Corporate Continuing Prayer (continued)
The Value of Corporate Prayer
Dear ones, just as individual prayer puts a thousand to flight, so two will put ten thousand to flight; therefore, the most effective prayer is the corporate, united prayer of the Body of Christ. Corporate prayer does not necessarily mean that we have to be in the same locality. When any two, or more, of the Body are united in the "one Spirit," that is, when they are united in motive, object, and purpose for the FULL PLAN of God which is Expressed in Christ Jesus, then effective corporate prayer is being offered. They can be "separated upon the wall" - for "the work is great" - but united in prayer for the glory of God (Nehemiah 4:16-20).
Toward the end of their earthly walk together, Paul and Timothy were examples of those who are "separated upon the wall" for the work's sake. Paul was in prison, penning the Holy Writ, and Timothy was at Ephesus, standing against that which could dilute the Church. Although in separate locations, both were united "in Spirit" in order that Christ be "All, and in All."
CORPORATE PRAYER IS WHEN TWO OR MORE OF THE BODY OF CHRIST, REGARDLESS OF LOCALITY, ARE UNITED IN THE ONE SPIRIT, LABORING TOGETHER IN PRAYER FOR THE WILL AND PURPOSE OF GOD AS EXPRESSED IN THE WORD OF GOD.
If Two (or More) Agree
In Matthew eighteen, there is much instruction given by our Lord Jesus Christ about the behavior, conduct, and work within the fellowship of the Church. In verses eighteen through twenty His Words enlighten us as to the power of corporate, united prayer.
"I solemnly tell you that whatever you as a Church bind on earth will in Heaven be held as bound, and whatever you loose on earth will in Heaven be held to be loosed. I also solemnly tell you that if two of you here on earth agree together concerning anything whatever that they shall ask, the boon will come to them from My Father Who is in heaven. For where there are two or three assembled in My name, there Am I in the midst of them".
Jesus is saying:
"That is two (or more Agree
(harmonize together, make a symphony together) on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, (concerning the Kingdom of God, this is understood in the text) It shall be done for them of My Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered ... (drawn together as My followers) In (into) My Name, (The Name of Christ that is above all names is the Name which, when used, should represent the very essence and character of Christ; and it is this Name which authenticates the Will of God; and we should not use His Name except it be in line with God's Will.) There I am
(The I AM, Who appeared to Moses,
The Eternal God, the Living Word
Who appeared to Daniel,
The Alpha and the Omega - Christ
Who appeared to John,
The Resurrected Lord of Glory
Who appeared to Paul,
He Who Is = Continuance in time present;
He Who Was = Continuance in time present;
He Who Is To Come = Continuance forever.)
There I am in the midst of (you) them." (Among you," intermingled in close, intimate union with you).
Truly, this is fellowship in the Spirit of prayer!
"Yet I Have Left Me Seven Thousand"
In the Word of God, one of the greatest examples of corporate prayer can be found when Elijah took his stand on Mount Carmel. We may wonder just how corporate, intercessory prayer has reference to Elijah, for it would seem that he took his stand alone on Mount Carmel; however, in 1 Kings 19:18, the Lord said to Elijah:
"Yet I have let Me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him."
Let us remember that God spoke these words to Elijah when he was very discouraged and felt that he was the only one left who was serving God. The Lord was saying: "Elijah, when you stood on Mount Carmel, you did not stand alone"; and in Romans 11:4 and 5, the Lord is repeating this same Word and saying to us today:
"I have reserved to Myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal." And then the Holy Spirit adds this, "Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace."
(continued with # 12)