Ministry of Intercession

INTERCESSION:  Act of interceding, mediation, petition or entreaty in favor of another. 

Webster 

To   approach   or   appeal   to   someone   against   a   third person. 

1. Romans 8:34  Christ at right hand of Father intercedes for us. 

2. Romans 8:26  Spirit intercedes far saints according to will of God. Dictionary of Hew Testament Theology Vol. 2 

How Did I Get Involved In Intercession? 

The above question can be answered in one word -GOD. If you are like me you need that explained. The following is how God revealed it to me when I asked Him, “Why are you involving me in intercession?" May I say this has been fifteen years of a journey in Christ's school of learning. 

For years I had an understanding that intercession was praying for others. I saw a need and at once decided I knew the answer and told God what to do. I would give God a short time to move on the person and if He didn't, I did. You can't believe how many people I had in a prayer notebook that I sincerely prayed for regularly. Then about eight years ago I started removing people from the notebook and left only those God was leading me to pray for. I found most of the people left were my family and six missionaries. When this took place God pointed out something very new to me. INTERCESSION WAS NOT MY LICENSE TO MANAGE AID DIRECT GOD OR THOSE I WAS INTERCEDING FOR. I have to admit when that came to me it took me several years to come to know what God meant. 

The word intercession dropped from my prayer language. God begin to teach me as a little child how to pray. My area of prayer was my husband and children. It seemed I was learning step by step that my relationship to the Trinity was vital in my prayer life. In these last eight years I have come to have a relationship with Jesus as seen in the Song of Songs. From this place of resting in Him I have come to realize who the Father is in my life. This was made very plain as I realized who the Father was to Jesus as He walked on this earth. 

John 5:19-20,30 

John 8:28,38,42 

John 12:50 

John 14:10 & 12 

What common thought do you see in these verses? 

Jesus said or did nothing without hearing His Father first. This is freedom; the same Father who works in Jesus works in me. "No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him" (John 6:44) and more to the point, "no one can come to the Father, but through Me" (John 14:6b). May I say again; this is FREEDOM! I don't have to strive and beg God for things to happen to so and so. It's my heavenly Father's work and His responsibility. This has brought more peace and rest in my life than I have ever had before. 

As I begin to see that, "...The Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He seeth the Father do..."(John 5:19) I realized that applied to me also. The Holy Spirit started showing up and sharing words of knowledge and wisdom which gave clearer insight to praying. Every area of my prayer life began to increase with new meaning and life. More and more I accepted that the role of an intercessor was NOT TO MANAGE OR DIRECT GOD OR THOSE I WAS INTERCEDING FOR. 

How Do You Get Involved In Intercession? 

Other kinds of prayer such as praise, thanksgiving, and petition begin with us but intercession has two distinctive marks: 

1. It ALWAYS begins with God. 

2. It’s done through man but accomplished by Jesus. 

3. A couple of comments I feel important to realize at this point are: 

a. Intercession is not an invasion of privacy. It's the tender, compassionate, love of the Father for one of His own. 

b. To be an intercessor one must be willing to say, “Father, I am all yours and I am willing to lay down my life for this brother." 

Let's look closer and see how it is accomplished. II Corinthians 4:10-12 NKJ v.12. “So then death is working in us but life in you." 

Working - to be active and energetic to effect, prove one strong. Life - referring to the principle of life in the spirit and soul, expressing all of the highest and best which Christ is and which He gives to the saints.1

Did you notice that death is active; it's not working upon us but in us. 

Philippians 3:7-11 NKJ v.10"... that I may know and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,..." 

Conformed - jointly formed, union with, to render like. We are jointly formed with Christ to His death which is active in us and His life. 

Colossians 1:24 NKJV "I now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ, for the sake of His body, which is the church." Flesh is the human body or that which is natural. 

Sufferings - notice the Greek wording and arrangement of this verse. "Now I rejoice in my sufferings on behalf of you, and fill up the things lacking of the afflictions of Christ in the flesh of me on behalf of the body of him, which is the church." 

