A Quick Guide to Intercessory Prayer

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Kenneth E. Hagin


For a long time, almost all prayer was called "intercession." It was thought that intercession was the only effective kind of praying. But the most effective prayer is one the Holy Spirit inspires which is needed at the moment. To better understand intercession, we'll take a basic look at this kind of prayer by answering three questions: What is it? What is its purpose? What is the role of the Holy Spirit?

Intercession Defined

The word intercede, means "to act between two parties with the thought of reconciling the two of them." Therefore, the prayer of intercession is standing in the gap in prayer on behalf of another.

The purpose of defining intercession, or any kind of prayer, is not to limit prayer to a set of rules and regulations, but to give a better understanding of what the Bible teaches about each type of prayer. Equipped with this knowledge, believers can cooperate more fully with the Holy Spirit because He always works in conjunction with the Word.

The Purpose of Intercession

When you intercede on behalf of another, you are asking God to hold back judgment from a person or persons who provoked judgment upon themselves through their wrongdoing. Normally, intercession is made for those who are lost. Jesus identified with fallen humanity to bring our deliverance. Through love and compassion, you also identify with those for whom you pray.

If the ones who have sinned and caused judgment to come on themselves don't turn and repent, the only hope for judgment to be prevented is for someone to intercede for them.

God doesn't enjoy seeing people judged, so He looks for people of prayer to stand in the gap and intercede in order that lives can be spared. He said, "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" (Ezek. 22:30).

In Genesis 18:23-32, Abraham's prayer for Sodom and Gomorrah is a clear example of the prayer of intercession. Under the Old Covenant, Abraham interceded for people and God heard him. How much more will God hear your prayers for your lost loved one, city, and nation under the New Covenant?

You are a covenant child of God, just as Abraham was. And you have the authority in the Name of Jesus to help others through prayer and intercession!

The Holy Spirit's Role in Intercession

To be effective, intercession must be made at the prompting and under the direction of the Holy Spirit. You can intercede with your understanding, as Abraham did, or with your spirit in tongues or in groanings and travail inspired by the Spirit. (See Rom. 8:26.)

The Holy Spirit helps you pray. He helps you intercede for others. However, He does not do the praying apart from you. You are responsible to take time to pray and intercede for others and to obey the gentle urgings of the Spirit to do so.

In conclusion, it is important that we equip ourselves with an understanding of God's will when we go before Him to intercede on behalf of others. God's highest and best is that people turn to Him and live.

Take Your Prayers to the Next Level!

Learning how to pray effectively is one of the most important things a believer can do in their Christian walk. In his Bible Prayer Study Course, Kenneth E. Hagin discusses many principles of prayer found in God's Word. As you apply these principles in your life, you can be sure of an answer every time! Click here to order your copy today!

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