Monday, January 5, 2009

The Daniel Fast

Well, in the new year, I am believing God for A LOT, so I am sacraficing my meals. Lord, this is going to be I have included all the details for what The Daniel Fast is about and how to actually follow it. I will keep you posted. :-)

Why Daniel fasted:

The concept of a Daniel fast comes from Daniel 1:8-14, “But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. Now God had caused the official to show favor and sympathy to Daniel, but the official told Daniel, ‘I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned your food and drink. Why should he see you looking worse than the other young men your age? The king would then have my head because of you.’

Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, ‘Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.’ So he agreed to this and tested them for ten days.”

The background of the Daniel fast is that Daniel and his three friends had been deported to Babylon when Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians conquered Judah (2 Kings 24:13-14). Daniel and his three friends were put into the Babylonian court servant “training program.” Part of the program was learning Babylonian customs, beliefs, laws, and practices. The eating habits of the Babylonians were not in complete agreement with the Mosaic Law. As a result, Daniel asked if he and his three friends could be excused from eating the meat (which was likely sacrificed to Babylonian false gods and idols).

So, a Daniel fast is eating only fruits and vegetables for a certain amount of time and abstaining from meat products. Some people use a Daniel fast as a dieting method. Some people use a Daniel fast instead of fasting from food entirely. The Bible nowhere commands believers to observe a Daniel fast. As a result, it is a matter of Christian freedom whether to observe a Daniel fast.

Theme of the fast—fasting and prayer: Your goal in fasting is to become closer to God by voluntarily denying the demands of your flesh. Increase your prayer life during this time. Study the Scriptures with a new intensity. When the fast is over, you should have a new spiritual strength from overcoming the cravings that usually control your life and from dedicating yourself to God.

Biblical model: Do a personal study of fasting. In the book of Daniel, chapters 2 and 10, Daniel describes two examples of his personal fasting and the dramatic results. Isaiah described God's chosen fast in Isaiah 58. Jesus fasted in the wilderness (Matthew 4, etc.) and spoke of the necessity of fasting for believers. It was a normal part of early church life. Fasting is one way we respond to the admonition throughout the Scriptures to die to our self-will and not to accommodate the desires of the flesh.

Following your own conscience: The precise details of your fast are between you and God. In Romans 14, the apostle Paul describes how we should relate in love to one another in the matter of what we eat or choose not to eat. He says, "Each person is free to follow the convictions of his own conscience" (Romans 14, The Message). If you fast often, you may need to turn up your fasting another level during this time. If this is your first fast, you may not be able to endure as many restrictions as someone else who fasts frequently. In the future, live a "fasted lifestyle," increasingly accommodating God and not the flesh.

Accountability and support groups: You will probably be most successful with this fast if you make yourself accountable to at least one other person during this fast. You may want to form a group of from five to seven people who meet occasionally or talk by phone. Encourage one another. If someone falls and eats the wrong foods, do not condemn them. Help them start again. Walk in love and mercy.Restricting television and entertainment. It will be difficult for you to consecrate yourself if you feed yourself on television and movies during this time.

Overview of the fast: The Daniel fast drastically restricts normal food intake by cutting away many of the foods you commonly eat to satisfy your appetite. During the Daniel fast, there will be a sense of hunger much of the time and a sense of sacrifice even when we eat. We recommend that you restrict yourself to only one meal a day, leaving a small hunger.

Side effects: You may experience moderate to severe headaches for the first day or two as your body rids itself of caffeine, salt, sugar, and various impurities. You may need to take Advil, aspirin, or a Goodies (smile).Important exceptions: Anyone with a medical condition related to eating or under the treatment of a physician must consult their doctor. Children, especially small children, will have special needs that must be considered. Under these conditions, find some sacrifice in the area of food that can be made without endangering health. Also, if you have extreme difficulty with the fast, such as impairment of your ability to work at your job, you will have to make adjustments. This is not a failure of will but is wisdom. Seek the Lord and discuss it with other Christians involved in the fast to find alternatives."God's kingdom isn't a matter of what you put in your stomach . . . It's what God does with your life as he sets it right, puts it together, and completes it with joy. Your task is to single-mindedly serve Christ."(Romans 14, The Message)

Step One: Be SpecificDaniel was not vague in his objection to the Babylonian diet. He defined the problem immediately.
The king's food was against dietary laws.
Daniel and his friends had vowed against wine.
The king's food had been offered up to idols/demons.

