Shaping our nation through intercessory prayer
By Pastor Tony Ojamiren
1 Tim 2:1-4 “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”
Apostle Paul use of the four NT theme for prayer is something that must not be missed here. His emphasis here is that the people who benefit the most from prayer are the believers themselves “that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way”v2.
Prayer is a double-edged sword - petition and praying for all men (everyone), and for kings and those in authority.Not all men will believe and accept this offer of salvation but they must be given the opportunity to either receive it or reject it.
Though our prayers might be pleasing to God v3, it is for our good. The benefit is for us to live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.
Christians have a reputation of running to God in prayers when political leaders are oppressive. They pray that God minister to them so that they will develop good policies and govern righteously and with justice.
Why not pray instead for their salvation. Verse 4 said “God wants all men (including those in authority) to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth”.
Praying for their salvation will not only bring them to the knowledge of the truth but will cause them “...to do justly, to love mercy, and walk humbly with your God” - Mal 6:8.
Through intercessory prayer, we can shape people, leaders and nations.
It is very easy to stop praying when all is smooth sailing but be careful because there is always the calm before the storm. Eph 6:12 “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places”.
There is more to life than what we can see in the natural – 1 Corin 2:14
In Gen 18 - Abraham interceded for Sodom. I believe God loves intercession. Wow! Did you see the patience of God while Abraham was interceding for Sodom?
I recon Sodom could have been saved had Abraham not stopped at 10. I know this will be subject to debate and might not sit well with many. The point I am trying to make here is that through intercession and prayer, we can change the destiny of nations and people. We cannot afford to stop praying.
Jesus knew that we might stop praying whenever weariness set in. Stopping is not an option that is why He encouraged us not to give up in the narratives of the parable of the persistent widow (Luke 18:1-8).
Intercessory prayer stem the tide of injustices in nations –
- The highlights in this narrative is that “persistence wearies the devil” - V5
- He will give up your goods (whatsoever you are believing for).
Is 59:14-16 (Read)Quite often people blame God for allowing injustices in nations to continue unabated. Some people often take matters into their hands to right the injustices around them because they think God no longer cares. They petition their political leaders or lead people into the streets. I do believe in petitions but there are petitions that supersedes all petitions - that is petitioning the King Of kings – Jesus Christ on our knees.
“Only by kneeling down (praying) will you be in a good position to conquer or overcome the weed in your life and society”
It displeases God that there is no justice (v15b) but through intercessory pray we can turn the tide against the enemy.
In Luke 18:1-8, Christ’s parable about this persistent widow illustrates how we can receive justice through intercessory prayer. We must not give up for prayer works. Your miracle is a prayer away. Our intercessory (persistence) prayers wearies (troubles) the devil V5).
Paraphrasing Luke 18:1 “If you are about to give up praying, that is when you must not give up. Keep on interceding before the Throne of Grace for God will change your story into History (Testimony). Amen.Have a fantastic week.