The Art of PRAYER Kenneth E. Hagin
BOOKS BY KENNETH E. HAGIN *Redeemed From Poverty, Sickness and Spiritual Death *What Faith Is *Seven Vital Steps To Receiving the Holy Spirit *Right and Wrong Thinking Prayer Secrets *Authority of the Believer (foreign only) *How To Turn Your Faith Loose The Key to Scriptural Healing Praying To Get Results The Present-Day Ministry of Jesus Christ The Gift of Prophecy Healing Belongs to Us The Real Faith How You Can Know the Will of God The Threefold Nature of Man The Human Spirit Turning Hopeless Situations Around Casting Your Cares Upon the Lord Seven Steps for Judging Prophecy *The Interceding Christian Faith Food for Autumn *Faith Food for Winter Faith Food for Spring Faith Food for Summer *New Thresholds of Faith *Prevailing Prayer to Peace *Concerning Spiritual Gifts Bible Faith Study Course Bible Prayer Study Course The Holy Spirit and His Gifts *The Ministry Gifts (Study Guide) Seven Things You Should Know About Divine Healing El Shaddai Zoe: The God-Kind of Life A Commonsense Guide to Fasting Must Christians Suffer'? The Woman Question The Believer's Authority Ministering to Your Family What To Do When Faith Seems Weak and Victory Lost Growing Up, Spiritually Bodily Healing and the Atonement (Dr. T.J. McCrossan) Exceedingly Growing Faith Understanding the Anointing I Believe in Visions Understanding How To Fight the Good Fight of Faith Plans, Purposes, and Pursuits How You Can Be Led by the Spirit of God A Fresh Anointing Classic Sermons He Gave Gifts Unto Men: A Biblical Perspective of Apostles, Prophets, and Pastors The AH of Prayer Following God's Plan For Your Life
Contents Foreword Acknowledgment 1. Why Pray? .................................................................1 2. Various Kinds of Prayer............................................5 3. Supplication Defined .................................................9 4. Intercession Defined ...............................................13 5. Man's Need for an Intercessor ................................21 6. The Prayer Life of the Believer ..............................27 7. Love: The Foundation for Successful Prayer .........31 8. Knowing God's Love................................................39 9. Boldness...................................................................45 10. Elements of the Believer's Prayer Life...................51 11. The Holy Spirit: Our Helper in Prayer ..................59 12. The Holy Spirit and Our Infirmities ......................63 13. Prayer for the Sick ..................................................67 14. What Is Praying in the Spirit? ..............................73 15. Quiet Prayer ............................................................ 81
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations in this volume are from the King James Version of the Bible. Fourth Edition Fifth Printing 1996 ISBN 0-89276-518-6 In the U.S. write: In Canada write: Kenneth Hagin Ministries Kenneth Hagin Ministries P.O. Box 50126 P.O. Box 335, Station D, Tulsa, OK 74150-0126 Etobicoke (Toronto), Ontario Canada, M9A 4X3 Copyright © 1992 RHEMA Bible Church AKA Kenneth Hagin Ministries, Inc. All Rights Reserved Printed in USA The Faith Shield is a trademark of RHEMA Bible Church, AKA Kenneth Hagin Ministries, Inc., registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and therefore may not be duplicated.
Foreword All of us are continually growing in our knowledge of God and in our understanding of His Word. Since this book was first released under the title The Art of Inter- cession, my study of God's Word has brought new under- standing in the area of prayer. Because of insights gained where the prayers of intercession and supplica- tion are concerned, I felt it was no longer appropriate to call this book, The Art of Intercession. Intercession is only one type of prayer. Actually, supplication covers a broader spectrum of prayer than does intercession, but the scope of this book involves even more than just these two kinds of prayer. For this reason, I asked our editors to change the name of the book to The Art of Prayer. This re-edited version reflects some of the additional illumination I have received over the last few years. My desire is that this book will stir believers to commit themselves to prayer so that the purpose of God can be consummated in the earth.
