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Doctrine in dialogue format



Penelope Potter Ss.T


I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection.

"Good morning children."


"Is everyone ready to begin their Sunday School lesson for today?"


"Very good. Then we will begin. Today's lesson is about....Yes Julie, you have something you would like to ask before we begin our lesson?"

"Yes Miss Potter. Why do people speed?"

"Why do people speed? Well Julie, people speed because they're in a hurry to get somewhere. Why do you ask such a question at this time?"

"Because Miss Potter, my mother speeds about once a month and I don't think it's good for her to go without eating for a whole day. I'm afraid she'll get sick and starve to death if she speeds too much."

"Oh, you mean she fasts Julie. Fasting is when a person goes without food for a day or more, or sometimes just for one meal. Some people fast in order to lose weight, and others fast because it's a ritual of some nature. There are lots of reasons a person might fast. But you needn't worry about your mother Julie, a person can go a great many days without food and not be hurt by it unless they have some physical illness that requires they eat more regularly. Does that answer your question?"

"Kinda' Miss Potter. But why do people fast? Does God want us to fast? Should I fast?"

"The Bible doesn't come right out and say we must fast Julie, but it is rather apparent that fasting was a custom during Bible times. I, just as my own opinion, don't think it would be good for you to fast at such a young age unless there was some good reason for it."

"But why do people fast Miss Potter? I like to eat. It's fun to eat. Don't people who fast like to eat?"

"I'm sure they do Julie. Fasting isn't something we do because we want to go without food. Fasting is going without something we really want, and that is why some people choose to go without food."

"That doesn't sound right to me Miss Potter. They do it because it's what they don't want to do it? Why do they do it then? Do you fast Miss Potter?"

"Fasting is a form of discipline Julie. For instance, if you see a big delicious cake on the table that your mother just baked for someone else, what do you do?"

"Well Miss Potter, what I want to do is cut a big piece out of the cake and eat it. But I'd get in trouble if I did that. So I just look at it, and when I can't stand to look at it without eating it, I go outside and play so I can forget about the cake."

"Good for you Julie. What you did was to use self-control. You were demonstrating your ability to discipline yourself. In a way you were fasting at that moment."

"I was Miss Potter? But I didn't go without eating, all I did was not eat what I wanted to eat. That's not like what my mother does. She goes all day and not eat anything but water."

"You used a form of self discipline which is one purpose of fasting, and perhaps the reason people in the Bible would fast. It's natural for us humans to want to do whatever our feelings tell us to do. Often these feelings get us into trouble if we are unable to resist doing what our feelings tell us to do. In order to learn to keep ourselves under the control of our conscience we do something just the opposite of what we feel like doing. Fasting is one of those ways to gain that self-control. Does that answer your question Julie?"

"I think so Miss Potter. I'm glad I didn't eat that piece of cake, because if I did then I would have to fast like my mother does."

24Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. 25And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. 26I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: 27But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway. (1Cor 9:)

26And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: (Rev 2:)

11For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; 13Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; 14Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. (Titus 2:)




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