I Prayed have prayed
Father God, I want to be a powerful intercessor for You. I want to serve You by praying continually for Your Kingdom to come and Your will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Lord, please help me in this area. Teach me how to pray and intercede, and fill me with Your power and zeal. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

Have you ever wondered about the difference between “prayer” and “intercession”? Are they the same thing? And if prayer and intercession two totally different things, what on earth makes the difference?

If you have wondered about these things, this article is for you.

Prayer and intercession do have a lot in common, and they often overlap one another. However, they are not exactly the same thing.

To help people understand this, I use a Venn diagram showing the attributes of prayer and intercession.

Prayer and intercession each have their own characteristics, and some of those attributes and characteristics overlap and apply to both concepts. However, there are two noteworthy differences between prayer and intercession:

  1. Prayer is talking to God about anything; but
  2. Intercession is talking to Him about someone else or something else, other than yourself.

­­Talking with God in simple conversation, in worship, in praise, and even in pouring your heart out to Him is a necessary and vital part of Christian life. But intercession goes beyond that:

  • to a place of being willing to carry God’s heart for someone else;
  • to a place of being willing to sacrifice your time, your energy, your fastings, and your passionate cries to God all for someone else.

The purest and truest intercession brings you to a place of being willing to lay down parts of your life (or maybe even all of it, as Jesus did for us) so that God’s Kingdom can come and His will can be done in someone else’s life … just like it is in Heaven.

Additionally, simple prayer can be peaceful, mild, calm, and relaxed. But truly releasing God’s heart on the earth through intercession will almost always carry the Holy Spirit’s raw power and holy furor with it.

Intercession is spiritually forceful.

The actual definition of intercession in the Hebrew (Biblical) language is “to impinge, by accident or violence or by importunity.”* According to Dictionary.com, “impinge” means “To make an impression; have an effect or impact; to encroach; infringe; strike; dash; collide; come into violent contact with.”

So intercession brings you into such violent contact with the heart, the will, and the Word of God that it forces Him to make an impression on the person or situation you’re interceding for.

In everyday lingo, “intercession” means:

  • You collide with God violently until His will is released on the earth.
  • You stand in the gap as a priest between heaven and earth, saying as Jesus taught us, “Our Father who is in Heaven … Your Kingdom come! Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven!”
  • And you continue “impinging” or making spiritually-violent contact with God until you see God move on the earth as you know He desires to move, according to His written Word, the Bible.

(Note: Intercession will also often compel you to act and actually become the solution to the problem about which you’re praying … but that’s another article for another day.)

You should also know this about the governing power of intercession:

In ancient times, “intercession” was actually a legal term that meant “to intervene with a veto.” It was something that governments did; a governing council met and made a decision about this thing or that thing, and whatever they said became the law (or struck down the old law).

The name of that governing body was the ekklesia.

And today, my friend, YOU are part of the ekklesia. You have governing power through intercession. Whether you’re the highest elected official in the land or an elderly grandparent sitting at home in your prayer chair with your Bible, YOU can govern through intercession. Your prayers of intercession can cause God to raise up kings and bring them down. Your prayers of intercession can cause God to raise up laws and bring them down. Your intercession can change the course, future history, and destiny of nations.

Prayer is simple conversation, and prayer is essential too. But intercession takes the power of conversation with God and “hits” up against Him until His will is enforced on the earth.

Do you want this? Do you want God to use you as an intercessor?

He will!

Pray this:

“Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Jesus to die on the cross to intercede for me and save my life. Thank You that Jesus now ever lives to make intercession for me.

Father God, I ask right now in Jesus’ name that You would also make me an intercessor after Your own heart, just like Jesus is. Help me to intercede with power. Teach me to pray and intercede like You want me to, and let my prayers be filled with the holy furor and fire of the Holy Ghost.

Thank You, Heavenly Father. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.”

Are you willing to let God the Holy Spirit turn you into an intercessor? If so, leave a comment below!

*Hebrew definition: Strong’s word #6293: “paga /paw-gah/; to impinge, by accident or violence or by importunity.”