The Triumphant Church: Dominion Over All the Powers of Darkness Healing Scriptures Mountain-Moving Faith Love: The Way to Victory Biblical Keys to Financial Prosperity The Price Is Not Greater Than God's Grace (Mrs. Oretha Hagin) MINIBOOKS (A partial listing) * The New Birth * Why Tongues? * In Him * God's Medicine * You Can Have What You Say * Don't Blame God * Words Plead Your Case * How To Keep Your Healing The Bible Way To Receive the Holy Spirit I Went to Hell How To Walk in Love The Precious Blood of Jesus * Love Never Fails How God Taught Me About Prosperity BOOKS BY KENNETH HAGIN JR. * Man's Impossibility God's Possibility Because of Jesus How To Make the Dream God Gave You Come True The Life of Obedience Forget Not! God's Irresistible Word Healing: Forever Settled Don't Quit! Your Faith Will See You Through The Untapped Power in Praise Listen to Your Heart What Comes After Faith? Speak to Your Mountain! Come Out of the Valley! It's Your Move! God's Victory Plan Another Look at Faith MINIBOOKS (A partial listing) * Faith Worketh by Love * Seven Hindrances to Healing * The Past Tense of God's Word Faith Takes Back What the Devil's Stolen How To Be a Success in Life Get Acquainted With God Unforgiveness Ministering to the Brokenhearted
Chapter 1 Why Pray? Years ago I read a statement John Weslej. made and it stayed with me. Wesley said, 'It seems God is limited by our prayer life that He can do nothing for humanity unless someone asks Him.' A while later, in 1949, I was reading after another writer who made that same statement. But this fellow added, 'Why this is, I do not know.' 'Why doesn't he know?' I asked. Then I found out I didn't know either. Yet if Wesley's statement is correct and it seems to be as you read through the Bible then we who are to pray should know more about it. I began to examine the Bible to find out why, if God wants to do something for humanity, He cannot unless somebody asks Him. I found the answer through study of God's Word. You see, though some people have built up 'spiritual air castles' that God is running everything in this world, He is not. During the Vietnam War a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist began one column by stating that he was not a Christian. He said that he was not an athe- ist because the atheist says there is no God. 'I suppose you would classify me an agnostic,' he wrote. 'The agnostic says there may be a God, but if there is, I don't know it. Actually, I am prone to believe there is a Supreme Being. I do not believe that every- 1
16. Not-So-Quiet Prayer .............................................. 89 17. Groanings in the Spirit .......................................... 93 18. The Praying Church ............................................... 97 19. Until Christ Be Formed in You ........................... 101 20. Praying for Those in Sin....................................... 105 21. Praying for Deliverance ........................................109 22. Interceding for the Lost ........................................117 23. Prevailing in Prayer ..............................................125 24. Praying for Your Nation ........................................143 25. Excesses .................................................................153 26. Reviving the Art ....................................................159
Why Pray? the Millennium tomorrow. As I examined God's Word for the 'why' behind John Wesley's statement, I saw a truth I had never seen before, though I had been in the ministry many years. As I asked the Lord about it, He said to me, 'Go back to the Book of Beginnings.' I knew He meant the Book of Genesis. I reread it. I had read it many times. I had heard it taught as a Sun- day School boy. But I saw it in a different light this time. I saw that God made the world and the fullness thereof. He made His man, Adam. Then He said, 'Adam, I give you dominion over all the work of my hands' (Gen. 1:26,27; Ps. 8:6). God did not say, 'I am going to dominate through you.' He said, 'I give you dominion over all the work of my hands.' Therefore Adam had dominion upon this earth and in this world. He was originally, in a sense, god of this world. But Satan came and lied to Adam. Adam committed high treason and sold out to Satan. Then Satan became the god of this world. Second Corinthians 4:4 calls Satan 'the god of this world.' As such, he has dominion. Where? In this world. He will have that dominion, he will be god of this world, until Adam's lease runs out. God cannot legally and justly move in and take away that dominion from the devil. The devil has dominion here. He has a legal right because he has Adam's lease. And God cannot do anything unless somebody down here asks Him.
Acknowledgment Reverend Wilford H. Reidt of Kennewick, Washing- ton, was an outstanding Bible teacher. Wilford's wife, Gertrude, was the daughter of John G. Lake, well-known apostle of faith in the early days of this century. The Reidts were greatly used by God for many years in the area of prayer before they both went home to be with the Lord. Wilford's teachings on the subject of prayer reveal a depth of knowledge that could only have been gained from years of experience in prayer. I was so impressed with his study outline and comments on the subject of prayer that I asked his permission to use his materials in this book to the glory of God. We believe that God will use this book to raise up and train a great number of people who know how to pray and who will be at the forefront of the work of the Lord in these last days. Brother Reidt gave me permission to use his material and his remarks appear throughout the book in recognizable type.
Chapter 2 Various Kinds of Prayer Praying always with all prayer and supplica- tion in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints. Ephesians 6:18 Notice that says, 'Praying . . . with ALL prayer. ...' The Amplified translation reads, 'Pray . . . with ALL [MANNER of] prayer. . . .' Another translation reads, 'Praying with ALL KINDS of prayer. . . .' But the translation that really strikes a note in my own spirit is Goodspeed's. It reads, 'Use EVERY KIND of prayer and entreaty, and at every opportunity pray in the Spirit. . . .' The Bible teaches several kinds of prayer and the different rules governing them. The church world makes a mistake in not differenti- ating between those different kinds of praying. We sim- ply put all prayer in the same sack and shake it all out together. Many prayers are not working because people are using the wrong rules and laws. In the field of sports, for instance, we have baseball, basketball, football, golf, tennis, etc. These are all kinds of sports but they are not all played by the same rules. Wouldn't it be confusing to play a baseball game with football rules, or vice versa? The reason people are confused and have a prayer 5
The Art of Prayer thing here just happened. I believe there is a Creator somewhere. 'But I have never read the Bible. I do not attend church. One reason I don't is that what the Christians say about God doesn't agree with what I think a Creator should be, nor with what I can see of Him in nature. 'Even ministers say, 'God has everything under con- trol. He's running everything.' 'Well, if He is, He sure has things in a mess. People are killing each other. Little children are dying. Little children are hungry. Women are suffering. There are wars everywhere. 'If God has everything under control, do you mean God is running those wars?' Even an unregenerate columnist knew that wasn't right. God is not ruling in this world. He is not ruling on the earth. Thank God, He will one day! But right now His will is not being carried out on the earth, except in the lives of those who surrender to Him. That is easy to see if you will accept what the Bible says. The Bible says that God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). It is obvious that His will concerning the salvation of all men is not being carried out. When individuals accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior, it is carried out in their lives. But if God were running things and pushing His will off on people, since He is not willing that any should perish, He would make everybody get saved today and we would go into
Various Kinds of Prayer tion and dedication of our lives for God's use to go anywhere and do anything. In this prayer we pray, 'If it be Thy will' (Luke 22:42). *The Prayer of Commitment: casting your cares upon the Lord in prayer (1 Peter 5:7). *The Prayer of Worship (Luke 24:52,53; Acts 13:1-4). *The Prayer of Agreement (Matt. 18:18-20). *Prayer in the Spirit: praying in tongues (1 Cor. 14:14,15). *United Prayer (Acts 4:23-31). *The Prayer of Supplication. ^Intercessory Prayer. The last two types of prayer are primarily covered in the next two chapters. (For additional teaching on different types of prayer, please see Brother Hagin's book, Prevailing Prayer to Peace.)
