Reasons e5 Men Decided to Fast (List #4)
“To pray for healing for my wife”
“I have a difficult time fasting”
“Iron sharpens iron”
“Accountability and Spiritual Encouragement”
“I want to fast on every Wednesday for my wife”
“I love to be obedient to God's’s word”
“For my future wife and women everywhere”
By Steven C. Habisohn, e5 Founder
From the prophecies at the presentation in the temple to the fleeing into Egypt, the early life of Christ foreshadowed the fulfillment of His redemptive mission on the cross. For instance, God showed us that the sins of the flesh were to be addressed in the sacrifice of Christ by poetically foreshadowing it at Christ's circumcision.
ST. PAUL'S LAMENT
Christ's death on the cross for our redemption included the reordering of all that was disordered as a result of the fall. Our body's sexual desires were never meant to be the master of our wills. Yet, when we look at our sexual desires, we find them disordered to our reason and our will weak. Paul, referring to all passions, including sexual desires, states it this way:
"but I see in my members another principle at war with the law of my mind, taking me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Miserable one that I am! Who will deliver me from this mortal body?" (Romans 7:23-24, NAB)
THE SUBORDINATION OF THE FLESH
We know of course that the sexual desires of the body were designed by God as good. However, fleshly joys were supposed to be subordinate to spiritual joy, as the body is subordinate to the soul.
A sexual act that seeks pleasure as the path for joy without the spiritual joy of the communion of persons enslaves a person to the lust of the flesh. It further entrenches the inversion of the sacred order of joy that occurred as a result of the fall. This inversion placed body over soul, desire over reason. The flesh - the body - was never designed to be the head of the person and therefore when it takes authority it can be nothing other than a tyrant.
Acts of love, whether sexual or not, are not to be judged entirely, or even principally, by the physical pleasure attained. The greatest act of physical love, Jesus Christ's passion on the Cross, had absolutely no physical pleasure at all. He teaches us through His act of total subordination of his body to his will that this is the correct order. He shows us that physical pleasure is not the object of spiritual love but a subordinated participant in that love.
E5 AND THE SACRED ORDER
When we fast as e5 men we declare to the body that the soul is king. By grace (God's help), the sacred order in our persons begins to be reestablished. Through this act of bodily love, which involves no physical pleasure, we declare like Christ on his cross the correct nature of love.
THE FINAL VICTORY
It should be noted that while on earth we will always struggle with our disordered desires. As we practice and grow in the virtues that accompany fasting and abstinence, our self-mastery grows and victory becomes easier, even though the struggle continues until the transformation of our bodies at the resurrection. When in heaven, the battle will be over and our desires will be in total harmony with our reason, all under the kingship of Christ. There will be no war and these parts of us will be in perfect communion with each other.
*Most of us have had to deal with, or are dealing with, sexual sin in our lives. These obviously deeply affect our relationships not only with our brides but with all women. If this is an issue you are dealing with there is a great e5 way to help with this war that rages inside. Fasting out of repentance for our sins of the flesh soon after we commit them is a very powerful way to startto untwist this problem within. Fasting battles the issue in the flesh instead of just in the mind and will. It is a recommendation I have given a lot of men because it was the way that I personally was greatly healed of this battle that raged within.