Jamie Rohrbaugh equips people to walk in the manifest presence of God. She blogs for a global readership at FromHisPresence.com, where she writes about prayer, the prophetic word, living supernaturally, inner healing, and Kingdom wealth. Her writing is featured on YouVersion, Charisma Magazine, The Elijah List, Spirit Fuel, and various other ministry outlets. Her podcast, Take Your Territory with Jamie Rohrbaugh, can be found on iTunes and Spotify. Download her FREE ebook, Praying the Names of God: 555 Biblical Names of God and How To Use Them In Prayer and Worship, here.

 

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Darrel Batina
December 14, 2021

I thank God for providing a clear and concise understanding of the difference between prayer and intercession. I have been praying and fasting since January 2020 in the capacity of an Intercessor for our nation, against the evil of abortion and for the Peace of Israel among a few other issues. I have been asking for the Holy Spirit to lead and guide me in praying. After listening in on today’s call I realized I need to put more emotion in my prayers. Thank you Lord for Intercessors for America and the many spirituality gifted disciplines who help us focus our prayers.

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Roxanne Rice
December 14, 2021

This came at exactly the right time for me. God has been teaching me about stronger, deeper prayer for some time now, entering His heavenly courts and petitioning for what He has written in His books. Very meaningful and powerful!

While listening to today’s prayer time, I found my heart yearning for so much more.

Several years ago, when I was in a coma, God came and asked me if I really wanted to die. I thought it over very carefully before answering. I knew with certainty He still had things He wanted me to do, and I wanted with all my heart to do them. I knew if I went home to be with Him, I wouldn’t be able to do them. So I told God no, I didn’t want to die. And He sent me back.

I know in my heart that this, learning to be an intercessor, is one of the major things He sent me back to do. Oh, how I want this!

Please pray for me, that He will continue to teach me and use me mightily in His purposes! To Him be all the honor and glory and thanks!

17
connie mitchell
December 14, 2021

I believe that intercession is a type of prayer. Prayer is the mode of communication given to Believers that is far more superior than any modern technology that man could have dreamed of! Through prayer (with intercession being a type of) one can reach heaven at the speed of light. The entrance to praying is simple and that is through Christ Jesus. Lastly I thank God for all the brothers and sisters in Christ for all your powerful and truthful responses. I was blessed to read some of them. Pray without ceasing….connie

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Donna Martin
December 14, 2021

Father YHWH, please teach me to pray an intercede for Your Glory and Your Honor to be first and foremost in my mind and the minds of people everywhere. Please let my words be carried to Your Holy Throne by the wind and breath of Your Holy Spirit. Help them in the overthrowing of strongholds in this world, in our nation, and in the lives of my family. May You be attentive to these prayers Father, and may Your merciful and gracious heart forgive us and lead us out of this darkness. Thank You Father for Your remembrance of us – in the precious Name of our King and Redeemer, Yeshua Messiah – Amen and so be it!

15
Bob Huseby
December 14, 2021

May my prayers be mighty to the pulling down of strongholds. May my effectual and fervent prayers availeth much. May I be dead to th flesh enough that I am sensitive to th Holy Spirit to pray against Satans will to steal, kill and destroy. May my prayers have th authority of God’s word since greater is he that is in me than he that is in the world!! In our savior Jesus’s name
Love you guys

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Esther Egan
December 14, 2021

Father, teach me to pray for a difference in the world where sin will be dealt with, and those who are killing babies and adults for organs will be destroyed.

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Judith Moguel
December 14, 2021

I too believe intercession is not “colliding with God,” but standing in opposition to the kingdoms of this world by representing and praying in the authority of the Kingdom of God. Ezekiel 22:30 says God is looking for someone to stand in the gap so His holy, righteous (and fully justified) judgment does not go forth. As part of a holy priesthood, I both battle the enemy ( in violent collision at times) and also stand to appeal for God’s mercy on behalf of those around me, my nation and those caught in the grip of the enemy’s kingdoms. God chooses to partner with us and work through us to accomplish His will. Our sovereign God can fully accomplish His will without us, but instead chooses to work through us. This is the mystery of a God who has chosen free will for His children that we serve out of love and not compulsion. The same as Jesus, we must only do (or pray) what the Father wills.

