Fasting for Personal Breakthroughs
I believe that there is a greater spiritual significance to the extended 40-day fast than what we have yet realized. If the bitterest battles we fight are against temptation and the devil, then extended fasting is the atomic weapon in our arsenal. Jesus prepared himself to overcome the intense temptations of Satan by going on a 40-day fast. Elijah’s experience with the 40-day fast is a clear example of this as well. He had just witnessed one of the most dramatic demonstrations of God’s power, yet despite this incredible victory on Mount Carmel, Jezebel was still alive and dominating the land. Imagine being discouraged after seeing supernatural fire blaze down on your sacrifice. Talk about an altar call! Furious about the death of her prophets and under the possession of the spirit of Ashtoreth, Jezebel vowed to kill Elijah, who in turn ran for his life. The angel of the Lord found Elijah on the verge of collapse and under the spirit of suicide. This was no weak or ordinary spell.
The spell of Jezebel often comes upon a man or a woman and, in particular, leaders with the spirit of adultery. It seduces even the bondservants into sexual immorality. In the face of this demonic spell, the Lord initiates a 40-day fast and leads his broken servant to a place of cleansing, repentance and new commissioning. Elijah returned to the same place where Moses generations before had fulfilled his own 40-day fast. I believe Elijah’s 40-day fast was a mighty act of spiritual warfare against Jezebel’s sorceries and brought him back to a place where he could reclaim covenant mercies for himself and the nation. I believe the 40-day fast can be the channel though which the Holy Spirit can cleanse us from tormenting thoughts, demonically inspired addictions, as well as heal us of chronic diseases.
In my own experience, I have seen the power of God bring personal freedom through the vehicle of 40 days of fasting. In 2003 before The Call Los Angeles, I was led sovereignly while on a 40-day fast to pray for freedom from the inward toleration of Jezebel. The scripture says, “Nevertheless I have this against you: that you tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my bondservants into sexual immorality.” God warns of coming judgment and by that judgment declares that, “The church will know that I am He who searched the hearts and minds.”
I was struggling with temptations of the lust of the eyes and was led supernaturally on a 40-day fast in which I prayed every day, “Cleanse me, Jesus, from any inward toleration of the spirit of Jezebel and the lust of the eyes.” I also prayed every day that God would break through over California against that spirit. On the 31st day of a water fast, God visited me mightily in a dream, and I experienced personal deliverance and a promise for breakthrough in California. The personal freedom was exhilarating, and soon thereafter, the governor of California, who was signing all kinds of ungodly bills, was removed from office and I was given a supernatural opportunity to warn the mayor of San Francisco that he would be held accountable for what he would do in his city. He is the one who began to marry the homosexuals.
In the book The Prophetic Whisper, Richard Gazowsky shares the significance of a 40-day fast that the Lord gave him:
My wife and I had gone to Carmel, California for a time of extended prayer. On the third day, while we were praying at the beach, a swarm of flies ascended from the ocean surface as if orchestrated by an invisible conductor and swept like a blanket across the water and onto the beach. I ran over to the place where Sandy was praying to see if she was alright.
“Richard it is so strange,” she said. “While I was praying, I brought up the name of a pastor’s wife whom I knew had been tempted to commit adultery, intending to intercede for her. As soon as I mentioned her name, these flies rose up off the ocean.”
No sooner had she finished, then the Lord quickened my spirit and said, “I am going to show you a secret vulnerability in Satan’s kingdom.” His weakness is in the flies. Later that day, we went to the Carmel public library and looked up the word fly. I discovered the meaning of Beelzebub, and found one of the names of Satan is “Lord of the Flies.” Scientists have discovered that flies have a reproductive period from 4 hours to 40 days depending upon the species. When pest controllers go to eradicate flies in a certain area, they spray pesticides everyday for a 40-day period. If they destroy the reproductive cycles of presently existing flies, they can kill off a whole generation of future flies. I then saw what God was trying to show me. Satan can’t fight for long periods. If a Christian will pray consistently for a 40-day period, he will be able to conquer most satanic strongholds in his life.
On this 40th anniversary of the 1967 landmark of the sexual revolution called the “Summer of Love,” we are calling for a 40-day fast beginning on the evening of May 28 through TheCall Nashville on 7-7-07. Our purpose is to call two generations to a 40-day season of fasting from food (the more intense the better) and from the media to cleanse ourselves of the affects of the spirit that seduces our nation into sexual immorality, greed, entertainment, dependency and spiritual malaise. Let us cry out, “God, break the pornographic plague off of the church and the homosexuality that is invading a young generation!” Let us cry out for deliverance from the spell of Jezebel, witchcraft, suicidal thoughts, drug addictions and eating disorders. Let parents pray daily for their children’s freedom. Pray for 40 days that the prodigals come home. Let a generation cry, “No toleration of Jezebel! No toleration!” And watch Christ break the power of Beelzebub, the lord of the flies, and once again the shout will be heard, “Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty I am free at last!” (Martin Luther King, Jr.)
Posted by Lou Engle