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Monday: Jesus ~ the Mighty Intercessor — 18 Comments

  1. I am not sure why John 17 has not been included under today's topic. Jesus prayer is one of the most powerful intercessory prayers recorded. I quoted the second part of it in my comment on Sabbath so today I will quote the first part where he prayers for those near him, like the disciples:

    “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them. I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one as we are one. While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.

    “I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them. I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified. John 17:6-19 NIV

    What are the themes in this prayer that should inform our own intercessory prayers?

    • Bro Maurice, the focus of this lesson is "Praying for others" (not "how to pray" or "the elements of prayer"). I think the general point about Jesus' prayer life with an example of a person for whom He prayed is appropriate here. I recall that not too long ago we actually studied the prayer in John 17. Similarly, we will be considering Daniels intercessory prayer but not from the point of view that we examined it in our study of the book of Daniel earlier this year.
      So let us remember that this week's study is showing us specifically about interceding for others as a step in making friends for God and not just how to pray.

    • Maurice -
      I think the themes in this prayer are *protection from the evil one* - his evil devices causing separation and division among the followers of Christ.
      *Praying for unity in the Spirit* - for all His disciples to be sanctified and united in/by the truth of God's Word.

      'Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me, that they may be one as we are one'.
      'My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.

      I do not fully understand the reference: ..'protect them by the power of your name, the name you gave me,..'.
      Could you shed some light on this?

      • When I was at primary school, I had a big Maori friend called Pero. My Dad had done a building job for Pero's dad, so when I turned up at school Pero already knew who I was and kind of looked out for me. When other kids started to tease me, the mention of Pero's name was enough to protect me. Now Pero was not a thug who when around bashing other kids but he was a lot bigger than the other kids.

        I know it is only an illustration, but when you look through all the names that are used for God, how many of them are indicative of care and protection? Perhaps, pertinent to this conversation, "Saviour" is the one that comes to my mind. But you can probably think of other names that have a special meaning for you.

        • Thank you for the reply, Maurice - This was not a trick question - I am sincerely reaching out to find out what 'power of the name' Jesus is referring to that are both His Father's and His own, and given to Him by His Father.
          I understand your example to indicate a power of a certain persuation toward a certain outcome.

          What 'power of the name' did God the Father give Jesus that was also His own? Is it a title? Is the phrase 'power of your name' used as a metaphor to stand for something else? It must be, because it is not clear just by reading the text.

          Would I be right to see 'the power of your name' to be the all-encompassing power of His Authority related to earth? Jesus was fulfilling a mandate to save as many as God would give Him during His ministry on earth. God delegated His authority to Jesus for this endevor, but will give Him all of His authority in the future.
          This Authority will pass on to Jesus the Christ at the end of the age. What does the Bible scholar in you think it is?

          • I think you are right in that it is a metaphor. Authority is certainly one interpretation but I like to temper the notion of authority with protection and sustenance as well. A focus on just one aspect of God limits our perception of his omnipotence.

            • Maurice, Thanks again for joining me on my 'train of thought'. 🙂 Yes, I believe as well that God the Father will bestow on Jesus His Authority which will be inclusive of all the attributes of Himself - including protection and sustenance.
              God in Jesus and Jesus in God is the only Authority I have 'no' problem 'submitting' to. It was a great relieve when I found myself thus secured.
              A thought just came to mind - I think that His truest Name is *Righteousness*; which we will also have difficulty to comprehend the full extend of its meaning. 🙂

            • Yes, Righteousness is a good name. Those of us who are Christian accept it as meaningful and embracing. However, in the back of my mind, I have my atheist and unchurched friends who carry a lot of negative baggage with that name. It is their problem, but when we are representing Jesus to them I am mindful of their mindset. If we are partakers in Christ's righteousness then that should show in our actions. That is the way to make it meaningful to searching unbelievers.

    • Maurice, I totally agree. John 17 has become, I think, my most favorite chapter in the Bible. It is the clearest example of intercessory prayer I can think of. Jesus prayed for ME in that chapter, and that has meant so much to me. The texts they use do show us that Jesus prayed, a lot, but John 17 lets us in, so we can hear His prayer. It’s pretty amazing and encouraging.

  2. I must never forget prayer is not powerful it is only the means of communicating with the all powerful Triune God.
    My prayers do not change the LORD or His heart, it changes me.
    The Word of the LORD reveals many examples of the benefits of asking the LORD to perform miracles in the lives of others.

