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Toronto, ON, Canada

November 22, 2014


Intercession (Rom. 8:34; Heb. 7:25)

What is it?

Intercession is intense "personal confiding intercourse with God on the part of one who is able to approach God" (JND notes on 1 Tim. 2:1). Such prayer -for so it is- may have as its background negative situations or may stem from a desire for continued positive benefits. Throughout the Scripture of Truth there are examples of this kind of prayer and the wonderful answers that God gave in response to them. The Scripture also encourages us to make intercessions (1 Tim. 2:1) In our meditation we will consider some intercessions in the Scripture of Truth culminating with that of our Lord Jesus. We will look at the circumstances that occasioned them, their character and nature, and what are some results of the intercessions. We will further seek to connect them with relevant principles in the Scripture which will help us to trust and rejoice in the God of all grace (1 Pet. 5:10).

Introduction: What is it?

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Nature of intercession: Christ on high -Rom. 8:34 Intercession: work of the mediator, the daysman (Job 9:33) -for those who are accepted in the Beloved

  • Priestly work (Heb. 2, 4, 7) -for the redeemed ones
  • Advocacy (1 Jn. 2:1) -for family members
These two latter functions support the general truth of intercession (Aaron, Hur and Moses: Ex. 17:10-13).

Character of intercession: immediate response to a recognised need: “Go quickly” and “Aaron”… “ran…” (Num. 17:46). “The King’s business required haste” (1 Sam. 21:8). “Drive and go forward; slack not thy riding for me, except I bid thee” (2Ki. 2:24).

Circumstances facing the person(s) in need are

  1. The attractions/hostility of the world -Gen. 14. The result of the choices we make. Result of the intercession made: the rescue of Lot by Abram and his army.
  2. The attacks of the flesh -Ex. 17. The result of uncontrolled desires. Result of the intercession: Joshua broke the power of Amalek.
  3. The attacks of Satan -Lk. 22.The result of pride and self-confidence. Result of the intercession: Simon will be converted and commissioned to “strengthen his brethren”.

Who needs intercession? We the saints of God need intercession of Divine persons -Rom. 8: 26, 34 OF other saints -Eph. 6:18; Col. 4:2-4; 1 Thess.5:25; 2 Thess. 3:1, 2; Philemon v. 22; Heb. 13:18; Jas. 5:16; 1 Jn. 5:16

Lecture 1: Abraham

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Gen. 18:16-33

Abraham intercedes for righteous ones in Sodom.

Condition of cities of Sodom and Gomorrah: Gen. 13:10-13; 18:20; cf. Gen. 19:4-9; Ezek: 16:49. The cities were marked out for destruction. Cf. ch. 18:19

  • Did Abraham think that Lot had a positive influence on some in Sodom?
Antagonism of the flesh: 2 Pet. 2:6-8. God the Judge of all the earth (v. 25); Abraham but dust and ashes (v. 27)

Nature of intercession: (Gen. 18:23) approaching God on the part of righteous persons associated with evil

Character of intercession: intense, comprehensive
No giving up after a few pleas: 50, 45, 40, 30, 20 or even 10 persons -vv. 24-32

  • Was it weakness that made Abraham stop at 10 persons?
Lot’s family was delivered from Sodom “the Lord being merciful to him” (Gen. 19:16)
Lot and his two daughters were delivered from the judgement (2 Pet. 2:7).

Cf. Mt. 10:29-31; Lk. 12:6, 7: “Ye are of more value than many sparrows.”

Lecture 2: Judah

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Gen. 44:14-34

Judah pleads for his brother and his father

Circumstances: the brother was threatened with slavery in Egypt; the father faced with unspeakable grief because of the envy of 10 brothers.

v. 16. Piety of Judah: the envy of the flesh exposed and God is brought in.

v. 18. The suppliant “drew near”: The manner in which he shares his heart; “with an olive branch”

  • The truth of their home situation (vv. 19-20)
  • How Benjamin was allowed to be in Egypt (vv. 21-26)
  • The father’s sorrow and fears (vv. 27-29)
  • Judah’s assessment: without Benjamin, our father will die (vv. 30, 31)

The Substitute: Great love for his brother and for his father (vv. 32-34)
Cf. Moses who offered himself as an alternate to be excluded (Ex. 32:32) and Paul who could wish himself accursed (Rom. 9:1-3)
Christlikeness: The Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me (Gal. 2:20)

Lecture 3: Moses

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Ex. 32:7-13

Moses beseeches on behalf of the children of Israel.

Circumstances of the people: under Satan’s delusion: 32:1-6; naked: 32:25
Nature and character of his intercession: the daysman -Job 9:33

1. Moses speaks with Jehovah: everything for the people; nothing for himself
  • Pleads Jehovah’s name; His promise to the patriarchs -32: 12, 13
  • Pleads for Jehovah’s presence -33:12-16
  • Grace offered to Moses is therefore extended to the people -33:17-23; 34:1, 9, 10

    2. Moses speaks with the people: everything for Jehovah; nothing for himself

    • Idol destroyed; incident investigated -32:20-24
    • Known sin not ignored, therefore judgement executed -32:26-30

    NB: Only the sons of Levi: not everyone will submit fully to the Word of God (vv. 26, 27).

    Result: Grace and mercy (34:1-7, 9-10) to go into the land
    Reflection of the glory of Jehovah (34:29); cf. 2 Cor. 3:17, 18 Read Romans 8:35-39
    NB: “the gifts and calling of God are without repentance (Rom. 11:29).
    He made it another vessel as seemed good to the potter (Jer. 8:1-6).

Lecture 4: Daniel

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Dan. 9:1-19

Daniel intercedes on behalf of “his” people.

Conditions of the people: under the chastisement of Jehovah (in captivity)

vv.1, 2
Daniel read and meditated on the Word of God (“by books”), “comparing scriptural things with scriptural” (1 Cor. 2:13). See also 1 Ki. 25:1 and Jer. 25:11, 12.

It drove him to his knees. Where does my study (meditation) of the Word of God drive me? Is it to speak? Is it to pray?
v. 3.
Prayer: what he said to Jehovah
v. 3.
v. 3.: how he said it “with an olive branch”; humbly
v. 3.
Fastings: abstinence from food; cf. Job. 23:12
v. 3.
Sackcloth and ashes: external manifestation of an internal condition: humility and humiliation (cf. Abraham: Gen. 18:27).
vv. 4-15
Confession: He identified himself with the condition of the people
  • the condition of the people and what brought them there
  • the righteousness of God in His chastisement of the people
vv. 16-19
Petition:He sought for the glory of Jehovah
  • Hear, forgive, restore His people for His great name’s sake
  • Hear, forgive, restore His people for the sake of His Place
vv. 20-27
  • Given skill and understanding
  • Approved: “greatly beloved
  • Given the secrets of Jehovah: Ps. 25:14; Prov. 3:32b; Amos 3:7

Lecture 5: Our Lord Jesus

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Jn. 17:4-26

The Lord Jesus pleads on behalf His disciples and those who follow

Circumstances: “I am no more in the world but these are in the world and I come to Thee” (Jn. 17:11)

Petition for them:

  • to be kept as one (v. 11)
  • His joy fulfilled in them (v. 13).
  • To be kept from evil (v. 15)
  • To be sanctified by the Truth (v. 17).
  • As sent out by the Son (v. 18)
  • For the fruit of their work (v. 20)
  • Their oneness (vv. 21, 22)
  • To be brought to be with Him (v. 24)
  • To behold His glory (v. 24)

Questions and Answers

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