PRINCIPLES FOR EFFECTIVE INTERCESSION
1) Praise God for who He is. God’s power is especially released through worshipful song. II Chronicles 20:22 says, “As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the enemy and they were defeated.” Praise God for the privilege of engaging in the same wonderful ministry as the Lord Jesus, as you cooperate with Him in prayer relating to the affairs of men. “He ever lives to intercede for them.” Hebrews 7:25 Praise God for who you are in Christ Jesus. It is because of the shed blood of Jesus and our acceptance of that sacrifice for our own sins, that we are able to enter boldly into the Throne Room of the Almighty and make known our petitions. 2) Ensure that your heart is clean before God by giving the Holy Spirit time to convict should you have any unconfessed sin. Psalm 66:18 says, “If I had cherished sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened. (There are really as many as 10 reasons that our prayers are not heard. They can be found in the scriptures, and I will discuss them later in this teaching.) 3) Acknowledge that you can’t really pray effectively without the Holy Spirit’s enabling. “…the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for” Romans 8:26b
4) Deal aggressively with the enemy. Come against him in the all-powerful name of the Lord Jesus Christ and with the sword of the Spirit- the Word of God. “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” James 4:7 5) Die to your own imaginations, desires and burdens for what you feel you should pray. The need for this act of the will is clearly stated as follows: “…lean not on your own understanding” Proverbs 3:5b; “he who trusts in his own mind is a fool” Proverbs 28:26a; and finally- “For my thoughts are not your thoughts” Isaiah 55:8a 6) Praise God now in faith for the remarkable prayer time you are going to have. He’s a remarkable God and will do something consistent with His character. 7) Wait before God in silent expectancy, listening for His direction. “But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices. If my people would but listen to me, if Israel would follow my ways” Psalm 81:11-13; “For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from Him” Psalm 62:5; “But as for me, I will look to the Lord, I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me.” Micah 7:7 8) In obedience and faith, take action on what God brings to your mind, BELIEVING. “My sheep listen to my voice and they follow me.” John 10:27. Keep asking God for direction expecting Him to give it to you. He will. “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.” Psalm 32:8 We must make sure we don’t move on to the next subject until we’ve given God time to discharge all He wants to say to you regarding the present focus, especially when praying in a group. It’s not necessary for everyone in the group to receive directional revelation. But it is necessary for all to cooperate with those who do, providing the Holy Spirit witnesses in each heart that the directions are coming from Him. Guard against any one person dominating the prayers. 9) If possible, have your Bible with you should God want to give you direction or confirmation through His Word. “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” Psalm 119:105 10) Get involved with the Word of God and understand the “Keys of the Kingdom”. Bind and Loose. Understand by the Spirit of God what these mean. Search the scriptures.
11) When God ceases to bring things to your mind for which to pray, finish by praising and thanking Him for what He has done, reminding yourself that “…from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever! Amen.” Romans 11:36
SOME GUIDELINES TO GIVE FOCUS AND IMPACT TO OUR PRAYERS FOR SPIRITUAL LEADERS
1) Thank God for spiritual leaders and for the high price they’ve paid to be in leadership. It’s always high. We’re instructed to honor our spiritual leaders. “The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching.” I Timothy 5:17 2) Pray that God will comfort and encourage spiritual leaders, and heal their wounded spirits and hurting hearts. Psalm 147:3 3) Ask God to pour out His supernatural grace and patience upon spiritual leaders. Bind the spirit of pride, loose the spirit of humility…etc. Speak into their lives via the Holy Spirit, while standing against the enemy on their behalf. 4) Ask God to give leaders clear understanding that the underlying purpose in all their trials and testing is to conform them more to the likeness of the Lord Jesus as they live in obedience to God’s Word. Romans 8:29 5) Pray that wayward and fallen leaders will not only receive discipline in repentance and humility, but also have faith for their complete restoration and usefulness at the appropriate time. David prayed; “Let a righteous man strike me-it is a kindness; let him rebuke me-it is oil on my head. My head will not refuse it” Psalm 141:5 We pray that the leaders involved in giving and receiving correction and discipline will be motivated by David’s prayer: “May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope is in You” Psalm 25:21 We also pray that the following qualifications of leadership will be evidenced: “He has showed you O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with you God.” Micah 6:8 6) Pray that spiritual leaders will find that their greatest fulfillment is in having a more intimate relationship with the Lord, rather than in ministry accomplishments. Pray that worship and praise to the Lord will become an integral part of their lives. Pray that leaders will make ministry to the Lord a priority over ministry to the people. Luke 4:8 Pray that they’ll understand that submission and constant obedience to the Person of the Holy Spirit is the pathway of sustained power. Ephesians 5:18 7) Pray that the Fear of the Lord will be upon spiritual leaders. “To fear the Lord is to hate evil.” Proverbs 8:13a; “through the fear of the Lord a man avoids evil.” Proverbs 16:6b (All fascination with sin or rationalization of sin comes from the lack of the hatred of sin, hence, a lack of the fear of the Lord.) Bind the spirit of Baalim and Loose the Spirit of the fear of the Lord. Bind the spirit of Jezebel and Loose the spirit of wisdom and the spirit of the fear of the Lord. 8) Pray that spiritual leaders will see the need to study God’s character facet by facet and His ways form His Word as a basis for their own lives, leadership, and teaching. Without this revelation, distortion of truth and unwise actions will be the result. Most spiritual leaders’ problems stem from a lack of a knowledge of either the character of God or His ways…or from disobedience to revealed truth. One can understand and explain a person to others only to the degree they’ve taken time to know the person’s character. It’s the same in relation to God. Jeremiah 9:23-24 Pray that spiritual leaders will be convinced by the Holy Spirit that it’s more effective to speak to God on behalf of men than to speak to men on behalf of God. Pray this so they will be motivated to fulfill their priestly role of intercession and realize as Samuel did that failure to do so is sinning against the Lord. “God forbid that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you.” I Samuel 12:23 9) Pray that spiritual leaders will have vision for both worldwide revival and world evangelization AND be personally involved in intercession for them. Pray that leaders will be prepared for the inevitable, awesome visitations of the Holy Spirit that accompany revival, and for the great end-time harvest of lost souls. “The Lord will lay bare His holy arm in the sight of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth will see the salvation of our God.” Isaiah 52:10 Pray that leaders will have a deeper understanding of the ways of the Spirit in revival so they will not resist His workings, particularly when those workings are unpredictable and unusual.
