If you would, turn in your Bibles with me first to the book of
Joel chapter two. Joel chapter two. And when you reach the
book of Joel chapter two, just signify by saying, "Amen."
The book of Joel, the prophet Joel, the messenger Joel chapter
two. Praise the Lord. Amen? In Joel chapter two we will
begin with verse twelve. It says,
12. Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me
with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and
13. And rend your heart...
In other words, tear your heart. Don't worry about your
garment, but tear your heart.
13. ...and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious
and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and
repenteth him of the evil.
14. Who knoweth if he will return and repent, and leave a
blessing behind him; even a meat offering and a drink
offering unto the LORD your God?
15. Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn
16. Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble
the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts:
let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out
of her closet.
17. Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between
the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O
LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the
heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say
among the people, Where is their God?
18. Then will the LORD be jealous for his land, and pity his
Let us pray.
Most holy and gracious heavenly Father, we sanctify
ourselves in Your sight today. Father, give us ears to hear and
eyes to see, that we may receive Your Word. And Father, let
it go forth boldly with love and assurance, that the Lord God
Almighty is for us, and He's more than the world against us.
Dear Lord, hide Your son behind the cross, that Your people
would see You and not me. And let me decrease, Holy Spirit,
that You might increase. And anoint me today that I would
be a vessel unto honor, worthy to minister Your Word. In
Jesus' holy and blessed Name, amen.
In verse fifteen he said,
15. Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn
The prophet Joel voiced God's call to consecrate a fast, to set
aside a fast. His people in that land have been devastated
because of their disobedience. God's promise to those who
will come to Him with prayer and with fasting, with broken-ness and repentance of heart was found in verse twenty-five.
25. And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath
eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpiller, and the
palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you.
You see, in the land today God is calling for a fast. The Bible
says in Second Chronicles twenty, twenty, "Believe in the
Lord your God; so shall you be established. Believe in His
prophets, and so shall ye prosper."
Believe me as a messenger of God. God is calling for a fast
among the body of Christ. God is looking to restore what has
been taken from you. Glory to God. He said the land was
devastated. There was a famine that was going on.
When we look at the people of God, we have been believing
for miracles and signs and wonders. And if we take a survey,
there's a famine that's going on.
He told them, he said, "Don't worry about your outer
garments." He said, "Don't worry about the outer garments."
He said, "But tear your hearts in half, and then I will restore
the devastation that has come to your land."
Saints of God, listen today. There's no problem that cannot
be stopped with prayer and fasting. When I set myself aside
to seek the Lord, when I come into His Presence with
thanksgiving and into His courts with praise, when I lay down
who I think I am... Oh, you don't hear me today. He said if
you need restoration, it's on the way.
Fasting is a subject in the body of Christ of great importance.
Yes, singing is important. Yes, yes, hearing the Word is
important. But when I set aside that time to afflict my soul,
when I give up what my body craves (oh, you don't hear me
today), my Father that seeth in secret is going to reward me
openly. Oh, some of you don't know what I'm talking about
Every now and then I got to go on a fast. Every now and then
I got to get my flesh under.
The disciples were in a situation where there was a young
person with a deaf and dumb spirit. And they said every time
they turned around the devil was tormenting this child. So
they brought the child to the disciples. And the disciples
began to do what they knew to do. But the spirit would not
But then they brought the child to Jesus. And Jesus rebuked
the spirit, and the spirit came out of the boy. And the
disciples asked Jesus later, "Why could we not do this thing?"
And Jesus answered, "Because of your unbelief." And then
He went on to say, "This kind only comes out by prayer and
fasting." What do you mean, Jesus? The demon only comes
out? No. Your unbelief that all things are possible with God
is going to come out of you.
Prayer and fasting is one of the keys to our success. When I
don't know what to do, He knows what to do. When I set
myself aside to come at His feet, to get that good part like
Mary did, He's going to begin to minister to my needs.
If you would, turn with me in your Bibles to the book of
Isaiah chapter fifty-eight. When we look at Isaiah chapter
fifty-eight, it links fasting to the observation of the Sabbath
day, the day of rest that was established in the Old Testament
people. Israel's disrespect for and the desecration of the
Sabbath resulted in divine discipline.
People who come before God in prayer and fasting develop a
renewed appreciation for the things of God. God was saying
that the promise He made to Jacob could only be enjoyed to
the extent that they returned to the Lord and His ordinances in
Saints of God, God made you some promises. But they will
come to pass only to the extent that I'm willing to submit
myself unto His Word and to obedience of everything He
In the book of Isaiah chapter fifty-eight and verse eight
through fourteen. We're going to read that verse, and then
we're going to back through it. He said,
8. Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine
health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall
go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy rereward.
9. Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou
shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from
the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and
10. And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy
the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy
darkness be as the noonday:
Glory be to God today. Listen in verse eleven.
11. And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy
thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be
like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose
waters fail not.
12. And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste
places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many
generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the
breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.
13. If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing
thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight,
the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not
doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor
speaking thine own words:
14. Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will
cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed
thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the
LORD hath spoken it.
