Intercessory prayers aren’t new, they have been around for centuries in human societies. The first mention of prayer or men calling on God is recorded in Genesis 4:26.
It was at the birth of Enosh, and from thereon men begun calling on the name of the Lord. Genesis 4:26” And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the LORD.”
But… are intercessory prayers relevant today? Let’s take a look:
Why are Intercessory Prayers Important
Praying or prayer isn’t the most attractive and pleasurable duty going around right now. In fact, out of all of our daily responsibilities, prayer is the least important based on the time we give to it.
Nevertheless, prayer remains relevant, necessary, and something we must do if we are to live a victorious life here on earth.
With that being said, here are ten important reasons why you need to offer intercessory prayers daily:
1. It is your kingdom duty:
In Matthew 6:7-12 Jesus was teaching his disciples how to pray. He said to them, “when ye pray…” notice he didn’t say if you pray, but when.
And then he goes on to say verse 10, ” thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven.” in other words, Jesus was telling his disciples that one of their duties is to pray, to that the kingdom of God come to earth so that God’s will be done.
For this reason, intercessory prayer is vital, as it brings the mind, purpose, and intentions of God for men to manifest in the earth.
If you don’t pray, if we don’t pray, if the church doesn’t pray or offer prayers of intercessions, then the world will become chaotic, evil, wicked, Godless, and an extremely dark and cold place to live. There would be no healing deliverance, miracles, and the promises of God won’t manifest.
2. It helps you to keep God at the forefront of your life:
In a busy world with busy lifestyles, remembering God and keeping him at the forefront isn’t always easy. Not to say you won’t have them in your heart or thoughts.
But to pursue after him, to do what he says, and to be guided by his word Is often the issue. However, On the flip side, daily intercessory prayers keep us centered, focused, and always mindful of God, and the role he plays in our daily lives. For this reason, prayer is vital and something you should do often.
3. It makes it possible to help others through your intercessions:
Another benefit of intercessory prayer is that it makes it possible for you to help others through your intercessions. What’s a fail to realize is that unless somebody prays nothing will happen.
Sure, we may seek the help of men, but there are some things in life that men cannot help us with. Some people would even go and seek help from other spiritual sources.
But even that will fail and will come with a serious or even deadly price to pay later down the road. That said, the safest, quickest, and best way to help others is by offering intercessory prayers to God on others’ behalf.
4. It builds your spiritual life and strengthens your faith:
It always surprises me that a lot of Christians want to become stronger and do great things for God but neglects their prayer lives. You will not grow, become great, or build your faith through convenient prayers.
They must be consistent prayer, along with other things like reading the Bible, fasting, studying, among other duties.
Don’t be deceive, intercessory prayers, in terms of priority, should be right up there among our most important priorities, if not the most important duty.
Jude shares the same sentiment here in Jude 1:20 “But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost.”
5. It helps you to resist the devil and temptations:
Matthew 26:41 “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
As you can see based on Matthew 26:41 where Jesus says prayers, daily intercessory prayers will help you to overcome temptation.
The flesh is weak, and unless we strengthen our spirit man, the inner man, the flash will give in to temptations, but continual intercessory prayers for ourselves helps to resist temptations and the devil, as this other verse shows us.
James 4:7 “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
6. It helps you to keep your faith in hard times:
Psalm 20:7 “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God.” when times are hard, and we pray, our mind stays and God.
And by so doing we overcome being strengthened by God, even in difficult times.
7. It helps you to remain focused:
Isaiah 26:3 “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.”
Philippians 4:6-7 “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
As you can see, when we choose not to become flustered by life’s daily troubles. But instead pray, God will keep our mind in perfect peace which helps us to remain focused, which is another great reason to pray and why intercessory prayers for ourselves or others are important.
8. It gives you a spiritual advantage:
Philippians 4:13 ” I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” This is an advantage the child of God has, and especially if you pray you will see this advantage becoming a reality more often in your life.
Romans 8:37 ” Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.” Again, God reinforces to us the advantage that we have as a child, And through prayer, we make this advantage in reality.
9. It causes God to move and intervene on your, or someone else behalf:
Acts 10:1-6 “There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band, A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always.
He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming ion to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius.
And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.
And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner, whose house is by the seaside: he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do.”
In Acts 10:1-6, we see as a result of Cornelius giving in prayer that an angel from God and instructed him what to do to save himself and his household
10. It causes the promises of God to manifest in your life:
Mark 11:24 “Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.”
When you pray, all of God’s promises will become reality, but the promises of God becoming reality are predicated on your prayer life.
If you don’t pray; the promises of God will not become reality, but if you pray, you’ll enjoy daily God’s promises in your life.
What are Intercessory Prayers?
Intercession or intercessory prayer is a simple act of praying for yourself or on behalf of others to a deity, in this case, Almighty God. The Apostle Paul’s exhortation to Timothy in 1 Timothy 2:1-4 Is is the perfect example of intercession.
” 1 Timothy 2:1-4 KJVI exhort, therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.”
