As I prepared during the week to teach at the Chinese Community Church on “Winning Life’s Battles” (Basis: Ex. 17:8-16), I had a sense that God intended to call someone from among us to serve a high-level intercessor to engage the enemy in spiritual warfare. Toward the end of the message on Sunday, I identified three levels of pray-ers (which I will describe in the notes that follow). The third level pertains to ‘spiritual warfare pray-ers’. As I moved into that phase of the teaching, the Spirit of the Lord fell upon me strong, very strong! As is often the case when that happens, I had difficulty speaking. Yes, it is a little embarrassing to stand before a congregation and not be able to speak for several moments.
My guess is that most people in the congregation simply concluded that for some reason I was feeling emotional. However, I knew that I was experiencing something far deeper than human emotion. I was trembling; I was shaking; and, I believe that the Holy Spirit was at work at that moment to accomplish divine purposes. The Lord helped me compose myself enough to make the point and conclude the service.
Although I do not know for sure, I have an idea who the Lord is calling to serve as a higher-level prayer warrior and I am waiting for them to come to this realization. It may be weeks, even months, before the word bears fruit. God’s timing is always best.
As an interesting aside, following the service no one asked me what was going on in me during the sermon. I don’t blame them; 10-15 years ago I would have responded in the same way. Displays of God’s presence and power can be so unsettling and so ‘out-there’ that the average church-goer chooses to overlook them. I remain in awe of God.
From my Journal, Jan. 22, 2013
A curious statement occurs in the familiar story regarding Joshua in the valley fighting and Moses on the mountain praying (Ex. 17:8-16) that sheds light on high-level spiritual warfare prayer.
Moses built an altar and called the name of it, The Lord Is My Banner, saying, “A hand upon the throne of the Lord!” Ex. 17:15-16, ESV (bold mine.)
By this statement what is Moses telling us?
Moses wrote about the battle with the Amalekites several years after it happened. As I see it, Moses looked back and chose this phase – A hand upon the throne of the Lord – to summarize what his experience in prayer on that mountain during that battle was like. Moses is telling us that he stepped through the veil that separates the earthly realm from the heavenly, and into the very presence of God, into the throne room of heaven. While in that spiritual state he reached out and grasped the very throne of the Lord as he pleaded for Joshua and Israel in their battle against the Amalekites.
Three Kinds of Pray-ers
1. Prayer Workers
The term “Prayer Worker” is a reference to millions of Christians around the world who daily do the work of prayer. Regularly and faithfully they make their requests known to God.
2. Prayer Worshippers
“Prayer worshippers” take the work of prayer a step higher and deeper. Prayer Worshippers not only bring their requests to God; they also delight in worshipping God as they pray. They bask in His glory as they exalt His holy Name. They lift their hands and hearts heavenward as they mingle prayer and worship, worship and prayer. With joy they accept whatever outcomes come their way because they know that God is in charge and that He knows what is best for us.
“Prayer Warriors” wrestle with God in prayer. “Prayer Warriors” are high-level intercessors who engage with God in a manner that often influences the outcome of the battle. Jesus calls and appoints, ordains and anoints a few people in the Body of Christ to function as “Prayer Warriors”.
Biblical Examples of Prayer Warriors
In the battle against the Amalekites (Ex. 17:8-16), God allowed and enabled Moses to step into another dimension of reality. Spiritually, he stepped into the throne room of heaven itself, grasped the very throne of God (Ex. 17:16), and pleaded with the Almighty for Israel’s success in this battle.
That is high-level intercession! That is what Prayer Warriors do!
In Genesis 18:16-33, Abraham boldly and respectfully negotiated with God, moving God to agree that He would spare Sodom even if there were only ten righteous people in the city. Negotiating with God. Remarkable!
After wresting all night with God, Scripture tells us that “Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, ‘For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered,’” Gen. 32:30, ESV. Prayer Warriors travel spiritually from the dimension of the earthly into the dimension of the heavenly. In some sense they see God face to face. They wrestle with God and often prevail. Their prayers influence what God does for our children, for marriages, for churches, and for nations. Wow!
Personally, I know a few people who have been called to high-level spiritual warfare. The stories they tell about battling demons and dragons in the heavens are nothing short of jaw-dropping and awe-inspiring. On occasion some of these people pray for me, for my family, and for the church where I serve. I thank God for their ministry of intercession on my behalf and on our behalf!
What about you?
Is Jesus calling, appointing, equipping, and anointing me to serve as a Prayer Warrior?
Do not under any circumstances choose that calling for yourself! Spiritually, it is far too dangerous for the majority of Christians. However, if you are sure that God Himself is ordaining you to this area of service, please say ‘Yes’, and ask Jesus to equip you to succeed.
Thank God for:
- Prayer Workers
- Prayer Worshippers
- Prayer Warriors
What is God’s call on your life?
During World War II a Marine was serving in the South Pacific. His platoon was under fire and they were trying to signal their comrades that they had taken a certain hill. Their sergeant issued an order for a man to take the American flag and raise it up on a pole to let other units know they had taken this ground. As he grabbed the flag and ran off to raise it up, he was shot by a sniper.
Another man was sent to retrieve the flag and raise it up. He too was shot.
Finally, a young private spoke up and said, “Sergeant, in just a few minutes it will be four o’clock. If you will let me wait until then, I will take that flag, I will raise it up on that pole.” The sergeant thought for a moment and said, “All right son.”
At four o’clock, that private jumped out of his foxhole, ran over and picked up the flag, and then he ran to that pole and raised it up. He then turned and ran back to his foxhole and jumped in without so much as a scratch.
The men cheered and the sergeant asked him why he wanted to wait until four o’clock to do what he did. The private replied, “Well sir, its four o’clock here, but its 6am back home in Kansas. My mother loves Jesus and she told me that every morning at 6am she would be on her knees praying for my safety. I knew that I would be safe while mama touched heaven for me.” [i]
“A hand upon the throne of the Lord!” Ex. 17:16, ESV
[i] Taken from www.thesermonnotebook.org