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The 21-Day Daniel Fast

“At that time I, Daniel, mourned for three weeks. I ate no choice food; no meat or wine touched my lips; and I used no lotions at all until the three weeks were over.” Daniel 10:2-3

The Prophet Daniel recorded several times of fasting, which can be found in the Old Testament Book of Daniel. For this fast, Daniel was seeking God’s wisdom, direction and insight. He had received powerful visions and dreams about times to come and he wanted understanding.

As a way of  devoting himself to the Lord and seeking God’s wisdom, Daniel fasted for 21 days, eating no delicacies or meat, and drinking no wine. This would be considered a “partial fast” since some food was consumed. This differs from what is called a “normal fast,” which is eating no food and drinking only water; and from an “absolute fast,” which is eating no food and drinking no liquids.

We don’t know for sure why Daniel chose a partial fast in Daniel 10:2, 3 as opposed to a normal fast, which it seems he did in Daniel 9:3. The length of the fast in the 9th chapter isn’t noted, so perhaps Daniel knew that a physically taxing 21-day fast from all food wouldn’t be wise considering his duties.

What we do know is that the 21-day partial fast resulted in Daniel seeing visions of angels and receiving powerful direction from the Lord.

Most Christians who will fast in the 2008 New Year Fast will chose the form of the 21-day Daniel Fast. This will  mean confining food intake to vegetables and fruits, and drinking only water (pure fruit and pure vegetable juices are considered acceptable).

Fasting has benefits for the spirit, the soul, and the body. However, if you have health issues, please consult your health care provider before starting any fast, including the 21-day Daniel Fast.

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