For those fasting and praying today, consider this;
Nazarites were to be OT examples of holiness in the world. They were to live by a strict set of rules and be an example to the world of righteous living. Some performed that role better than others. When they were filled with the Holy Spirit of God , they were used by God to accomplish great things. But the Holy Spirit in the OT did not dwell forever in an individual and one did not necessarily know when the Spirit was present or was no longer with him until the consequences of bad decisions made it clear they had been left behind because of unrighteous living. God’s Spirit sought out righteous living, pure hearted people among whom to dwell. It was a pretty demanding standard and Nazarites often failed. Case in point, Samson. Even David learned this principle, though he had not been called to live the life of a Nazarite, he just loved the Lord and desired the Lord to have a permanent dwelling among his people instead of having to roam to and fro seeking pure hearts in which to dwell. That desire, for a permanent home among God’s people, was the Lord’s desire, too, so he blessed David and forgave David’s misadventures and ignorance. And eventually David’s son Solomon completed the beautiful temple in which God’s presence could remain among his people and be given the honor he was due in the Holy of Holies.
In the New Testament God sent his only begotten Son, the incarnation of himself to show mankind how to live in righteousness that would enable God to live with individuals permanently. Jesus Christ, the true Nazarene, is the pattern and the pathway for the modern day parallel to a Nazarite….one who has been set aside for a special purpose- to be the dwelling place of the living God. It’s like God made a pattern, the Nazarite, then created the perfect garment, the Designer Original, that became the treasured cloak which God places around the shoulders of his Beloved(s)…… each one of them. Like the coat of many colors Jacob put upon the shoulders of his favored son of Rachel, Joseph. We wear the precious covering of Christ that reveals to the world that we are the beloved Children of God, molded by him in the pattern of the Nazarene, wearing the Designer Original, not a cheap knockoff cut out of the same pattern but from from an inferior “fig leaf” fabric we chose for ourselves.
God’s way of making the pattern first and trying it out for millennia through calling for the Nazarites to live as God lives only proved that mankind was not up for the task of living into that Nazarite covenant alone. So God, in keeping with all his covenants with man, shouldered the burden of responsibility for keeping the Nazarite covenant of living a holy life by becoming the Designer Original so that mankind would not fail again and again in striving to live into the likeness of God’s holiness but could actually, through Christ, become the holiness of godly living, to BE holy as God is holy in the a person of Christ.
Sacrificial living, living into the example of Jesus Christ, the Nazarene, is the Way, the Truth, the Light. As we fast and pray let us be focused and refined for that calling.