Finally, Jesus warned against fasting with strings attached — in contrast to good fasting (46):
And when you fast, don’t make a big show of that, either. Because hypocrites want people to praise them when they fast, that’s all the praise they’ll get.
Instead, when you fast (47), don’t let other people know it.
And God, who sees what you do privately, will both praise & reward you.
(46) Matthew 6:16-18
(47) In the days of Jesus’ life & ministry upon the earth, fasting seems to have been more common than in our day. In depriving themselves of things like food & drink for a time, and devoting themselves to the service of others, people found it much easier to focus on God. Fasting still works this way today. But fasting is rarely practiced in modern cultures — even though there is so much more of which we might deprive ourselves for a time, and so many more human needs we might serve.