One of the most challenging things to do in prayer in pray for politics, especially in a group context. There are so many different opinions that can get intertwined in our prayers. Yet as I mentioned in my previous post the Scriptures are clear in commanding us to pray for our political leaders.
There are some fantastic articles and blogs that have been written about this issue. One recent blog that I highly recommend is by Rob Parker of the National House of Prayer in Ottawa on how to pray for government. It is very practical and worth reading.
This past weekend was the Luke 18 weekend of 72 hours of intercession and worship over the G8/20 Summits. (you can read a report on how the weekend went from a national perspective in a blog post by Sara Maynard, who was the national coordinator of the Luke 18 weekend) The main theme for me was the exalting of Jesus as the King above all the other kings of the earth. There was a lot of intercession for justice, wisdom and for each of the individual leaders of the G8 and G20 summits, however I want to comment on this issue of prayers that exalt Jesus above the nations.
Within the book of Psalms there are a grouping of Psalms from 93-100 that are commonly called the ‘kingship Psalms‘. (obviously there are many other ‘kingship psalms as well) These Psalms exalt God as the King that is above all other kings. They are a tremendously rich place from which to pray for government and those in authority.
Why is the theme of Jesus being exalted as the King of all kings so important? One answer is found in Psalm 2:
Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the LORD and against his Anointed One (v. 1-2)
Therefore, you kings, be wise; be warned you rulers of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry and you be destroyed in your way, for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him. (v. 10-12)
This is a prophetic Psalm about the end of the age and the return of Jesus, so there is a futuristic context to these verses. However you understand this Psalm, one thing is clear: the tendency of human kings (Presidents, Prime Ministers etc.) is to exalt themselves and to pursue power for themselves over and against the establish power of the King of kings, Jesus Christ.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper, President Barak Obama and all the G8 leaders need us to pray for them for wisdom as they seek to lead and make very difficult decisions. It is also important to pray for them to make decisions that are honoring to God and also pray for the prosperity of our nations. However, the greatest need that they have is to bow down in worship before Jesus Christ and recognize him as the King who is exalted above all kings and who has all authority and power. If they get that one issue right, it will make all the difference. It will connect them to the God of all the universe who has ALL wisdom and understanding and power. I am not saying it will instantly guarantee that all problems will be solved, but no other issue will have more impact on their leadership. The Scriptures makes that abundantly clear.
I strongly encourage you to pray for governmental leaders. Pray for God to give them wisdom and Godly counsel, to protect them and their families. Pray for their own salvation. Pray that Jesus Christ would be acknowledged and worshiped as the King.
As Psalm 2 puts it: “Blessed are all who take refuge in him”
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