So after looking through my concordance, searching my Bible and hopping online (I found this REALLY great site), I've come to some conclusions. Fasting seems to me to have been something that was done when making requests to God and also something that was done in thanksgiving after the fact. Fasting was also done in preparation for coming events. Why? Why all the fasting? And why is fasting deemed so unhealthy in today's day and age? Why do people shy away from something that sounds pretty "normal practice" to me.
Exodus 34:28 So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights. He neither ate bread nor drank water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.
I honestly don't know what to say hear... no water for forty days? That is some supernatural, kill-anyone-else kind of fasting! But this is certainly a clear example of fasting for connection with God (if not fasting WHILE connected to God).
Ezra 8:21 Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, to seek from him a safe journey for ourselves, our children, and all our goods.
Clearly this fast was for a request to God as well as preparation for their journey. I'm diggin the humbling part!
Deuteronomy 9:9 When I went up the mountain to receive the tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant that the Lord made with you, I remained on the mountain forty days and forty nights. I neither ate bread nor drank water.
Wow! That was some serious fasting! Do you think God gave him lemonade? :)
1Kings 19:8 And he arose and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb, the mount of God.
So, was that a fast of necessity? I mean, Elijah was already connected to God. An angel SPOKE to him twice telling him to eat prior to the 40 day journey to Horeb... the journey where he fasted. Did he drink? I wonder. Surely he would have to making a forty day journey on just two servings of cake!
Daniel 9:3 Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes.
Another instance of someone fasting for direct connection with God. So is fasting some sort of super highway? It must be. Joel 1:14 Consecrate a fast; call a solemn assembly. Gather the elders and all the inhabitants of the land to the house of the Lord your God, and cry out to the Lord.
Matthew 4:2 And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.
Just after this scripture, "the tempter" tempted Jesus with a loaf of bread. Jesus knew that if he would have eaten the bread, after forty days of not eating, he probably would have puked his guts up. I mean really... you can't jump on solid food like that after forty days! Only people who fast know how sick you can get on solid food when eaten too quickly after going so long without it. Stupid tempter!
Matthew 6:16 And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others.
Welp! I can honestly say, The Master Cleanse fixes that. Most of the time I have more energy fasting than I did before I started the cleanse. And I can certainly say that the feeling of "Zen" feels terrific! Why would anyone disfigure their faces? Oh! That's right... they probably didn't know about The Master Cleanse back then...hahahahaha!