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Monday, April 2, 2012

Lord, Teach Us To Pray! Part 33

Prayers of Intercession continued...

The second thing required for a prayer of intercession, is to know the details of what you are interceding for. Specificity is important, because when we are interceding on behalf of someone, it is for a specific issue, and not a general prayer.

It’s one thing to pray for Bob in general terms; it’s another to pray for Bob’s healing from Crohn’s disease. We can lift someone up in prayer, and we ought to as often as we are able, but interceding on behalf of someone is slightly different than just lifting them up. When we intercede, it is for a specific issue, for a specific purpose, and it is for that issue in particular that we plead for before God, and intercede.

In order for an attorney to adequately plead your case before a judge, they must know the specifics of what they are pleading. A good attorney goes into court thoroughly prepared to make their argument, and adequately represents their client.

When we intercede on behalf of another, we are pleading their case, and as such must know the particulars of the individual in question.

The third thing required for a prayer of intercession, is emotion. We must feel with those for whom we are praying. We must be empathetic, compassionate, sympathetic, and pray with the passion these feelings elicit.

Prayers of intercession are passionate, fervent things, because we feel with those who are hurting, we feel with those for whom we are praying, and we are pleading before God to work on their behalf.

God desires that His children be intercessors. He desires that we intercede on behalf of those who are either unable, or reluctant to approach Him themselves.

Isaiah 59:16, “He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor; therefore His own arm brought salvation for Him; and His own righteousness, it sustained Him.”

God saw that there was no intercessor, and marveled. He saw that there was no man; He saw that there was no one to intercede, and God was amazed. Although there were still believers on earth, although there were still those that followed His precepts, there were none who interceded.

If interceding were not relevant or important to God, logic would dictate He would have had no reason to be amazed at the absence of intercessors.

Ezekiel 22:30-31, ‘“So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one. Therefore I have poured out My indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of My wrath; and I have recompensed their deeds on their own heads,’ says the Lord God.’”

One of the sure signs that the wrath of God is getting ready to be poured out upon a nation, is when the children of God stop interceding before Him on behalf of the land. When God says He sought someone to make a wall, and stand in the gap, what He is saying is that He sought someone who would intercede, who would plead with Him, yet He found no one.

Yes, there are times, as was the case with Jeremiah, wherein God will say ‘do not pray for this people, or lift up a cry or prayer for them, or make intercession to Me,’ but until such a time, our duty is to pray and intercede.

When we diminish the importance of prayer, when we belittle the importance of intercession, when the children of God begin to omit prayers of intercession from their daily lives, the end result is that God pours out His indignation upon the land.

Because He could not find anyone who would stand in the gap, because He could not find anyone who would make a wall, God poured out the fire of His wrath, and recompensed the deeds of the people on their own heads. God’s judgment was the direct result of not finding anyone who would intercede.

Throughout the word, we see that men of God knew the importance of interceding, of standing in the gap, and pleading on behalf of the people.

One of the greatest examples of intercession is that of Moses on behalf of Israel.

Psalm 106:23, “Therefore He said that He would destroy them, had not Moses His chosen one stood before Him in the breach, to turn away His wrath, lest He destroy them.”

Because they had started worshiping other Gods, because they had abandoned the one true God, because their sin had reached to heaven, God had decided to destroy the people of Israel. If not for Moses, who stood in the breach before God, who interceded, and pleaded for God to turn away His wrath, the history of Israel would read very differently today.

Moses interceded, he stood in the breach, and God’s wrath was turned away. Prayer works miracles. Prayer stirs the heart of God, prayer turns away the wrath of God and prayers of intercession on behalf of others compels God to intervene and do mighty works.

When the word tells us that the prayer of a righteous man avails much, it is not hyperbole, it is the truth. We see this in scripture, time and again, wherein one man standing in the gap, one man standing in the breach, one man interceding, moved the heart of God. Whether to turn away His wrath, or bless His people, whether to strengthen them in adversity, or keep them from the hands of their enemies, prayers of intercession have been proven to work.

The three essentials for any intercessor is that they come before God with confidence, know what they are praying for, and pray from the heart, with emotion and pathos, with fervor and passion.

Pray, and see the windows of heaven open wide. Intercede on behalf of those who are lost, who are broken, who are hurting, and see God work on their behalf.

God is still seeking for a man who would make a wall and stand in the gap. The question is: will He find him?

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

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