Fasting Births History-Making Moments
So Cornelius said, “Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour (3 pm) I prayed in my house, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing.” Acts 10:30 NKJV
Acts 10 is one of the most critical chapters in all of Scripture. That may sound over-the-top, but the events that take place between Simon Peter and Cornelius change the trajectory of the Early Church in a truly significant way. God had something major to communicate to His Church and He used a three-day fast to unlock forgiveness, salvation, and His Spirit to billions of souls!
An angel visits Cornelius with a message to send men to Joppa to bring Peter to Caesarea (where Cornelius was). Both cities were along the Mediterranean Sea, about 35 miles apart. The next day, as Cornelius’ men were approaching the city, Peter had a “prayer vision” and a voice told him to eat food considered impure and unclean under Jewish dietary laws. This happens three times in a row, and then a voice speaks to Peter: “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean” (v15). Then the Holy Spirit said to Peter, “Three men are looking for you, get up and go with them, for I have sent them” (v19-20).
Peter leaves Joppa, goes to Caesarea, and finds a large gathering of people in Cornelius’ house. It was against Jewish law for a Jew to associate with or even visit a Gentile (a non-Jew), but Peter was told to not consider anyone impure or unclean, so he entered Cornelius’s home and asked, “Why did you send for me?” Cornelius just finished a three-day season of fasting and prayer, which triggered his and Peter’s God-encounter; both experiences lead to the strategic moment that happens next.
Cornelius sets the stage for Peter, “We’re all here in the presense of God to listen to everything the Lord has commanded you to tell us” (v33). Peter shares the Good News of Jesus with the Gentiles—and everyone who believes in Jesus (both Jew and non-Jew) receives forgiveness of sin. As Peter was still preaching, God interrupted his message, filled Cornelius and his friends with the Holy Spirit, and they began speaking in tongues!
The Jewish believers in Jesus who came with Peter on this mission trip were astonished to see the Jewish–Gentile barrier that had existed for thousands of years come down in a moment when God’s Spirit responded to the Gentiles’ faith in Jesus! The Gentiles were then baptized in water too.
Cornelius’ decision to fast was the first domino to fall in a series of events that impacted many, many lives. What will come from your current season of fasting? History may lie in the balance.
If you are a Gentile reading this, you can link your own personal salvation to this moment in time, as well as the billions of other non-Jewish believers of Jesus in the world today and over the past 2,000 years. God used one person’s three-day fast to change all of human history! Wow, that’s incredible.
Is there a barrier in your life right now that needs to come down?
Is there a closed door that God wants to make an open door?
Is there a vision/dream that God wants to send to you as you fast?
Is God calling you to virgin territory on the mission field for pioneer work with an unreached people group? Believe God for a supernatural breakthrough as you fast and pray!
PRAY THIS OUT LOUD
God, take my life and use me as a history-maker in Your Kingdom. Speak to me and I will obey. My life, my steps, my words, my relationships are in Your hands. I declare that through this fast, my life will make a difference in the world, in Jesus Name!
What verse or phrase from today’s Scripture reading was the most meaningful to me? What key truths or observations stand out to me in today’s story of fasting? How does the Holy Spirit want to apply this to my life today?
This is reproduced from Griffin, Chris. Fasting For Breakthrough: A 21-Day Biblical Roadmap for Fasting and Prayer (p. 65). BookBaby. Kindle Edition.