Some may question, if Jesus has accomplished all on the cross, is it right for us to think of any human being other than Jesus as suffering redemptively for another? He did accomplish all, Redemption is a finished work. We can not add one thing to His perfected work of salvation. In His wisdom and the mystery of time, He does intend to complete that work of redemptive suffering through His spiritual body - the church - His Bride. 

II Corinthians 4:10 NKJ "Always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body”. 

Manifested is to become or be made visible. Now you should be getting an idea of what intercession is:  

• Not a license to manage and direct God or anyone! 

• It always begins with God! 

• It's done through man but accomplished by Jesus. 

The Way of Intercession 

When we receive Christ we entered into a new dimension of protection and the Father's love. It seems the more we allow Christ to become a part of our   lives   the  more   He   is  able  to  do.     However,   our will plays a big roll. 

Proverbs 16:9 NKJV "A man's heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps." 

Proverbs 19:21 "There are many plans in a man's heart, Nevertheless the Lords counsel - that will stand." 

Sometimes our will is not always sharp and clear. Sometimes part of our will wants one thing and another part wants another. A person with un-surrendered will gives God little or no opportunity to move in his life. If an intercessor walks closely enough to God He is free to violate a person's conscious will in response to the deeper will of the person's heart and spirit. This is where God uses intercession. God will use another willing heart to come between man and the cross. 

Hebrews   4:   14-16   NKJV     "Seeing   then   that   we have   a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession." 

"For we do not have a  High Priest who cannot sympathize with  our  weakness, but was in all points tempted as we are yet without sin." 

"Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace in help in time of need." 

Hebrews 7:25 NKJV "Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him since He ever lives to make intercession for them." 

It's very important for an intercessor to have an inner sensitivity to God which comes from knowing Him, There will be times when this relationship will aid us in ignoring what seems to be the actions of God. Knowing only the acts of God seems to place us in the past and what He has done, not what He is doing at the present moment. An intercessor needs to move in knowing God for everything they do. So often I've seen intercessors move on the acts of God and become involved in soul power or demonic powers without realizing what they are doing. (I will comment on this later.) 

Even as I am writing this God has brought this home to me again. For the past two days I have come against one of the most difficult times I have ever had in putting into words what I have learned from the Lord. In the past when this has happened I've just backed off and felt God did not want it printed at this time. I realized today as my husband was praying for me that this was different. I had allowed myself to get totally under the heavy weight of circumstances to the point I felt my whole life was falling apart. There was confusion in every area and depression was about to set in. I had told myself God did not want this to be written, not ever. Who was I to think I knew about intercession? God reminded me fresh and anew, that as an intercessor to the degree that my heart becomes one with my brother is the degree that He can save him from what ever his need is. The same is true with my relationship to the Father. The degree that my heart is one with my brother and my Father is the limit of release in my brother. I had allowed the circumstances in my life to tell me it's hard, God does not want it printed ever. When I responded to the person of God and not past actions I saw His will and did it. 

The Works of Intercession 

When a Christian surrenders his life, body and spirit to God he is placing himself in the complete life of Christ that His death may work in others as He chooses. A person can start this on his own but will soon find himself involved in all kinds of flesh actions and unable to live in them. God will never allow an intercessor to go beyond what the brother needs. The Holy Spirit knows the stopping place: 

Galatians 6:2 NKJV "Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." Galatians 6:5 NKJV" For each one shall bear his own load." 

As we have seen, intercession is a part of every Christian's life. For a while God will lay on your heart one person, for one moment in time in that person's life. When this happens respond as you sense the Lord leading. This could come in the area of sickness, an emotion out of control, the need for God's hedge of protection or angels assigned. No matter what you sense the Lord saying you respond in that way! Don't add or take away! At first this will seem strange and it is strange. Respond in faith and the Father will guide you. 

As God chooses, some interceders will be called into the Ministry of Intercession. The difference is the time you find yourself involved and God will have you interceding for one person for a period of time. This is where God responds to your total surrender to His will for your life and draws you into His Son's death to complete a work in another. An intercessor prepares the way of the Lord to his brother's heart. The load is lightened in order for the brother to stand free in Jesus. The intercessor who receives the burden is able to give it to the Lord, sometimes at once, other times after tears and prayers. 

The following are points I've learned through Christ's school of learning. It's my prayer that maybe your schooling will be shorter because of the walk I've had. 

