The act of interceding on someone's behalf is not new to most members of the local church. What actually takes place and how it takes place is a different matter. I recently found this definition for the Apostolic Intercessor and apostolic intercession and I believe it reflects very accurately what it entails:
1.) An apostolic intercessor functions as a personal intercessor for an apostle.
2.) An apostolic intercessor is aligned with an apostle and taps into the apostolic authority flowing downward from that apostle. Whatever the apostle’s jurisdiction of authority is, is what the apostolic intercessor has authority to reach into in prayers and receive answers for.
3. An apostolic intercessor has been given authority by God to pray and receive answers within a particular sphere of influence — such as a region, state, or nation that he or she is called to intercede for.
We are familiar with the term 'apostle" as being someone who is sent. In this case we are referring to an "apostle" who is sent to a region to function in the realm of prayer. An apostolic intercessor is typically a leader of other intercessors. This leader provides insight into greater levels of understanding the realms of intercession. The leader would also need to be prophetic - one who listens to the Holy Spirit for direction and then praying for these matters as the Spirit of God reveals.
The role of apostolic intercessor carries a great deal of weight. It is a calling that God also provides the grace to function in. You don't just decide one morning that you're an apostolic intercessor. The spirit of God brings confirmation to you once he calls you. There is a process He takes you through that will involve emptying of yourself and all your personal ambitions along with the need for recognition.
What about the prophetic intercessor?
Prayer ministries require a prophetic vision to continue over the long-term because most of them die out after a relatively short period of time. Prayer ministries that span a number of years do so because they operate from a context of inspiration. So, what is the inspiration for these intercessory groups over the long haul? Their focus is on the Lord Jesus and their vision must be consumed with His hearts desire.
A wonderful example of a prophetic intercessor is the prophetess Anna. We don't know a great deal about her through the scriptures but what we can deduce is that she was a woman of the secret place. From all accounts she did not have a public ministry. The hallmark of her ministry is that it was an enduring ministry. We can confidently say that she was a Jesus fanatic. In Luke 2:36-38 we read:
"Anna, a prophet, was also there in the temple. She was the daughter of Phenuel from the tribe of Asher, and she was very old. Her husband died when they had been married only seven years. Then she lived as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the temple but stayed there day and night, worshipping God with fasting and prayer. She came along just as Simeon was talking with Mary and Joseph, and she began praising God. She talked about the child to everyone who had been waiting expectantly for God to rescue Jerusalem"
It appears that her intercessory burden included searching the scriptures for the prophetic promises of the coming Messiah which had not yet been fulfilled. Anna is a model of what the Lord is looking for in these last days. They will be a company of intercessors who will pray through the promises of God and pave the way for the coming of the Lord.
The tendency is for most intercessors, apostolic and prophetic, to be women. It is their sensitivity to the spirit, their passion for the things of God, the ease with which they yield to the things of God, that position women to fill these roles. That is not to say that men are not able to do likewise. I encourage all men to not let the ease with which women function in this role to deter them from being the "priest" in their home.
Whether you are male or female is not what qualifies or disqualifies you for this position. What truly matters is strong conviction for the things of God and a desire to press into the spirit realm until these matters are manifest.
What is prophetic intercession?
It is the place where the ministry of the priest and prophet come together. Prophetic people don't just pronounce the word of the Lord, they also pray the promise back to Him! By doing this they actually give birth to it and bring it into being. Their activities pave the way for the fulfillment of the prophetic promise. They are focused warriors who peer intently into the spirit from a heavenly vantage point. As they intercede they do so from a revelatory dimension.
Intercessory prayer groups are being birthed all across the nations. As a result, Reformation Prayer Networks are being geared at seeing each part of society brought into a biblical worldview. These include what have become known as the "seven mountains of influence".
Many of the truths that prayer leaders were taught in the 80's and 90's are surprisingly unknown to the new generation. It behooves us all, speaking of leaders of intercessory prayer, to begin with the basics and not assume the latest generation today are aware of all we have learned over the years. We as leaders must reintroduce the understanding that we are enforcers of God's will in the earth and only then will the revivals and awakenings we are praying for be long-lasting.
Who will benefit from reviewing the basics?
At the time of this writing we are preparing a "bootcamp" which is intended to appeal to beginning intercessors as well as mature leaders. Depending on when you read this, we may have our first version of this bootcamp in place and running. Please fill out the form at the end of this page if you would like more information.
One of the biggest predicaments facing intercessors is that they have no one to talk to on a practical level about intercession. Believe it or not, they are not always sure if they are praying "on target" or if they are out in left field. This is an issue we will be addressing during our bootcamp.
One of the early leaders of the Intercessory Prayer movement, Peter Wagner said, "it is usually not in the nature of intercessors to analyze what God is doing in their lives; they are too busy praying". A couple of questions we will be asking during our bootcamp sessions is "Lord, show me your ways in the life of an intercessor", and, "what are the traps of the enemy that he lays for God's people as they intercede?".
We will also be covering topics such as the language and the manifestations of intercession so we all understand the definition of terms such as "binding" and "loosing" and "travail". Unfortunately, there have been too many instances of gross error and problems with intercessory groups. Many prayer groups are weak or ineffective because they lack strong leadership. As a result, we will be covering guidelines for pastors and ministry leaders.
The interest in prophetic intercession is on the upswing. So, we will be addressing how to prophesy in prayer. As we progress through the bootcamp we will be reviewing principles that really work; these are tried and tested. You will learn, as a result, that there are thousands of intercessors like you all over the world.
So, are you still interested in learning more about this role that God is calling you into? Sign up for our updates so you can be part of the bootcamp and workshops we will be having online on this topic. You will not be disappointed.
Testimony of a former Southern Baptist pastor in Georgia who asked the Lord why he wasn't seeing the power of God in his church like he read about in the book of Acts. He acknowledges that not a single person ever got healed in his church and he wanted to know why. The Then the Lord answered him.
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