Monday, December 24, 2012

Have you ever wondered how to pray?

It is really helpful when one thinks about prayer in terms of being in court. Especially when praying for others and our specific needs. There is an overwhelming amount of scriptural evidence to confirm that this concept is accurate and that we should understand prayer to function in this way. This kind of prayer however does not replace the need for us to simply fellowship with God through conversation, waiting and listening.

Satan is referred to as the accuser which is a legal term. We see in the book of Job how satan comes before God and a discussion ensues in the court of heaven.  We are at an advantage over Job because we live on this side of Christ's death and resurrection - we have a new covenant or contract, again, another legal term referring to a legal document. Job did not have access to this covenant. He also did not have an advocate on his behalf. Subsequent to the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit was given, we received an Advocate (the Holy Spirit) who stands for us, before the Father. 

In the book "The Advocate" by Eddie and Alice Smith, we can learn some valuable lessons on how to pray in the courts of heaven and how we can intercede for others in the court before the Father. In another book written by Alice Smith called "Beyond the Veil: Entering into Intimacy with God Through Prayer" she explains beautifully how God has invited us to partner with Him in prayer for people and situations on the earth. We actually play a vital role in accomplishing God's plans on earth. In fact, one can go so far as to say that there are certain things that will never be accomplished by anyone other than what God has called us as individuals to do. That means that there are people who could spend eternity in hell through our lack of concern and action. This is a truly frightening and sobering thought.

The act of God's Grace and His mercy towards us, saves us and empowers us to become effective soldiers in His army and we then carry a responsibility, playing a role in bringing others to the saving knowledge of Christ. Gods Grace is in place for when we fall, but we must get up and move on. Grace is not intended to make us complacent, allowing us to sit back and say "Christ has done it all, there is nothing left for us to do". Of course we cannot do what He did in terms of paying for our salvation, but He wants to work through us to reach others. This means action, it means stepping out, it means making plans to reach others, to change society, to pray and intercede. Without spending time in prayer we have no power. Before the throne of God, in the courts of heaven, we will obtain a judgement in our favour which will empower us.  We can demand that satan loose a person or situation because we have obtained the court order.

Some extracts from Chapter 10 of the "The Advocates"

Warfare Prayer: Prosecuting Satan in Court
A praying saint performs far more havoc among the unseen forces of darkness than we have the slightest notion of. —OSWALD CHAMBERS

For eons a cosmic battle has raged between God and His former angel Lucifer (Satan). It is a battle for worshipers. One doesn’t decide whether or not to do spiritual warfare. We were all born on a spiritual battlefield. The war rages around us incessantly. And, we were born POWs (prisoners of war)! 

Charles Finney was familiar with this war.

A friend of Charles Finney tells about a man who came to Mr. Finney and said, “I don’t believe in the existence of a devil.”
“Don’t you?” said Finney. “Well, you resist him for a while, and you will believe in him.”

It is by being born again that we are rescued, recruited and released to fight our former oppressor. Paul taught the Ephesian Christians: “As for you, you were dead in your trans- gressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient” (Eph. 2:1–2).

The fighting we are to do is to be done in a court of law. (See Job 1:6–8; Revelation 12:10.) It is in this courtroom that we, as spiritual prosecuting attorneys under the leadership of our lead attorney, Jesus Christ, are to level our charges against the ancient outlaw Satan. This is spiritual warfare.

The American church has begun to realize that the devil and his demons are a real threat. But we must equip ourselves with the proper understanding, techniques and strategies to face him in court.

We have discussed our role as defense attorneys. In this chapter we will discuss our role as prosecuting attorneys. In jurisprudence, a prosecutor is an attorney who represents the government by presenting evidence to convict one who is charged with a crime. However, the prosecutor can only present evidence that the court allows. Without using the law, precedent of the court or proving otherwise, the judge will have no other choice but to rule against the prosecutor when he violates protocol. In a court of law, there are procedures and protocol that we must follow. There are strict methods of handling evidence so that it is not contaminated or misrepresented.

In our spiritual application, we represent the government of God. As prosecutors we identify where Satan has broken God’s laws and prosecute him and his strongmen based on our covenant relationship with the Lord Jesus. As in any legal case where the prosecutor is held to strict codes, we can do no less. We must not represent or mishandle the opportunities God has given us to prosecute an ancient depraved deity. His crimes are very real—and we must be prepared and ready to prosecute him in court.


Before we could be released from death’s grip and made alive before God, our sin had to be blotted out. Paul explained how Jesus’ death eradicated our sin record, which resulted in disarming the devil and his angels. “Having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross” (Col. 2:14–15).

It is easy to understand how the devil had gained ground against us—we had fallen under Satan’s dominion. Satan was pleading the law against us in the court of heaven, and he and the law were winning. Satan, just like any prosecuting attorney, has been presenting his charges and evidence against us as the defendants. With his endless accusations of men, he justly appealed to the righteousness of God as revealed by the law. We found ourselves condemned and confined to death row, where we were awaiting our final execution!

However, Jesus Christ fulfilled the law’s demands by living a perfect life and dying in accordance with the Father’s plan. He has delivered us from Satan’s power. When Jesus was executed in our place, He once and for all settled our sin account.

