Fasting and Prayer for Witnessing

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President of the Seventh-day Adventist World Church, Ted N.C. Wilson, and his wife Nancy, share how prayer can help us proclaim the 3 Angels’ Messages

SILVER SPRING, MARYLAND, UNITED STATES | TED N.C WILSON, PRESIDENT, SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTIST WORLD CHURCH

Ted Wilson: Greetings, friends. From time to time in our weekly video messages, you have heard me talk about the three angels’ messages recorded in Revelation 14. If ever there was a time in history that we should be urgently sharing God’s three final messages of love with the world, it is now. Our world is in crisis. Confusion abounds and people are searching for answers. Spiritual delusions are leading multitudes astray. Now, as never before, it’s time to study God’s Word so we can share these vital messages of hope and love found in Revelation 14!

Ellen White writes, “In a special sense Seventh-day Adventists have been set in the world as watchmen and light-bearers. To them has been entrusted the last warning for a perishing world. On them is shining wonderful light from the word of God. They have been given a work of the most solemn import—the proclamation of the first, second, and third angels’ messages. There is no other work of so great importance. They are to allow nothing else to absorb their attention. The most solemn truths ever entrusted to mortals have been given us to proclaim to the world. The proclamation of these truths is to be our work” (Testimonies for the Church, vol. 9, p. 19).

Nancy Wilson: As Seventh-day Adventists, we may have heard about the three angels’ messages for a long time, and yet, how well do we really know these messages? Can we explain them clearly to someone else? Have the beauty and relevancy of these angelic messages touched our lives in such a way that we are compelled to share them with others? If not, perhaps we need to see these special messages with new eyes.

TW: If you would like to understand these vital, life-saving messages personally and more deeply, and you sense a desperate need of the Holy Spirit so you can share the good news with others, Nancy and I invite you to join our worldwide church family for a special day of prayer and fasting on Sabbath, October 2.

The theme for the day is, “Sharing Three Final Messages of Love as We Pray for Righteousness by Faith.” Many helpful materials focusing on the three angels’ messages have been prepared by the Revival and Reformation Committee at the General Conference to help both the young and not-so-young understand and apply these vitally important messages today. I encourage you to download these very helpful materials at revivalandreformation.org.

NW: During this special day of prayer and fasting, we will be praying to understand Bible truth in a fresh way, to grow faith for the hard times, and to gain Holy Spirit power to witness and share God’s truth in a loving, winsome way.

You may wonder why this day of prayer also includes fasting. It’s important to recognize that we do not earn God’s love or salvation by fasting; rather, we fast because we are in earnest for His blessing. When we read the Bible, we see that fasting is not an option. It’s a given for Christians.

TW: In Matthew 6:17 and 18 we read, “But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.”

Notice that the text does not say, “IF you fast,” but rather, “WHEN you fast.” If we study all the fasts in the Bible, we find that every time God’s people pray and fasted, God worked mightily on their behalf–from deliverance from enemies in battle to supernatural deliverance from prison to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. This pattern has repeated itself throughout Christian history. Fasting has always been part of the believer’s lifestyle, just like prayer and Bible study. In fact, it’s interesting to note that every major character in the Bible fasted.

NW: We are told, “Now and onward till the close of time the people of God should be more earnest, more wide-awake, not trusting in their own wisdom, but in the wisdom of their Leader. They should set aside days for fasting and prayer. Entire abstinence from food may not be required, but they should eat sparingly of the most simple food” (Counsels on Diet and Foods, pp. 188, 189).

Fasting is more than just skipping meals–it is choosing to do without something in order to pray more intentionally and with more heart and soul focus. Many choose to skip meals, but not everyone can do without food completely, and not everyone chooses this type of fast. That’s okay. We encourage you to pray and ask God what type of fast He wants you to do.

You might choose to eat more simply, or you might choose to fast from social media, television, or other time-consuming habits. Whatever you do, it’s important to remember that fasting isn’t about earning a heavenly reward. The main point of fasting is removing distractions so we can seek Jesus more wholeheartedly.

TW: We invite you to be part of this special day! Whether you choose to fast or not, we believe God has a special blessing in store for you. Jesus invites His followers to pray together. In Matthew 18:19 and 20 we hear His words to us today: “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”

Friends, the Day of the Lord is fasting approaching. Now is the time to share God’s final messages of hope and salvation! We must not delay. Don’t miss the storehouse of blessings God has for you as we come together to fast and pray.

Once again, I encourage you to download the very helpful materials for this special day at: revivalandreformation.org.

May the Lord bless you as we come to Him in prayer just now. Father in heaven please be with each church member, each viewer, as they understand the need to focus upon your word, upon trying to illuminate distractions, and focusing upon the real truth. So Lord, guide our minds, bless us during this very special day of fasting and prayer. And Lord, help us to understand our true mission as we come to the end of time, recognizing that Jesus is coming soon very soon. Thank you for hearing us in this prayer, in Jesus’ name we ask it, amen.