What Saith the Scripture?
Intercession Promises: Casting The Net
Or, Help in Becoming Fishers of Men
"And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after Me, and I will make you to become fishers of men"
by Katie Stewart
When the LORD Jesus Christ subjected Himself to men, it was to fulfill the yearning of His heart, "to seek and to save that which was lost" (Luke 19:10). He desires us to follow His lead. "For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps" (1Peter 2:21). In following His steps, you become obedient to His will. Thus you fulfill the conditions necessary for claiming the Precious Promises, which He Providentially puts into your path. There are always conditions to be met in any contract. And participating with the LORD Jesus in the "Better Covenant" with "Better Promises" means obedience on your part. But no contract/covenant was ever fulfilled in such heart-felt abundance, as the benefits that come from a partnership with the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY. "He is The Mediator of a Better Covenant, which was established upon Better Promises" (Hebrews 8:6).
And "what shall I render unto the LORD for all His benefits toward me? I will take the cup of Salvation [for myself, and by intercession, for others], and call upon the Name of the LORD" (Psalm 116:12-13). Our LORD beckons to us to enter into an Intercessory Covenant with Him. His Love He supplies as the foundational premise. His Blood He puts down to cover the debt. His Intercession for us ensures our success. And all that's required for us to begin this "joint venture", is, in love, to follow Him. "As He walked by the sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after Me, and I will make you to become fishers of men. And straightway they forsook their nets, and followed Him" (Mark 1:16-18). If we want to please our LORD, and follow His example, then we must leave-off using our own useless nets. Imitate the ways of our Saviour. Make Him to be the object of our attention, our vision, because without Him, "there is no vision, [and] "the people perish" (Proverbs 29:18). But in "looking unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith" (Hebrews 12:2), we not only find Our Way, but The Way for others. And we will find that His "free Gift... the Gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many" (Romans 5:15). The souls of men are the reward of His increase. For if Jesus Christ is the Net with which we use to catch men, then they will be truly and eternally caught!
"Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget
not all His benefits"
His Promises Are The Threads In His Net
Since faith is the only thing that we can do to please God, for "without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a Rewarder of them that diligently seek Him" (Hebrews 11:6), and since our King Jesus honours His Word above all of His wonderful Name, "for Thou hast magnified Thy WORD above all Thy Name" (Psalm 138:2), then there is no more pleasing thing we can do for Him than to believe in the Absolute Strength of His Promise. And the Absolute Strength of His Promise equals the Absolute Strength that our Net will have as we cast His WORD over the souls of men and He draws them in to Himself.
"Jesus, lover of my soul, let
me to Thy bosom fly,
While the nearer waters roll, while the tempest still is high.
Hide me, O my Savior, hide, till the storm of life is past;
Safe into the haven guide; O receive my soul at last."*
This Omnipotent Net will never break. He will not lose that
which is H(Isaiah "For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels,
nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height,
nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of
God, which is in Christ Jesus our LORD" (Romans
8:38-39). If the Promise is Sure, then the Net is Strong,
and your confidence Secure. "And this is the confidence that we have in Him,
that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us" (1John 5:14). Thus equipped
with an Eternally Strong Net, we now ask, "How do we cast this Wonderfully Strong
The Net of His Promises: Cast Over the Souls of Men by Intercession
The LORD Jesus is our Great Intercessor.
The LORD Jesus understands how often we have failed Him in the past.
The LORD Jesus needs us in this partnership of intercession.
Intercession is the act of,
Putting Yourself Sacrificially In Someone Else's Situation
As the Saviour of a sinning world, our Jesus had to enter this world in the same way that those of us who need His help have entered.
As the Saviour of a sinning world, our Jesus stood in the place of sinning men-- never sinning Himself, yet bearing sin's penalty for all who did sin.
Following his Saviour's example, Paul stood in the place of sinning men when he said,
And, even though he preceded the LORD Jesus in the historical timeline of man, Moses knew his Saviour-- and imitated His intercession for others.
Jesus became one in bonds with those upon whom He had compassion.