We find God's promised benefits for those who enter this
discipline with a serious heart and a spiritual focus. He said,
"Then," in verse eight, "Your light shall break forth like the
morning." In other words, "I'm going to give you insight and
When we look at that word "light" in the Hebrew (glory to
God), it means "understanding." As we engage in prayer and
fasting, God will give us the insight to solve problems (glory
to God) and to behave with discretion.
You got a problem in your life and you need and answer?
God will give you the understanding with prayer and fasting.
Revelation and illumination will go off on the inside of you.
You don't have to search out no prophet. Oh, you don't hear
me. Because He'll speak directly to your spirit man and give
you just what you need when you need it. Glory to God.
He said, "Then your light shall break forth like the morning."
There shall also be a remarkable, positive change in our
physical well-being. He said, "And thine health shall spring
forth speedily." You need a healing in your body? You need
to fast a little while. I know what the doctors told you, but the
real Doctor told me that I need to fast a little while. I need to
afflict myself a little bit longer.
He said, "Not only will I heal you, but I'll heal you quick,
fast, and in a hurry." Your health is connected to your prayer
and fasting life. The more I pray and fast, the more healthy I
will be, not only in my spiritual being, but in my physical
being. You got an ailment? You need to fast it out. In the
Name of Jesus. Speedy recovery comes from obedience to
the word of God.
He went on to say, "And thy righteousness shall go before
thee." Your righteousness shall go before you. You'll begin
to have a deeper sense of what is right. You see, everybody
knows good from evil. When you get a certain age (glory to
God), I don't care if you're saved or not saved, you have a
sense of what's good and what's evil.
But He says when I fast, I'm going to have a deeper sense of
what's right in the eyes of God. Let me tell you something.
People like Indians... Not all Indians, so don't take what I say
out of context.
But what they have a lot of times is what's called a shaman,
that lives in the village. And this is supposed to be a spiritual
person. When they have, you know, an ailment with their
body or they need to know a history of what was going on in
that particular tribe, they would go to the shaman because
he's supposed to be all-knowing.
But the reason why (glory to God) he has the spirituality that
he has is because he fasts. And when they fast, they begin to
see into the spirit realm. Oh, you don't hear me. But the
problem is, it's the wrong spirit.
You want to see in the Spirit? Start fasting. Starts setting
yourself aside. You won't see nothing if you don't consecrate
a fast. You'll always be in the dark about everything. People
will know more about you than you know about yourself.
It cleanses out the body. Even the world knows that. Doctors
prescribe it. They tell you that you need to fast for a while to
get all the toxins and the impurities out of your body. But
when I fast unto the Lord, He's going to get all the toxins and
the impurities out of my spirit man.
Go on a fast and see what happens. Your healing shall spring
forth speedily. Your righteousness shall go before you. And
then it went on to say the glory of the Lord shall be thy
rereward. They'll know that you've been in the Presence of
When Moses went up into the mountain to spend time with
the Lord, I'm sure he was in a place of fasting, because the
Lord was his food. But when he came down from the
mountain, the Bible said that his face was glowing. The
Glory of God was on his face. And they knew that he had
been in the Presence of the Lord.
Let me tell you something. If I fast and pray long enough, the
Glory of God is going to be on my face. I don't have to tell
nobody I'm fasting. They'll see it for themselves. Because
the Glory of the Lord will shine on my face. His majestic
Presence will follow after us.
How important is that? It's very important. Because when
God's Presence is with you, He will protect you and He will
provide for you. Whatever you need, if God is with you, you
don't have to worry about it.
Saints of God, it's time to fast.
In verse nine it said, "Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall
answer." We don't pray to God (listen) to get His attention.
We pray to the Father because... Let me give you a
revelation. We already have His attention. He said, "My eyes
are open and My ears are tense." You already have His
attention. Don't pray to get His attention. You already have
it. He just wants you to talk to Him for a little while.
Setting aside time to pray and fast, it'll bring us face to face
with God, with whatever has crept into our lives and is
hindering our relationship with Him.
In Psalm sixty-six and verse eighteen, the psalmist said,
18. If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:
When I fast, it's going to get the sin out of my life. Jeremiah
thirty-three, verse three, my wife's favorite Scripture, He said,
"Call upon Me and I'll answer thee and show thee..." He
didn't only say He would answer you.
He's going to open up your eyes that you could see
something. He said, "I'll show you great and mighty things
that thou knowest not." He's going to upon up the treasures
of darkness for you. He's going to let you see into the realm
Saints, I'm not just talking to be talking. I'm trying to teach
you something. Fasting, prayer and fasting is what we need.
In verse ten,
10. ...thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the
I'm going to get a release from spiritual oppression. If I begin
to fast, that spirit of oppression that's even over a city is going
to have to lift up off of me. Oh, you don't hear me, because
you ain't never been oppressed before. When I carry and I
allow a spirit of oppression in my life, it's going to carry it's
Oppression is going to lift off of me. It's going to help me to
pinpoint the problem. It's going to help me... Let me say that
again. Pinpoint the problem. And not only will I pinpoint the
problem, but it's going to give me the solution to the problem.
