INTERCESSION........ Noble and Honourable service to the Lord!



INTERCESSION - GOD ANSWERS PRAYERS

Introduction

Prayer is one the keys to success in the kingdom of God and knowing how to pray yourself out of difficult situations remains one of the dominion priviledges of sons and daughters of God.

Intercession, on the other hand, is a planned and persistent prayer to God.  It is fervent prayers going to God for other people and things other than the need of the intercessor.  It can be a persistent prayer for God to arrest a close relative, who is yet to know the Lord.  It is prayer rising to the Lord consistently until the person is saved.  

Intercessory prayers is one of the most important assignments of a believer in Christ.  It is a kind of prayer that doesn't give up. It endures all setbacks and overcomes every obstacle, pressing on till the will of God is "apprehend" in the situation-  Phil. 3:12.

Intercession is the fuel of progress in ministry.  If you are leading a ministry or a group in the church, the more you intercede for the people under you and the goals of your church or group, the better the results you will see.  Leadership position in the church should turn the leader into an intercessor, who will consciously take the needs of people to God, and refuse to stop praying until the needs are met.

Intercessory is a noble job before the Almighty God.  The Lord called me into intercessory ministry when I did not even understand what it means.  I was climbing the steps to a Mountain for prayers when the Lord asked me: "Are you still praying for yourself?, I have answered your prayers, start praying for others" 

At that time, I did not understand what the Lord was saying to me because I felt I had so many needs for which I was believing God for, but, later the message became clear to me.  I knew one thing is sure, the Lord will not give you an assignment you cannot fulfil.  He knows you have what it takes to excel in that assignment.  That was how I started praying for people, the Church and the Nation.  

Intercessors and the Prophetic

There is a strong correlation between intercessory and the prophetic.  The bible mentioned one Anna, a Prophetess and a widow who served the Lord with fasting and prayer, day and night for 77 years.  The Lord allowed her to among those that will witness the christening of the Saviour Jesus Christ.  

This widow interceded for the church of God day and night for 77 years, what a noble service and the bible described her as a Prophetess.  There is also the case of Daniel in the bible.  Daniel was never described as the sons of a Prophet.  Daniel was counted among the wise and favoured children from Judah, and the bible said God gave him and the other three in his company knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom.  Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.

But, immediately he was promoted in Babylon, he began to pray and fast and through the years and serving many Kings, Daniel became a Prophet that God began to reveal mysteries to him in dreams and visions.  Daniel ended up as a Prophet of God, how honourable to be an intercessor!.

The case of Moses is another strong pointer to the relationship between intercessor and prophetic.  Moses started a Leader and intercessor and ended up also as a Prophet of God.  It can be said that in every generation, those people who take interest in the things of God, in praying for the will of God to be established will end up as spiritual giants.

Nature of Intercession

Intercession is praying for the will of God to be established on a person, issue or a Nation, and persisting on the prayer until it is established.  It is crying for an ugly condition affecting a person or nation to be changed for better by the Almighty God.  

Intercessory prayer is a spiritual sacrifice unto the Lord, so the intercessor should be born again with a right standing before God. 

Intercession is warfare and for it to be effective, it should be done unselfishly.  All selfish desires should be removed out of the way.  The vessel praying should be right with the Lord.  The bible says the prayer of sinners is an abomination unto the Lord, so the intercessor should be born again child of God.   If you are born again, you are God's son or daughter (John 1:12). As His child, you have direct access to God. You can boldly come into His presence to ask for anything you desire.

Intercessory prayer is a serious matter. And just like soldiers who are preparing for battle, we cannot take on the enemy if we have no weapons. That's why we must go into "battle" armed for spiritual weapons (see 2 Cor. 10:3,4) and the confidence that our Lord Jesus Christ is in control of the situation and victory is sure.

Who is an Intercessor
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Intercessors are Christian soldiers who pray at all seasons and under every circumstance.  For him, prayer settles all matters, so his prayer is as intense as when there is physical battle to fight.  He knows that his victory comes as fervent supplications go up unto the Lord.  He prays in the spirit all the time and undertakes some other spiritual exercises.

bible talks about praying without season, but many Christians do not yet understand the importance of fervent prayer.  Everything God has can be obtained through prayers and no meaningful and enduring work for God can be done without prayers.

Intercessors pray with authority, knowing that Jesus has given them the power to act on His behalf and in His name.  You take authority over the situation in the name of the Lord.