Again, following his Saviour's example, Paul said,
And James said,
Laying Claim To The Promises: The Threads In His Net
Of course, be sure you are free of known sin-- coming before the Throne of Grace with a clean heart.
Once you understand the individual's trouble, you can then ask the LORD for His Wisdom in helping this person. While in prayer, ask the LORD for a Promise that fits the situation.
Have the confidence in your heart, which faith will require, in knowing that ALL the Promises are available for ANY situation. ALL the Promises are given to ALL the righteous for application to ALL the people, and ALL the problems, that the Holy Spirit directs you to have intercessory compassion upon.
Remember: Faith requires confidence in Jesus Christ, Whose "Name is called The WORD of God" (Revelation 19:13).
Persevering In Faith Until The Petition Is Answered
The petition is the request for which you have claimed God's own WORD-- a Promise. The petition is, that He will do what you claimed His Promise said He would do for the person or problem.
Persevering in faith, or prevailing in prayer, means that you won't give up faith to receive the desired result. You will "continue in faith" until the LORD does what He promised to do!
Nothing outside of yourself can stop you-- nothing outside of yourself will stop you-- when your faith is anchored in the Promises made by God. But you can stop your own efforts-- by NOT continuing to believe God!
Being Led By The Spirit To Those Who Are Elect
The LORD expects us to pray for all men.
The petition should often be for Christians.
Inasmuch as, "God so loved the world, that He
gave His only begotten Son" (John 3:16), He did also say, "I have created the waster to destroy"
It is by the Holy Spirit that we "by reason of use have [our] senses exercised
to discern both good and evil" (Hebrews
5:14). How much of the unsaved world can we claim Salvation
for? How wide can our Net be cast?
While it is true that during The Millennium, all the world will worship our LORD...
...it is also true, that before Christ's Millennium starts, He has shown us that we are not to pray for, nor expect, the Salvation of the entire world--
Interceding for an individual you know personally gives you an advantage of tailoring the Promises perfectly to the needs of that person.
Interceding for a group complicates the tailoring of the Promises, but can still be easily achieved by the broad range the LORD has provided in many of His general Promises.
How do you know the Holy Spirit is directing you to a certain person or problem?
Desires are clues of who to pray for, because the LORD Jesus directs His people by Providence, and righteous desires are Providential.
Prepared by the LORD--
Secured by the LORD--
Suggested Ways in Which the Net May Be Cast Over the Elect- A Wide Cast
Or, Ideas On How To Use Scripture For Intercession
When you pray, whether its for an individual or a group, take into consideration the Christ-like merits the individual or group may have, which can work for their good. For example, if a person has had a generous tendency in their character, then remind the LORD that He said He would reward people according to their works and faith, and ask for a generous portion of mercy in their behalf. Perhaps you don't know the person or group well enough to know of any merits to advocate in their behalf, then all you can ask is for a "space to repent" (Revelation 2:21).
Christ's finished work of Redemption on His Cross is the foundation for the advocacy work He carries on for us. Without the Precious Sacrifice of His Life-Giving Blood we would have no chance, no advocacy floor on which to stand. But since "he that winneth souls is Wise" (Proverbs 11:30) in the Wisdom and Counsel of the WORD, we know that it is the LORD Himself that offers the intercessor the opportunity to plead for the Godless elect-- not "established" on the basis of any Christ-like (yet unrepentant) characteristics they may have yielded to in their lives-- but yet, influenced by whatever Godly tendencies the person did allow in their lives. This is a very generous tool for the LORD to allow us to have in our work of intercession.
