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47 results for fasting found within the Blog

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Great Lent

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 13th February 2016 in fasting | Lent,Easter,fasting,Prayer,early church,early church fathers,paganism,pagan roots

fasting A spiritual and physical discipline   Update 2018: I recently published a book called 40 Days with the Fathers, which is a daily reading plan and an introduction to the Early Church Fathers that is spread across forty days, originally written as a Lenten reading plan. You can get a copy by clicking here. Lent 2016: Lent is upon us once again! Even though we are already four days into the fast (according to Western tradition) I thought it’d be good to write something on the discipline of fasting. And, much like any major holiday, there is the usual arguments and accusations about how it's all just pagan festivities with a "Christian mask". Eas...
 

fasting: A spiritual and physical discipline

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 27th May 2019 in fasting | fasting,didache,discipline,self control,Lent,early church,early church fathers

The topic of fasting often comes up in online discussion groups that I'm a part of, more often in Protestant circles where the practice is more often sidelined in low churches. So let's take a look at the practice of fasting from a practical and historical view, as it seems to be a spiritual discipline which has been pushed aside in many churches today, with prayer, worship and bible reading taking more precedence in a Christian's life instead (not that those are bad things to do!). Why fast? There are many reasons to fast, and recent studies have shown a lot of health benefits that can be derived from fasting. But on the spiritual side of life, there are also...
 

Spiritual Disciplines of the Early Church: Ancient Practices for the 21st Century

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 17th June 2019 in Early Church |

...s regular fasting, since Jesus had said “when you fast”, not “if”. Typically, fasting was done every week on Wednesday and Friday, based on Matthew 6:16–18, and also to honour the days of the Passion and crucifixion in later tradition. “But let not your fasts be with the hypocrites; … but fast on the fourth day (Wednesday) and the Preparation (Friday). … [But pray] as the Lord commanded in His Gospel (the Lord’s Prayer) … Thrice in the day thus pray.” Didache (c. 50 – 70) Alongside fasting, praying the Lord’s Prayer three times a day (morning, noon, evening) was a common discipline. From around the third century, liturgy and pra...
 

Lent Day 39: Leo the Great: Sermon XLIX (On Lent XI)

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 14th April 2017 in Lent | Lent,great lent,fasting,early church fathers,devotional,daily reading,Doctor of the Church,lectures,Leo the Great,St Leo,Pope Leo I,sermon,almsgiving

...of people fasting to renew their faith and discipline in following Christ. Even those who had slipped into worldly cares, become lukewarm or were just weak in faith, “furnished [themselves] with spiritual armour” and renewed their enthusiasm! Through Jesus's victory on the cross, many people turned to faith, and so Satan was “driven from the hearts of those he once possessed” and was stripped of his power over such people. But as James wrote, “all of us make many mistakes” (James 3:2), so we must all be willing to forgive one another, in order that we don't violate the holy command in the Lord's prayer which we bind ourselves to, where it says, “f...
 

Lent Day 21: Athanasius: Life of Anthony: Chaps. 1-10

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 24th March 2017 in Lent | Lent,great lent,fasting,early church fathers,devotional,daily reading,Athanasius,Bishop of Alexandria,Confessor,Doctor of the Church,Anthony the Great

...r for his fasting and sleeping on the ground; the meekness of one and the long-suffering of another he watched with care, while he took note of the piety towards Christ and the mutual love which animated all. When his reputation had spread throughout the villages, the people “saw that he was a man of this sort, used to call him God-beloved. And some welcomed him as a son, others as a brother”. But as we draw closer to God, the more attention we can also draw from our adversary, the devil. Having seen that someone so young could be so pious, the enemy began “whispering to him the remembrance of his wealth, care for his sister, claims of kindred, love of...
 

Lent Day 22: Athanasius: Life of Anthony: Chaps. 11-20

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 25th March 2017 in Lent | Lent,great lent,fasting,early church fathers,devotional,daily reading,Athanasius,Bishop of Alexandria,Confessor,Doctor of the Church,Anthony the Great

...lean from fasting and striving with the demons”; and being full of the Spirit, “through him the Lord healed the bodily ailments of many present, and cleansed others from evil spirits” and with godly wisdom he countless counselled many various people in need. He began preaching from Romans 8:32 about how God didn’t hold anything back, but gave up even his only Son, and continued “exhorting all to prefer the love of Christ before all that is in the world”, which led many to prefer the solitary life of devotion to God than to their worldly pleasures, and eventually caused many groups to gather “even in the mountains, and the desert was colonised by ...
 
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