Friday, February 24, 2012

Intercessory Prayer





Scripture

“Pardon, I pray, the iniquity of this people according to the greatness of Your lovingkindness, just as You also have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.”
(Numbers 14:19 NASB)

Observation

In this scripture in Numbers today we find Moses again and again interceding for the lives of the Israelites. Day in and day out they grumble against God who is dwelling with them. Moses on the other hand is a good and faithful man and loves his people, even when they are disobedient. Moses is a foreshadowing of Jesus Christ who never, ever gives up on his people. Whenever the people turn their backs on God, it is Moses who mediates between the people and God. He literally gets down on his face before God and pleads for the people. There are times that the people themselves have no clue how repulsive their acts have been in the eyes of God. Many of them are very far from God and have no relationship with him, even if he is in their midst. Therefore it is Moses who becomes the bridge, ever pleading for the lives of his people, desiring to draw them back to the God who truly loves them.

Application

We are told that after Christ Jesus ascended to heaven, he now sits at the right hand of the Father, ever interceding for all of us. Moses gave us a glimpse of the Messiah who was to come. Interestingly fallen humanity's nature has not changed since the days of Moses. Humanity continues to have the same kind of reckless responses before our Holy God. However, now we can see Jesus, the Messiah, the Son of God, sitting at the right hand of the Father, always praying and interceding for all of us. The result is that the presence of God never leaves us. God never stops facing us and reaching out to us, because Jesus is ever interceding for us. We may turn our backs on him, and we may do stupid things but he does not give up on us.

When our lives are in tune with God, we too, are to follow the example of Moses. Christ is interceding for us, but we are to step into that role as well, ever interceding for others who need to be drawn back to God. This is part of our calling as followers of Jesus Christ. Every follower of Jesus Christ ought to be passionate about the lost whom they encounter on a daily basis. We ought to be on our faces before God for those loved ones of ours who are not following him. We ought to have a list of those for whom we are praying on a daily basis. We ought to also be praying for those "Divine Appointments" which God has ordained for us to have every single day so that we can be ever interceding for a lost and dying world.

Intercession -- it's not just for Moses, or for Jesus, but as transformed followers of Christ, we are also called into this ministry together with him. Oswald Chambers once said that God does not allow us to see the weaknesses in others so that we can criticize them, but rather, that we can pray for them. This is why we must understand that it is part of our responsibility as a Christian to be ever in intercession for those around us. It is a part of our responsibility which we must take seriously.

Prayer

Lord, I am interceding today for those whom you have laid on my heart. Amen.

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