“I urge you, first of all, to pray for ALL people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them.” 1 Timothy 2:1
There are so many people, right now in 2017, who are not living for God. Sure, a lot know ABOUT Him, but they do not KNOW Him. They don’t know that Jesus did for us all. How His death, burial, and resurrection provided them a way to live that is unlike any other.
In Sean Smith’s book, “Prophetic Evangelism” there is a section on how to pray for others. He calls it “standing in the gap”. I like that term because it’s like we are bridging the gap between unbelievers and Jesus.
You never know if you are the only person on this planet that is praying for someone. I say it that way because Jesus is praying for us all the time. That’s what He’s doing in heaven. So, people are being prayed for, but we are also called to pray.
Here are Sean’s practical instructions for standing in the gap:
- Recognize the infection. It is only as we see the effects that sin has on people that we will contend with compassion.
- Seek to be covered. Anytime we step out to war for souls, it’s vitally important that we are connected to a local body and covered by His presence. If we’re not properly related to a local church, we will be unable to adequately function in what it takes to be a lifeline for the lost and it becomes easy to develop shortsighted tendencies ad be more vulnerable to attacks.
- Get lit up. The act of putting fire in your censer might be the most pivotal. I’m convinced that a true burden of the Lord will drive us to fire. No fire – no effect. In the Old Testament, priests were told to keep the fire burning (Lev. 6:13). It is an ardent love to Christ that carries you on with resolve in the burden for souls. Fire is the guarantee of divine assistance and the heavenly fuel necessitated.
- Enter into intercession. When Aaron was told to make atonement for the people, to appropriate the atonement, the tool the Father gave was intercession. (Numbers 16:42-48) Isaiah affirms that Christ, our example, “made intercession for the transgressors” (Isaiah 53:12) Our intercession, like Aaron’s, will make a difference. God is still looking for those who will stand in the gap and partner to release God’s purposes in the earth.
- Stand in the battlefield. After Aaron prepared himself, the Bible says, “He ran into the midst”, and “stood between the living and the dead.” Being heartbroken for humanity moves us into the market-place where we step into the lives of the perishing, willing to put ourselves on the line, where we not longer avoid “sinners” or “sinner hangouts”. We stand wherever and whenever God calls us. Our assignment is to love people enough to endure the challenges that stand in the way of their conversion.
Please read that last sentence again:
Our assignment is to love people enough to endure the challenges that stand in the way of their conversion.
We are called to “Go into all the nations proclaiming the Gospel”, and that starts with praying for unbelievers.
I totally love prayer. I love talking to God and for months now, I”ve been practicing listening too. I enjoy that time with Him. But even I am not praying for unbelievers like I should.
Will you join me?
The world NEEDS Jesus! We know Him, but we are just keeping Him to ourselves. We need to stop that. Jesus wants us to tell others about Him.
I pray that you will become a great intercessory prayer warrior and that people will start giving their lives to Jesus because you “stood in the gap” for them!
God bless you today and always!