How to Pray with Authority like Nehemiah and Esther
I want to invite you on a journey to look at the lives of Nehemiah and Esther as we learn how to pray with authority. The Lord brought about miraculous intervention and deliverance through these risk takers and history makers.
- Both heard dismal reports of trouble, shame, brokenness and plots of destruction.
- Both lamented and turned heavenward in fervent prayer and fasting, seeking the Lord for strength, wisdom and divine intervention.
- Both found themselves in an opportune time – in a position of strategic ACCESS and INFLUENCE.
- Both asked largely and specifically – and received ALL that they asked for.
Their prayers didn’t stagnate in the realm of the ethereal. They materialized into action, precisely in the place where they had access and influence.
Nehemiah Steps Out
Nehemiah volunteered himself to be an answer to the devastating report given to him concerning Jerusalem. As cupbearer to the king, he asked boldly:
- To be sent to Judah, to rebuild.
- To be guaranteed safe passage with letters of authority for travel.
- To be given all of the building materials for rebuilding the temple, the city walls and his own personal house.
“And the king granted me what I asked, for the good hand of my God was upon me.” Nehemiah 2:8
Esther Risks Everything
Esther, recent captive turned queen, knew how to pray and took the risk to intercede before God and the king on behalf of her people – and her request was granted. What the enemy intended for evil was turned around into glorious victory. This victory is still celebrated every year in Israel and by the Jewish people around the world on the day of Purim, to honor Esther’s courageous faith and the ensuing deliverance.
Intercession then is about ACCESS and INFLUENCE.
What does that mean for you?
Through the saving work of Yeshua, each of us can freely access the courts of heaven – we are granted an audience with the King of Kings and encouraged to ask largely.
“Through Him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” Romans 5:2
“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16
“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” Mark 11:24
The Purpose of Prayer
“And yet how much of our prayer is vague and pointless. Some cry for mercy but take not the trouble to know what mercy must do for them. Others ask, perhaps, to be delivered from sin but do not begin by bringing any sin by name from which the deliverance may be claimed. Still others pray for God’s blessing on those around them, for the outpouring of God’s Spirit on their land or the world, and yet have no special field where they wait and expect to see the answer. To all the Lord says: ‘And what is it now you really want and expect me to do?
…God speaks to His child in all truth, ‘What wilt thou?’ It is often spiritual sloth that, under the appearance of humility, professes to have no will, because it fears the trouble of searching out the will of God, or, when found, the struggle of claiming it in faith. True humility is ever in company with strong faith, which only seeks to know what is according to the will of God, and then boldly claims the fulfillment of the promise: ‘Ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.’” Andrew Murray, With Christ in the School of Prayer
Dare to Ask
I am challenged to ASK BOLDLY, ASK SPECIFICALLY, and to ACT ACCORDINGLY.
Where has the Lord opened doors and placed each of us in a context that can bring about change?
We are not all commissioned to fight the same battles – the causes and arenas that provoke each of us to prayer and action may be very different – but we are all commissioned to step out in faith in the sphere where the Lord has placed us for influence and has granted us authority.
So… what is YOUR request? Is it specific? Will you know for certain when you have received your answer?
As we daily approach the throne of grace through the ACCESS and INFLUENCE granted through Yeshua, we can take great confidence in Him, trusting that He hears and answers prayer. And don’t be surprised when the answers to those prayers invite us into a place of bold, corresponding action.