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    TRUST in JESUS!!
    December 14, 2021

    I think the intent here is that which speaks of when Jacob “wrestled” WITH God and refused to let go UNTIL God BLESSED him and also of Moses when God told him He’d send an angel with him because God got tired of dealing with the complaining people, Moses said to God “If You don’t go WITH me, I’m NOT going” because both men KNEW their NEED for God. I don’t believe there’s any disrespect meant here and NO man can FORCE God to do anything anyway. Yes, our heart must be in alignment though! Our part is to come alongside and agree with Him IN His plans. The Word says “the VIOLENT take it by FORCE”. The church for too long has been frail and timid BUT NO MORE for our God has awakened the LION inside of us and that is our spirit FILLED with His Holy Spirit to exalt our King Jesus and be about the Father’s business to glorify the Son!! Know that “colliding” with God is one where we are broken down to conform to His will and we “pull” on His will UNTIL it MANIFESTS in the natural so we can do what He wants in the first place. I think we collide with God EVERYTIME He seeks to take us to a new level because we have to let go of things to ascend to a higher and deeper place within Him! We MUST be FORCEFUL in the spirit to BRING FORTH what God wants refusing to let go of His promises NO MATTER WHAT!! Jesus even spoke of the woman who “wore down” the unrighteous judge with her petition UNTIL he granted her request to show that if an ungodly man would act then how much more will our Father who is HOLY answer us when we agree with Him in our petition. I hope this helps clarify, this is what I get from reading this post. Be blessed in Jesus Name! 🙂

    8
      Melissa Bolger
      December 14, 2021

      Well said! When we pray to die to ourselves and want only His will he is so faithful to lead us into the proper prayers, be they calm, loud, violent, with shouts… we follow his leading. May He become greater and we become less. We seek your will and your kingdom come. We are co-laborers with Jesus.

      4
David Espenlaub
December 14, 2021

I agree we are called to pray for many things beyond ourselves, but be careful about defining a type of prayer that “forces God”, and “violently collides with God”, as you stated it. We are to pray His Will, not ours. Matt 6:10, Matt 26:39.
Also real prayer is never wimpy as you suggest. It is highly effective. James 5 16
I think it is misleading to make only these two distinct types of prayer and divide people as one or the other. The scriptures show many types of prayer and we should all use them all, depending on the situation. Eph 6:18 I am concerned that you have not used any scripture references in making these fine distinctions. I pray that we all will ‘pray with all types of prayer at all times in the spirit…”.

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    TRUST in JESUS!!
    December 14, 2021

    I think the intent here is that which speaks of when Jacob “wrestled” WITH God and refused to let go UNTIL God BLESSED him and also of Moses when God told him He’d send an angel with him because God got tired of dealing with the complaining people, Moses said to God “If You don’t go WITH me, I’m NOT going” because both men KNEW their NEED for God. I don’t believe there’s any disrespect meant here and NO man can FORCE God to do anything anyway. Yes, our heart must be in alignment though! Our part is to come alongside and agree with Him IN His plans. The Word says “the VIOLENT take it by FORCE”. The church for too long has been frail and timid BUT NO MORE for our God has awakened the LION inside of us and that is our spirit FILLED with His Holy Spirit to exalt our King Jesus and be about the Father’s business to glorify the Son!! Know that “colliding” with God is one where we are broken down to conform to His will and we “pull” on His will UNTIL it MANIFESTS in the natural so we can do what He wants in the first place. I think we collide with God EVERYTIME He seeks to take us to a new level because we have to let go of things to ascend to a higher and deeper place within Him! We MUST be FORCEFUL in the spirit to BRING FORTH what God wants refusing to let go of His promises NO MATTER WHAT!! Jesus even spoke of the woman who “wore down” the unrighteous judge with her petition UNTIL he granted her request to show that if an ungodly man would act then how much more will our Father who is HOLY answer us when we agree with Him in our petition. I hope this helps clarify, this is what I get from reading this post. Be blessed in Jesus Name! 🙂

    4

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