Exercising Our Authority in Prayer

11295609_965501846846256_8820776121841191577_n“Many in the church today are being held captive spiritually, not because of the enemy’s power, but because we do not clearly understand our authority and calling in Christ… As we begin to understand the hope of His calling, we will begin to walk in an abundant life of freedom and power.” Angie Weaver

Most Christians do not realize, or even attempt to exercise, the tremendous authority they have in Christ. God has called us to make a difference on earth. He can enforce His will, but He limits His dealings on earth by working through His people. God does not want us to passively stand by and watch the earth fall into decay (Psalm 8:4-6, 115:16). But if we were to evaluate the situation, isn’t this what many Christians are doing? How many of us exercise our authority? This needs to change.

God has given us authority on earth to rule. It may not feel like it, but it’s true. God does nothing on earth unless he does it through a person. He always intended to rule the earth through His delegated authority in mankind (Genesis 1:26). We were to carry out the government of the earth, but man (through Adam and Eve) gave it away through disobedience. You know the story. Adam transferred authority over the earth to Satan (Luke 4:4, 2 Corinthians 4:4). All of mankind was then under his dominion. God did not give Satan authority over the earth, Adam did.

We needed someone to stand between us, and Satan, in order to break that dominion. Jesus was the only one who could. He came as a man completely fulfilling God’s will and became our intercessor – the one who could join us to God again and break Satan’s headship over us (Isaiah 53:12). Jesus, the intercessor, joined us to God. He purchased us with his blood (Rev. 5:9, 1 Timothy 2:5). He not only restored us to God, He became the way that God could again have dominion over the earth (1 Corinthians 15, Matthew 28:19-20). Jesus could now rule in the affairs of earth.

He has given us authority to rule, and through prayer we exercise our authority in Christ.

We are called to pray and seek justice on the earth on behalf of others. The world lies in the power of the evil one (1 John 5:19). Look around and you see this everywhere. Jesus has authority in heaven and on earth but since He is no longer on the earth, He rules through his Church. He changes things on earth through us! As we use our authority, we can actually subdue powers and principalities (Ephesians 3:10).

We must learn to exercise our authority right in the middle of Satan’s territory. We read in Psalm 144:1: “Praise be to the Lord, my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle.” Exodus 15:3 says, “The Lord is a mighty warrior; the Lord is his name.” Satan wants us to think that He is winning and that we are defeated. He comes in like a flood, trying to fill us with doubt and discourage-ment.  But our God always has victory when we trust in Him. We must be clad in His armor and understand the seriousness of war.

How can we walk in victory in the midst of personal, and sometimes unrelenting, spiritual warfare and maintain our authority in prayer? We must choose to reign with Christ now.  

Choosing to Reign with Christ

“We now walk in authority by faith, but when Christ returns, our authority and position will be evident to all. It is easy to become passive and lax in our present lives, because there seems to be no real accountability or certainty of our authority. That is, unless we choose to be accountable and to live with conviction.” Angie Weaver

We must not only understand the authority we have in Christ, but we must choose to walk in it. One day we will judge the whole earth! We are heirs with Christ and are called to rule the earth with Him (Revelation 1:6). We can declare God’s rule over the earth now. We must activate our authority and inheritance in Christ through prayer. We can bring the message of restoration to mankind and break the dominion of Satan over society. Are we willing to choose to take up our call?

God will not do our work for us. He has provided everything we need. He is not the one that is allowing the evil to continue on earth. We are when we do not recognize and use the authority He has given us. We are not to passively wait but to take action in prayer. He is waiting (Hebrews 10:12-13). We have to enforce his victory on earth (Romans 16:20, Colossians 2:13-15). We must fight the battle for our inheritance – the nations (Psalm 2:7).

“That authority is invested in Jesus Christ, an we initially access it through the simplest, weakest way that man could ever imagine – prayer. We sit with God, and sitting in His Son, we ask God to move by His Spirit. Whatever we ask, while abiding in God, He will do for us (John 15:7-8)… Prayer is not the only work, but it is the first work of the church. Until we have prayed, there is nothing more we can do. After we have prayed and our intercession is accomplished, we must move forth into obedience, doing what God has shown us to do.” Steve Thompson

We wield our authority as we abide in Christ. We have the keys of the Kingdom of heaven. We need to begin to exercise a sense of ownership for our cities. We are called to bring into subjection demonic powers and disciple the nations. We are called to subdue the earth spiritually, affecting change through Christ’s authority. God is waiting for us to use our authority.

There was a submarine that was being tested and had to remain submerged, deep underwater for many hours through the night. A ferocious storm hit the area during the night. The next day the submarine resurfaced and returned to harbor. A man asked the captain, “How did the terrible storm last night affect you?” The officer looked at him with surprise on his face and exclaimed, “Storm? We didn’t realize there was a storm!”

