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A Hunger for God: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer
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A Hunger for God: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer

4.2 of 5 stars 4.20  ·  rating details  ·  1,976 ratings  ·  105 reviews
Pastor-scholar John Piper invites the reader to sharpen his or her appetite for God by turning away from the dulling effects of food and the dangers of idolatry and draw closer to God through simple fasting with accompanying prayer.
Kindle Edition
Published (first published July 3rd 1997)
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In almost every way this is the best book I've read on fasting. Piper really sells the importance of this oft-neglected discipline, particularly for our current satisfaction-obsessed culture.

The only real misstep of this book--and it's a jarring one--is the seventh chapter, in which Piper focuses on the importance of fasting over the issue of abortion. Of course, it makes sense to talk about fasting over a particular issue of world concern. But he doesn't do much to justify the topic's inclusio
Diana Barrick
I've read so many Piper books that they begin to sound like a broken record in my head. "John Edwards...blah...blah..." I skimmed through this book until I got to his chapters explaining Isaiah 58. Reading these chapters came as an unexpected splash of cold water in the face. I had wanted to read a book on fasting because of this very passage I'd stumbled across in my own Bible study! I went back and reread this book; taking notes and the time to digest (hah!) it all. I loved his explanation of ...more
Zack Migioia
I would highly recommend this book to any and all Christians.

Fasting is not practiced or taught in most churches today and the Bible speaks very clearly to subject of fasting. It's so helpful to look at fasting as a privilege and joy, rather than a duty and dread. Whether we eat or don't eat, we should be joyful. Joyful eating and Joyful fasting make up the Christian's life.

God rewards those who fast, but it's important to know that it's not in a meritorious way. The reward that comes from fas
God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him. That's the message of this book for why we fast. This is an excellent biblical expository work on key passages on fasting. Not just why and how, but also the dangers and damage of doing it wrongly, in practice or motivation. The first half of this book taught me a great deal and will be used to keep my own path pure when it comes to fasting. Maybe the most poignant passage being how uncommon this discipline has become being that we a ...more
Daniel Duane
Insightful and profound in tackling the issue of the Christian fast. I love the way Piper looks at Fasting. Fasting is just like prayer. It isn't like something Christians must or are obliged to do. It's something that IS part of Christian Life, just as prayer and worship. Fasting is not an ends of a means. It should accompany prayer and worship. The goal is not to master the flesh, although mastering fleshly desires and passions can be the result of fasting. But Fasting goes much deeper than th ...more
A great book to read!

Recently I commented to my wife that in our community there has been a surge of restaurants. In some ways, I suppose that is good for the economy. Yet it may seem strange to people in the west so accustomed to eating “three square meals a day” that fasting should play any role for a conservative evangelical person at the dawn of the 21st century. John Piper’s book on fasting, A Hunger for God, is the best book I’ve read on the subject.

Piper first asks the question: Is Fasti
Mandy J. Hoffman

This is a book I really wanted to read, but it took me a long time to finally read it because I knew I would be convicted. And, yes, I was.

John Piper eloquently and passionately explains fasting and it's Biblical basis as well as it's secular background. He digs into Scripture, both Old Testament and New Testament, to learn what place fasting has in our lives and they why and how behind doing it today in our own lives. I walked away having learned a lot, having been challenged immense
I was attracted to this book because of the subtitle: Desiring God through Fasting and Prayer. Like others who have read some of John Piper's work, I appreciate the way he targets our desires as a true reflection of our relationship with God. I was intrigued to see how he would write about fasting in this light.

Piper does his usual careful, persuasive job in this book, and I enjoyed it. Well, I enjoyed it as much as you can enjoy something that is convicting! He writes that fasting can be used a
Pat Roseman
This was a great book on fasting. Piper explores the scriptural basis and many (if not all) of the reasons for fasting. He cautions against a lot of the pitfalls [Woe to the fasting that leaves sin in our lives untouched. The only authentic fasting is fasting that includes a spiritual attack against our own sin. I sour fasting really a hunger for God? We test whether it is by whether we are hungering for our own holiness. To want God is to hate sin. For God is holy, and we cannot love God and lo ...more
I'll start with a confession.

I don't like John Piper. I mean, obviously, I don't know the man, and I've never met him. But his book on N.T. Wright highlighted some fairly major presuppositions that he and I disagree on, and his childishness in regards to the Rob Bell fiasco just left a bad taste in my mouth.

But I'm fasting this Lent, and I really needed something to read to move fasting into a more profound level for me, and not just being hungry and irritated for days at a time, and Piper's wo
My only complaint with Piper is that sometimes he takes 200 pages to say what he could have said in 130. I think this is the case with this book. It was definitely worthwhile and I highly recommend it but I think it could have been shorter. Perhaps the issue was that I didn't have to be convinced as I'm with one mind with Piper on the topic. The only issue I have is that he indicates that fasting can be applied to something other than food and I disagree with that. There are instances when the B ...more
I read this book several months ago and never got around to reviewing it, partly because I have about twenty pages left to read in the book. But a friend told me a while back that reading non-fiction is different than reading fiction. When she has the author's point in a non-fiction book, she feels it's OK to stop, whether she's read every word or not. I definitely read enough of this book to get its point.

