Intercessory Prayer

Intercession “Hyperentynchano” means simply to “ask God on behalf of others”

We do this when we pray for each other.   It is scriptural that fellow believes should pray for one another.

Ephesians 6:18 “and always keep on praying for all the saints”   James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”

Jesus interceded often for his disciples. He told Peter that he had interceded on his behalf:   But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail” Luke 22:32

In Jesus’ prayer in John Ch 17 we see that Jesus prayed not just for himself but for his disciples: 9 “I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me”

and then for all who would follow Him: 20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message” – that’s us Hallelujah.

Paul interceded and prayed often for the early church so that they would grow in Christ and be strengthened.

Ephesians 1:17 “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe.”

1 Thess 3: 12 “May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. 13 May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones”

Galatians 1:3 “Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ”

Philippians 1:9 “And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ–to the glory and praise of God”.

Colossians 1:9 “For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of His will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. 10 And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please Him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light”.

Paul also recognised that he needed prayer and asked the believers to pray for him:

Ephesians 6:19 “Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should”.

Romans 15:30 “I urge you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me. 31 Pray that I may be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea and that my service in Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints there, 32 so that by God’s will I may come to you with joy and together with you be refreshed”.

The lessons for us are:

1.We need to pray for one another so that we can be strengthened in faith and grow in Christ.   If you are not linked with anyone in prayer then I encourage you to seek a prayer partner or to become part of a prayer triplet.

2.We must not be too proud to acknowledge that we need support in prayer from each other. This is particularly true for those in leadership in the church. You need prayer support.

II  Intercession – also means to “plead on behalf of another” to“mediate” or “intercede” or be the go-between for others with God in prayer who are not in a position to represent themselves.

i.e when we pray to God on behalf of someone who is not saved or someone who knows God but has broken fellowship through sin, a community, a town, a nation etc.   We come before God’s throne on their behalf to pray that God’s love, mercy & His plans & purposes will be established in their lives

i.e“Your kingdom come, Your Will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” Matt 6:10

Paul said:  1Timothy 2:1 “I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone– 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.”

It is scriptural to pray for those in our nations who are in power and the political leaders whether you agree with them or not.

B             WHY DOES GOD REQUIRE INTERCESSORS?

In previous posts I have said that in order for God to hear our prayers we need to be in right standing with God and praying through the person of Jesus Christ. We have also seen that the Holy Spirit guides and helps us in our prayers and makes intercession “according to the will of God”.

We are therefore called to stand on behalf of those who are currently through their sin and disobedience removed from God and to repent on their behalf and pray for God’s mercy to be poured out upon them.

In prayer we want to break down spiritual strongholds to help people come to a place of repentance and reconciliation with God through Jesus Christ. Our nations will be judged for their sin one day before the throne of God and also those who have not received Christ Jesus and his redemption. We can intercede in prayer for people, the nations etc for God’s mercy to be poured out and people’s hearts to be softened towards God.

This type of prayer is sometimes referred to as “standing in the gap”. i.e. in prayer we “stand in the gap” before God on the person, group, communities’, nation’s behalf. They are not in relationship with God because of sin/disobedience but we “bridge the gap” because of our position in Christ to God and can in prayer appear on their behalf before God’s throne.

Imagine a courtroom – the judge is God, the prisoner (sinner) is in the dock, his lawyer (representative) on his behalf (us) speaks to the judge and pleads in mitigation for the mercy of the judge.

God said: Ezekiel 22:30 “I looked for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found none.

God was actively looking for an intercessor for the people. God is actively looking for intercessors today to stand in the gap for the unsaved & the godless nations.

In Scripture there are many examples of the ministry of intercession:

1.ABRAHAM

Abraham interceded with God for the people of Sodom & Gomorrah. Genesis 18 23-32.

