Every office--apostle, prophet, pastor, teacher and evangelist--prays! E.M. Bounds asserts, "Without prayer, nothing happens!" So, what happens when the prophet prays?
Prophetic prayer prays the intercession of the Son to the Father (see Heb. 7:25). Jesus commanded us to pray for God's will in heaven to be done on earth (see Matt. 6). Jesus, our High Priest at the throne of God, is praying God's will for the saints continually.
Similarly, the mo-ment a prophet hears God's word and speaks it in prayer, a prophet births the invisible and impossible of God into the visible and the possible (see 1 Kin. 18; Mark 10:27; 2 Cor. 4). A classic description of travailing, prophetic prayer is found in the life of Elijah:
When God told Elijah that He would end a drought, by sending "an abundance of rain," the prophet responded by fervently praying that the word would indeed come to pass (see 1 Kin. 18:41-45).
In the church, leaders need to begin releasing the prophetic in pray as we gather together. Paul describes how this happens in 1 Corinthians 14 as he gives instruction and corrections to prophets and the whole flow of worship: "How is it then, brethren? Whenever you come together, each of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation" (v. 26, NKJV).
In the culture, Christian leaders need to speak prophetically to such issues as abortion, the federal marriage amendment, covenant marriage state legislation and a host of faith-based initiatives that can transform society.
Spirit-filled, Christian leaders need to come out of their services and begin to prophetically pray in public forums--not to be seen by people, but to have God's word heard by public leaders even as the prophets of old were heard by kings and rulers.
President Abraham Lincoln spoke of our need for prayer in the public arena: >P> "We have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and persevering grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us. It behooves us, then, to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins, and to pray for clemency and forgiveness."
In this fall season of national elections, we need to pray that God's will be done in the seating of the 44th president. One important prayer initiative (see 1 Tim. 2:1) is Campaign 44 (www.campaign44.org), and another is headed by The Presidential Prayer Team (www .presidentialprayerteam.org).
Many spiritual leaders have teamed together to call our nation to pray throughout this fall for our nation as we prepare to elect the 44th president of the United States. We all pray for God's will and guidance during the 44 days between Sunday, September 19 and Election Day, November 2, 2004.
Be encouraged to do the following in prophetic prayer beginning now:
Prophetic prayer prays into time and space the intercession of the Son to the Father for us. Begin to pray what He wants not what you want today for yourself, your family, your church, your community, state and nation.
Larry Keefauver, D.Min., is a pastor, author and international seminar leader with his wife, Judi, on prayer, family and God's presence. He is the author of Prayers of the Presidents (Bridge Logos & YMCS).