2nd - 8th January 2017
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“THE EARNEST PRAYER OF A RIGHTEOUS PERSON HAS GREAT POWER AND WONDERFUL RESULTS." (JAMES 5:16)
As we come to the end of 2016 and enter into the early days of a brand New Year, we are acutely aware of the vast needs that are pressing all around the world; heartaches, challenges and situations of apparent hopelessness that can only truly be met by the One who has the answers to each and every dilemma; our Lord Jesus Christ. It can be only too easy to feel overwhelmed by the vastness of the sorrow in our world; that happens when we take our eyes off the Lord, as we can be so prone to doing, and fail to keep them firmly fixed on Christ. We look to Him for anointed guidance as we pray; believing that He alone can transform situations and give us prophetic strategies as we endeavour to flood this world with the life-giving, liberating message of our glorious Gospel.
In her inspiring teaching on intercession in the book, ‘Prayer as a Lifestyle,’ Suzette Hattingh states, “Intercession is a partnership with God. It signifies a coming together with Him, in order to do that which He wants to do. You are never alone; it is praying with Jesus and the Holy Spirit who seeks the heart of the Father to bring to fulfilment what He wants on the earth.” As the International Missions’ Department launches this week of prayer, we are increasingly aware that we need to rise up as intercessors with Him. God-inspired, God- directed, God-honouring, God-anointed praying, resulting in victories that can only be proclaimed through Divine intervention and transformation; where the Lord gets all the glory.
Suzette Hattingh goes on to unpack the meaning of intercession more fully. In Hebrew it means, ‘paga’ and this word has several layers of meaning that are lost in our inadequate translation. In summary, these are as follows:
‘To collide with’ – intercession is literally like two forces coming against each other.
‘To encroach upon’ – like an animal about to catch its prey; coming in ‘with force against the situation.’
‘To drive in’ – like the powerful blow of a hammer on a nail forcing it into the right position.
‘To strike against, or to be violent against’ – not in the sense of physical violence but rising up with determination in the Lord to reclaim our inheritance in Christ.
‘To invade’ – spreading throughout the land; moving in against the enemy and spreading out in influence against him.
‘To come in between’ – like a referee the intercessor comes in between two opposing situations.
‘To entreat’ – earnestly asking and requesting with commitment and persistence.
‘To meet together’ – partnership agreement with each other and with Christ.
The double-edged sword of intercession has two main actions; warfare and travail. In warfare we face Satan, in the name of Jesus, as we stand against the forces of darkness. In travail we face our Father as we cry out to Him pleading on behalf of others. All the time we are asking God to use us as peacemakers. “The whole purpose of ‘coming in between and working together with’ Almighty God in partnership is to resolve a situation, so that a Godly peace will result and that His will will be done.” (Suzette Hattingh)
Surely this must be where our hearts must join and our spirits engage? Surely it is this standing in the gap partnership, earnest, precise, invasive, persistent, meeting together, travailing, warfaring prayer that will cause our great God to transform situations?
“Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts. What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain; and he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of ‘Grace, grace to it.’ (Zech 4:6)
There are many heartbreaking situations where we need to rise up in partnership together in every sense of the ‘paga’ word; situations that need the Spirit of Almighty God to flood over them and where God Himself places the final stone of victory in place and we cry out on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ; ‘Grace, grace to it’.
Let it be Lord, let it be!
Within our Elim Global family we have 72 missionaries in 27 different countries of the world and 70 partners. Partnership means fellowship, relationship, connection, collaboration, connection. How much greater the potential impact of those words in the spiritual realm!
Join together ‘with us’ in partnership intercession for the glory of His name. We can do this more effectively by growing in understanding about the needs specific to each country, nation, their people and those who minister faithfully amongst them. Please tell us specifically what you need us to collectively:
‘collide with’ in the Spirit, on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ;
‘encroach upon’, on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ;
‘drive in’, on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ;
‘strike against’, on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ;
‘invade’, on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ;
‘come in between’; on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ;
‘entreat’, on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ;
And ‘meet together’, on your behalf and in partnership together with Christ.
Please email your response for partnership prayer to: firstname.lastname@example.org
E.M. Bounds says “Prayer is the contact of a living soul with God. In prayer, God stoops to kiss man, to bless man, and to aid in everything that God can desire or man can need.”