Chapter 3 Supplication Defined The nature of supplication is much more heartfelt than a casual request. The word 'supplication' means a humble, earnest entreaty or request. If a request is not made in a heartfelt, fervent, and earnest manner, it would not be supplication. For Whom Can Supplication Be Made? First, we pray the prayer of supplication for ourselves concerning both natural and spiritual needs. PHILIPPIANS 4:6 6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and SUPPLICATION with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. Second, we pray the prayer of supplication for God's people for believers or all saints. EPHESIANS 6:18 18 Praying always with all prayer and SUPPLICATION in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all persever- ance and SUPPLICATION for ALL SAINTS. Third, we are to pray the prayer of supplication for all men and for those who are in authority. That would include unbelievers as well. 1 TIMOTHY 2:1,2 1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, SUPPLICA- TIONS, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be 9
The Art of Prayer problem is that they have their rules and laws all mixed up together. They take rules which govern one kind of praying and try to apply them to other kinds of praying. Speaking illustratively, they've got football, baseball, basketball, golf, and tennis rules supposedly all working together. They are confused. And so is their prayer life. One common misconception people have is they think they should conclude every prayer with the words, 'If it be Thy will.' They claim that is how Jesus prayed. How- ever, Jesus prayed this way on only one occasion that is recorded in Scripture. That was in the Garden of Gethse-mane when He prayed the prayer of consecration. When they attempt to pray the prayer of faith (the prayer of petition, the prayer to change things), they conclude it with 'if it be Thy will.' And their prayer is hindered because they are uncertain of His will His Word. They may say, 'I don't understand why that didn't work.' That would be like saying at a football game, 'I don't see why someone doesn't hit a home run.' Don't be confused. Go to the Rulebook! Go to the Bible and see how to pray. I will list here several kinds of prayers the Bible teaches. However, I cannot go into detail on all of them in this book. (I do have books on prayer which deal with them in more detail.) *The Prayer of Faith: the prayer of petition, the prayer to change things (Matt. 21:22; Mark 11:24). This prayer, always to be based on God's revealed will in His Word, never contains an 'if.' *The Prayer of Consecration: the prayer of consecra-
Supplication Defined 11 another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. 17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. 18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit. JAMES 5:16 (Amplified) 16 Confess to one another therefore your faults — your slips, your false steps, your offenses, your sins; and pray [also] for one another, that you may be healed and restored — to a spiritual tone of mind and heart. The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available — dynamic in its working. Notice the characteristics of supplication in these verses it is fervent, earnest, heartfelt, and continued. Such prayer makes tremendous power available! We can also offer the prayer of supplication to obtain forgiveness. DANIEL 9:2,3,17,18 2 In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. 3 And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and SUPPLICATIONS, with fasting, and sack cloth, and ashes__ . 17 Now therefore, O our God, hear the prayer of thy servant, and his SUPPLICATIONS, and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary that is desolate, for the Lord's sake.
