In this wonderful and inspiring book, John Piper talks about fasting. John Piper is what I'd almost call a present day C.S. Lewis. Now I am not even all the way through the book, not even halfway. And even though I got it at the family christian book store, it is at Grace's book store as well. As Jesus puts it in Matthew and the other synoptics, (Matthew, Mark and Luke, but I bet he talks about it in John as well) Fasting is a large test: It pin-points to where your heart is. Is it with the Lord, or the large problem with the praise of men? That's not just something you can answer in two flat seconds.
It is not at all a sin if you fast while people are around; but it depends HOW you fast. After all, Piper says this: "Seen Fasting and Fasting To Be Seen is not the same thing." I agree. By your works...nevermind, I need to Rephrase that. After you've been baptised or know the Lord and your submission to him, it will show if you're fasting for God or glory for yourself. Praise of man is VERY DECEPTIVE. That's one reason why Fasting is a very complicated Spiritual Discipline. (Fasting is not a spiritual gift. Here's why: If you have the Lord in you, you'll find that you cannot DO without fasting.) Fasting is both Depression and Joy to the Lord. It is quoting Deuteronomy 8:3: "And he humbled you and let you hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that he might make you know that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord."
Another interesting thing is this: The Isrealites wandered in the wilderness for forty years...Guess how long Jesus fasted in the wilderness before the devil begins tempting him? Forty days. What a coincidence? (But guess what? That's no coincidence. If you believe otherwise, get your facts straight please.)
Lee Over 'N Out...