The desired goal of our intercession for the unrepentant is that, one day, they will cry out themselves to the LORD, SOLELY on the basis of His Character--
A few examples of Scripture-based Intercession--
For the brethren:
For the Backslider:
Salvation for the elect of the world, in general:
For the elect sinner:
For the elect people on the edge of death:
For the elect meek:
For the elect divisive:
For the elect hopeless:
For the elect blind-- spiritually blind, as well as physically blind:
For the elect prisoners:
For the Helpful:
For the elect descendants of your favorite hymn writers:
For friendly grocery workers:
For a brother:
For a sister:
For your children:
For elect movie stars:
For elect survivors of the Holocaust:
For the elect undefiled at the Last Trump:
For the elect worldwide that are in never-ending comas:
For elect war vets that have been preserved in traumatic combat:
For the elect forgotten old people who have showed mercy in their lives:
For the Tribulation Martyrs:
For a great harvest at the Rapture:
That Israel's blindness be lifted:
Hopefully, there is time left for us to help at least one person. There is not much time. But wouldn't it be wonderful if even just one person could know and love our LORD? If they could know His generous nature, His tenderness and watchfulness of us. No detail in life is beyond His notice. His ever-present Comforter guides us on all our journey's way. His love for us, proved and tested, showers over us continually, in this life and in the Eternal Heavenly Mansions. His Hand works in all areas to promote us service, for in that way we honour and glorify the Father. But to those who don't know Him, tomorrow holds uncertainty and fear. "Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away" (James 4:14).
A Christian's life is not his own. "For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain" (Philippians 1:21). "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service" (Romans 12:1). Don't deny "the LORD that bought" you-- at the costly price of His own Blood (2Peter 2:1).
A Vision of the Lost
(1829 - 1912)
Founder of the Salvation Army
"On one of my recent journeys, as I gazed from the coach window, I was led into a train of thought concerning the condition of the multitudes around me. They were living carelessly in the most open and shameless rebellion against God, without a thought for their eternal welfare. As I looked out of the window, I seemed to see them all... millions of people all around me given up to their drink and their pleasure, their dancing and their music, their business and their anxieties, their politics and their troubles. Ignorant- willfully ignorant in many cases- and in other instances knowing all about the truth and not caring at all. But all of them, the whole mass of them, sweeping on and up in their blasphemies and devilries to the Throne of God. While my mind was thus engaged, I had a vision.
I saw a dark and stormy ocean. Over it the black clouds hung heavily; through them every now and then vivid lightening flashed and loud thunder rolled, while the winds moaned, and the waves rose and foamed, towered and broke, only to rise and foam, tower and break again.
In that ocean I thought I saw myriads of poor human beings plunging and floating, shouting and shrieking, cursing and struggling and drowning; and as they cursed and screamed they rose and shrieked again, and then some sank to rise no more.
And I saw out of this dark angry ocean, a mighty rock that rose up with itís summit towering high above the black clouds that overhung the stormy sea. And all around the base of this great rock I saw a vast platform. Onto this platform, I saw with delight a number of the poor struggling, drowning wretches continually climbing out of the angry ocean. And I saw that a few of those who were already safe on the platform were helping the poor creatures still in the angry waters to reach the place of safety.
On looking more closely I found a number of those who had been rescued, industriously working and scheming by ladders, ropes, boats and other means more effective, to deliver the poor strugglers out of the sea. Here and there were some who actually jumped into the water, regardless of the consequences in their passion to 'rescue the perishing.' And I hardly know which gladdened me the most- the sight of the poor drowning people climbing onto the rocks reaching a place of safety, or the devotion and self-sacrifice of those whose whole being was wrapped up in the effort for their deliverance.
As I looked on, I saw that the occupants of that platform were quite a mixed company. That is, they were divided into different 'sets' or classes, and they occupied themselves with different pleasures and employments. But only a very few of them seemed to make it their business to get the people out of the sea.
But what puzzled me most was the fact that though all of them had been rescued at one time or another from the ocean, nearly everyone seemed to have forgotten all about it. Anyway, it seemed the memory of its darkness and danger no longer troubled them at all. And what seemed equally strange and perplexing to me was that these people did not even seem to have any care- that is any agonizing care- about the poor perishing ones who were struggling and drowning right before their very eyes... many of whom were their own husbands and wives, brothers and sisters and even their own children.
Now this astonishing unconcern could not have been the result of ignorance or lack of knowledge, because they lived right there in full sight of it all and even talked about it sometimes. Many even went regularly to hear lectures and sermons in which the awful state of these poor drowning creatures was described.
I have always said that the occupants of this platform were engaged in different pursuits and pastimes. Some of them were absorbed day and night in trading and business in order to make gain, storing up their savings in boxes, safes and the like.