Chapter 4 Intercession Defined The purpose of defining intercession or any other kind of prayer is not to limit or confine 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 such knowledge, the believer can cooper- ate more fully with the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit always works in conjunction with the Word. Many people have lost the true spirit of prayer by becoming legalistic and clinical in their praying. It's more important to recognize and learn to flow with the Holy Spirit in prayer than merely to know correct prayer terminology. For a long time, almost all prayer was called 'inter- cession,' or it was thought that intercession was the only effective kind of praying. But in reality, the most effec- tive prayer is the prayer the Holy Spirit inspires which is needed at the moment whether it is the prayer of agreement, the prayer of faith, the prayer of praise and worship, or some other type of prayer. Often different kinds of prayer will work together much like the fingers on a hand. For instance, supplication, which is an earnest, heartfelt request, is used in intercession. Briefly defined, intercession is standing in the gap in prayer between a person or persons, who have provoked judgment upon themselves through their wrongdoing, and the actual execution of that judgment. Or to put it more simply, intercession is prayer to hold back judgment. To be 13
10 The AH of Prayer made for ALL MEN; 2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For What Can Supplication Be Made? One of the things for which supplication can be made is for laborers to be sent into God's harvest. MATTHEW 9:37,38 37 Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few; 38 PRAY ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest. The word translated as 'pray' in verse 38 involves the idea of an urgent and necessary request presented with fervency and desire. Supplication can also be made for the rain of God's Spirit to be poured out upon the earth. ZECHARIAH 10:1 1 ASK ye of the Lord rain in the time of the latter rain; so the Lord shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field. The word translated as 'ask' in this verse means to desire, to ask earnestly, and to require. JAMES 5:7,16-18 7 Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the pre- cious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.... 16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for
Intercession Defined 15 Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? 26 And the Lord said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes. 27 And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes: 28 Peradventure there shall lack five of the fifty righ teous: wilt thou destroy all the city for lack of five? And he said, If I find there forty and five, I will not destroy it. 29 And he spake unto him yet again, and said, Perad venture there shall be forty found there. And he said, I will not do it for forty's sake. 30 And he said unto him, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Peradventure there shall thirty be found there. And he said, I will not do it, if I find thirty there. 31 And he said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord: Peradventure there shall be twenty found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for twenty's sake. 32 And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten's sake. 33 And the Lord went his way, as soon as he had left communing with Abraham: and Abraham returned unto his place. Abraham's prayer for Sodom and Gomorrah is a clear example of the prayer of intercession. There is an impor- tant thing we need to note from this biblical account. God mentions a cry that arose from Sodom and Gomor- rah in verses 20 and 21. Smith Wigglesworth said once that there is some- thing about faith that will cause God to pass over a mil- lion people just to get to one person who is in faith. You
12 The Art of Prayer 15 O my God, incline thine ear, and hear; open thine eyes, and behold our desolations, and the city which is called by thy name: for we do not present our SUPPLI CATIONS before thee for our righteousnesses, but for thy great mercies. Here we see Daniel earnestly confessing his own sins and the sins of his people. Repenting and confessing your sins is done by means of the prayer of supplication. Finally, we pray the prayer of supplication to lift up the spiritual needs of others. The words 'prayer' or 'pray' in the following verses literally mean supplication or earnest prayer. EPHESIANS 1:16 16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my PRAYERS. PHILIPPIANS 1:9 9 And this I PRAY, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment. COLOSSIANS 1:9 9 For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to PRAY for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding. COLOSSIANS 4:12 12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always labouring fervently for you in PRAYERS, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God. In these prayers Paul prayed and recorded in the epistles, he was making reference to supplication.
Intercession Defined 17 31 Therefore have I poured out mine indignation upon them; I have consumed them with the fire of my wrath: their own way have I recompensed upon their heads, saith the Lord God. In these verses we can see that God Himself sought for someone to stand in the gap for the land. But when no one was found, judgment was poured out. It is impor- tant to notice what God's will was in this matter. God's will was that someone stand in the gap so the land would not be destroyed. We need to equip ourselves with an understanding of God's will when we go before Him to make intercession on behalf of others. God's highest and best is that people turn to Him and live. Second Peter 3:9 further enforces God's will concern- ing all men. 2 PETER 3:9 9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. There were two occasions when Moses had to stand in the gap or make intercession for the children of Israel who had provoked God by their idolatry and sin: NUMBERS 14:11-19 11 And the Lord said unto Moses, How long will this people provoke me? and how long will it be ere they believe me, for all the signs which I have shewed among them? 12 I will smite them with the pestilence, and disinherit them, and will make of thee a greater nation and mightier than they.
14 The Art of Prayer effective, intercession needs to be made at the prompting of and under the direction of the Holy Spirit. So that we can better understand intercession, let's examine some instances in Scripture when intercession was made. GENESIS 18:16-33 16 And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. 17 And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; 18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spo ken of him. 20 And the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; 21 I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know. 22 And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the Lord. 23 And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked? 24 Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein? 25 That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righ teous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee:
Intercession Defined 19 hot against them, and that I may consume them: and I will make of thee a great nation. 11 And Moses besought the Lord his God, and said, Lord, why doth thy wrath wax hot against thy people, which thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand? 12 Wherefore should the Egyptians speak, and say, For mischief did he bring them out, to slay them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth? Turn from thy fierce wrath, and repent of this evil against thy people. 13 Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom thou swarest by thine own self, and saidst unto them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have spoken of will I give unto your seed, and they shall inherit it for ever. 14 And the Lord repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people. Psalm 106 gives further insight into the importance of Moses' intercessory prayers in withholding judgment from the children of Israel. Note especially verse 23: PSALM 106:23 23 Therefore he said that he would destroy them, had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, to turn away his wrath, lest he should destroy them. We can see from this verse that had Moses not stood in the gap for Israel, they would surely have been destroyed in judgment. However, the most precious and outstanding example of an intercessor is our Lord Jesus who stood in the gap for us and who now intercedes for us at the Father's right hand. In the next two chapters we will look at His intercessory role on our behalf.
