Luke 2:37 "Anna, a prophetess ..served God with fastings" ( plural )
There is more than one kind of fast. During my study on Ezekiel's wheels I felt the Lord instruct me to not only fast my food but also to fast my regular activities and even speech. That meant not talking to people - something that certainly curtails going about ones daily business! I felt the Lord instruct me, "Whenever you fast your activity you are also to fast your tongue." So I did a study on the relationship between the tongue and our daily activity.
"Set a watch over the door of my lips"
"If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body. Indeed, we put bits in horses' mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body."
Activity and speech are connected. That is why you fast your speech when you want to control the body. By fasting your speech you bridle the whole body, and the busyness of the flesh is brought under control.
Verse 4 "Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, ( of activity ) they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires. Even so the tongue."
Verse 6 "it sets on fire the course of nature"
Literally, "The tongue sets in motion the wheel of existence."
When you bridle the tongue, the wheels of activity grind to a halt.
"You do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, "If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that."
When Jesus submitted His will to the will of the Father and went the way of the cross, He "opened not His mouth." A submitted tongue is a submitted will. The tongue is the unruly member that needs to be crucified daily.
It is Biblical and normal to receive a vision and not be permitted to speak.
"But behold, you will be mute and not able to speak until the day these things take place. But when he came out, he could not speak to them; and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple, for he beckoned to them and remained speechless."
When God has dealt with our tongue, we go forth in the power of the Spirit.
"I will make your tongue cling to the roof of your mouth, so that you shall be mute. But when I speak with you, I will open your mouth, and you shall say to them,
"Thus says the Lord God."
Isaiah 6: 5,6
"Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of Hosts." Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth with it."
In Revelation 8:1 there is silence at this altar for half an hour. This coal, taken from the altar of silence, purges our lips, and takes away our iniquities.
Isaiah 6:7-8 "Behold, this has touched your lips; your iniquity is taken away, and your sin is purged."
Then the Lord says, "Whom shall I send? Who will speak the Word of the Lord?"
Only after having his lips purged with a coal taken from the altar of silence, is Isaiah able to say,
" Here am I. Send me! "
We are not fit to speak the Word of the Lord, or for God to use us, until our lips have first been silenced and sanctified by the purging coals of His Holy presence.
Not until all that is within us has been brought to nothing will we ever amount to anything.
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