Intercessors devote their time to apostolic doctrines of studying the Word, praying and fasting.  They must have a quality relationship with the Lord.  Imagine what the ministry of Moses would have looked like without those answered prayers that came as they were prayed.  What would his ministry be like without praying and fasting often?

Intercessors in the Church keep a prayer book that records the prayers and intercession done within a period of time in order to see the effectiveness of their prayers.  Leaders, who intercede for the church or group activities should also keep a record of their efforts for evaluation in the future.

Intercessory Ministry

God chooses people who know Him and appreciate the value of prayer to intercede on behalf of the people.  People of God like Moses (Numbers 14:11-20), Ezra (Ezra 9:1), Esther (Esther 4:12-17), Daniel (Daniel 9), and others were notable intercessors in their days.  Jesus Christ interceded for the Church (John 17) and His ministry of intercession continues forever (Hebrews 7:25).

Intercessory prayers may be divided into:
1. For Souls 
2. The Church
3. The nation.

Let looks briefly into these three intercessory targets:

Interceding for Souls

1. Pray for demonic covering over them to be removed
2. That God will give them a heart of flesh
3. Removal of stronghold built-up in their heart
4. Fear be destroyed.
5. The shame of men and what they will say or their mockery
6. Spirit of worldliness
7. That they will love the Lord and obey His word
8. Pray that the Lord touches their heart to repent and accept him

The Church

God desires that men pray without season for the Church and its programs.  Many times, we see Apostle Paul urging brethren to pray for him.  

What to Pray For
1. Pray for unity among the Pastors and other leaders of the Church
2. That faithful elder be established 
3. The preaching of sound doctrines of the word of God.
4. That members would remain above reproach, kept from temptation,  idols, and worldliness.
5.  Pray for the programs of the church
6. Pray for the Evangelism efforts of the Church
7. The House fellowship groups
8 Pray for the Spirit of Love among the brethren
9. Pray for Mission and branches of the church
10. Pray for the projects o the church
11. Pray for the Spirit of obedience among members
12. Pray for the Spirit of love for God among members
13. Pray for the Spirit of fear of the Lord among members
14. Pray for the Spirit of righteousness and holiness among members

The Nation

The Lord would always search for people who love Him and who are willing to stand in the gap for their countries.  In Ezekiel 22:30, the bible says God searched for those willing to fight the spiritual battle for their land but found none.  "And I searched for a man among them who should build up the wall and stand in the gap before Me for the land, that I should not destroy it, but I found no one" (Ezek. 22:30

The importance of intercession is spelt out in 2 Chronicles 7:13-14.  God will surely intervene in any unpleasant matter if Christians will intercede faithfully.  If the Nation can repent and call upon the Lord in faith, National calamity, catastrophe, epidemics and even war can be averted. Intercession for the nation will focus on the following areas.

1. Pray for the President and other leaders of the Country
2. Pray for national repentance from evil ways
3. Pray against war,  catastrophe etc
4. Pray for the peace and progress of the country
5. Pray for unity of purpose among groups in the country
6. Pray that the entire nation will accept Christ as Lord and Saviour
7. Pray for Economic. social and political progress
8. Pray for the Spirit of fear of the Lord come upon the people
9. Pray for the wisdom of God to invent new and better things
10. Pray for the Youths of the country

Hindrances to effective intercession
1. A person who is living in sin cannot intercede effectively.  A holy life is essential because God does not hear the prayer of sinners except one that is a plea for forgiveness according to God’s will.

2. Ignorance of the word of God and of the things that are happening in the country can hinder effective intercession.  The intercessor for the nation must know the word of God, and be abreast with current happenings.  He should be able to relate current events with the word of God.  

3. Wrong motives can hinder effective intercession.  

4. Faithlessness, doubt and unbelief are some of the most potent hindrances to prayers and they should be avoided if we expect answers to our prayers. 

5. Wrong attitudes like pride, arrogance, indifference and a general prayerlessness disposition. 

CONCLUSION

You know its comparatively easy for you to pray for yourselves, your families, and our friends. But how easy is it for us to pray fervently and consistently for the Church of God and its needs?, How easy is it for us to pray for souls to come to repentance?  How many times do we pray for the nation?

Will you start interceding for your church and the nation today?  That friend of yours that is still struggling with addiction, will you intercede for him or her today?.  The Lord reward you greatly as you intercede for others in Jesus name.


FIRE...


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