16 The Art of Prayer see, the cry of faith will bring God on the scene. The cry of faith invokes a blessing. The word 'invoke' means to call forth, to put into operation, or to bring about. But sin also cries out to God and brings Him on the scene. Rather than invoking God, sin provokes God. The word 'provoke' means to incite to anger, to call forth, to bring on, and to stir up on purpose. Sin provokes God and calls forth wrath and judgment. Time and again in Scripture we read where Israel provoked God to anger, and judgment came. God does not delight in seeing people receive judgment. According to Micah 7:18, God delights in mercy. MICAH 7:18 18 Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniq- uity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy. EZEKIEL 33:11 11 Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel? However, if the ones who have sinned and provoked judgment upon themselves do not turn and repent, the only hope for judgment to be averted is for someone to stand in the gap for them and make intercession. EZEKIEL 22:30,31 30 And 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.
Chapter 5 Man's Need for an Intercessor For he is not a man, as I am, that I should answer him, and we should come together in judg- ment. Neither is there any days man betwixt us, that might lay his hand upon us both. — Job 9:32,33 The marginal rendering in my King James reference Bible for the word translated 'days man' is 'umpire.' Another reference reads 'one who argues.' In other words, there is no one to argue the case for both sides. The following translation is enlightening: JOB 9:32,33 (Amplified) 32 For [God] is not a mere man, as I am, that I should answer Him, that we should come together in court. 33 There is no umpire between us, who might lay his hand upon us both [would that there were]! Job needed one who would be able to lay his hand on him and a hand on God. He needed one to stand between him and God and plead his case. Reidt God saw that there was no intercessor. ISAIAH 59:16 16 And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him. 21
18 The Art of Prayer 13 And Moses said unto the Lord, Then the Egyptians shall hear it, (for thou broughtest up this people in thy might from among them;) 14 And they will tell it to the inhabitants of this land: for they have heard that thou Lord art among this peo ple, that thou Lord art seen face to face, and that thy cloud standeth over them, and that thou goest before them, by day time in a pillar of a cloud, and in a pillar of fire by night. 15 Now if thou shalt kill all this people as one man, then the nations which have heard the fame of thee will speak, saying, 16 Because the Lord was not able to bring this people into the land which he sware unto them, therefore he hath slain them in the wilderness. 17 And now, I beseech thee, let the power of my Lord be great, according as thou hast spoken, saying, 18 The Lord is longsuffering, and of great mercy, for giving iniquity and transgression, and by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth genera tion. 19 Pardon, I beseech thee, the iniquity of this people according unto the greatness of thy mercy, and as thou hast forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now. EXODUS 32:7-14 7 And the Lord said unto Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, which thou broughtest out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves: 8 They have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them: they have made them a molten calf, and have worshipped it, and have sacri ficed thereunto, and said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which have brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. 9 And the Lord said unto Moses, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people: 10 Now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may wax
Man's Need for an Intercessor 23 HEBREWS 7:25 25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the utter- most that come unto God by him, SEEING HE EVER LIVETH TO MAKE INTERCESSION FOR THEM. There flows from Jesus to the Father an unceasing stream of prayer and love for all people and for those that have accepted Him as Savior and Lord. Conversely there flows from the Father to Jesus the answer for us. Therefore there flows from Jesus to every mem- ber of His Body abundant grace for every timely need. He abideth forever. Regardless of circumstances, regard- less of how dark things look, regardless of how we feel, He abides in us forever if we continue in His goodness (Rom. 11:22). He is our High Priest forever at the right hand of the Father. Reidt HEBREWS 7:16,17 16 Who is made, not after the law of a carnal command ment, but after the power of an endless life. 17 For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec. How long is Jesus Christ our High Priest? Forever! HEBREWS 8:1 1 Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens. As our High Priest He exercises every function of His office in endless Life-Power. This endless Life-Power never ceases for one moment. Our faith and experience of that inter- cession need never fail because its flow is endless. Reidt
Man's Need for an Intercessor 25 1 JOHN 5:3 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his com- mandments: and his commandments are not grievous. The love law of the family of God is, 'A new com- mandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another' (John 13:34). Every step outside of love is sin. We tend to get our minds on dos and don'ts, but many Christians who abide perfectly by dos and don'ts are still sinning. How? By not walking in love. Their attitudes are wrong. You need to maintain a love attitude toward your fellow man. If you do not, you are sinning. Thank God for His intercession. Thank God for His standing in that place today to minister for us. Jesus spent about 3V2 years in teaching and training His apostles. Since His ascension He has been interceding for about 2,000 years for the people of this earth. What a dignity this adds to prayer. Reidt Jesus has been interceding 2,000 years for the people of this earth not just for the Church! Notice Hebrews 7:25 again, 'Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost THAT COME UNTO GOD [This is talking about people coming unto God.] by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.' Jesus' intercessory ministry includes His being our Mediator, our High Priest, our Advocate, our Consoler, and the One who prays for us at the Father's right hand.
