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Job Opportunity – Intercession

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Job Opportunity – Intercession

by in Features, Formation

Intercession - Can I Pray for You?Has anyone ever offered to pray for you? Have you ever offered to pray for someone else? There’s a good chance that many of us have been on the receiving or giving end of prayer. Are we able to pray on behalf of others? YES! This is what is referred to as intercessory prayer. The dictionary defines intercession as an “entreaty in favor of another, especially a prayer or petition to God in behalf of another” or “mediation in a dispute.” So when we participate in intercessory prayer we are asking God to act on behalf of the person we are praying for.

WHAT’S THE BIBLE SAY?
In the Old Testament part of the bible, there were only a select few who were able to speak to God directly. One of these people was the High Priest who would take on the responsibility of intercession and speak to God directly on behalf of the Israelite nation (the people God chose to use to show himself and his ways to the rest of the world). The High Priest would go into the part of the temple where God actually dwelt (called the Holy of Holies) once a year. He would bring animal sacrifices and offerings to God on behalf of all the Israelites and ask for the forgiveness of their sins. The High Priest would stand before perfect God and imperfect man and bring them together at the place of the blood sacrifice. This continued up until Jesus the God man sacrificed himself on the cross to set man right with God once and for all. Jesus has taken the place of the High Priest (see Hebrews 7:11-19).

JESUS THE MODEL
Jesus Christ is our model for intercessory prayer. Jesus intercedes for each of us, and stands between perfect God and sinful man, to make things right between us by way of his blood sacrifice.

For there is one God, and one mediator (intercessor) between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” ~ 1 Timothy 2:5

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

Isn’t that great?! I’m glad we don’t have to keep spilling the blood of animals. We can now approach God boldly and without fear or apprehension because of Jesus’ sacrifice and the spilling of his blood (check Hebrews 4:14-16).
While on earth, Jesus practiced intercession by praying for those who were sick or possessed by demons. He also prayed for His disciples and believe it or not… you and me (look at John 17:20)! He even continues to intercede for us after his death and resurrection. He’s sitting in heaven RIGHT NOW and intercedes between God & us (Romans 8:34)!

WHAT’S IT LOOK LIKE?
For us to engage in intercessory prayer, we need to stand between God and man – on behalf of those who either cannot or will not interact with God personally.

In order to be effective in standing “between”, we must first stand “before” God to develop the proper relationship with Him to fulfill this role. Numbers 14 is one of the greatest accounts of intercessory prayer recorded in the Bible. Moses was able to stand between God and man because he had stood “before” God and had developed intimacy in his relationship with God. It’s interesting to note that God spoke with Moses face to face and not through visions and dreams as He did with other prophets.
Today, thankfully we aren’t required to sacrifice animals. We get to approach God and have that direct communication because of the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. We are called to intercede for people because we are a part of a holy priesthood (1 Peter 2:5); a royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9) and we are a Kingdom of priests (Revelation 1:5). This places the responsibility on us to intercede for those who need it. We are to bring spiritual sacrifices of praise (Hebrews 13:15) and the ‘sacrifices’ of our own lives (Romans 12:1). It is on the basis of this intimate relationship that we have developed with God that we can then stand “between” Him and others, serving as an intercessor on their behalf.
Peter uses “holy” and “royal” to define the proper relationship we need to have with God. The word “holy” is used because holiness is required to see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14) and we are not able to be holy because of anything we’ve done but rather we can because of what Jesus has done. The word “royal” is used so that we understand the authority we have been given as believers, through our adoption into the family of God (Ephesians 1:5), so that we may have access to the throne of God.

LIVING IT OUT
So… how do you actually live this out? First, care enough about others to even want to pray. Surely we know lots of people who are sick, have been hurt physically, crushed emotionally, abused. Are scared, alone, need peace, comfort, and freedom from oppressors and enslaving habits/addictions. The list could go on and on. Remember, it’s a responsibility and honour to support others, let’s not waste the opportunities all around you.

So what can we do? Here are a few suggestions.

  1. SendTheFire prayer wall
    Write a prayer request on the wall for yourself or intercede for someone else by leaving a prayer comment.
  2. Make a prayer journal or a prayer list
    Keep track of those you’re praying for. Writing them down keeps you from forgetting and you can look back and see how God has answered prayers.
  3. Pick a regular time
    This is a different time than your own personal time with God. It’s about others.
  4. Move Outward
    When thinking about concerns of others, start by thinking of those you know personally. Then move outwards to your city, province, country and our world. This helps keep our focus on others.
  5. Join or create a prayer group
    Gather some friends to meet in person together.
  6. Commit to becoming a “prayer warrior”
  7. Participate in Intercession prayer events
    Eg’s include…
    See You At The Pole
    Weekend of Prayer for Victims of Sexual Trafficking
    International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church

RESOURCES
Websites:
See You At The Pole – yearly day to pray for your school, teachers and fellow students.
Weekend of Prayer for Victims of Sexual Trafficking – yearly day championed by The Salvation Army to pray for those caught up in sexual trafficking
International Day of Prayer For The Persecuted Church – day set aside yearly to pray for Christians who are persecuted for their faith

Books:
Getting in God’s Face – by Dutch Sheets

:: by Ryan Law of Grand Prairie, Alberta

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