Piper is one of my favorite Christian writers. He really has a heart for God and has used
Micah Cobb
Jan 08, 2015 Micah Cobb rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Christians
Recommended to Micah by: Wes Gunn
Shelves: my-books
I found this to be an excellent book. John Piper looks at the spiritual discipline of fasting. With his trademark intensity and close attention to the Christian Scriptures, Piper explains why fasting is Biblical, profitable, and world-changing. I would recommend this book to everyone who wants to learn more about fasting, or even if they just want to learn more about developing a hunger and a passion for God.
Richard Minor
I have to confess that I am a person who has not given enough thought to fasting. It has been a neglected discipline in my life. That is why I found this book to be so good for me. Piper takes a hard look at what fasting is, why Christians should be doing it, the appropriate way to fast, what to be in prayer and fasting for, as well as quotations from others about fasting that are quite helpful.
Absolutely fantastic. This book not only increased my knowledge of fasting and my desire to fast but more importantly I have a deeper desire for God in my heart after finishing the book than I had when I started. The introduction just floored me and convicted me in a way that few books have done in the past. Piper's love for God and desire for his glory really come through. Loved this book!
Read this book.

This is a clear, deep, passionate explanation of what fasting is and why and when we should (and should not) do it. This is not a step-by-step practical how-to guide on fasting. It is a push toward hungering for God more deeply than anything else; it cries out "Come, Lord Jesus!"
This book stems from the basic life principle in the author’s earlier book, Desiring God, which states “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.” He fleshes this statement out in the context of fasting and prayer. Piper builds a case for fasting in the church from a biblical perspective as well as addresses many of the modern day concerns with this spiritual discipline. While food fasting is the most common way to fast, he shows the reader other ways that are biblically app ...more
Matt Kottman
This may have been one of the best books I read this year. Piper does a great job of describing the relationship of fasting with hungering for God. I was greatly encouraged and stirred by this volume.
I loved MOST of this book. As do most Piper books, it challenged me to hunger for God more than I do. It made me stop and ask myself, "Do I love God like this?"

However, the last chapter was an enormous disappointment. I am pro-life, and I think 90% of abortions are performed because of false information. Nonetheless, I was not convinced that this chapter belonged in a book about fasting. Piper spent the entire chapter talking about abortion laws, how wrong they are, and what a tragedy abortion i
Best book I ever read on prayer and fasting!! It got our family stated again on the disciplines of prayer and fasting. A must read by every Christian.
Good stuff. Less of a theology of fasting, and took some turns I didn't expect in the last couple chapters, but this book was sweet to my soul.
Pascal Denault
You finish this book and you think: we must fast!
Jeff Short
This is a study of fasting and desire for God. Piper takes the principles of fasting from the Old Testament and weaves them together with the teaching on fasting in the New Testament. This book answers a lot of questions about the why’s of fasting. He enumerates the blessings of it and sounds many needed warnings also.

I recommend this book to get a better grasp of this subject. The chapter on Isaiah 58 is convicting and clarifying. There are practical implications for all believers. I believe ev
James Mindrup
Such a clear and honest look at fasting
It's a great read so far. Pastor Steve asked me to speak to our church about fasting, and I read a couple of paragraphs from the Introduction. I do normally read book introductions but I have never quoted one before.

Typical of Piper, the writing is too deep to skim over any parts, so my progress is slow though very enjoyable so far.

UPDATE - Finished! It was good to the end, a great resource, informative and encouraging. Fasting for prayer has become very valuable to me, very beneficial for focus
best book I have read on fasting. Piper is a little wordy but brings us to a right understanding of fasting and God.
Adam Shields
Full review at

Short review. This was a good introduction to fasting as a biblical discipline. It veered into politics in the middle, but other than that I thought it was a very good take on the subject. This was much more of a positive tone than Scot McKnight's book Fasting.

Neither this book or Fasting talks about how to fast. If you are looking for practical discussions about how to fast. You need to keep looking.
Great awakening to the need and importance to fasting and prayer. Highly recommend with the condition of our world.
Good exposition on importance of fasting.
I read this book a few years ago, but I think I was still reading it our of mere curiosity instead of a true desire to seek after God. Reading it now Piper's words hit me hard, with truths I fele in the past I was too distracted and blind to see. God will work in us if we are willing to let go. Fasting is a way of telling God we hunger for him and are willing to finally sacrifice somethign of ourselves to seek Him and serve Him, instead of our own selfish needs and desires.
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  • Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life
  • Treasuring God in Our Traditions
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  • Holiness by Grace: Delighting in the Joy That Is Our Strength
  • Growing in Christ
  • The Christian Life: A Doctrinal Introduction
  • Overcoming Sin & Temptation
  • Spiritual Depression: Its Causes and Cure
  • Necessity of Prayer
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  • Biblical Theology in the Life of the Church: A Guide for Ministry
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John Piper is founder and teacher of and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. For 33 years, he served as senior pastor at Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota.

He grew up in Greenville, South Carolina, and studied at Wheaton College, Fuller Theological Seminary (B.D.), and the University of Munich (D.theol.). For six years, he taught Biblical Studies at Bethe
More about John Piper...
Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist Don't Waste Your Life The Passion of Jesus Christ The Pleasures of God: Meditations on God's Delight in Being God Let the Nations Be Glad!: The Supremacy of God in Missions

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“If you don't feel strong desires for the manifestation of the glory of God, it is not because you have drunk deeply and are satisfied. It is because you have nibbled so long at the table of the world. Your soul is stuffed with small things, and there is no room for the great.” 253 likes
“The greatest enemy of hunger for God is not poison but apple pie.
It is not the banquet of the wicked that dulls our appetite for
heaven, but endless nibbling at the table of the world. It is not
the X-rated video, but the prime-time dribble of triviality we
drink in every night.”
More quotes…