The following shows every verse in the Bible that uses the words “fast” or “fasting”.*
He was there with Yahweh forty days and forty nights; he neither ate bread, nor drank water. He wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the ten commandments.
Then all the children of Israel, and all the people, went up, and came to Bethel, and wept, and sat there before Yahweh, and fasted that day until evening; then they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before Yahweh.
They gathered together to Mizpah, and drew water, and poured it out before Yahweh, and fasted on that day, and said there, “We have sinned against Yahweh.” Samuel judged the children of Israel in Mizpah.
They took their bones and buried them under the tamarisk tree in Jabesh, and fasted seven days.
They mourned, wept, and fasted until evening, for Saul, and for Jonathan his son, and for the people of Yahweh, and for the house of Israel; because they had fallen by the sword.
David therefore begged God for the child; and David fasted, and went in, and lay all night on the ground.
Then his servants said to him, “What is this that you have done? You fasted and wept for the child while he was alive, but when the child was dead, you rose up and ate bread.”
He said, “While the child was yet alive, I fasted and wept; for I said, ‘Who knows whether Yahweh will not be gracious to me, that the child may live?’
But now he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.”
She wrote in the letters, saying, “Proclaim a fast, and set Naboth on high among the people.
They proclaimed a fast, and set Naboth on high among the people.
When Ahab heard those words, he tore his clothes, and put sackcloth on his flesh, and fasted, and lay in sackcloth, and went softly.
all the valiant men arose, and took away the body of Saul, and the bodies of his sons, and brought them to Jabesh, and buried their bones under the oak in Jabesh, and fasted seven days.
Jehoshaphat was alarmed, and set himself to seek to Yahweh. He proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.
Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, to seek of him a straight way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance.
So we fasted and begged our God for this: and he was entreated of us.
When I heard these words, I sat down and wept, and mourned certain days; and I fasted and prayed before the God of heaven,
Now in the twenty-fourth day of this month the children of Israel were assembled with fasting, and with sackcloth, and earth on them.
In every province, wherever the king’s commandment and his decree came, there was great mourning among the Jews, and fasting, and weeping, and wailing; and many lay in sackcloth and ashes.
“Go, gather together all the Jews who are present in Shushan, and fast for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day. I and my maidens will also fast the same way. Then I will go in to the king, which is against the law; and if I perish, I perish.”
to confirm these days of Purim in their appointed times, as Mordecai the Jew and Esther the queen had decreed, and as they had imposed upon themselves and their descendants, in the matter of the fastings and their cry.
But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth. I afflicted my soul with fasting. My prayer returned into my own bosom.
When I wept and I fasted, that was to my reproach.
My knees are weak through fasting. My body is thin and lacks fat.
‘Why have we fasted,’ say they, ‘and you don’t see? Why have we afflicted our soul, and you don’t notice?’ “Behold, in the day of your fast you find pleasure, and oppress all your laborers.
Behold, you fast for strife and contention, and to strike with the fist of wickedness. You don’t fast today so as to make your voice to be heard on high.
Is this the fast that I have chosen? A day for a man to humble his soul? Is it to bow down his head like a reed, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under himself? Will you call this a fast, and an acceptable day to Yahweh?
“Isn’t this the fast that I have chosen: to release the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke?
When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and meal offering, I will not accept them; but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence.
therefore you go, and read in the scroll, which you have written from my mouth, Yahweh’s words in the ears of the people in Yahweh’s house on the fast day; and also you shall read them in the ears of all Judah who come out of their cities.
Now in the fifth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, in the ninth month, all the people in Jerusalem, and all the people who came from the cities of Judah to Jerusalem, proclaimed a fast before Yahweh.
Then the king went to his palace, and passed the night fasting; neither were instruments of music brought before him: and his sleep fled from him.
I set my face to the Lord God, to seek by prayer and petitions, with fasting and sackcloth and ashes.
Sanctify a fast. Call a solemn assembly. Gather the elders, and all the inhabitants of the land, to the house of Yahweh, your God, and cry to Yahweh.
“Yet even now,” says Yahweh, “turn to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning.”
Blow the trumpet in Zion! Sanctify a fast. Call a solemn assembly.
The people of Nineveh believed God; and they proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from their greatest even to their least.
“Speak to all the people of the land, and to the priests, saying, ‘When you fasted and mourned in the fifth and in the seventh month for these seventy years, did you at all fast to me, really to me?
Yahweh of Armies says: “The fasts of the fourth fifth, seventh, and tenth months shall be for the house of Judah joy and gladness, and cheerful feasts. Therefore love truth and peace.”
When he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was hungry afterward.
“Moreover when you fast, don’t be like the hypocrites, with sad faces. For they disfigure their faces, that they may be seen by men to be fasting. Most certainly I tell you, they have received their reward.
But you, when you fast, anoint your head, and wash your face;
so that you are not seen by men to be fasting, but by your Father who is in secret, and your Father, who sees in secret, will reward you.
Then John’s disciples came to him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples don’t fast?”
Jesus said to them, “Can the friends of the bridegroom mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.
Jesus summoned his disciples and said, “I have compassion on the multitude, because they continue with me now three days and have nothing to eat. I don’t want to send them away fasting, or they might faint on the way.”
But this kind doesn’t go out except by prayer and fasting.”
John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting, and they came and asked him, “Why do John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples don’t fast?”
Jesus said to them, “Can the groomsmen fast while the bridegroom is with them? As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they can’t fast.
But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then will they fast in that day.
If I send them away fasting to their home, they will faint on the way, for some of them have come a long way.”
He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing, except by prayer and fasting.”
and she had been a widow for about eighty-four years), who didn’t depart from the temple, worshiping with fastings and petitions night and day.
He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fastened on him.
They said to him, “Why do John’s disciples often fast and pray, likewise also the disciples of the Pharisees, but yours eat and drink?”
He said to them, “Can you make the friends of the bridegroom fast, while the bridegroom is with them?
But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them. Then they will fast in those days.”
I fast twice a week. I give tithes of all that I get.’
Cornelius said, “Four days ago, I was fasting until this hour, and at the ninth hour, I prayed in my house, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing,
As they served the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, “Separate Barnabas and Saul for me, for the work to which I have called them.”
Then, when they had fasted and prayed and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.
When they had appointed elders for them in every assembly, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they had believed.
When much time had passed and the voyage was now dangerous, because the Fast had now already gone by, Paul admonished them,
While the day was coming on, Paul begged them all to take some food, saying, “Today is the fourteenth day that you wait and continue fasting, having taken nothing.
Don’t deprive one another, unless it is by consent for a season, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer, and may be together again, that Satan doesn’t tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
in beatings, in imprisonments, in riots, in labors, in watchings, in fastings;
in labor and travail, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, and in cold and nakedness.
* There may be other reference to fasting in Scripture that don’t use the words “fast” or “fasting.”
Unless otherwise indicated Scripture quotations are from the
World English Bible (WEB). If you are using a digital version of this book, most devices will allow you to connect each verse to Biblegateway.com so you can read each passage in context and change to different translations.