“Moreover when ye fast…”
“And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes: And I prayed unto the Lord my God”
“But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.”
Is it Lawful to Fast on the Lord’s Day?
Order of Contents
Burges, Cornelius – Two Sermons Preached… at Two Public Fasts. The former, opening the necessity and benefit of washing the heart; the latter, discovering the vanity and mischief of an heart unwashed Ref 1642/5 Westminster divine
Spurstowe, William – England’s Pattern and Duty in its Monthly Fasts presented in a sermon, preached to both Houses of Parliament Assembled being sermon 5 on 1 Sam. 7:6 in The Sermons of William Spurstowe Pre ToC Buy 1643 Westminster divine
Chambers, Humphrey – A Divine Balance to Weigh Religious Fasts In. Applied to present use, in a sermon preached… at their public fast on Zech. 7:5-7 Ref 1643 Westminster divine
Palmer, Herbert – The Soul of Fasting: or Affections Requisite in a Day of Solemn Fasting and Humiliation, according to the pattern, Neh. 9:5, etc ToC 1644 Westminster divine
Coleman, Thomas – God’s Unusual Answer to a Solemn Fast. Or, some observations upon the late sad success in the west, upon the day immediately following our public humiliation; in a sermon before the Houses of Parliament, on a fast specially set apart upon that occasion, Sept. 12, 1644 ToC Westminster divine, Erastian
Proffet, Nicholas – England’s Impenitency under Smiting, causing anger to continue, and the destroying hand of God to be stretched forth still. Set out in a sermon preached before the Honourable House of Commons, at a Public Fast, Sept. 25, 1644 on Isa. 9:13 33 pp. Westminster divine
Vines, Richard – The Purifying of Unclean Hearts and Hands. Opened in a Sermon preached… at their solemn fast in XII Sermons Preached upon Several Public Occasions Ref 1658 Westminster divine
Mr. Barker – A Religious Fast. The duty whereof is asserted, described, persuaded in a brief, exercise upon Mark 2:20 on Mk. 2:20 in Puritan Sermons, vol. 2
Hacket, John – Fasting on Neh. 1:4 in Tracts of the Anglican Fathers, no. 4, Practical, also in A Century of Sermons upon Several Remarkable Subjects: Preached by the Right Reverend Father in God, John Hacket Ref 1675 Westminster divine
Manton, Thomas – in Works 15
A Fast Sermon on Isa. 43:22
A Fast Sermon on Mal. 3:7
Owen, John – A Fast Sermon, Christian Duty Under the Hidings of God’s Face on Isa. 8:17 in Posthumous Sermons First Published in 1854 in Works, vol. 16
A’Brakel, Wilhelmus – ‘Fasting’ in The Christian’s Reasonable Service, vol. 4
Henry, Matthew – in Works, vol. 2
Fast Sermon I on Isa. 8:12-13
Fast Sermon II on Isa. 42:21
Fast Sermon III on Jer. 14:7
Fast Sermon IV on Mt. 13:7
Boston, Thomas – ‘A Memorial Concerning Personal and Family Fasting’ on Zech. 12:12 in Works, vol. 11, pp. 343-393
The occasion for Thomas Boston having written this piece on family fasting:
“The mortality in our perish is not over yet, though I hoped my child had closed it: but just while I was writing this, I heard of the death of a mother of four small children… carried off at night by a sickness, so far as I could understand, not above two hours long long. Alas! we have provoked our God.