Intercessory prayers aren’t new, for example, men like Moses, Daniel, Abraham, David, Samuel, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Elijah, Jesus Christ, the apostles, and many others interceded for their countrymen and women.
For example, Jeremiah interceded for Israel in Jeremiah chapter 14 and 15, Moses interceded for Israel in Exodus chapter 32, Samuel interceded for Israel in 1 Samuel chapter 7, Ezekiel interceded for Israel in Ezekiel chapter 9, Elijah interceded in 1 King chapter 18, and Jesus interceded for his disciples In John chapter 17.
As you can see, intercessory prayers have been around us for centuries. The idea or purpose of intercessory prayer is that someone, a mediator ( a go-between/ middleman), who knows God and has a relationship with him will pray on the behalf of others.
In 1 Timothy 2:5 “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” Speaks of Christ as our mediator, And the only middleman between God and men.
There is no other person that can go between God and Men and can intercede for men outside Jesus Christ. You may ask yourself: can I intercede for others?
Sure, you can, even though Jesus Christ is the ultimate mediator because you are joint heir with Christ and in Christ, you qualify to intercede for others too, as the scriptures point out in 1Timothy 2:1-4.
Not only in 1Timothy 2:1-4 are we encouraged to intercede for others but in many other parts of the bible, we are instructed to pray for each other.
In fact, in 1 Samuel 12:23 “Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way.” Samuel concluded that not prayer for others is sinful, and sin against God.
The other thing about intercessory prayers is that the one offering prayer cannot do so for ulterior motives. Powerful intercessory prayers require that the one offering the prayer becomes selfless.
Being selfless, besides faith is the only way God will answer prayers. We see this here with the publican and pharisee:
Luke 18:10-14 “And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:
10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.
11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.
12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. 13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.”
We also see here that prayers motivated by fleshly intentions go unanswered:
James 4:3 “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.”
For this reason, Anyone who desires to approach God on the behalf of others must examine their motives. Our motive must be pure and sincere; not to brag, boast, or expect anything in return. When our motives are pure; our prayers will be answered by God speedily.
Powerful Examples of Intercessory Prayers in the Bible
1. Jesus praying for his disciples. John 17: 9-24 “I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine. 10 And all mine are thine, and thine are mine, and I am glorified in them.
11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.
12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. 17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. 18 As thou hast sent me into the world, even so, have I also sent them into the world.
19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. 20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
24 Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.”
2. Jeremiah praying for Israel. Jeremiah 7:16 “Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee.” Jeremiah was interceding for Israel until God told him to stop.
3. Moses praying for Israel. Exodus 9:11-14 “And Moses besought the Lord his God, and said, Lord, why doth thy wrath wax hot against thy people, which thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand?
12 Wherefore should the Egyptians speak, and say, For mischief did he bring them out, to slay them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth? Turn from thy fierce wrath, and repent of this evil against thy people.
13 Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom thou swarest by thine own self, and saidst unto them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have spoken of will I give unto your seed, and they shall inherit it forever.
14 And the Lord repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people.
Daniel praying for Israel. Daniel 9:3-7 “And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes:
4 And I prayed unto the Lord my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments;
5 We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments:
6 Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.
7 O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, that are near, and that are far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee.
4. Ezekiel praying for Israel. Ezekiel 37:11-14 “Then he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts.
12 Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel.
13 And ye shall know that I am the Lord when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves,
14 And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the Lord have spoken it, and performed it, saith the Lord.
5. Samuel praying for Israel. 1 Samuel 7:9 “And Samuel took a sucking lamb, and offered it for a burnt offering wholly unto the Lord: and Samuel cried unto the Lord for Israel, and the Lord heard him.”
Abraham intercedes for Sodom and Gomorrah. Genesis 18:27-29 “And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes:
28 Peradventure there shall lack five of the fifty righteous: wilt thou destroy all the city for lack of five? And he said, If I find there forty and five, I will not destroy it.
29 And he spake unto him yet again, and said, Peradventure there shall be forty found there. And he said I will not do it for forty’s sake.”
Powerful Intercessory Prayers for Fast Results
Throughout my life, I’ve discovered and rediscovered that they’re prayers, and they’re powerful intercessory prayers.
What’s the difference between the two you may ask, simple: the effectiveness of the prayer (one people just say with their mouths expecting little and the other people say with their heart and mouth and consider it done). Do you see the difference?
The idea is not in praying, but to pray the effectual, fervent, powerful prayers. These are the prayers that will get results every time, and in some cases, immediately.
That said, here are some short but powerful intercessory prayers you can pray for yourself, or someone you know.
Read More on Prayer
Is Intercessory Prayer Necessary?
It sure is, not only that, but we are instructed to pray without ceasing in 1 Thessalonians 5:17. Moreover, in Colossians 4:2, we are instructed again to continue in prayer and watch in the same with Thanksgiving.