John wrote, “My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One” (1 John 2:1). When Jesus pleads our case in heaven, He neither pleads our innocence nor our guilt; He pleads His blood. It is on the basis of His paying our penalty that the Governor (Jehovah) can justly issue our pardon and demand our release. The demands of justice have been satisfied, and Satan can no longer approach the Father demanding payment. That would constitute double jeopardy—the demand for a second payment for the same crime—which is illegal! The enemy’s weapons have been stripped from his hands. Jesus has disarmed the devil of the right to condemn us. Hallelujah!

Paul recognized that Jesus had removed the handwriting of ordinances against us and that Satan could no longer legally accuse us before God. No charge against us will be entertained in court. Scripture says, “What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? . . . Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died— more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us” (Rom. 8:31, 33–34).

Notice the questions Paul submits: Who can be against us? Who is he that condemns? The definitive answer from heaven is no one! Although the devil’s aim is to condemn us, God has justified us. All of our accounts are “Paid in Full.” When it comes to heaven’s courtroom, Satan’s accusations of us now fall on deaf ears. Since God refuses to hear them, why are you listening?

Regis Philbin, the host of the popular show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, always asks the nervous player, “Is this your final answer?” 

Well, God has answered from heaven, “THIS IS MY FINAL ANSWER!”

The devil may contend with you, claiming that God will no longer help you. He is a liar when he suggests your sins prevent you from the right to prosecute him. Your authority against the principalities, powers and rulers of darkness is established as you stand on the biblical ground of what God has done for you and are following God’s direct orders.

So why doesn’t God just “zap” the devil and be done with it all? 

God will not do this for the same reason that He did not destroy Lucifer when he led angels and men into rebellion against God. When the Lord throws the devil into the lake of fire, sadly, because of His justice, He must also throw in people who are still aligned with Satan in sin. As a good and just God would, He has announced the promise of redemption through Jesus, His Son. He is still executing His plan of mercy for humanity as well as the final fiery judgment of Satan.


Not every petition includes warfare proclamations. Only when you feel the Holy Spirit’s prompting are you to directly address the enemy.

Clearly outline where your adversary (Satan) has violated the law. You are about to enter into spiritual warfare prayer. Satan has ceased in his role as prosecutor. You are now the prosecutor, and he has become the defendant. You are to prosecute him for his crimes against God and humanity. Write out the charges you wish to file against him.

In spiritual warfare prayer we . . .
• Sometimes declare Satan’s guilt and demand justice (restoration).
• Sometimes seek his restriction (binding).
• Sometimes proclaim our enemy’s punishment (loose something he has stolen).
• Sometimes petition God for protection from Satan (a legal restraining order).

A restraining order is an order of the court that prevents one party from contacting or approaching another. Jesus prayed for the Judge to issue a restraining order against Satan on behalf of His disciples and us when He prayed, “My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one” (John 17:15). In His model prayer, which we call the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus taught us to ask the Judge for a restraining order against Satan for ourselves. He said that we should pray, “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one” (Matt. 6:13).


We have two roles when we stand as a prosecutor against the defendant Satan.


In prayer we tell God the crimes the devil has committed and the laws he has broken, and we present our proof (the evidence). We prepare and present our case to the Judge so He can act upon it.

As prosecutors, using Scripture (the law) is essential to our prayer strategy. Without the Word as its foundation, every prayer hangs by a thread. Even prayer can be a worthless reli- gious exercise. The Word of God empowers our prayer. It is the warhead on the missiles of prayer. Scripture grants us access in heaven and is the language of the court. If we don’t know how to approach the Lord with His Word, prayer will continue to be a hit-and-run experience. To correctly position ourselves to present our case to the Judge, we should collect the relevant information. A good prayer warrior is a good Word warrior. “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us” (1 John 5:14).

Begin organizing and writing out your scriptures, prayer points and determining, with the Holy Spirit’s leadership, how you plan to appeal to the Judge. 

For example:

Father Judge, in the name of Jesus Christ our lead attorney, the enemy is accusing our pastor and his wife. Slanderous words are being spoken, and gossip is spreading like wildfire. But we have not been left defenseless. Heavenly Judge, according to Your Word, “It is time for you to act, O LORD; your law is being broken” (Ps. 119:126). The powers of darkness are confusing his family, his church members and neighbors. The evidence is that “the wicked man hunts down the weak, who are caught in the schemes he [the devil] devises. He boasts of the cravings of his heart; he blesses the greedy and reviles the Lord” (Ps. 10:2–3).

Judge, I appeal to You. “Contend, O LORD, with those who contend with [us]; fight against those who fight against [us]” (Ps. 35:1). Because You are just, true and faithful, this is what I am asking You to do to the enemy. “For the sins of their mouths, for the words of their lips, let them be caught in their pride. For the curses and lies they utter, consume them in wrath, consume them till they are no more. Then it will be known to the ends of the earth that God rules over Jacob” (Ps. 59:12–13). As heaven’s prosecutor I am asking You to:
• Act now against the forces of darkness.
• Notice that the enemy has broken Your law.
• Hunt down the wicked who oppress the man of God.
• Give help to the pastor, who is weak and tired and needs Your help.
• Take note of the arrogance of the devil, and cause him to fall.
• Expose the darkness, lies and confusion.
• Come and fight the demonic powers behind this situation.
• Deal harshly with the evil rulers that are tormenting.
• Fulfill Your divine purpose through this situation, giving our friend a peace that You are working on his behalf.

Always keep in mind that we are not praying against people. We are to pray for people. We are wrestling in prayer against “spiritual wickedness in high places” (Eph. 6:12, KJV). 

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