Romans 8:26-27, “26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with Gods will.”
Paul in the above verses gives another dimension of prayer called, “the prayer of intercession.” Intercession means, “to plead on behalf of another or make someone else’s case.” Thus, when praying God desires for us to plead for others and make their case to Him on their behalf.
Some have been taught that dead saints are the best intercessors because they are already in heaven close to Jesus. However, the Bible never teaches us to pray to saints, whether dead or alive. The best form of intercession is for one to pray directly to God the Father in the name of Jesus, by the leading of the Holy Spirit.
Paul said, “the Spirit helps us in our weakness,” meaning, we don’t know how to always pray for others because we don’t know all of their needs and the things they are facing. However, he goes on to say, “but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.” Thus, when praying the prayer of intercession the Spirit of God will cause you to weep and groan as if you were at a funeral because God will break your heart with the things that break His. Also, when the Holy Spirit baptizes you and gives you the gift of speaking in others tongues you can pray things that earthly words cannot express.
Paul also taught in 1 Timothy 2:1, “I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone.” As a result, intercession can be made in the following ways, (1) Praying with weeping and groaning, (2) Praying in tongues, and (3) With earthly prayers and requests.
Due to the nature of the first two kinds of intercession I will simply give an example of the third kind. However, the first two kinds are very powerful and I would say in my experience are even more effective. Thus, I would strongly suggest not just relying upon earthly words in intercession, but to rather make time for the Spirit of God to overcome your emotions and use you in deep and powerful ways.
Thus, here is an example of the prayer of intercession for an unsaved relative with earthly words, “Father, I come to you in the name of Jesus asking you to save my sister Michelle. I pray that you will convict her of sin and open her heart to the Gospel. Send her Gospel preachers so she may hear your Word and be saved. I rebuke all the attacks of the devil against her and plead for her salvation and protection. I praise you for always seeking and saving the lost, Amen.
Try to make time every day to intercede for the unsaved, God will you use in incredible ways!
- Think of three people in your life who do not know Jesus and if they died they would spend eternity in hell forever separated from the presence of God.
- Ask God, by the Holy Spirit, to lead you in deep intercession for their souls.
- Pray like heaven and hell are in the balance… because they are.