1. Intercession has been one of the most beautiful ways I've seen God heal a wounded spirit. This could be a hurt, anger, doubts, guilt to name just a few. 

2. When I am interceding for one who is miles away I find myself having to trust God more when I've not heard any news. Some might call it curiosity but I feel only love and concern. 

3. Many times I have received an emotion or desire I thought I had long ago dealt with. Until I realized that these were not mine but had come to me as a part of intercession, I was confused, lost confidence in what was happening. I even felt guilt and unworthiness. Then one day God taught me those are the easy ones. All I need to do is give it to the Lord. Once again, knowing God is so important! 

4. We soon learn that God is there, after all He started all this. He is blessing you fully even though at times you may not feel His presence.  You come to know that He is present, not based on circumstances but pure faith. 

5. One thing I had to deal with was the fact that God did not care what I was doing when my sister needed help. I really had to learn my time, day or night, was not mine anymore. There's nothing like being awakened in the middle of the night because someone can't "sleep because of worry or anger. Or you may be driving down the highway in a van full of teenagers on a mission trip and realize your sister is getting tired and needing to continue what she is doing. For several minutes you receive her tiredness and give it to the Lord and release God's continual freshness and strength to your sister. 

6. One area I am still learning a lot about is releasing to someone what God lays on my heart at the time they need it. 

7. Intercessors learn much about their relationship with Jesus and the Father.  Their love comes to be very real in your life. 

8. I guess one of the hardest things to deal with has been to be around someone and seeing them laughing and having fun and receive a hurt or sorrow from them in intercession.*In times like these you can only receive and give to the Lord, never sharing what just happened.  

Warnings In Intercession

This last section I feel is the most important part of this study. Believe me Satan does not like an intercessor to be available to God in this way. 

There's one force fighting against intercession and that's the Devil and his army. Many times an intercessor will be called to stand against an attack by Satan for someone who doesn't even realize it's happening or they may know they are under attack. I just experienced this when our grandson was born six months ago. Marcus was just minutes old and developed problems breathing. For two hours my granddaughter, Faith, and I stood by the nursery window and watched the doctor and nurses treat his problem. At times it seemed nothing was working. I found myself breaking every curse God revealed to me on both sides of his family and standing against Satan. After about two hours Faith pulled on my skirt and I leaned over to hear what she was saying, "Nana, Marcus is alright now." I looked back through the window and saw only a nurse bathing Marcus with a big smile on her face. Satan had been, defeated! 

As the last days come upon us we will see demonic powers stirring up man's soul to release the latent power within him, Revelation 18:13. (For clearer understanding on the latent power of man's soul I recommend Watchman Nee's, Latent Power of The Soul and Jessie Penn-Lewis's, Spirit and Soul.) 

The demonic can cause an intercessor to go astray in the same way he can any Christian in any area of life! What I really feel I need to warn you about is the attempt the demonic forces will make to cause you to use your soul power in interceding for others. The Holy Spirit works in our spirit; the demonic spirit works in our soul.  The following is how your soul can become involved in intercession: 

1. Matthew 6:9 NKJ "... Our Father in heaven..." Our prayers should be directed and sent to our Father in heaven. 

2. Our prayers should not be directed at someone! This happens when as an intercessor you concentrate on your thoughts, expectations and wishes for a person. This becomes a force aimed at the person. The person can become oppressed by this force and do exactly what you ask. 

Prayers NOT directed and sent to our Father in heaven or directed at or on someone draws us into fulfilling the law of hypnotism; releasing psychic force. This is better known in the Christian world as the latent power of the soul. When you use this soul force in praying you can not only cause the person to do what YOU want, you can also cause sickness to come on the person. The more the force is added the weaker the person will become. 

In the opening session I pointed out that our Lord did nothing that His Father did not tell Him to do. It would seem that Jesus would have had a perfect soul and could have used it and its power if He had desired. However Jesus said Himself "... Verily, verily, I say unto you, the Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father doing..." John 5:19. 

After all is said and done I think this says it all for us intercessors. Intercessors find it hard to die because we think we already have! 

May God Bless You In Your Journey! 

--by Ann Brittain

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