God revealed His plan to Abraham to destroy Sodom & Gomorrah because of the great wickedness carried out there. Abraham started to intercede on the people’s behalf – first asking God whether he intended to destroy the righteous along with the wicked or whether the Lord would save the city if there were 50 righteous people. He then went on to keep pressing his case until he got God to agree to show mercy if there were 10 righteous people. If there had been 10 righteous people then God would not have destroyed the city. Unfortunately, there were not even 10 righteous people in the place.

Abraham did not manipulate or twist God’s arm but in fact the passage shows that God wants to be merciful and He is a merciful God.   Abraham showed his compassion for the people and was prepared to intercede on their behalf even when in reality they were so wicked we would have said they deserved destruction. However, God is looking for that same compassionate heart in us when we intercede for others.

We have all been saved “by grace” God does not want us to be self-righteous but to be compassionate in intercession.

2.MOSES was a great intercessor for the people of Israel when they sinned and God’s anger was stirred up against them to destroy them. Moses interceded when they had made the golden calf (EX 32 11-14).

Psalm 106:23 “So he said he would destroy them had not Moses, his chosen one,stood in the breach before him to keep his wrath from destroying them”.

Moses also interceded on behalf of Pharaoh for the various plagues to be ended (Exodus ch 8-10) for the Israelites, during the battle with the Amalekites (Ex 17:11-14), after the Israelites had made the golden calf (Ex 32:11-14, 31-34; Dt 9:18-29; 10:10; Ps 106:23), after the murmuring of the people (Ex 33:15-17), when the fire of the Lord consumed the people (Nu 11:1-2), when the people murmured on account of the report of the spies (Nu 14:11-20), that the poisonous snakes might be taken away (Nu 21:4-9); that Miriam’s leprosy might be healed (Nu 12:13); on behalf of Aaron, on account of his sin in making the golden calf (Dt 9:20).

3.SAMUEL – Samuel was also raised up as an intercessor for the people of Israel to lead them back to God.

Psalm 99:6 “Samuel was among those who called on his name; they called on the LORD, and he answered them”

Jeremiah 15:1 Then the LORD said to me: “Even if Moses and Samuel were to stand before me, my heart would not go out to this people. Send them away from my presence! Let them go!”

4. JESUS

Jesus’ greatest act of intercession for us was when he went to the Cross for us. He reconciled us to God. Jesus is now seated in heaven and is our high priest who constantly makes intercession for us.

Heb 7:25 “Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them”.

Romans 8:34 “Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died–more than that, who was raised to life–is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us”

5.  CHRISTIANS – I believe intercession is for every believer.

1 Peter 2:5 “you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ”.

“intercessory prayer” fulfills “spiritual sacrifices” You make a sacrifice to stand in the gap for someone.

Matthew 5: 44 ” But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you”.

I pray that God will reveal His heart for intercession for others and for His love & compassion for the lost & nations to be revealed to you.

Interceding for others.

 i) Be prepared – As in previous posts allow the Holy Spirit to search you and confess any sin in your life. It is the prayers of a “righteous” man which avail much.

ii) Put on your spiritual armour (Ephesians ch 6) – The belt of truth, helmet of salvation, breastplate of righteousness, feet shod with the gospel of peace, shield of faith, sword of the spirit and then the garment of praise & worship and cloak of humility. See end notes for “The Warrior’s Prayer”

iii)   Know God’s heart for sinners and the nation – God wants to pour out His love & mercy on people but He abhors sin itself and wants people to turn to righteousness.

iv) Allow the Holy Spirit to make intercession through you

Romans 8:26 “Likewise the Spirit also helps us in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 “ Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is because He makes intercession for the Saints according to the will of God”

Ask God to reveal His heart to you about the state of your nation. God is a compassionate and loving God and so be prepared that you might cry, groan, labour in effort and have to keep pushing through etc in prayer when God reveals His heart to you.   These prayers are especially powerful and they birth breakthroughs in the spiritual realm.

v) Pray with faith – Prayerful intercession can turn a nation back to God!!!! Do we believe it?

vi) In prayerful intercession the Holy Spirit may lead you to address the work of satan directly and to take up the authority and victory which Christ secured at the Cross.

vii)          Be prepared to spend periods of time in this type of intercessory prayer. The Holy Spirit may burden you for a season to pray for a particular situation e.g. the church, local schools, government,  towns, nations etc . It may be weeks, months, years etc.