10) Pray that spiritual leaders will have a desire to be real, and have a holy hatred of hypocrisy, starting with themselves. Pray this so that leaders will want to be transparent and honest and will never project an image other than what God knows them to be. Pray that leaders will choose never to preach a truth unless they’re living that truth; in other words, that their lives will validate their lips. Romans 2:21-27 says, “21 Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself? thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal? 22 Thou that sayest a man should not commit adultery, dost thou commit adultery? thou that abhorrest idols, dost thou commit sacrilege? 23 Thou that makest thy boast of the law, through breaking the law dishonourest thou God? 24 For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written. 25 For circumcision verily profiteth, if thou keep the law: but if thou be a breaker of the law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision. 26 Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision? 27 And shall not uncircumcision which is by nature, if it fulfil the law, judge thee, who by the letter and circumcision dost transgress the law? Pray that God will expose those who resist His conviction.
11) Ask God to give leaders a burning desire and spiritual ambition to be Christlike role models. Only being like Christ will release the manifestations of the strength of the Lion of the Tribe of Judah and the meekness of the Lamb of God at the appropriate times. Both are necessary and are made possible only through consistent submission and obedience to the Holy Spirit with the right motive of the heart. “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in His steps.” I Peter 2:21
12) Ask God to reveal to them any resentment or anger they may be harboring toward God or toward people for the price they have had to pay to lead.
13) Pray that they give needed correction and discipline with humility, mercy, and compassion, balanced with uncompromising firmness according to biblical standards. Pray that they in turn will receive needed correction and discipline in humility and repentance. “He who listens to a life-giving rebuke will be at home among the wise.” Proverbs 15:31
14) Pray that spiritual leaders will have the humility to recognize that they’re only one of a number of other ministry functions, (Ephesians 4:11) and that they were never meant to do it all. Pray that they’ll have faith to release others to function in their complementary ministries. Romans 12:3-8
15) Ask God to bring spiritual leaders to a commitment to being unifiers of the Body of Christ, and to use them mightily as such. According to John 17:23, unity is a vital key to world evangelization, and Psalm 133:1-3 tells us that God commands His blessing when we’re experiencing the biblical standard of unity.
16) Pray that God will reveal to spiritual leaders all sins of presumption: In placement of people in positions within the church In determining what speakers to engage, and what engagements he/she should take For God’s direction in all matters pertaining to money and spending In all things they would seek guidance –even in small matters.
How did Jesus tell us to pray? He gave what we commonly call the Lord’s Prayer to us. It is a guideline on how we should pray. Let’s examine it: Our Father, who art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. So we see that we are to pray to the Father and we are to recognize His holiness and the authority His Name has. We are also saying that we understand that He is in the Heaven of His home, where His Throne of His Kingdom is. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done, in Earth as it is in Heaven. We are to pray that the Earth will be made manifest into the Kingdom of Heaven. (or vice-versa). That is the new Earth that we read about in the book of Revelation. He tells us that Heaven and Earth will pass away but His words will never pass away. Pass away does not necessarily mean they will cease to exist, but more likely become something better. Give us this day our daily bread. This is the provision of God He is talking about. We are not to care or concern ourselves with even the clothes we will wear. That doesn’t mean we should not want to look nice and neat. (We are ambassadors of Christ, so we should attempt to look our best at all times).
But I submit that this is also showing us that we are to be as the Israelites were instructed to be in the O.T. We are to have enough for each day and no more and no less. (Manna in the wilderness.) Y”shua tells us that He is the Bread of Heaven. So we are to study, meditate upon and learn even by memory the Word of God. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Interesting to note is that this sentence is a continuance of the last. It is clear from scripture that if we have aught against someone, we are to leave our gift at the altar and go and make amends with the one, then return to worship. This is because we cannot receive from God if we have a problem with someone and refuse to forgive. We also read in the parables where the Lord is showing us about the servant who was forgiven a great debt that would take his lifetime to repay. (if even possible, and probably not.) But then in the next moment, he is unwilling even upon begging and pleading, to forgive a much smaller debt from another servant. [We should discuss this because of its importance.] And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. This is another addition to the sentence. I submit that the Lord will allow us to be led into temptation if we are walking in unforgiveness. It is the way a person’s heart becomes hard and their love turns cold. We also are not in a position to be delivered from the evil because we are operating in the Anti-Christ spirit. I say that because Y’shua came from the Father to place His perfect blood on the mercy seat in Heaven which could only be done by God. And therefore provided the sacrifice required to forgive sin; the sin of Adam and the sins of any man who appropriates it to his own life. So, in other words, The Forgiveness of God towards man = Jesus! So operating in Unforgiveness is the spirit that is directly opposite Jesus! = Satan!
For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power and the glory, forever and ever. Amen. So when we pray we are to recognize and declare that the Earth is redeemed back and is again in the Kingdom. And all power and all glory is His forever and ever. So Be It!
********************************************************************** When we say the words directly from the Word of God and recite the Lord’s Prayer as it has come to be known, it has power because we are Speaking forth the Word of God.