Prayer is a privilege purchased for us but the blood of Christ, a privilege, strangely enough that we greatly neglect. We have many privileges which God in His mercy gives us, but if we examine our privileges we will find that they are necessary as well. However, the privilege is secondary to the necessity. So it is with prayer: it is a necessity, pure and simple.
The need of prayer is very clearly presented in the experience of Israel at Rephidim. This was God’s opportunity to teach the young nation their dependence on Him. Moses sent Joshua and his men to fight the battle in the valley against Amalek, while Moses held his hand up toward heaven until Israel prevailed and gained the victory. The enemy was not defeated by manpower or human weapons only, but by the power of God through the intercession of Moses.
This was written for the church – that ‘we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, powers’ (Eph. 6:12). Israel discovered that they were in conflict with spiritual powers far superior to their own natural powers.
Joshua and his men in the valley with swords fighting, Moses together with Aaron and Hur on the mount with uplifted hands speaks of the two phases of the gospel ministry, the outward ministry and the upward ministry. The outward ministry is the sword of God’s Word and the upward ministry is intercessory prayer. Both were necessary in winning the battle and in going forward in God’s purpose. A man of God once said, ‘Prayer is not everything, but everything is by prayer!’
Notice Exodus 17:11, ‘It came to pass, when Moses held his hands, Israel prevailed.’ What does this teach us? That Victory hinged on the intercession of Moses, Aaron, and Hur. What can call for an army of soldiers for Christ to preach the Gospel and great is this need.
But, we can settle it in our hearts that the missionary army will not prevail in its mission unless God’s people lift up holy hands in constant believing prayer – the two or three who will feel the burden and responsibility of the battle in which missionaries are engaged. Satan doesn’t care if the saints are sincere and confident as long as they are weary in prayer.
God needs praying men who sense that they are at the very core of the success or the failure of the Gospel in the world. Such men as these, like Moses and his supporters, will have the thrill of being co-workers together with God in the furtherance of the Gospel. They will see Satan defeated and Christ exalted!
This article is from the Spring 2018 Issue of coMission Magazine.