By the awful voice of Providence continuing, I was led to Zech. 12:12, ‘And the land shall mourn, every family apart,’ etc., on which I dwelt from 11th March till 20th May; and for some time after, on Ps. 126:5, ‘They that sow in tears, shall reap in joy.’ Upon the former of these I pressed the duty of personal and family fasting, among other things. And this was not without fruit. I knew that some were engaged in these duties; particularly James Biggar’s family, on which the hand of the Lord lay long and heavy, and carried off several of them…” – Memoirs, p. 304
Edwards, Jonathan – Fast Days in Dead Times on Isa. 58:3-5 in Sermons and Discourses, 1734-1738 being WJE Online, Vol. 19
Wesley, John – When You Fast on Mt. 6:16-18
MacLaurin, John – Contents of a National Fast Day Sermon on Ps. 119:26 1745 in The Works of Rev. John MacLaurin ed. W.H. Goold (Edinburgh, 1860), vol. 2, p. 507 ff. Scottish divine
‘Fasting’ no date or source info, 7 paragraphs
A Short Conversation on Fasting and Prayer in Practical Truths
Miller, Samuel – The Duty, the Benefits & the Proper Method of Religious Fasting, Dan. 9:3, Two Sermons (1831)
Spurgeon, Charles – Sad Fasts Changed to Glad Feasts
Rishel, Joel – ‘Why God’s People should Fast’ (2002) 9 pp.
Rishel holds an M.Div. from Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary. He has been the Director of Operations for the publisher Soli Deo Gloria.
Downame, George – 1st Treatise, of the Christian Exercise of Fasting 63 pp. in The Christian’s Sanctuary whereinto being retired, he may safely be preserved in the midst of all dangers… (London, 1604) See also the Analysis of this treatise.
Hildersham, Arthur – The Doctrine of Fasting and Prayer, and Humiliation for Sin Delivered in  sundry Sermons at the Fast appointed by public authority, in the year 1625 (London, 1633)
Du Moulin & Henry Wilkinson – Repentance & Fasting Buy
Du Moulin (1601-1684), was a Reformed French Calvinist, and Wilkinson (1566-1647) was a Reformed preacher and scholar and member of the Westminster Assembly.
On the Nature of Fasting
A Fresh Suit Against Human Ceremonies in God’s Worship… (Amsterdam: Thorp, 1633), Manuduction, ch. 12, section 2, pp. 145-46
“The truth is that fasting is such a help to extraordinary humiliation, as moderate feasting is to extraordinary thanksgiving, and therefore [fasting] is no more worship than Christian feasting: And to this purpose do our divines answer, concerning this place, which is ordinarily objected by every Papist, as here by the Rejoinder [of Ames’s opponent].
See Chemnitius upon these words. See Polanus, Syntagma, bk. 9, ch. 8, ‘Fasting is a help to prayer, a sign of humility and repentance, but is not a worship of God.’
5. Fasting such as Hannah’s was, is not a human institution, as our ceremonies are, but partly natural, when the whole man is taken up with greater and more instant imployment, exclusive of all ordinary refreshments: and partly of divine application, in extraordinary humiliation, so that it has ground and example both in the Old & New Testament, which our ceremonies are destitute of.”
On Days of Public Fasting
A Peaceable & Temperate Plea for Paul’s Presbytery in Scotland (1642), Chapter 20, Article 7
“The fast is indicted [called and set] eight days before, and the causes laid open for preparing of the people for humiliation (as Joel 2:1-3; Isa. 22:12,13). We have no anniversary [annual] and set fasts or feasts either, because God Himself by his judgment imminent, or already inflicted, or by permitting his people to follow their own ways, calls to fasting and mourning (Isa. 22:13, Joel 2:1-6, etc.), and so by his mercies and wonderful deliverances calls to extraordinary joy of thanksgiving (Ps. 118:24). The doctrine of the Law is preached (as Joel 2 and Isa 58), and the fast observed with abstinence from meat and drink, and carnal and ordinary pleasures (Joel 2:16).”
Love, W. DeLoss – The Fast & Thanksgiving Days of New England (Boston, 1895) 600 pp.
Natural vs. Instituted Worship
Regulative Principle of Worship
Natural Gestures & Customs in Worship; of Reverence
Distinguishable Aspects in the Elements of Worship
Opinion of Sanctity & Necessity: Not Essential to False Worship