How To Intercede Effectively
1 Timothy 2:1-4
Here are my directions: Pray much for others; plead for God’s mercy upon them; give thanks for all he is going to do for them.Pray in this way for kings and all others who are in authority over us, or are in places of high responsibility, so that we can live in peace and quietness, spending our time in godly living and thinking much about the Lord. This is good and pleases God our Savior, for he longs for all to be saved and to understand this truth:
Then, when Job prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his wealth and happiness! In fact, the Lord gave him twice as much as before!
First Things First.
In our spiritual life we blame God for our failures. We wonder why certain things don’t go right, when, really, we are not putting first things first. Usually, people are putting themselves first, even when it comes to praying. But the Bible doesn’t teach that. Many times prayers are not answered for you because you are putting yourself first.
In the scale or arrangement of prayer, you don’t come first.
Who Comes First?
- All Men
I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men…
Here are my directions: Pray much for others; plead for God’s mercy upon them…
- All leaders. In the time in which Paul wrote, most countries had kings for leaders. Today’s equivalent in our country would be our President. Paul then said, “for all that are in authority” (v. 2). That means all our leaders—politicians, parliamentarians, senators, governors, mayors— all who are in authority. It even includes policemen.”
If we don’t pray for our leaders, satanically inspired laws will be promulgated that will affect the work of God, your children and your destiny. If we don’t pray for teachers and those in the board of education, Witchcraft and godlessness will take over our schools. If you don’t pray for the supervisors , managers and directors in your work place, then God’s will, Kingdom and influence will not prevail. And if Light isn’t there, guess who’s there!
This is Pleasing to God!
For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth….1Tim.2:3
God wills all men to be saved. And since he’s Almighty, why doesn’t he just go ahead and save all men? The reason is because God will do nothing on earth without man’s permission. Do you really want to do something pleasing and acceptable to God? Then begin to pray for others. You will hardly criticize someone you pray for. One reason why we criticize people and especially leaders both political and spiritual is because we pray little for them. The more I pray for you , the less I’ll hate or criticize you. So this kind of prayer helps us to walk in the love of God. If we, as Christians, want to please God, what are we going to put as number one on our prayer list? Me? My Children? My grandchildren? My church? No. We are going to do exactly as God said to do: to pray first for all who are in authority.”
What Happens When We Pray
In our Scripture text we can learn the purpose of praying for our leaders.Paul said to pray for those who are in authority so that we who are Christians “may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty” (v. 2). God is concerned about us and will move, even though those who are in authority may not be Christians. He will answer our prayers and do things for us. Also this prayer facilitates men everywhere coming to the knowledge of the truth and getting saved. 1Tim.4:2
Biblical Examples of Intercession.
- Abraham on behalf of Sodom and Gomorrah. Gen.18:22-32. You see, only Abraham interceded on behalf of Sodom. There was no Intercessory group. You can start from where you are. Start praying for people everywhere. Listen to the Holy Ghost inside you. Anytime someone drops on my mind, I just start interceding for them.
- Ezekiel and Israel
30 And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.Therefore have I poured out mine indignation upon them; I have consumed them with the fire of my wrath: their own way have I recompensed upon their heads, saith the Lord God.
It is not in the nature of God to destroy. He is a merciful God. However he is also a just God. This means that Wickedness must be punished. However if there is an Intercessor, someone to stand in the gap, judgment can be averted. God said this concerning Israel, yet there is a spiritual truth that applies to us today. God said, “I sought for a man among them. .. but I found none” (v. 30). Isn’t that a terrible indictment?”Satan’s authority over matters on the earth can only be overcome as Christians pray and intercede in behalf of our country. God is looking today for someone who will “make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it.. . . ” (Ezek. 22:30).”
How To Intercede Effectively.
- Identify with the situation or individual. This means you have to put yourself in their shoes or position. That is only when you can generate the compassion of Jesus. That is only when tears can well up in your eyes. Until you identify with someone’s pain, problem and situation, you cannot be connected with them in the spirit.
This is why we often don’t get results. We pray for others but we never feel what they feel.
Until you identify with others, compassion will never rise in you. And until compassion rises, there can be no power or breakthrough.
Ezekiel 3:15 (KJV) Then I came to them of the captivity at Telabib, that dwelt by the river of Chebar, and I sat where they sat, and remained there astonished among them seven days.
Hebrews 4:15 (KJV)
For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as [we are, yet] without sin.
- Take on yourself the sin and errors of others. Sometimes, you have to take on the sins of others in order to intercede effectively.
Daniel 9:3-6 (KJV)
And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes: 4 And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments; 5 We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments: 6 Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.
You see, the pointing of the finger shuts the heavens over us. Isaiah 58:9.
God wants us to begin to assume the sins and errors of others in prayer.
If a brother commits sin, then to intercede effectively, you must see yourself in prayer as the one who committed that sin.
This is what the Bible means by;
Galatians 6:1-2 (KJV)
Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. 2 Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.
James 5:20 (KJV)
Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.
1 Peter 4:8 (KJV)
And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.
Remember that whatever you make to happen for others, God will make happen for you one thousand times over.
Anytime you pray for a sinner, see yourself as the one who’s lost.
Anytime you pray for an embattled marriage , see it as your marriage.
Anytime you pray for a situation, see it as your situation.
Anytime you pray for the sick, imagine that you’re the one who’s sick.
Anytime you pray for your pastor, imagine that you’re the pastor with all the attending responsibilities and challenges.
If you are not touched by the situation or need, you really cannot make any difference. Whatever does not move you cannot move God.
If it’s our case, we will cry. We may even weep. But have you cried over another’s case?
Have you wept for someone else’s child?
Have you wept for someone else’s marriage?
Have you been touched?
This is why we see no answers or real breakthroughs.
Why did Daniel have so much favor? He was an Intercessor.
Why was Abraham so blessed? He was an Intercessor.
Why was Esther so great? She stood in the gap.
All the men of old, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Paul, Elijah, Elisha, Moses etc and even our Lord Jesus Christ made a mark because they interceded for others.