Many spent their time in amusing themselves with growing flowers on the side of the rock, others in painting pieces of cloth or in playing music, or in dressing themselves up in different styles and walking about to be admired. Some occupied themselves chiefly in eating and drinking, others were taken up with arguing about the poor drowning creatures that had already been rescued.
But the thing to me that seemed the most amazing was that those on the platform to whom He called, who heard His voice and felt that they ought to obey it- at least they said they did- those who confessed to love Him much were in full sympathy with Him in the task He had undertaken- who worshipped Him or who professed to do so- were so taken up with their trades and professions, their money saving and pleasures, their families and circles, their religions and arguments about it, and their preparation for going to the mainland, that they did not listen to the cry that came to them from this Wonderful Being who had Himself gone down into the sea. Anyway, if they heard it they did not heed it. They did not care. And so the multitude went on right before them struggling and shrieking and drowning in the darkness.
And then I saw something that seemed to me even more strange than anything that had gone on before in this strange vision. I saw that some of these people on the platform whom this Wonderful Being had called to, wanting them to come and help Him in His difficult task of saving these perishing creatures, were always praying and crying out to Him to come to them!
Some wanted Him to come and stay with them, and spend His time and strength in making them happier. Others wanted Him to come and take away various doubts and misgivings they had concerning the truth of some letters He had written them. Some wanted Him to come and make them feel more secure on the rock- so secure that they would be quite sure that they should never slip off again into the ocean. Numbers of others wanted Him to make them feel quite certain that they would really get off the rock and onto the mainland someday: because as a matter of fact, it was well known that some had walked so carelessly as to loose their footing, and had fallen back again into the stormy waters.
So these people used to meet and get up as high on the rock as they could, and looking towards the mainland (where they thought the Great Being was) they would cry out, 'Come to us! Come and help us!' And all the while He was down (by His Spirit) among the poor struggling, drowning creatures in the angry deep, with His arms around them trying to drag them out, and looking up- oh! so longingly but all in vain- to those on the rock, crying to them with His voice all hoarse from calling, 'Come to Me! Come, and help Me!
And then I understood it all. It was plain enough. The sea was the ocean of life- the sea of real, actual human existence. That lightening was the gleaming of piercing truth coming from Jehovahís Throne. That thunder was the distant echoing of the wrath of God. Those multitudes of people shrieking, struggling and agonizing in the stormy sea, was the thousands and thousands of poor harlots and harlot-makers, of drunkards and drunkard makers, of thieves, liars, blasphemers and ungodly people of every kindred, tongue and nation.
Oh what a black sea it was! And oh, what multitudes of rich and poor, ignorant and educated were there. They were all so unalike in their outward circumstances and conditions, yet all alike in one thing- all sinners before God- all held by, and holding onto, some iniquity, fascinated by some idol, the slaves of some devilish lust, and ruled by the foul fiend from the bottomless pit!
'All alike in one thing?' No, all alike in two things- not only the same in their wickedness but, unless rescued, the same in their sinking, sinking... down, down, down... to the same terrible doom. That great sheltering rock represented Calvary, the place where Jesus had died for them. And the people on it were those who had been rescued. The way they used their energies, gifts and time represented the occupations and amusements of those who professed to be saved from sin and hell- followers of the Lord Jesus Christ. The handful of fierce, determined ones, who were risking their own lives in saving the perishing were true soldiers of the cross of Jesus. That Mighty Being who was calling to them from the midst of the angry waters was the Son of God, 'the same yesterday, today and forever' who is still struggling and interceding to save the dying multitudes about us from this terrible doom of damnation, and whose voice can be heard above the music, machinery, and noise of life, calling on the rescued to come and help Him save the world.
My friends in Christ, you are rescued from the waters, you are on the rock, He is in the dark sea calling on you to come to Him and help Him. Will you go? Look for yourselves. The surging sea of life, crowded with perishing multitudes rolls up to the very spot on which you stand. Leaving the vision, I now come to speak of the fact- a fact that is as real as the Bible, as real as the Christ who hung upon the cross, as real as the judgment day will be, and as real as the heaven and hell that will follow it.
