Intercessory Prayer is an overflow of His Spirit and Love for Others
Intercessory Prayer is something that Paul exhorts the church to do "first of all." What is the importance of intercessory prayer? What things are accomplished in the Spirit through intercessory prayer? What is the significance of spiritual warfare? The Holy Spirit is faithful to focus us into all truth in Christ, as we look these things of intercessory prayer that are an overflow of His Spirit and love for others in and through us.
By Dwight Davis
"Therefore I exhort first of all supplications, prayers, intercessions and thanksgivings to ever be made for all men, for kings and all who ever are in authority, that we may ever lead a tranquil and restful life in all reverence and respect" (I Tim. 2:1-2, author's translation).
First, Intercessory Prayer is to Deal with the World, the Flesh, and the Devil
Paul exhorts the church to do this "first of all." This is a top priority item. While we are going to focus on the intercessory prayer area, supplications, prayers, and thanksgivings are also included as "first of all." We are not in a natural battle, although it may seem that we are at times. We are actually in a spiritual battle, and "the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for the pulling down of strongholds" (II Cor. 10:4). We operate in the Spirit with intercessory prayer to deal with things in three areas – the world, the flesh, and the devil. The more that we know that we are in Christ and Christ is in us and let Him fully live and be expressed through us, the less we have to deal with these things for ourselves. Since we are dealing with others who do not really know who they are in Christ, some not fully walking in the Spirit, and others who may not even be Christians, there will be need for intercessory prayer for others who are dealing with things in these three areas.
Second, A Spirit of Repentance Poured out on the Entire Congregation
There was a season when a close friend of mine had regular intercessory prayer together the evening before the Sunday morning services. We interceded in a room with 12 banners declaring the Names of the Lord which we declared in prayer back to the Lord at the beginning of each of the intercessory prayer sessions. It seemed each week either he or I would get a verse of scripture or a word from the Lord on how and what we would pray for that evening as we started in prayer together. One night, the Lord clearly spoke to me and said, "Don't pray that I will bring repentance to my people, but pray that I will bring a Spirit of Repentance upon my people." We heeded that Rhema word in intercessory prayer accordingly. We went very early and followed-up with additional intercessory prayer face down on the floor of the sanctuary before the service began. During the prayer following the praise and worship service, people began crying out to God all over the sanctuary confessing their sins and praying for forgiveness. The pastor stated, that since the Lord had poured out a Spirit of repentance upon the congregation, that there would be no sermon, but the altar was open to whosoever wanted to come forward. Please understand that there is not a formula in this, but a specific direction for a specific time that the Lord, Himself requested and fulfilled through using intercessory prayer.
Third, Deep Groanings in the Spirit in Intercessory Prayer at the Altar
In an invitation time, I went down to the altar. I immediately went into deep groanings in the Spirit in intercessory prayer. A dear lady put her hands on my back and said, "That's all right son, go ahead and confess your sins." I just continued on unmoved. Remember, not every one at an altar is confessing sins.
Fourth, Intercessory Prayer and Miraculous Spirit Intervention for Others
There were occasional times where intercessory prayer was so intense that there were intense groanings in the Spirit within me. Some times the groanings were so intense, I wasn't sure that I could physically handle it another second. Although at the time, I understood that what was being done was extremely important in the Spirit to change some things in the natural. One time as several of us were face down lying prostrate on the floor in deep intercessory prayer, the Lord did something very miraculous. Whether in the body or out of the body, I do not know. However in the Spirit, I saw myself arriving into a dark, candle-lit cave with a group of Oriental people seated in a circle on the ground. I remember talking to one of them, who pointed to a stack of letters and notes in their midst. While he was speaking in an Oriental tongue, I understood that these letters and notes were prayer requests that they had gathered for intercessory prayer. I remember asking to pray with them together in intercessory prayer for these requests, although I heard myself talking in their language. In a short time, I found myself back on the floor with the intercessory prayer groanings ceasing.
Fifth, Intercessory Prayer is a Golden Barricade to Stop and Hinder Hell
During the concluding year of our radio ministry, I visited with a pastor in his home in Charlotte, North Carolina. The pastor and a small group felt led that we should take some time for intercessory prayer that evening around his dining room table. We were all intensely in the Spirit given to intercessory prayer and were praying and waiting on the Lord. I had laid my face down on the table over my folded arms and was groaning in deep intercession. The best way I know to explain what then happened is that I left my body in the Spirit, rose up and hovered over near the ceiling in the corner of the room. I could see my body and the rest of the group all interceding at the table below. I looked over at the corner of the table and saw the cliff that I had seen just months earlier in my day vision 1 with the Father. This time I saw a golden street barricade stopping those from going across. I remembered my reply to the Father, that I would tell others to stop them and put up barricades to stop them from going into hell for all time and eternity. The Spirit spoke to me and said, "What you are doing here tonight in intercessory prayer is a golden barricade to do much to stop and hinder many from going over that cliff." I then saw myself descending and the next thing I knew I was back groaning in the Spirit. I shared with the group what happened.
Sixth, The Whole Armor of God is Christ in Us for Intercessory Prayer
Intercessory Prayer is greatly used by the Spirit in Spiritual warfare. Every piece of the whole armor of God that Paul describes in Ephesians 6:10-17 was received and once then put on when we received Christ at our Spirit rebirthing. Every armor piece describes the attributes of Christ in us, who is our truth, righteousness, peace, faith, mind of salvation, sword of the Spirit, and the Word of God. This is really prayer armor, that the Christ can fulfill in us as us "praying with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit for all the saints" (Eph. 6:18).
Seventh, Intercessory Prayer is an Overflow of His Spirit & Love for Others
Christ is a continual intercessor to the Father in behalf of us (Rom. 8:34; Hebr. 7:25). Our identification is with Christ – to let Him be in us as us what the Father desires. Intercessory Prayer is an overflow of His Spirit and love for others.
1 -- See article on "Evangelism" sent 07/23/02 in the fourth paragraph for details on my day vision.