In Old Testament times God counted on a limited number of persons from the tribe of Levi to be priests to represent the people before Him. These priests were permitted to go where ordinary Hebrews were not permitted to go, into the very presence of God. Their role was essentially that of intercessors or “in-between-ers.” Isaiah, however, predicted that a day would come when all of God’s people would be called “priests of the Lord” (Isaiah 61:6). That day has arrived, says Peter. New Testament believers are “a royal priesthood” (1 Peter 2:9). That means we are all priests. We are all officially appointed as intercessors. The privilege of access to God, once very limited, has now been opened to all of us. We are given this access not only to pray for ourselves, but also to pray for others—to be intercessors. God counts on our prayers to mediate His blessings to others and carry forward His love-plan for the world.
God, it seems, has always been using intercessors and their prayers in shaping history. God used Moses’ prayers to keep His wrath from destroying Israel. God used Daniel’s prayers to return Israel to the Promised Land. God used Elijah’s prayers to reprimand Israel by stopping and later restarting rainfall in the land of Canaan. To assure that there would always be intercessors to bring about His purposes, God even arranged to have watchmen posted on the walls of Jerusalem and mandated them to “call on the Lord,” and “never be silent day or night.” Today, through the work of His Son and His Spirit, God has arranged to have about two billion “watch persons” posted throughout the nations of the earth to “call on the Lord” and “never be silent day or night.” That is the group that you and I are part of.
–Adapted from Praying God’s Heart (Prayers that Make a Difference) by Alvin VanderGriend.
Worthy God, You have called me into a royal priesthood, and charged me with being a watchman on the wall! It awes me how You can choose to use the prayers of even one of Your servants to move or stay Your hand. May I never lose sight of the fact that my prayers are important to the working of Your kingdom and that to neglect this responsibility is disobedience! Give me a deep desire to call upon You day and night along with millions of other saints so that the purposes of Your loving heart may be carried out.
Praise the Lamb who is worthy “to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise” (Rev. 5:12). Thank God for the blood of the Lamb given for the complete remission of all your sin. Confess any self-centeredness which has taken your focus off God. Commit yourself to loving God with all your heart and soul and mind and strength, and your neighbor as yourself. Ask him to give you the kingdom and make you his priest that you may serve him and reign with him on earth.
Pray that sons and daughters who have wandered away from the faith may be restored.
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend
Praying God’s Heart (Prayers that Make a Difference) by Alvin VanderGriend, is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount on the book.