The Need for More Prayer and Fasting
by Kenneth F. Haney
Editors Note: Written by Bishop Kenneth Haney and used as a Guest post with permission of Sister Joy Haney.
Have we lost passion for apostolic power? Almost weekly I am ministering in different districts throughout North America. The majority of these meetings are conferences and ministers’ meetings, and each has its own agenda. It is refreshing and gratifying to find so many of our ministers in attendance. Almost without exception, these meetings focus on revival, church growth, missions, and reaching a lost world.
Without question, there is among us a quest for apostolic power and authority, which is essential if we are to impact the world. The question is, “How can we obtain apostolic power and authority?” The simple answer is to look at the original blueprint: the Book of Acts. There are several components, of course, but I fear that at times we are overlooking prayer and fasting. We preach about it, write about it, and refer to it in Scripture; yet few have reached the magnitude of apostolic power referred to in the Book of Acts.
Jesus and the apostles gave themselves to much prayer and fasting, which is the real source of apostolic power. Prayer and fasting takes time and commitment. It is never pleasant to go without food. Our flesh rebels. Time spent in prayer is very difficult to find. We all have many duties. Preachers have many meetings, day and night. We can become slaves to the fast pace of a modern generation. To achieve spiritual authority with signs and wonders, our wills and our flesh must decrease; He must increase. For this to happen, there must be more time spent in the presence of the Holy Spirit, listening to His voice, and taking time to shut out the din of the world. We must take time to be spiritually refreshed and to be in tune with the Master.
Jesus referred to these two foundational truths of the Christian walk—“when ye pray” and “when ye fast”—in Matthew 6:5-7, 16. He expected it of the church. It was not debatable; this was the way of power and disciplines. Some things will not happen until there is prayer and fasting as demonstrated in the story of the young man who needed to be delivered from a spirit that would throw him into the fire and try to destroy him. When the disciples asked why they were unable to deliver him, Jesus answered: “This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting” (Mark 9:29).
The early church did what Jesus taught them to do: “As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away” (Acts 13:2-3). Those who sincerely seek God in prayer and fasting will enter into a dimension where the Holy Ghost is mightily at work.
As the end time is being ushered in, the war cry is sweeping around the world, and many unprecedented events are transpiring. This is the time for the church universally to take hold of this simple way of power and seek to live in the realm of the Spirit as never before.
As the church embraces the biblical lifestyle of prayer and fasting, there will be an increase in miracles, revival, signs, and wonders. There is no magic method; there is only the Word: “Nothing, but by prayer and fasting!”