"Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us." (Romans 8:34)
"Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He ever lives to make intercession for them." (Hebrews 7:25)
"Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God." (Romans 8:26-27)The first two verses are referring to Jesus' intercessory ministry that He has for each of us and the third verse is referring direct to the Holy Spirit Himself. Notice in the first and third verses the exact same words are being used in reference to Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Those same exact words are that They both "make intercession for us." In the Gospels of the New Testament, Jesus specifically tells us that we are to pray direct to God the Father if we have any specific prayer needs. We are not to pray direct to Jesus, the Holy Spirit, or to any dead saints who are living in heaven. We are to only pray direct to God the Father in the name of Jesus if we have any specific prayer requests.
These three verses are giving us an incredible revelation in that not only should all born-again believers pray direct to God the Father, but that Jesus and the Holy Spirit will also be praying direct to God the Father for all of us as well. And if Jesus and the Holy Spirit will also pray direct to God the Father for all of us, then this means we can approach both Jesus and the Holy Spirit from time to time to personally ask Them to pray for us and with us on a particular prayer request.When you sum it all up, I believe the above three verses are giving us 5 key pieces of revelation that we can use in our own personal prayer life with the Lord. Here are the 5 key pieces of revelation put under the following appropriate captions.
1. Jesus Christ Makes Intercession For Us. The first two verses are directly referring to Jesus Christ. When the Bible tells us that Jesus will "make intercession for us", there are some who do not believe that this should be interpreted literally.Their interpretation of the words that Jesus will "make intercession for us" is that it is not referring to Jesus making or offering any specific prayers to God the Father on our behalf. Their definition of the word "intercession" is that it is only referring to Jesus remaining in the presence of God as our High Priest. In other words, Jesus as our Redeemer and High Priest, now sits at the right hand of God the Father in a position of power and authority, and as such, we can pray direct to God in Jesus' name as an intercessor for someone else, but we are not to ask or expect Jesus to pray for us or with us. Jesus' sacrificial death on the cross has now opened up the gates to heaven and to the very throne of God Himself. As a result, we can now go and pray direct to God Himself with any specific prayer requests that we may have for Him. However, myself and many other noted Bible scholars do not agree with this symbolic interpretation of the phrase that Jesus will "make intercession for us." We believe that these words are meant to be taken very literally. If these two verses are telling us that Jesus will make intercession for us, then we should take this statement as a literal statement and believe that Jesus will literally, not symbolically or figuratively, but literally make direct intercession for all of us from time to time. In other words, Jesus will be praying direct to God the Father on our behalf as different needs and circumstances arise in our lives. The obvious key word in these three verses is the word "intercession." Here are several definitions from some of the different Bible Dictionaries as to what the word "intercession" means:
• Prayer offered in behalf of others • To assail with urgent petitions, entreating God for His favor • The act of petitioning God or praying on behalf of another person or group • To reach, to meet someone, to pressure or urge someone strongly • The act of intervening or mediating between differing parties, particularly the act of praying to God on behalf of another personAll of these definitions are showing us that whenever a person is interceding for another person before God the Father, they are literally praying for that other person and whatever his special prayer need may be at the time. So when these verses are telling us that Jesus Himself will be making direct intercession for us, then I believe this is showing us that Jesus has a very special role as an actual Intercessor for all of us, and that He too will actually pray direct to God the Father for all of us from time to time.
2. The Holy Spirit Makes Intercession For Us. Not only can Jesus Christ pray and intercede for all of us from time to time before God the Father, but the last verse tells us that the Holy Spirit Himself can also pray and intercede for all of us from time to time as different needs and circumstances arise in our personal lives.With the third verse on the Holy Spirit using the exact same words as it does with Jesus in that He too will "make intercession for us," then I believe the same principles of interpretation should be used on this verse and that we should also interpret this verse very literally. We should interpret this verse that the Holy Spirit Himself can literally intercede and pray direct to God the Father for all of us from time to time. This means that both Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit can now become our actual prayer Partners and prayer Allies from time to time depending on what we are praying for to God the Father.
