MTS2 Session Three: Powerful Prayer

MTS-2 Bar Montenegro
October 2009

Session Three
Why Am I Here? To Intercede for Others

Powerful Prayer – Jonah 2:1-2

Introduction:
There are a lot of different ways we tell others we will pray for them. We say “I’ll hold you in my prayer.” Or “I’ll keep you in my prayers.” Or “I will lift you up.” Or just “I’ll pray for you.” But do we, are consistent to our word.

Here is a video clip that talks about one way we get prayer.

Table Time:
We want to start off with some table time. Divide into 4’s and each table has a section of the Bible to discover the following: (one group takes “Pentateuch” the next takes the OT History books, the next takes the Prophets, the next the Psalms and Proverbs, and the next the NT.)
Find two examples of Intercession.
1. Who was the intercessor?
2. Who are they praying for?
3. What were they requesting?
4. What was the outcome?

➢ Why are we here?
o We realize that you got here by prayer. You have a team of people who are praying for you. Many of you are in places that, if you were not praying and being prayed for, would not still be there. And your life and your ministry depend on prayer.
o Someone said that the work of most evangelical churches in the West – if prayer and the work of the Holy Spirit were removed –would continue as usual. We have to be careful not to begin to depend on our own skills, strengths, and experiences. Unless we continue to pray and grow in prayer, our ministry and our relationship with God can drop into a routine. We live and work in our own strength and God’s presence and power are absent.

Teaching Intro:
Define “Intercession” and “Intercede” – in the Greek, it is a compound word – “between” and “to go” – and it’s the specific kind of prayer that takes a position before God on behalf of another person or people. Then presents their case, appeals to God’s mercy, and asks for God’s active participation in changing the situation or condition.

Ministries and Missions that are experiencing consistent evidence of God’s power and seeing lives changed are making Intercession a priority. They are not just praying normal, everyday “bless me” prayers. They have at least four things in common (credit to C. Peter Wagner for the promptings for these):
1. Intercessors encouraged – they acknowledging that some people are gifted with a passion and effectiveness for Intercessory Prayer – and giving them ministry encouragement.
2. Surrounding Intercession – the are identifying important times in the calendar for intercession, especially during times when ministry happens, the Word is preached, outreaches occur – and they pray before, during, and after these times.
3. Calendared Intercession – they have calendared and created office space physically for intercession to happen consistently, so that prayer becomes a team priority.
In Italy, we are moving toward daily intercession, as well as pre-event teams who will intercede in the cities before we do outreaches.
4. Strategic Intercession Partnerships – they are connecting with other churches and with pastors and ministries who are passionate for evangelism, discipleship and God’s glory and supporting one another in intercession.

Jonah 2:1-2 – Powerful Intercession
Out of all the prophets, Jonah is not the typical example of intercession. You know the story well:
o Prophet of the Living God
o Vowed to declare His word
o Serving in Jerusalem
o Gets the call to deliver a judgment to Nineveh – biggest pagan city of his day. Hated among the Hebrews for their vicious treatment of Jews.
o Knows God’s mercy will fall on Nineveh if they listen and repent.
o Goes other way toward Spain and the end of the world.
Seems to do everything except intercede for the Ninevites.
But something happens in that fish. He hears from God, repents, and becomes an intercessor.
2:1-2 Not just the typical prayers – “his prayers go up before God” – he intercedes. “Palal” is the Hebrew word for this kind of prayer called intercession. It’s the same word the Bible uses for Moses when God was ready to destroy the Hebrews and he interceded for their sake and for God’s glory and fame. Deut 9:26-29.
James 5 is the NT example of “palal” prayer – powerful and passionate prayer accomplishes much. Not sure where you are theologically with God bringing mercy where he promised judgment. And God acting on behalf, or not acting on behalf depending on whether or not we pray. But while you straighten this out, you better be praying.

Illus. In the 1940’s God raised up some incredibly passionate prayer warriors that set the stage for a move of missions, youth work, discipleship and evangelism in the 60’s. InterVarsity, Christian Literature Crusade, Navigators, Mission Aviation Fellowship, Wycliffe Bible Translators, Campus Crusade for Christ, and of course OM were all born out of a movement of dependence on God and intercession.
Dawson Trotman, the founder of Navigators, was led to take a map and list of California counties up into the mountains every day 5 a.m. with a friend. After one week they had prayed through the western United States, and at the end of two weeks they were across the nation. On week three they took a world map and pray for and point to and touch each country on the world map. They would intercede for these countries and ask God to let them make disciples in each culture. After 42 days a burden seemed to lift off of him. Years later, he was straightening his desk, found cards from people all over the United States and around the globe who had come to Christ because of his work.
When we pray “palal” we bring God’s activity and merciful judgment.

Closing:
Pray as a group. Intercede for Montenegro. For their leaders. For:
1. The Work in Montenegro
2. Their leaders
3. Other mission teams
4. Churches and pastors
5. The Lost

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