  3. Praise the LORD, He has promised that we will never be without Jesus as an intercessor for us. Heb 7:25, Isa 53:12

  4. -Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit... and supplication for all saints. Eph 6:18

    -And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are; for they love to pray standing in the synagogues..Matt 6:5

    -Pray without ceasing. 1 Thess 5:16

    The Scriptures admonish us to “pray without ceasing.” This does not mean that we are to spend all of our time on our knees in formal prayer. It does mean that we must live and serve our Lord in the atmosphere of prayer. {Pr 1.1}
    Prayer is the channel of communication between our souls and God. God speaks to us through His word; we respond to Him through our prayers, and He always listens to us. We cannot weary or burden Him by our frequent heart to heart communications. {Pr 1.2}

    Two things stood out to me in the reading.
    #1 'that we are not to spend all of our time on our knees but we must live and serve our Lord in the atmosphere of prayer'. {Pr 1.1}
    #2 God speaks to us through His word; we respond to Him through our prayers.' The channel of communication must be open- his words-our prayers.

    The Lord knew the weakness and temperament of Peter, so did Satan. Satan claimed Peter but Jesus constantly was praying for him.
    Can we be constantly praying for others while we ourselves we eternally lost or leave Christ while here on earth?

  5. We prayer without ceasing - I often think of one of my friends, a Kindergarten teacher. The school is close to a busy highway — each time a siren is heard, she has taught her class to stop and pray for whomever is in need of help. Many of her students are now young adults - what a valuable e lesson to each - that they can pray for someone they do not know who needs help and that they can stop whatever they are doing and offer a prayer to our Lord.

    “Whisper a prayer in the morning, whisper a prayer at noon, whisper a prayer in the evening, to keep your heart in tune”

  6. In God's vision, everything is possible! Nothing is difficult! We are the ones who face ourselves into situations that may seem insoluble! Although in everything we need to say 'thanks', it is harder when we do not see the solution. But this may be the very situation that we need to develop our dependence on God and even learn to feel greatful for. While prayer is always a booster in times of trouble!

  7. Today's lesson speaks directly to me and i need to step up my prayer life.
    Before now i was at the verge of giving up on prayers because i felt the more i pray, the more silence i get from God concerning the issues i prayed for. This affected my prayer life talk more of interceding for others. Thanks to the lesson especially the two last paragraphs
    "What a thrilling reality to recognize that the Savior is praying for us, too. He invites us to join Him in this work of intercessory prayer and lift up others by name before His throne.

    Our persistence in prayer acknowledges that we recognize our total, absolute dependence on God to reach the individual for whom we are praying".

  8. The lesson part most outstanding to me is from Luke 22:31,32 - ..'Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat; ...'and when thou art CONVERTED, strengthen thy brethren'. Jesus is addressing Peter. Peter was a disciple of Christ from the very beginning; how come Jesus tells him that he still needs to be 'converted'?

    Jesus noticed Peter's ambivalence; he knew that Peter had not committed himself to the mission completely and warned him about Satan's attempts to 'sift him as wheat'. Peter needed to wait until Pentecost to be converted and empowered to take the Gospel to all God would give to him.

    This is not different with us. Unless we ask the Holy Spirit to direct our life, we will operate in the darkness of our own light. God's Light is the Holy Spirit and His are the works of God's Light!

    Reading through the posts, I believe there may still be a misunderstanding regarding our relationship with God through Prayer. I believe this misunderstanding came about because many have been taught to focused on the 'single' prayer as the only type of prayer, not realizing the 'ongoing' prayer through the presence of the Holy Spirit residing in us. We never leave this 'state of prayer', but many do not realize this.

    Jesus' example helps us understand that, with the indwelling Holy Spirit, we are always in prayer! Jesus was never without the Holy Spirit. It was the Holy Spirit's power that was filling Him and establish through Him all the miracles of healing and answers to His prayers. When He went to the Father, He sent the Holy Spirit to indwell us.
    We want to always, consciously direct our thoughts and emotions only toward our heavenly Father; we will always receive His reply. John14:26,27 - This is how we receive and maintain His peace in our hearts.

    This fram of mind will help us avoid being anxious when we pray. We know that God hears all our prayers and responds according to His Will; we submit our will to His.
    Anxiousness is a sign that we have not given our 'Self' fully into the hands of our Heavenly Father.
    Heb.4:9-16 - If we feel anxious, we pray for Him to remind us that we are embraced by His Rest. v.15: "For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. v.16: Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

  9. In the Law Jesus is the good shepherd, leading us in the footsteps of his life here on earth. He kept the letter of the law, so making a way for man to follow him. He was one with the father as the only begotten son of God from the human race. Seeking his blessing in the wee hours of the morning, so keeping the first commandment to love God with all your heart, mind and soul.


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