The submarine was so far below the surface of the water that the storm wasn’t even felt by those down below. To sailors, this area is known as the “cushion of the sea.” The ocean had huge waves and high winds on the surface, but the water deep below was very still. The Christian life should be like that submarine. We should be so close to God, so deep in seeking and knowing Him and His Word, that even the storms of everyday life on earth won’t shake our confidence, authority, and trust in Him. We can rest completely in His care even in the midst of spiritual warfare and the turbulent days we live in.

We must aggressively take our stand against the enemy. The enemy is intent on stopping us as we move forward in taking our authority in prayer. We are here to fight, and we must persevere.  Nothing good happens without perseverance.  We are living in enemy territory.  We are called to destroy the works of the devil.  To take our stand against him means that we refuse to give him ground and that we will not retreat.  James 4:7-8 says, “Submit yourselves, then, to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Come near to God and He will come near to you.” We are not going to retreat or depart because of enemy pressure, but we are going to go on from glory to glory to victory!  God’s grace is sufficient.  We resist the enemy, stand firm in the Lord, and do not give way.  We worship and praise God right in the middle of the difficulty.

We are taking ground in heavenly places when we pray, even if we do not see it.  We must not relax our vigilance.  It doesn’t mean that we are frantic, nervous and anxious.  No, we are like that submarine. We walk in that supernatural perfect peace that is possible as we abide in Christ.  This is the amazing truth of the Christian life.  We are living a life that is not of our own strength. We are depending on God and loving Him, as we stand firmly on His Word, pray fervently, and walk in His peace. Jesus already won the battle at the cross and we are here to enforce it. We read in 1 John 3:8, “The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” Let’s summarize how we can exercise our authority in prayer. As the army of God arises all throughout the nations, what are some ways to stand strong in our authority?

Ways to Stand Strong in Your Authority in Prayer

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.  Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand” (Ephesians 6:10-13).

  • Abide in Christ – As you abide, you are able to pray the things on God’s heart.
  • Practice fasting on a regular basis – Fasting gives you spiritual power and strength to stand against the enemy.
  • Be ready for battle and steadfast in prayer – Know that you are in enemy territory, and you are here to fight for God’s Kingdom. Watch for those fiery darts. Hold up your shield of faith and do not waver in prayer.
  • Stand upon the promises of God – Standing on God’s promises and do not listen to the enemy. Speak God’s promises over your family, neighborhood, city, and nation.
  • Know and pray God’s Word – Try using Daniel’s prayer in Daniel 9:3-19 in prayer. The Bible is filled with Scripture you can pray. Declarative prayer is a key way to exercise your authority in prayer.
  • Focus on God during times of warfare – The enemy will try to discourage you as to your authority. Focus on God instead of the things you see happening in the world. Remember, you have authority in Christ.
  • Mix praise and prayer together – Worship is the atmosphere where truth dwells.       There is power released in worship warfare. God is greater than all enemy attacks.
  • Let God’s peace rule in your heart – Come in the opposite spirit of the world system. An attitude of peace and joy in the midst of darkness is powerful (Colossians 3:15).

We must choose to reign with Christ. This is our God-given responsibility. We must help one another to stand strong in authority. We must learn to abide, praise, worship, and stand on the promises of God. We are in enemy territory.

We just got new internet access because of our constant work on our computers. A man came and installed it outside. While we were at church one Sunday, someone cut the wires. We were unable to communicate with anyone! We knew that it was an unreasonable next-door neighbor who had done all kinds of bad things to us in the past. We have learned to walk in God’s peace and authority regarding this next-door neighbor and learned to take our authority in prayer by practicing these points.

Perhaps you can identify with some form of warfare where you live or work. Practice taking your authority in prayer, look to Jesus, and realize that God has called you to live on earth for such a time as this. This will be our finest hour if we learn to wield the weapons of warfare and stand in our God-give authority.

The perseverance is all part of the testing time.  We are being stretched.  We must hold our ground in battle. It’s part of the package of how God plans to train and work through us, bringing maturity and victory. God is teaching us to exercise our authority. He is teaching us to walk as kings on earth. We must accept this call. We are bringing heaven to earth through our prayers.

“Having been born of God, we are called to walk as kings on the earth. However, the Bible says that many are called but few are chosen (see Matthew 20:16). If we draw near to God, He will draw near to us (see James 4:8). We enter into our inheritance by choosing to accept God’s call. We activate and grow in our authority on the earth through intimacy with God and living our lives filled with the Holy Spirit. By being filled and walking in the conviction of the Holy Spirit, we are bridging heaven and earth and hastening the day of Christ’s return to rule and reign over the earth!” Angie Weaver

By Debbie Przybylski
Intercessors Arise International
IHOPKC

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