3. We Can Now Ask Jesus and the Holy Spirit to Intercede For Us. With all three verses telling us that both Jesus and the Holy Spirit can directly pray and intercede for all of us, what this means is that there are now two basic scenarios where this type of intercession will come into play as far as we are personally concerned. This will be another revelation that will be like looking at a two-sided coin.The one side of the coin, which will be the first scenario, will be when Jesus and the Holy Spirit will pray and intercede for us before God the Father and we will never know that They are actually doing it for us. With Jesus and the Holy Spirit both being God and Lord Themselves, They both can see perfectly into our futures and will know exactly what all of our futures will be holding for us down to the very smallest of details. As a result of perfectly knowing what will lie ahead of us in our futures, this means They can both pray and intercede for us before God the Father to stop any possible impeding tragedies that may be getting ready to strike us. And not only can They both pray direct to God to stop any possible impending tragedies from striking us, but They can also pray direct to God to help us with any problems or adverse situations that we may have already fallen into. In other words, They can both pray direct to God for our deliverance out of any of these bad situations. Until we get to heaven and we enter into the Judgment Seat of Christ where our whole life will be reviewed, we will never know for sure how often and how many times Jesus and the Holy Spirit had been praying and interceding for us before God the Father to either prevent bad things from happening to us, or praying for our deliverance after we had already fallen into a bad situation.
But with the above three verses telling us that both Jesus and the Holy Spirit can pray and intercede directly for us before God the Father, then you know They both have a very active and powerful intercessory prayer ministry for each and every born-again believer. This should give great comfort and great peace to all believers that the second and third Persons of the triune Godhead have all of us in their thoughts and in their prayers to God the Father.This will now lead us to the second possible scenario with this revelation from the Lord, which will be the other side to this same coin. Not only is Jesus and the Holy Spirit praying and interceding for all of us from time to time without us ever being aware of it, but I believe this revelation will now open up a whole new realm that many believers have never thought of before. And this will be the prayer secret of this article.
This prayer secret is that from time to time, depending on exactly what we are praying for to God the Father, we can literally ask both Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit to pray for us and with us on a particular prayer request before God the Father. In other words, we will be asking both Jesus and the Holy Spirit to become our prayer Partners and prayer Allies on some of our personal prayers to God the Father.Just as we can ask other believers to pray for us and with us from time to time, we can also do the exact same thing with both Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Except with Jesus and the Holy Spirit on our side, we will literally have God Almighty on our side since both Jesus and the Holy Spirit are both God and Lord Themselves. Just think how many more of your personal prayers might be able to get answered with God the Father if you have both Jesus and the Holy Spirit praying for you and with you on some of your personal prayer requests!
4. Praying According to the Will of God. Though you can ask both Jesus and the Holy Spirit to pray for you and with you from time to time, you also have to be very careful when you try and use this powerful prayer secret.In the third verse above about the Holy Spirit Himself making direct intercession for us - note how the very last sentence ends. The last part of the last sentence states that the Lord "makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God." The key words to hone in on are that the Lord makes intercession for us "according to the will of God." In other words, the Holy Spirit is not going to be praying and interceding for you unless the prayer request is in the will of God for your life. If the prayer request is not in the will of God for your life, then neither Jesus or the Holy Spirit will be praying for you, and you will thus be wasting both Their time and your time if you try and pressure Them to pray for something that God does not want to bring your way in the first place. So how do you know if a certain prayer request is going to be in the will of God for your life? This will now lead us right into the next caption.
5. The Holy Spirit Will Help You With Your Prayer Life. In the third verse above on the Holy Spirit, the first two sentences are giving us another powerful piece of revelation on this whole topic. The key words are: "Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought ..." (Romans 8:26)This powerful piece of revelation is telling us that we are not always going to know exactly what to pray for or exactly how to pray for it. As a result of our "weakness" in this area, we have to learn how to rely on the Holy Spirit on not only what to pray for, but exactly how to pray for it. This is something that every believer will have to learn on their own through a process of trial-and-error with the Holy Spirit. You will have to learn how to be guided and led by Holy Spirit, not only in your own personal prayer life, but also with the other parts of your life as well. This is a skill which can be learned if you are really wanting to learn how to do this with the Lord. The Holy Spirit Himself will show you and teach you how to become very sensitive to His movements within your being you so that you can learn how to become very adept in discerning when it is Him really moving in you and exactly what He is trying to lead you to do.
