“Pastor, while fasting, can I take water when I get thirsty?”
It depends on what you’re fasting for. For instance, Matthew 5:6 says, “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled”. What that means is that your hunger and thirst is not necessarily towards physical food and water, but towards harnessing the full potential of your righteous nature.
That could also mean that even if you are offered physical food and water, there’s a ninety percent chance that you will refuse. I remember many years ago when I just started practicing a fasted life, days came when I hated food or anything that gave unnecessary energy to my physical senses. My spiritual senses were much active and I loved it that way. Whenever I saw people who were eating, I’d be so upset with them🤣. I’d say things like, “must you eat everyday? Can’t you at least fast for one day?”. I understood how Jesus felt when He asked His disciples if they couldn’t pray for one hour.
My hunger and thirst had yielded towards prayer and the study of the word. I was always hungry to pray and always thirsty for the revelation of God’s word. I just wanted to experience the fullness of my righteousness in Christ.
Just so you understand my experience, let me take a moment to explain what righteousness is. Righteousness isn’t just a nature you receive when you receive Jesus as Lord and Saviour, it is the justification by God that gives you the right to communicate with God, from God and as God, and enjoy obedience and compliance from creation. In other words, you shouldn’t expect obedience and compliance from this world except you’re operating from God or as God. As far as this world is concerned, by flesh shall no man prevail.
So I didn’t want the world to ignore me at all, yet that is a possibility that exists only when I operate from God or as God. Coincidentally, many Christians are struggling in this world only because they don’t understand this simple secret.
For the kind of fasting I did, I didn’t thirst for water nor get hungry for food, I was hungry and thirsty for power. Hunger didn’t drive me to the restaurant, it drove me to my prayer altar.
Consequently, I’ve engaged in fasting exercises where I had to take water to avoid dehydration. The only reason I can give for that is that the fast wasn’t as desperate as the previous times. I just wanted to subject my flesh so that my spirit can be sensitive to God. Just so there’s a balance in this message, let’s look at instances in scriptures that covers 2 major forms of fasting.
1 In the third year of Cyrus, king of Persia, a secret was unfolded to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar; and the thing was true, even a hard work: and he had knowledge of it, and the vision was clear to him.
2 In those days I, Daniel, gave myself up to grief for three full weeks.
3 I had no pleasing food, no meat or wine came into my mouth, and I put no oil on my body till three full weeks were ended.
So here we see a type of fast where Daniel simply expressed his grievances in prayer. A secret was revealed to him, and because he needed God’s intervention, he deprived himself of pleasurable meals and drinks, he also did not use cream on his body, until 21 days ended.
If you’d recall in Daniel chapter 1, he and his 3 Hebrew friends did something similar when they refused to eat the king’s rich food. They resorted to taking vegetables and water for 10 days.
In summary, he did eat something and most likely drank water, but not to his satisfaction. What this means is that eating or drinking during a period of fasting isn’t for satisfaction, but for strenght to do what’s needed. This is especially for Christians who like to combine their breakfast, lunch and dinner to break their fast. You’re not supposed to eat for pleasure during a fast, you eat for strenght to continue what you are fasting for.
The scripture didn’t also tell us what time of the day Daniel took water or ate the unpleasant food; however, I encourage people to take water if they sense dizzyness. It’s most likely caused by dehydration. It also means that your thirst isn’t yielded yet. The yielding of the thirst and hunger is an assistance by the Spirit of God, and it doesn’t release you until you’re done with the fast. So when I say I wasn’t thirsty for water, it’s a supernatural thing. The level of commitment you give to a fast is what would determine the level of assistance you’d get.
28 And he was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights; he did neither eat bread, nor drink water. And he wrote upon the tables the words of the covenant, the ten commandments.
9 And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.
What Moses and Apostle Paul went through is a kind of fast we call DRY FASTING, one which you neither take water nor food for the period of the fast. In Mathew 4:2, Jesus also went through this type of fasting.
This is also assisted by the Spirit of God. If you desire to do a dry fasting, ensure you are led by the Spirit of God to do it. If He leads you, then He’s sure to back you up. Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, Moses was in the very presence of God for the 40 days. If it is sponsored by God, then nothing will happen to your body, no matter how many days it takes.
I hope this has brought enlightenment to someone.
Remain ever blessed, in Jesus precious name!