22 The Art of Prayer God saw there was no intercessor, so He supplied the need. He sent Jesus. Jesus, Our Intercessor Jesus came to bridge the gap between God and sinful man. Man needed someone to stand in the gap so he could get back to God. Man needed an Intercessor. Jesus' sacrifice established Him as the only fully trustworthy Intercessor for mankind. He is the only Intercessor for the people of this planet. Reidt 1 TIMOTHY 2:5 5 For there is one God, and ONE MEDIATOR BETWEEN GOD AND MEN, the man Christ Jesus. He entered Heaven to appear in the presence of God for us. Reidt HEBREWS 9:24 24 For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God FOR US. He is our Intercessor at the right hand of the Father. Reidt ROMANS 8:34 34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, WHO ALSO MAKETH INTERCESSION FOR US. He saves to the uttermost. His divine power can never cease for one moment. Reidt
Chapter 6 The Prayer Life of the Believer I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplica- tions, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peace- able life in all godliness and honesty. 1 Timothy 2:1,2 The Spirit of God, through the Apostle Paul, exhorted believers to put something first in their prayer lives not second, nor third, but first. First of all, supplications (petitions), prayers, inter- cessions, and giving of thanks (gratitude; grateful lan- guage to God as an act of worship), are to be made for all men; for kings (or presidents), and for all who are in authority. On what grounds can we do this? On what basis can we petition, pray, intercede, and give thanks for others? We can legally do it because we are one with Jesus the Great Intercessor, and prayer is part of His intercessory ministry. One With the Great Intercessor We have already talked about Jesus as Intercessor and now we see that because we are one with Him, we are one with the Great Intercessor. 27
24 The Art of Prayer 1 JOHN 2:1 1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advo- cate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. Included in the idea of intercession is the fact that Jesus is our Advocate. Advocate means 'intercessor, consoler.' Reidt W. E. Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words says of the Greek word PARAKLETOS translated 'advocate' in First John 2:1, 'It was used in a court of justice to denote a legal assistant, counsel for the defence, an advocate; then, generally, one who pleads another's cause, an intercessor, advocate. In the widest sense, it signifies a succourer, comforter.' When a person (Christian) sins, Jesus intercedes, and then consoles in the fact that the sin is forgiven and that the sin and its stain is washed away by His blood leaving the per- son pure and clean. However, it is the will of God that a per- son stop sinning (1 John 2:1; 5:3). Reidt First John 2:1 is not written to encourage us to sin. God wants us to stop sinning. But thank God, He did not stop with saying, 'My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. . . .' If He had, then when we failed, we'd think, We're out now; that's the end of it. No, that's just half that verse. He goes on to say, '. . . And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.' We have an Intercessor! We have a Consoler!
The Prayer Life of the Believer 29 Wilford Reidt capsules it like this: 'He is our great Intercessor. He is the great Intercessor for all mankind. As members of His Body, the Church, we partake in that intercession.' Therefore, our prayer life will find its pattern in Him. Identification We must identify with the one for whom we are interceding. Jesus identified with Mary and Martha in the death of Lazarus. They were groaning and weeping. He groaned within and wept. He went to the grave and raised Lazarus from the dead. Romans 12:15 brings in focus the idea of identification with others: 'Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.' The real believer can go from the house of rejoicing . . . to the house of weeping and weep with them. Paul identified with the Jews that he might gain the Jews. Paul identified to them without law as without law (being not without law to God, but under law to Christ) that he might gain them that are without law. To the weak he became as weak that he might gain the weak. He said that he was made all things to all men, that he by all means might save some (1 Cor. 9:19-22). Reidt The identification we are speaking of is that identifi- cation with the object that brings deliverance. Jesus Christ, the great Intercessor, is our Example. He identified with man when He, who had always existed in the form of God, emptied Himself and took the form of a bond servant, ' . . . and was made in the like- ness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even
Chapter 7 Love: The Foundation For Successful Prayer Love the God-kind of love, 'agape' is the first prerequisite for a successful prayer life. And if you are a child of God, you have this kind of love. ROMANS 5:5 5 . . . the love [agape] of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. When you were born again, God became your Father. He is a love God. You are a love child of a love God. You are born of God, and God is love, so you are born of love. The nature of God is in you. And the nature of God is love. Ours is a love family. Everyone in the family has God's love shed abroad in his heart, or else they are not in the family. Now they may not be exercising it. They may be like the one-talent guy who wrapped his talent in a napkin and buried it. But the Bible declares that the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost. That means the God-kind of love has been shed abroad in our spirits. This is a love family. Love is the basis for all the activity of the Body of Christ in the earth. 1 THESSALONIANS 4:9 9 But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to 31
30 The Art of Prayer the death of the cross' (Phil. 2:7,8). Jesus Christ identified with fallen man to bring our deliverance. Through love and compassion, we also identify with those for whom we pray.