Once you start to become more sensitive to His movements within you, and then you are able to start pick up and read what He is trying to tell you to do, then you will really be able to use this principle in your private prayer life with the Lord. The Holy Spirit will be able to let you know whether or not a particular prayer request should even be brought before the Lord for His consideration. In other words, He will let you know if your personal prayer request will be in the will of God for your life. If the Holy Spirit tells you that your personal prayer request is not in the will of God for your life, and you can pick that up ahead of time from Him, then you will end up saving yourself many hours of wasted prayer time praying for something that God was not wanting to bring your way in the first place. And not only can the Holy Spirit guide you and lead you as to what to pray for and what not to pray for, but He can also guide you as to how to word your prayers to God the Father and exactly what kinds of angles and points of view to key in on with your specific requests.There are times that I believe you will have more success with God in your prayer life if you can learn how to be very specific with some of your prayer requests and approach Him from the right angles and the right points of view. Example - say you are asking God to lead you to the soul mate of His choice for your life. The right angle and the correct point of view on this request is not to try and tie God down with who you think may be best suited for you. You may be dating a person and you may think this person is your true soul mate. But the way to correctly word your prayer to God on this person is to ask Him to let you know if this person is the right one for you and if this person is the one that He has specifically chosen for you. Some people will try and force their hand with God on this issue and they will ask Him to try and make the other person love them and commit to marrying them. Instead of trying to pressure God to make this person love them and marry them, they should be asking God if this person is the one that He has personally picked out for their lives. If God comes back and tells you this person is not the one that He has in store for you, then you will have to let that person go and wait until God leads you to the right person that He has personally picked out for you. I have seen numerous Christians force their hand with God on this particular issue, and when God would not come back with the answers they were wanting, they went ahead and married the people they were dating and were divorced shortly thereafter because they ended up marrying people that were not in the will of God for their lives. And the vital mistake they made was in the way they were wording their prayers to the Lord. Instead of asking God to render His opinion as to whether or not this person was the right one for them, they were trying to force God to make that person be the right one for them instead of being open to what God's true opinion really was on the matter. If these people would have learned how to become more sensitive to the leadings of the Holy Spirit, they could have picked it up from Him ahead of time that they were approaching God from the wrong angle and the wrong point of view.
If you can learn how to be led by the Holy Spirit in your personal prayer life with the Lord, here are some of the specific things that He will be able to help you out with: What to pray for, What not to pray for, How to word your prayers to God, What particular Scripture verses to use in your prayers, The timing factor - exactly when to pray for something, The correct battle strategies to use, The correct angle and point of view to approach God with, How many times to pray to God for the request, How long to stay with the prayer request, Whether or not to call in other believers to pray in agreement with you, Whether or not there is anything else that you will need to do on your end before God will grant the prayer request.All of the above are major factors that will come into play on some of your personal prayer requests to the Lord. And if you can get answers from the Holy Spirit on some of these factors before you start to pray, you will go a very long way in being able to get more of your personal prayers answered with the Lord.
Conclusion: Put the above three verses together like pieces to a jigsaw puzzle, and I believe that God the Father is giving all of us a very power secret to use in our own personal prayer life with Him.Not only is Jesus and the Holy Spirit praying and interceding for all of us without us ever being consciously aware of it, but I believe the Lord is also telling us that we can specifically ask both Jesus and the Holy Spirit to intercede and pray for us from time to time on some of our personal prayer requests to Him. I have personally found myself using this prayer secret when I have something that is on the heavier side. You will see this prayer secret incorporated into some of the battle prayers that I had drawn up for others in the Testimonies and Spiritual Warfare section of our site. You simply ask both Jesus and the Holy Spirit to pray for you and with you on your specific prayer request to God the Father. Quote the above three verses back to Them and ask Them to take this prayer assignment up with you.
What this means is that the three of you will now go before God the Father with your specific petitions and requests. In other words, both Jesus and the Holy Spirit will be praying in agreement with you on your specific prayer request to God the Father - just like you would have other believers do with you in the prayer of agreement that was talked about in Prayer Secret #6. If you are truly praying in the will of God on a particular prayer request, and then you ask both Jesus and the Holy Spirit to join forces with you as your prayer Partners and prayer Allies in your petitions to God the Father - then I believe you will dramatically increase your chances of having God the Father answer your specific prayer request.This is a very heavy torpedo to add to your personal prayer arsenal with the Lord. Do not be afraid to pull this heavy torpedo out and try it out with the Lord if you ever find yourself approaching Him with a heavier type of prayer request. It could be the strategy that will end up making the difference as to whether or not you end up pulling down that major miracle from the Lord.
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Scripture taken from New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Copyright © 2005-2006 by Michael Bradley.