TO CHEW ON: "My eyes overflow with rivers of water
For the destruction of the daughter of my people.
My eyes flow and do not cease
Till the Lord from heaven
Looks down and sees." Lamentations 3:48-50
Jeremiah here shows himself a patriot whose heart breaks when God comes through with threatened judgments against Judah. What a picture of persevering intercession for his nation!
We are reminded of other leaders who prayed for their people.
- Moses interceded for Israel when God threatened to destroy them after the golden calf incident (Exodus 32:30-32), and again when God's anger was hot at their refusal to enter Canaan (Numbers 14:17-19).
- Samuel prayed for the people when they wanted to return to God after a time of backsliding (1 Samuel 7:2-6).
- David interceded for God's mercy on the people after they were inflicted by a plague following his sin of initiating a census (1 Chronicles 21:16-19).
We don't have to be leaders to intercede for our country. Dick Eastman says of the intercessor:
"An intercessor is a man or woman—or child—who fights on behalf of others. As such, intercession is the activity that identifies us most with Christ. To be an intercessor is to be like Jesus because that is what Jesus is like. He ever lives to intercede (Hebrews 7:25; Romans 8:34)!"
Eastman goes on to give four insights that help us understand the role of the intercessor and grasp its impact:
1. We must understand our "privilege" as intercessors. Christ is ever at God's right hand (Romans 8:34 linked above), and from this position He intercedes for the saints continuously. To be at God's right hand is spoken of in the Bible as being a great privilege and pleasure (Psalm 16:11).
2. We must understand our "position" as intercessors. We are energized (Ephesians 2:45), elevated (Ephesians 2:6: "raised... up together"), and enthroned with Christ in intercession (Mark 11:22-24).
3. We must understand our "promise" as intercessors. Our objective is to see God's Kingdom established (Isaiah 11:9).
4. We must understand our "power" as intercessors. See Luke 10:19... "Our Lord is saying that those who move in the direction of involvement and are willing to pay the price of intervention will have all the power necessary to confront demonic forces in their citadels."
— Dick Eastman, summary and quotes from Love on its Knees, pp. 21-25.
What a privilege to be able to serve one's country in this way!
PRAYER: Dear God, please give me the urgency and conviction of interceding for my nation that I see in Moses, Samuel, David and Jeremiah. Amen.
MORE: Intercession's impact
"I am convinced that when we stand before God with the record of spiritual successes and failures, we will learn that intercessory prayer had more to do with bringing about positive changes in our world than any other single spiritual activity." - Dick Eastman, Love On Its Knees, p. 17.
Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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