Step Two: Fast as a Spiritual CommitmentThe Daniel Fast involves a spiritual commitment to God. "Daniel proposed in his heart that he would not defile himself" (Daniel 1:8).

Step Three: Reflect Inner Desire by Outer DisciplineMany people have an inner desire for better health, but they can't discipline themselves to avoid junk food, and other foods that are not good for their health. The physical health you seek from God may be more than an answer to prayer. Your physical health can be linked to any of the following factors:
-Your food choices.
-The level of your spiritual commitment as reflected in constant prayer during the fast.
-Your time commitment. If you determine to fast for a certain time, keep it. For example, if you determine to fast 10 days, don't stop on Day 9.
-Your testimony commitment. Your fast is a statement of faith to God that you want Him to heal your body, and faith is foundational to the Daniel Fast.

Step Four: Pray to Perceive Sin's Role in Poor HealthNotice James 5:3-16:
Sin is something related to the cause of sickness.
Lack of health/healing may be the result of spiritual rebellion.
Lack of health/healing may be due to sin of wrong intake, i.e. drugs, pornography.
Repentance is linked to health according to James.
Elders have a role in healing both spiritual and physical health.
Sick people must desire to be well
The anointing oil could mean
Medicine for healing,
Symbolic of the Holy Spirit, or
It could be baptism
Prayer alone may not gain healing, faith is the major factor.
In Greek there are several words for "sick". James uses "Kanino", which not only includes disease, but also means weak or weary.
Attitude is important. James said, "are there any among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms."

Step Five: Fast as a Statement of Faith to OthersDaniel was making a statement of faith when he asked for only vegetables to eat and water to drink, then dared the overseer to compare the appearance of the four sons of Israel with the young men who ate the king's food.

Step Six: Learn the Effects of the Food You EatWhy are some foods good for us, and other foods not? What does certain food do to your body? If we really knew, there would likely be some things we would never eat again.
Step Seven: Yield All Results to GodDaniel said, "as you see fit, deal with your servants" (Dan. 1:13).

The Daniel Fast will lead to spiritual insight. "to those four young men God gave knowledge".
The Daniel Fast is longer than one day. These young men fasted for ten days.
The Daniel Fast is a partial fast. They ate, but only vegetables and water.
The Daniel Fast requires abstinence from party or junk foods.
There is no indication that they ever began to eat the king's food.
Food Guidelines for a Daniel Fast

Foods You May Eat:

-Whole Grains: Brown Rice, Oats, Barley

-Legumes: Dried Beans, Pinto Beans, Split Peas, Lentils, Black Eyed Peas

-Fruits: Apples, Apricots, Bananas, Blackberries, Blueberries, Boysenberries, Cantaloupe, Cherries, Cranberries, Oats, Figs, Grapefruit, Grapes, Guava, Honeydew Melon, Kiwi, Lemons, Limes, Mangoes, Nectarines, Papayas, Peaches, Pears, Pineapples, Plums, Prunes, Raisins, Raspberries, Strawberries, Tangelos, Tangerines, Watermelon

-Vegetables:Artichokes, Asparagus, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chili Peppers, Corn, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Garlic, Gingerroot, Kale, Leeks, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Mustard Greens, Okra, Onions, Parsley, Potatoes, Radishes, Rutabagas, Scallions, Spinach, Sprouts, Squashes, Sweet Potatoes, Tomatoes, Turnips, Watercress, Yams, Zucchini, veggie burgers are an option if you not allergic to soy.

-Liquids: Spring Water, Distilled Water, 100% All-Natural Fruit Juices, 100% All Natural Vegetable Juices. You may also drink protein drinks.

-Others:Seeds, Nuts, Sprouts

Foods to Avoid:


-White Rice

-Fried Foods


-Carbonated Beverages

-Foods Containing Preservatives or Additives

-Refined Sugar

-Sugar Substitutes

-White Flour and All Products Using It

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