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Lord Jesus, teach us to pray in a way that moves mountains.
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Most people think that intercession and prayer are the same thing. But though both are mentioned and taught about in Scripture and both are surely important, they do differ, and there are various kinds of prayer.

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people — for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:1–4 NIV).

This verse mentions petitions, prayers, and intercession as three separate things. Prayer is a request for help. Almost everyone is familiar with prayer; even unbelievers who don’t know God will pray in times of crisis, seeking His help.

“Return and tell Hezekiah the leader of My people, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father: “I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will heal you. On the third day you shall go up to the house of the Lord” ’ ” (2 Kings 20:5).

A petition is a formal request and appeal to a higher authority.

But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your petition has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you will give him the name John” (Luke 1:13 NASB1995).

Intercession involves bridging the gap between God and man. The best example I can show you is Jesus when He prays for His disciples.

“I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them” (John 17:6–10 NIV).

And Jesus prays not only for His disciples, but also for those (you and me and many others) who are yet to call upon His name. Whether they’d accepted Him yet or not, He still prayed for them at that moment. He is the bridge between heaven and earth. He is the way, the truth, and the life — the only way to the Father (see John 14:6).

My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one — I in them and you in me — so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world” (John 17:20–24 NIV).

This is the first day of IFA’s newest daily devotional. The series looks at some important intercessors in the Bible and helps us learn to pray just like them. Sign up HERE.

IFA contributing writer Gloria Robles is a passionate intercessor with a prophetic voice for today. For more from Gloria, go to Spotify or Anchor and listen to her podcast, Something To Share.

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Darlene Estlow
July 8, 2024

Thank you Gloria. This is a good series and helpful in our praying.

Helen Phillips
July 8, 2024

Gloria this is an excellent article. Though I have been an intercessor for many years I signed up for the new daily devotional. I pray daily on global prayer calls as well as with other intercessors standing in the gap for nations to turn to righteousness and for souls to be saved in a mighty Holy Spirit awakening. Praying as led by Holy Spirit and available 24/7


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