Many of us are able to pinpoint the problem, but we don't
know how to get a solution to the problem. I remember when
I was a manager. My manager over me, he told me to read a
book called "The One-Minute Manager."
Because too many times we can pinpoint the problem, but
God already gave us the solution. The Bible says that a wise
man is able to draw it out of the well. What well? The well
of my spirit. He has already placed an answer in your spirit.
But through prayer and fasting you'll draw it out.
In verse eleven,
11. And the LORD shall guide thee continually...
Moment by moment, guidance from the Lord. Every step I
take, every step I make, I'm guided by Him. The steps of a
good man are what? Ordered by the Lord. I don't have to
worry about where I am, because I know that I'm in the right
I don't care what my mind is saying. I don't care what my
intellect (glory to God) is saying. I know where I am. I'm
there because He guided me there. I'm always in the right
place at the right time. He guides me continually. My
sensitivity to His divine counsel has been heightened. I have
an increased awareness of His Presence.
Sometimes saints of God can say, you know, "Oh, I feel the
Presence of God." And then you look at the other people, and
they're sitting there like they don't feel nothing. Their
sensitivity is not there. Why? Because that flesh is too high.
Get that flesh under, and you'll feel what I feel.
God will satisfy your soul in drought. He's going to begin to
take care of those places that were scorched by the trials of
life, by your situations and circumstances. We'll be able to
find fulfillment in unlikely places, under unlikely
circumstances, and get this: at very unlikely times.
All of this from prayer and fasting. It's amazing to me that
He gives us such simple things to do, but because we live in a
physical world, they're so hard to do.
One of my professors at school said, "You know, people that
have a weight problem, why is there a weight problem?"
And I sat back and I said, "I want to know what you got to
say, because you're all skinny."
He said, "The solution is, stop eating. Take in less calories
than what you spend out." So simple logic, but so hard to do.
All of these fad diets, all of these pills taking, only to put the
weight back on after we've lost it. The remedy is to stop
eating so much.
Simple principles that He's given to us, even in giving. Give
and it shall be given. How simple is that? But it's the hardest
thing to do. Simple things. But prayer and fasting will bring
me under subjection. And when this flesh wants to get out of
line, I can hit it and say, "You better get back in the Name of
He'll satisfy our souls in drought. We're almost finished.
Can you stay with me a little while longer? He said He will
make fat our bones. He will give us strength to do more and
more of His work. The Bible says the liberal soul shall be
Why do we need all of this Word? So we can do His Word.
He said to drink milk when you first start out. But then after a
while I got to get off the milk, because I need the protein of
the meat to get the strength that I need.
Why do I need strength? Because I got work to do. I don't
need to sit on the bench and just get fatter and fatter. I need to
take what I've learned and apply it and pass it on to somebody
else instead of keeping it all to myself. I can quote Genesis to
Revelation, but I don't know how to lead you to Christ.
Prayer and fasting. Psalm one and verse three says we'll be
like a tree planted by the rivers of water. Why? Because He
said, "You shall be like a watered garden," fruitfulness
through the Holy Spirit that's within us, having ever-sufficient water.
When a garden has a sufficient water supply, it keeps on
producing. As I pray and fast, He says on the inside of me is
going to be like rivers of living water, and I'm going to be
like a tree planted by the rivers of that water, that bringeth
forth what? Fruit in it's season. My leaf shall not wither.
And whatever I do, whatever I put my hands to (oh, you don't
hear me today) is going to prosper. Glory to God.
In verse twelve He said, "Recovering and restoring what has
been lost by turning away from God." See, a lot of times we
can go on and on and on in our sin. And it seems as though
we're still prospering. But there's something being taken
away from you.
You see, because we work from the spiritual realm. That's
where God works from. You see, in the natural it looks one
way, but in the Spirit (glory to God) there's devastation and
disaster. Turning away from God, it brings about serious
He said, "Fret not thyself because of evil doers, neither be
thou envious against the workers of iniquity." Why?
Because they'll what? Soon be cut down.
Come back. Once we come back according to verse fourteen,
He said then we shall enjoy the heritage of Jacob.
Saints of God, it's time to fast. It's time to consecrate a fast.
Your relationship is not going right? You need to fast. You
don't have enough finances? Not only give, but you need to
go on a fast.
You need somebody in your house to get saved? You need to
fast. Stop talking so much and fast. Stop nagging and
badgering and fast. The God that sees in secret will reward
you openly. Your boss ain't acting right? You need to go on
a fast. He'll turn their hearts for you.
Saints, He said call the congregation. He said the solemn
assembly. He said call the elders, the ministers. Rend your
hearts. "Don't worry about what you look like, because I'm
looking at the inside. I'm not worried about the outside. I'm
looking at the inside."
And Joel said then He'll restore what the cankerworm, the
palmer worm, the caterpillar... He said that great army, what
they've taken from you is going to come back to you.
Come on, give God a handclap of praise today.