"I was made to dwell with you, I was made for the higher places..."

In Matthew 16, Jesus says that on Peter (the rock) He will build his church. In the Greek, the word church is the word ecclesia. The ecclesia was the assembly of free citizens, to which belonged judicial and legislative power. The Passion Translation continues to call this group of people a “legislative assembly.” The church has been given a governmental title which is further emphasized in Revelation 1:6 where the members of the church body are addressed as kings and priests - not just carrying authority and power on the earth, but also in the government (courts) of heaven since we're seated in heavenly places (Ephesians 2). This is the means by which we have the honour of partnering with God & His work - ministry. When we see prayer merely as a chore or only as a way of exalting Jesus, we have missed a precious component of our role in the place of prayer.

Our prayers not only ascend to the throne of God, but they also fill golden bowls as incense before God. Through all of history, each prayer of every saint has not only been heard but has remained before God as a perpetual petition. These prayers ever rise before Him, ministering to His heart and beckoning Him to act. This means that God truly values the petitions of mere man and delights in their prayers (Proverbs 15:8b). Intercession is more than just praying for needs; it is standing in the gap as a lawyer before the judge (Ezekiel 22:30). As we operate in the reality of our union with Christ, we are given access to what is on the God-man’s heart to intercede for. We are graciously granted permission to join with his intercession and to access the strategies of heaven to establish God’s purposes on the earth.

There's a standard here though. Psalm 24:3-4 says, "Who, then, ascends into the presence of the Lord? And who has the privilege of entering into God’s Holy Place? Those who are clean—whose works and ways are pure, whose hearts are true and sealed by the truth, those who never deceive, whose words are sure."

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