Q: Is fasting a command? Since the Bible says " when you fast..." not " if "... A: No, fasting is not a command in Scripture. However, as the question points out, fasting was an expectation for disciples of Christ. Fasting from food and other things is not an exclusively Christian activity. Several other religions practice some form of fasting for spiritual purposes. Likewise, some doctors also recognize the purely physical benefits of fasting. Many today (particularly in an affluent nation such as the United States) scoff at the idea of not-eating as being a good option--much less an option that could be good for you ! However, there is a trend in the health and fitness industry called intermittent fasting that is bucking traditional views about nutrition and meal frequency. When Jesus was teaching His disciples (and the crowd that had gathered) about the Kingdom of God, He assumed that fasting would be a part of their lifestyle. In the sermon on the
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