We believe there to be 3 main types of fasting found in the Bible. We have added scriptures to support them and included a 4th type of fast to reflect our present time. You can follow along and select which type of fast will work best for you at this time.
1) Absolute Fast: This can be used in an emergency situation. It provides great Deliverance for a life or death situation. If you have a huge dilemma or a nation is facing a terrible situation, much breakthrough can be seen via the Absolute fast. Also, you can fast individually or corporately with this type.
It includes a 3 day fast without food or water. We see this type of fast in the Book of Esther. Queen Ester called the entire nation of Israel to fast for their deliverance. I have never fasted without water more than a day. I would suggest that without consulting your doctor and ultimately the Holy Spirit, do not deprive your body from water. It is amazing how long a human body can stand without food, but not without water. However, if God is calling you to this kind of fast, always follow His leading first.
As seen below in the scriptures, Queen Esther called her people to fast for 3 days without water and food. Also, Jonah fast in the same manner.
“Then Esther sent this reply to Mordecai: “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish.””
“When Jonah’s warning reached the king of Nineveh, he rose from his throne, took off his royal robes, covered himself with sackcloth and sat down in the dust. This is the proclamation he issued in Nineveh: “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let people or animals, herds or flocks, taste anything; do not let them eat or drink. But let people and animals be covered with sackcloth. Let everyone call urgently on God. Let them give up their evil ways and their violence. Who knows? God may yet relent and with compassion turn from his fierce anger so that we will not perish.” When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened.”
2) Supernatural Fast: A Commissioning Fast. This type of fasting is known for Ordination or commissioning for a higher ministry or a Divine task. This fast also includes fasting without water or food, liked the Absolute Fast, however, it is for a total of 40 days. Moses fasted two times for forty days without food and water. He took the Ark of the Covenant and The Ten Commandments to the Israelites. This was the first law that was given to mankind that was written by the very finger of God.
Also, we Jesus fasted in the Wilderness for forty days. Then His earthly ministry started. You can see in both cases, there is a huge spiritual responsibility and task before each individual. I wish that every Pastor, before their ordination by men and taking the office, would do this fast. I know very few people who have done this fast with water, therefore, please consult your doctor before you decide to start a 40 day or any fast. BUT obey God above all.
Moses was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant-the Ten Commandments.
3) Daniel Fast: Abstaining from certain foods for a period of time such as luxury foods. Or this can be solely a juice fast or liquid fast. Daniel fasted for 21 days on vegetables. He had no processed carbs, juices, no coffee, no sweets! No choice food means, you do not eat anything pleasurable. You can eat grains but no overeating. The purpose of this fast is self-discipline thereby, denying self-indulgence. This includes avoiding luxury restaurants. You need to be careful with this fast because a lot of people eat too much beans and heavy protein and high carb vegetables. Remember you cannot trick God. It has to be a sacrifice.
“At that time, I, Daniel, mourned for three weeks. I ate no choice food; no meat or wine touched my lips; and I used no lotions at all until the three weeks were over. On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing on the bank of the great river, the Tigris, I looked up and there before me was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of fine gold from Uphaz around his waist. His body was like topaz, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude. I, Daniel, was the only one who saw the vision; those who were with me did not see it, but such terror overwhelmed them that they fled and hid themselves.
Daniel 10: 11-12
He said, “Daniel, you who are highly esteemed, consider carefully the words I am about to speak to you, and stand up, for I have now been sent to you.” And when he said this to me, I stood up trembling. Then he continued, “Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them.”
4) Fasting from Indulgences: As Christians, we may listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit. God may speak to us individually for anything that He wants us to sacrifice for a period of time. This can be fasting from many things such as coffee, deserts, TV (I suggest anyone who is fasting to cut their cords with TV and social media and smart phones. It will increase the benefits of fasting.) Fasting from shopping and being online all the time. I usually fast at least a couple of days a week having only one meal a day. I fast through the breakfast and a lunch and eat dinner only. If you would like to start training your body for a long fast, this may be the best starting point for you.