fasting

Abstention from food which has been, and remains, a widespread religious obligation; it accompanies prayer, and is a sign of human humility. Fasting among the Hebrews (Judg. 20:26) became formalized during and after the Exile, and the Day of Atonement [[➝ Atonement, Day of, atonement]] was established as a national day of fasting. The prophets (e.g. Jer. 14:12) protested that the mere act of fasting, without repentance, did not bring results. Jews fasted in NT times on the Day of Atonement (Lev. 16:29) and Pharisees also on two days each week (Luke 18:12); Jesus fasted (Matt. 4:2), and the early Church practised fasting (Acts 13:2). Paul fasted before he was baptized (Acts 9:9), and this became a common practice in the Church, e.g before baptisms at Easter. It would seem that the interesting passage in Mark 2:18 ff.
reflects the Church's practice of fasting, which was out of step with what was remembered about Jesus, whose disciples were accused of not fasting (Mark 2:18) unlike those of John the Baptist. The reply in Mark (2:19–20) is that ' disciples will fast ‘when the bridegroom is taken away’. But bridegrooms are not normally ‘taken away’! Nor did the Pharisees have disciples (2:18). It does look as if an original saying about the joy in the presence of Jesus, like that of a marriage feast, has been expanded by the Church to defend itself in the course of current controversy with Jewish opponents.

Dictionary of the Bible.

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  • Fasting — is primarily the act of willingly abstaining from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time. An absolute fast is normally defined as abstinence from all food and liquid for a defined period, usually a single day (24 hours), or… …   Wikipedia

  • fasting —    Fasting is the practice of abstaining from food or drink for religious purposes, usually for a specified period of time. It passed into Protestantism from its Catholic and Jewish roots, but only in an attenuated form as a voluntary, occasional …   Encyclopedia of Protestantism

  • Fasting — Fasting, which was practised in Judaism and by the disciples of St. John the Baptist, was recommended by Christ both by example and teaching (Luke 4:2; Matt. 6:16­18 and Mark 2:20). It was observed by the Apostles (Acts 13:2; 14:23; 2 Cor. 11:27) …   Dictionary of church terms

  • fasting — Abstaining from food, usually for religious or ethical reasons. In ancient religions it was used to prepare worshipers or priests to approach deities, to pursue a vision, to demonstrate penance for sins, or to assuage an angered deity. All the… …   Universalium

  • Fasting — (Roget s Thesaurus) < N PARAG:Fasting >N GRP: N 1 Sgm: N 1 fasting fasting Sgm: N 1 xerophagy xerophagy Sgm: N 1 famishment famishment starvation GRP: N 2 Sgm: N 2 fast fast jour maigre Sgm: N 2 fast d …   English dictionary for students

  • Fasting — Fast Fast, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Fasted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Fasting}.] [AS. f[ae]stan; akin to D. vasten, OHG. fast[=e]n, G. fasten, Icel. & Sw. fasta, Dan. faste, Goth. fastan to keep, observe, fast, and prob. to E. fast firm.] 1. To abstain from… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • fasting — fast·ing fas tiŋ adj of or taken from a fasting subject <fasting blood sugar levels> <fasting urine> also occurring from or caused by fasting <fasting hyperglycemia> * * * fast·ing (fastґing) abstinence from all food and drink… …   Medical dictionary

  • Fasting —    Going without food of any kind as a religious discipline and as a help to the spiritual life, especially on the great Fasts of the Church. The Homily on Fasting says: Fasting is found to be of two sorts; the one outward, pertaining to the… …   American Church Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • fasting — badavimas statusas T sritis Kūno kultūra ir sportas apibrėžtis Būsena organizmo, kuris ilgą laiką negauna arba per mažai gauna gyvybiškai svarbių maisto medžiagų. Gali būti visiškas (organizmas negauna nei maisto, nei vandens) ir dalinis… …   Sporto terminų žodynas

  • fasting — see it’s ill speaking between a full man and a fasting …   Proverbs new dictionary

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