Love: The Foundation for Successful Prayer 33 That love is inside your spirit if you are born again. But you are the one who has to will to put it into prac- tice. You choose to let that love loose from within you. We can choose to love all people even our enemies. Almost anyone can love those who love them, but the Bible tells us to love our enemies. We choose to love all people, even the unlovable. We love as God loves. It involves (the) giving of our lives for the benefit of mankind. This does not merely refer to dying physically. It mainly refers to our being willing to give up our own will and way and take time to pray and intercede for all men. Reidt JOHN 15:13 13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. God loved us while we were yet sinners and sent Christ to die for us. We are to love the same way. We give our lives for mankind. One of the ways we give our lives for mankind is by giving ourselves to prayer. It involves sacrifice. It involves laying down our own desires for the benefit of mankind. There is sacrifice in giving up your own will and time to pray for others. Compassion Love is the basis for all Christian activity. Compassion is an ingredient of divine love. Reidt How do we know this is so?
32 The Art of Prayer love one another. The love law of the family of God is: JOHN 13:34 34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. We are also commanded to love our enemies: MATTHEW 5:44,45 44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; 45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. The reason we can do this love our enemies, bless them that curse us, do good to them that hate us, and pray for them which despitefully use us and persecute us is because of the manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us: 1 JOHN 3:1 1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God __ Your Will and Love involves This agape love this God-kind of love the choice of your will.
Love: The Foundation for Successful Prayer 35 MATTHEW 15:32 32 Then Jesus called his disciples unto him, and said, I have compassion on the multitude, because they con- tinue with me now three days, and have nothing to eat: and I will not send them away fasting, lest they faint in the way. In His compassion, Jesus healed the blind: MATTHEW 20:34 34 So Jesus had compassion on them, and touched their eyes: and immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed him. Compassion led to the healing of the leper: MARK 1:40,41 40 And there came a leper to him, beseeching him, and kneeling down to him, and saying unto him, If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. 41 And Jesus, moved with compassion, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean. In His compassion, Jesus healed every person who asked (Matt. 4:23,24; Mark 6:56; Luke 6:19). Jesus taught His disciples to share in His compassion by sending out the twelve (Luke 9:1-6) and the seventy (Luke 10:1-19). His compassion was to be carried on after His Ascension as He made healing one of the signs of the believer (Mark 16:16-18). His compassion was demonstrated after His Ascension (Acts 5:15,16; 19:11,12; 28:8,9). In every instance where Jesus was moved with compas- sion, the person or persons were delivered. Human sympathy says, 'I know how you feel; I'm so sorry.'
36 The Art of Prayer Divine compassion says, 'I feel how you feel.' And it brings deliverance. Jesus felt as Mary and Martha felt as He groaned within and also wept. Reidt JOHN 11:33,35 33 When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled.... 35 Jesus wept. Jesus' compassion brought deliverance. If we have the divine compassion of Jesus, there will be deliverance. But I think too much of the time we've tried to bring deliverance without God's divine compassion. That's where prayer and intercession come in. Weeping by the unction of the Holy Spirit with them that weep brings deliverance (Rom. 12:15). Dr. John G. Lake is known for his ministry that was well marked with apostolic ideals. He did an amazing work in South Africa just after the turn of the century. So many healings took place in his tabernacle in Johannesburg, report of them reached the leaders of the nation. Some of the top government people sought him for help on the behalf of the wife of a certain government official. When Lake went to her home, he found her bedridden with terminal cancer. He determined that she was a Christian. Then he began to give her Scripture to teach her about divine healing and to get her faith activated. She made a decision to trust God for her healing. The doctors had given her up to die and were only giving her
Love: The Foundation for Successful Prayer 37 pain relievers to keep her comfortable. But she decided to stop all drugs. She said, 'If I'm going to trust God for my healing, and I am, then I'm going to throw myself completely over on His mercy.' 'This woman was in such pain,' Lake said, 'that one of the ministers of the church and I stayed at her bed- side around the clock, praying. As we prayed, she would get relief.' One morning, after having prayed all night, Lake went home just long enough to bathe and shave. Then he started back. 'When I came within two blocks of the house,' Lake said, 'I heard the woman screaming in pain. At the sound of those screams, somehow I seemed to enter into a divine compassion. . . . ' Lake entered into the sufferings of Jesus. He began to feel just like Jesus feels. For Jesus can be touched with the feelings of our infirmities (Heb. 4:15). Lake said, 'I found myself running those last two blocks without even thinking what I was doing. Without thinking, I rushed into the room, sat down on the edge of the bed, picked up that emaciated body in my arms like a baby, and began to weep. While I was weeping, she was perfectly healed.' Somehow, the compassion of Jesus, the love of God, was able to permeate his heart, his spirit. Dedicated believers can enter into that area of com- passion by one way and you will not get there any other way and it is by fellowship with God. You cannot fellowship with God, you cannot sit in the
38 The Art of Prayer Presence of the Great God of this universe without His love permeating your being, and without His compassion flowing into you. And it is when you can get into this place that you will be able to do as Jesus said in John chapter 14. JOHN 14:12 12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. The works that He did were born out of love and com- passion. The works that the believing ones shall do, including prayer, are products of sharing in His ministry of love and compassion.