Look! Donít be deceived by appearances- men and things are not what they seem. All who are not on the rock are in the sea! Look at them from the standpoint of the great White Throne, and what a sight you have! Jesus Christ, the Son of God is, through His Spirit, in the midst of this dying multitude, struggling to save them. And He is calling on you to jump into the sea- to go right away to His side and help Him in the holy strife. Will you jump? That is, will you go to His feet and place yourself absolutely at His disposal?
A young Christian once came to me, and told me that for some time she had been giving the Lord her profession and prayers and money, but now she wanted to give Him her life. She wanted to go right into the fight. In other words, she wanted to go to His assistance in the sea. As when a man from the shore, seeing another struggling in the water, takes off those outer garments that would hinder his efforts and leaps to the rescue, so will you who still linger on the bank, thinking and singing and praying about the poor perishing souls, lay aside your shame, your pride, your cares about other peopleís opinions, your love of ease and all the selfish loves that have kept you back for so long, and rush to the rescue of this multitude of dying men and women.
Does the surging sea look dark and dangerous? Unquestionably it is so. There is no doubt that the leap for you, as for everyone who takes it, means difficulty and scorn and suffering. For you it may mean more than th(Isaiah It may mean death. He who beckons you from the sea however, knows what it will mean - and knowing, He still calls to you and bids to you to come.
You must do it! You cannot hold back. You have enjoyed yourself in Christianity long enough. You have had pleasant feelings, pleasant songs, pleasant meetings, pleasant prospects. There has been much of human happiness, much clapping of hands and shouting of praises- very much of heaven on earth.
Now then, go to God and tell Him you are prepared as much as necessary to turn your back upon it all, and that you are willing to spend the rest of your days struggling in the midst of these perishing multitudes, whatever it may cost you.
You must do it. With the light that is now broken in upon your mind and the call that is now sounding in your ears, and the beckoning hands that are now before your eyes, you have no alternative. To go down among the perishing crowds is your duty. Your happiness from now on will consist in sharing their misery, your ease in sharing their pain, your crown in helping them to bear their cross, and your heaven in going into the very jaws of hell to rescue them.
Now what will you do?" --William Booth
If you see it in His WORD,
then He was the One who revealed it to you.
If you desire it as a result of His WORD,
then He was the One who put it in your heart.
For, "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from Above,
and cometh down from the Father of Lights"
*--from Jesus, Lover of My Soul,
@ The Cyber Hymnal
Must "Reads" for the "diligent":
"The hand of the diligent shall bear rule" (Proverbs 12:24).
1. Exceeding Great and Precious Promises -- http://WhatSaithTheScripture.com/Promises/Exceeding.Promises.html --
Or, How God Has Ingeniously Designed His Promises to Sanctify His People
by Tom Stewart
Our day-to-day needs have been ordained by God to cause us the necessity of discovering some new aspect of the character of the LORD Jesus that we may lay hold of by means of the Exceeding Great and Precious Promises. "But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).
2. "Helps to Intercession" -- http://WhatSaithTheScripture.com/Fellowship/Murray.Intercession.html --
by Andrew Murray
Who is Sufficient for These Things? - "The more we study and try to practice this grace of intercession, the more we become overwhelmed by its greatness and our feebleness. Let every such impression lead us to listen: My grace is sufficient for thee, and to answer truthfully: Our sufficiency is of God. Take courage; it is in the intercession of Christ you are called to take part. The burden and the agony, the triumph and the victory are all His. Learn from Him, yield to His Spirit in you, to know how to pray. He gave Himself a sacrifice to God for men,that He might have the right and power of intercession. 'He bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.' Let your faith rest boldly on His finished work. Let your heart wholly identify itself with Him in His death and His life. Like Him, give yourself to God a sacrifice for men; it is your highest nobility; it is your true and full union with Him; it will be to you, as to Him, your power of intercession. Beloved Christian! come and give your whole heart and life to intercession, and you will know its blessedness and its power. God asks nothing less; the world needs nothing less; Christ asks nothing less; let us offer to God nothing less."
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