Also, in Acts 6:4, we see how the apostles are adamant to give themselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
Even Jesus said in Luke 18:1 that men ought always to pray and not to faint, and in Matthew 26 41 he said to watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.
And we can go on and on, in two other verses of the Bible; they all encourage us to pray, and not to feed because prayer is vital for our growth, and necessary believe victorious lives here on Earth.
Doesn’t God Already Know What You Need?
Sure, he knows, and many times before you even ask him for anything he gives it to you. For example, in Matthew 5:45, he causes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good and sends his rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
Also in Romans 2:4, we see that God’s goodness leads men to repentance. So, as you can see, God knows what we need, and at times bless us even before we ask.
However, in Matthew 7:7, Jesus said to ask, and it shall be given you, seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you.
He continues in verse 8 by saying: ” for every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth, and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
God knows what we need, and at times he would meet those needs even before we ask.
But according to the law in the spirit, and according to his word, If we want him to move swiftly and quickly on our behalf, then we need to pray.
Does Intercessory Prayer Work?
Absolutely, but I guess it depends on who you ask. Should you ask me; I will tell you that I am alive because of intercessory prayers.
My grandmother, my father, and perhaps other persons I wasn’t aware of were praying for me that the Lord will deliver and save my life.
I can tell you many other stories of how intercessory prayers helped me. But I would prefer the Bible to speak for itself by giving you a few examples in the Bible of how intercessory prayers brought deliverance to many persons.
1. Peter delivered from prison. Acts 12:1-7 “Peter, therefore, was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.
6 And when Herod would have brought him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers before the door kept the prison.
7 And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. And his chains fell off from his hands.
2. God delivers Judah. 2 Chronicles 20:13-15 “And all Judah stood before the Lord, with their little ones, their wives, and their children.
14 Then upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite of the sons of Asaph, came the Spirit of the Lord in the midst of the congregation;
15 And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the Lord unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s.
3. Nineveh was spared when they prayed and repented. Jonah 3:6-10 “When word reached the king of Nineveh, he got up from his throne, took off his royal robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.
7 Then he issued a proclamation in Nineveh: “By the decree of the king and his nobles:
Let no man or beast, herd or flock, taste anything at all. They must not eat or drink.
8 Furthermore, let both man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and have everyone call out earnestly to God. Let each one turn from his evil ways and from the violence in his hands.
9 Who knows? God may turn and relent; He may turn from His fierce anger so that we will not perish.”
10 When God saw their actions—that they had turned from their evil ways—He relented from the disaster He had threatened to bring upon them.”
There are many other examples in the bible about the efficacy of intercessory prayers. Intercessory prayer does work, and I would encourage you not to ignore it.
Who Qualifies to Pray Intercessory Prayers?
Psalms 24:3 ” who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity nor sworn deceitfully.”
The description in Psalm 24:3 is Ava person who qualifies to offer prayers of intercession before the Lord and get quick answers.
Nevertheless, God is merciful, and he says in 1 John 1:9, that if we confess our sins Jesus Christ is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us of all unrighteousness.
This means that even though you may not feel worthy; if you confess your sins when approaching God, he will forgive you and answer your prayers. For this reason, you are qualified to offer intercessory prayers for others, or yourself.
Where Should You Pray when Offering Intercessory Prayers?
Matthew 6:5-6 “And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.”
Praying in secret will help to build your spiritual life faster than you think. Praying in secret is powerful and it will catapult so that you can resist the devil and break down strongholds in prayer.
When ( which time) is the Best Time to Offer Intercessory Prayer?
The best time to make intercession prayers is from 12 am. to 3 am, or from 3:00 am. to 6:00 am, but from 12 am. to 3 am is the best time for powerful intercessory prayers.
Between this time (12 am to 3. am) is there in the kingdom of darkness is most active. And if you don’t pray around these crucial hours you will allow the kingdom of darkness to get an upper hand over you.
That’s why sometimes you would go to bed feeling good, but as soon as you get up the following day; you start feeling miserable: and invariably, you have a bad day.
For this reason, praying fervent intercessory prayers at the midnight watch, or also called the third watch of the night is necessary.
The midnight watch is the time when deep sleep falls upon most men according to Acts 20:7-12, and the time when the devil destroys many destinies, and enslave many lives.
Can Prayer Help You Build Your Faith?
Sure it can, and this according to Jude 1:20 “But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost.”
Continual intercessory prayers will help you build your faith beyond leaps and bounds. So it’s important to keep offering those prayers of intercessions.
How to Pray Powerful Intercessory Prayers?
1. Do it in Jesus’s name according to John 14:6. “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
2. Do it in spirit and truth according to John 4:23-24. But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
3. Do it with clean hands and a pure heart according to Psalms 24:3-4.“Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, Nor sworn deceitfully.”
4. Do it in faith according to James 1:6.“But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
5. Do it in Thanksgiving according to Philippians 4:6.“Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”
If this list of powerful intercessory prayers has been a blessing to you, I would encourage you to share it with your families, friends, and persons in your close circle.