Sunday, January 17, 2010

Day 17: A Way to Pray: Pray to Stand in the Gap

“I looked for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found none” (Ezekiel 22:30).

"When we pray for others the Spirit of God works in the unconscious domain of their being that we know nothing about, and the one we are praying for knows nothing about, but after the passing of time the conscious life of the one prayed for begins to show signs of unrest and disquiet. We may have spoken until we are worn out, but have never come anywhere near, and we have given up in despair. But if we have been praying, we find on meeting them one day that there is the beginning of a softening in an inquiry and a desire to know something. It is that kind of intercession that does most damage to Satan's kingdom. It is so slight, so feeble in its initial stages that if reason is not wedded to the light of the Holy Spirit, we will never obey it, and yet it is that kind of intercession that the New Testament places most emphasis on." - Oswald Chambers

Zadok straightened up and stretched out his sore back. All day long he had been moving heavy stones in the hot sun and now he was exhausted. He glanced to either side. On his left, he saw his friend Meshullam working hard. To his right, he saw the people of Tekoite using mortar to build the wall. He wiped the sweat off his brow with his free hand. In the other hand, he carried a sword.

He squinted down the length of the wall into the setting sun. Throughout the night, he planned to stay right where he was in case the enemy attacked. He figured tonight was the night the enemy might try to take the city. The men were all tired from working hard but the wall was not high enough yet to offer any real protection. All around the city there were far too many gaps in the wall. So, Sadok decided to stand in the gap so the city would be protected.

Along the bottom of the wall rode a figure on a horse. It was Nehemiah. Zadok waved at him and Nehemiah shouted back, “You are doing a wonderful job. Soon the wall will be finished.” Zadok smiled. It seemed like Nehemiah had been everywhere ever since he had arrived from Babylon. All day he circled the wall, encouraging the men, and lending a hand wherever it was needed the most.

Like a tornado of energy, Nehemiah had come ready to rebuild the walls of the city of David. Single handedly, he had convinced the city fathers to begin the work. At first everyone thought the project of rebuilding the walls was impossible, but now the walls were almost finished.

Of course, some were mad at Nehemiah’s success. People like Sanballat preferred that Jerusalem remain weak and defenseless. Because of the threat of attack, Nehemiah asked each man to work with one hand and to hold a weapon in his other hand. They would be ready if the enemy appeared. Each man pledged to stand in the gap and to defend the city with his life.

Today, there are many holes in the walls that protect our society. Slowly, the enemy has been attacking different areas that used to be protected. Marriages are under assault. Teenagers are being attacked from several directions. Morality has slipped. We need to pick up the weapon of prayer and use it to stand in the gap. You and your prayers are the only thing standing between the devil and the victory he desires.  God is looking for a modern day Zadok to help rebuild the walls of our society by standing in the gap with prayer to defeat the enemy.