Interceding for an unsaved relation, friend, loved one etc.

What to know before you pray:  2 Corinthians 4:4 “The god of this age (satan) has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God”.

But

2 Corinthians 10:3-5 “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

So, in prayer we take up the authority we have in Christ to bind up and release the person from satan’s influence over their mind and release them to come to knowledge of Christ.

Example Prayer:

[ name person[s] you are praying for], We call you forth into the Kingdom of God.  Satan, we bind your influence over the mind of [name person[s]] now and everything which sets itself up against the knowledge of God and we release[ name person[s]] in Jesus’ name to come to revelation and knowledge of Jesus Christ as Saviour.

We bind you spirits [name specific strongholds which Holy Spirit reveals e.g. pride, strife, unbelief, rebellion, idolatory, fear etc] which are blinding [name person[s]]’s mind to the truth of the gospel and their need of salvation.   We bind you now in the name of Jesus Christ and by the power of the blood of Jesus and the authority of His name and We speak release to [name person[s]] mind now.

We release [name person] from Satan’s influence and his bondage now in the name of Jesus.   Holy Spirit we ask you to bring revelation of Jesus Christ to [name person[s]] mind, to soften their heart and to open their eyes to the truth. Amen.

In prayer we have authority over spirits and not people. We are speaking to the spirits blinding their mind (the barriers to the person hearing & receiving the gospel) so that they have the free will to choose Christ as saviour. We are not seeking to manipulate them into accepting Christ but rather to bind up the opposition so that they are free to make a choice.

A PRAYER FOR THE NATION taken from KINGDOM FAITH MINISTERIES

WE DECLARE that Jesus has defeated the devil by the Cross, having disarmed all principalities and powers. He was raised from the dead and is now seated in heavenly places, far above all principalities and powers, might & dominion and every name that is named.

WE BELIEVE we have been raised up with Him and are seated together with Him now in the heavenly places, far above all influence and power of the enemy, in his freedom and victory. We are united with Him.   His life has become our life. His peace: our peace. His righteousness: our righteousness. His victory: our victory. As He is so are we in this world.

AS HIS BODY together in this place we have God given authority.   The right to exercise power, to rule over all the power of the enemy. Representing the will of the Lord Jesus Christ we now act upon this right. We command every spirit of fear, destruction, murder, hatred & rebellion to be bound in the name of Jesus. We resist you, your power and influence over our nation.

WE RAISE up the victory of the Cross and declare the power of the blood of Jesus to deliver this nation from evil. We loose this victory over the people of our nation by faith in the name of Jesus.

WE PRAY FOR:

-The peace of God to fill our cities, town, villages, streets & homes.

-That the Holy Spirit to minister healing and comfort those who mourn.

-the government, police & transport authorities, the doctors, nurses, & carers of sick, emergency services. We pray for God’s kingdom purposes to rule & reign through them, for there to be wisdom in ruling, morality, truth, no corruption in government, justice, truth, mercy, godliness, ethical responsibilities and a regard for the value of human life.

-Those who are investigating crimes – that God will lead them to those who are responsible and expose the deeds of darkness

WE UNITE together in His name and pray for the revelation of Jesus Christ to come to every people group in our nation for God is not willing that any man should perish, but all should come to repentance. WE BELIEVE as we stand together and act upon what Jesus has done on the Cross that the kingdom of heaven advances and will advance daily. God will grace us to continue to stand enforcing His victory until that final day when Christ returns.  Amen.Prayer – Let’s be inspired