Chapter 8 Knowing God's Love And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the ful- ness of God. Ephesians 3:19 To intercede effectively, you must know the great love God has for all humanity. He sends the rain on the just and the unjust (Matt. 5:45). He makes the sun to rise on the evil and the good (Matt. 5:45). He is kind to the unthankful and to the evil (Luke 6:35). Reidt Since the love of God is in us, and the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts, we are to be kind like God is kind to the unthankful and to the evil. Whosoever Will Jesus purchased a gift of salvation for anyone who would accept it (Eph. 2:8; Rev. 22:17). God commands all men every- where to repent (Acts 17:30). His hand of mercy is extended to all mankind. Our intercession for all men is not so much for God to extend His mercy. This He has already done through Jesus. Our intercession is mainly to break the bondage that the devil has over men. The devil has blinded men (2 Cor. 4:3,4). We are to loose the sinner from the blindness that he may see the Light. Reidt 39
40 The Art of Prayer One afternoon a number of years ago, I was lying across my bed resting between the morning and evening service. I had my Bible and another book and I was studying. Into my spirit not into my mind came an understanding of some of these things I'd never had before. I saw this scripture in a way I'd never seen it up to that time: 2 CORINTHIANS 4:3,4 3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. I saw how we had missed it in praying for the lost. I don't mean it unkindly, but just to say, 'God save Uncle John and Aunt Lucy,' does about as much good as it does to twiddle your thumbs and say, 'Twinkle, twin- kle, little star.' God has already done all He's going to do about saving them. But I didn't know that until that afternoon. I'd been praying like that about my own relatives. That afternoon, I heard the Lord say to my spirit, 'No human in his right mind would drive his car down the highway 100 miles an hour, past blinking red warning lights, past signs that said, 'Danger! Bridge out!' and plunge himself out into eternity. But a drunk man would a doped man would. The same thing is true spiritually. No man in his right mind would plunge him- self out into eternity without God. But the god of this world has blinded their minds.' He gave me this scripture, 'In whom the god of this
Knowing God's Love 41 world hath blinded the minds . . . ' (2 Cor. 4:4). I could hear the Spirit of God challenging me, 'You've approached it wrongly. You've worked on the wrong end of the thing. You've fasted and prayed that I would do something and I've done all I'm ever going to do. The blood has already been shed. The Gospel has already been given. The light is already here. It can't shine in because of what the devil has done. What you've got to do is break the power of the devil over them.' Intercession does not change God God never changes. Prayer does not change God. Prayer changes you and it changes others. It does not change God. I saw what I had to do for my brother, Dub. I'd been fasting and praying that God would save him off and on for 15 years, and if it ever did any good, I couldn't tell it. Dub was the black sheep of the family. Anything you could mention, he'd done. I knew if breaking the power of the devil would work on him, it would work on any- one. I rose up off the bed with my Bible in one hand, and the other hand lifted, saying, 'In the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, I break the power of the devil over my brother Dub's life, and I claim his deliverance. (That meant I claimed his deliverance from that blindness, that bondage of Satan.) And I claim his full salvation in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ.' Within three weeks, my brother was born again. Here is where intercession comes in we are to loose the sinner from the blindness that he may see the light. If we can get people to see God as He really is, they'll
42 The AH of Prayer want to love Him. We are one with the great Intercessor in His ministry of reconciliation. Let's look at this Scripture again in the Amplified translation: 2 CORINTHIANS 5:19 (Amplified) 19 It was God (personally present) in Christ, reconcil- ing and restoring the world to favor with Himself, not counting up and holding against [men] their trespasses [but cancelling them]; and committing to us the mes- sage of reconciliation — of the restoration to favor. Whom did He reconcile unto Himself? The world! Whose trespasses are canceled? The world's! That's what will be so terrible people will go to hell, and when they get there, they'll find out we hadn't told them the truth. We hadn't told them everything was canceled out. The sins of the unsaved have been canceled out by Jesus. That's how God is kind to the unthankful and the evil. And He has given to us that message, that word of reconciliation. Yet we have preached, 'God is going to get you if you don't watch out. He's after you.' People have trained their children, saying, 'Don't do that. Jesus won't love you if you do that.' That's a lie. He may not want them to do it, but He'll still love them anyhow. Telling children, 'God won't love you, if you do that,' causes them to grow up with their minds blinded to the light of His love. And it's very difficult to get that kind of
Knowing God's Love 43 teaching out of people. He has given to us the ministry of reconciliation. We used to think we had to preach people under con- viction. So we went out and beat them over the head, so to speak. No! The Spirit of God will convict them. Ours is the ministry of reconciliation. When we can get people to see God as He really is, they will want to love Him.
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Click here to see the free one-hour television special (2006) on The Art of Victory. Click here to see a full list of books written by Gregory Copley. The Latest from Gregory Copley: The New Total War of the 21st Century and the Trigger of the Fear Pandemic. The New Total War of the 21st Century and the Trigger of the Fear Pandemic, the 320. Sundiata an epic of old mali by djibriltamsir niane translated by g.d. Pickett illustration from the 100,000 horsemen of west africa by daud malik watts. Formulate and carry out spiritual military strategy which will bring victory in the spirit world. 6 THE MANUAL Each lesson is presented in military terms consisting of the following sections: THE CALL TO ARMS: Chapter 1 explains the invisible war.
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