His timing with His way.

It is now time for us to get ready to fast and pray as a nation, to seek His face, so that we can be prepared to contain His glory that will be poured out on us, the bearers of His image on earth.
Lending to the Lord.

Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will repay him for his deed.  (Proverbs 19:17)

There are numerous accounts recorded in the Bible where the idea of “charity” is expressed or alluded to, be it in a direct or indirect manner.

To God, giving is very much a part of His nature and character.  The Psalmists depicted God as a generous Giver whom all living creatures trust for their providence.  “The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season.  You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing” (Psalms 145:15-16).

The God who gives generously and unconditionally to all is the One who exhorts His people to do likewise.  There was a co-relation between the Land and the Law given to the Israelites with regards to the poor, the needy, the underprivileged and the aliens, etc., living among their communities.  The Israelites were constantly instructed by their laws to esteem and help the poor and needy residing in their land as a way to honor God (e.g Ex 23:11;Lev 19:10; Deut 14:28-29).  The intention of God was that “…there should be no poor among you, for in the land the LORD your God is giving you to possess as your inheritance, he will richly bless you” (Deut 15:4).

Poverty, whilst it often refers to people deprived in the monetary or material sense, would also include people who are deprived of their basic spiritual rights and privileges as creations of God because of the unfavourable circumstances or conditions that they are in.  Due to this fact, we therefore envision a need to especially those who dwell in poor or rural areas.

There is a need to groom them holistically and better equip them with the Word of God.  In order to disciple the many people in our nation, we have adopted certain projects like Reading Through the Bible, Family Discipleship Programs, Alongsider, and REEP, etc.  Thus, we invite you to partner and co-labour with us in the endeavours that we have undertaken.  Lend to the Lord by your sacrificial giving, and He alone shall repay you for your honourable deeds, as promised by Him.

Charity Collection

You may choose to fast a meal or more in this time of nationwide fast and prayer.  Any amount saved from your fast can be channeled to our Charity Collection.  You may transfer it to NECF’s Public Bank Account No.  3078972807) as individuals or as a church.  The money collected will be used for the following purposes:

1. Read through the Bible Initiative
2. Discipleship Focused Initiative
3. Rural Church Work

Please send us your bank slips via fax (no.  03-77291139) or email (  Do indicate the amount you have set aside for “40-day Fast and Prayer Charity Purpose”.


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