Intercessors / prophets - Who will call the church into repentance?

(Dean Schmucker) #1

I was reading through Romans one this week. Beginning with verse 18, it is an indictment of mankind. I was especially struck by verse 22: Professing themselves to be wise, the became fools. I thought, wow, does that ever strike home today. I believe the manifestation of that spirit is all over today’s media, culture, and even religion. In short, men think they know better than God how to live. The result? He gave them over to their degrading passions.
But as I was reading this, I began to be filled with sorrow, for as Romans 2 points out, religious people are no better, we are all forming God into our own image, instead of waiting for Him to put His image in us. And I wondered, "Where are the intercessors, where are the prophets, where are the voices calling the church into repentance? " I am not aware of any today, but perhaps some readers of this post know some. Are there humble, broken, leaders in the western church who are falling on their faces in intercession?

(Billie Corbett) #2

Amen, Brother!

Sadly…in answer to your question…the call to repentance is not coming from the mainstream Christian church…but, out of the secular world.
Dr. Jordan Peterson…is talking about repentance…the earthly hell, we create by our irresponsibility. He is confronting the false prophets, the ideologues…who believe they can and will create a utopian world…(but, they refuse to look at the darkness within themselves…They willfully blind themselves to the truths of reality…As a result, of their ignorance, they will be ushering in another round of suffering. Another earthly hell, in some form of a human totalitarian system.
In the same chapter 2 verse 4 of Romans…it speaks of showing contempt for God’s kindness, and forbearance which leads us to repentance.
I admire the straightforwardness of Dr. Peterson. He is brutally honest with reality. He is also both loved and hated for this very fact.
It is up to us as believers to be faithful. To speak the truth in love. Peterson is actually a really good example of this.
In apologetics…there are might men of faith…Ravi, Vince Vitale, Os Guinness, John Lennox, Abdu Murray…etc. But, sadly, to my way of thinking, the mainstream Christian church is not as supportive of these men as they should be.

(Dean Schmucker) #3

I also appreciate the work of our apologists, but they are not prophets, but teachers. Sad when we need someone outside the faith to speak the truth.

(Billie Corbett) #4

I know! But, I truly believe God has raised this man up (Jordan Peterson)…maybe because he is outside the church…(Since mainstream culture has been conditioned so powerfully to suspect and reject anything “Christian” or Bible centric.)
I have heard testimonies of young guys coming to Christ…because Jordan Peterson, piqued their interest and challenged them to think deeply…They sought out a church and God did the rest!
I love Paul Vander Klay…because he engages people’s interests and concerns … One of the testimonies I heard was on Paul’s you tube channel. (I have been praying for that young man, ever since I heard his testimony of coming to Christ…initially through interest in Jordan Peterson’s biblical talks. )
For me, Peterson should stick with what he knows…and that isn’t theology…Yet, God isn’t limited in how He draws and calls people to Himself. He can and will use a source outside the church… and then, in and through His Holy Word and Spirit…He accomplishes His sovereign saving work. If God is at work…sinners will repent and be added to the church!

(C Rhodes) #5

@manbooks. "Where are the intercessors, where are the prophets, where are the voices calling the church into repentance? "

I don’t think the secular world is raising the only significant challenge to the Church of JESUS CHRIST. I think that their voices are raised because of how the Lord loves and embraces His Church. I see their questions and all adversity against the Church as the Lord’s way of refining His gold. GOD uses it all to benefit those who love Him and keep His commandments.

I have no lament with secular scrutiny because the Church has an established history of becoming greater in the face of adversity. I would be so bold as to say; GOD gets His message across whether it is from the clamoring of an indignant society, from the lips of the donkey who spoke aloud to the prophet Balaam or from the burning bush when He spoke to Moses.

GOD is never restricted by our lack. He always, always has a witness. His will is always done. I trust His judgment and His love for His Church. It is evidence to me that He is determined that none of His children be lost. The call to repentance is loud and constant. It always has been.

(Dean Schmucker) #6

I just wondered if anyone knew of an intercessory / prophetic ministry. I actually doubt that they exist, at least in the public church, as by definition their message would not be very popular. As you said, God will not be limited. If He wishes to speak to His church, He will do so, whether or not we are ready to hear.

(Dean Schmucker) #7

Most likely judgment will have to hit hard before anyone wants to hear. I am hearing a call to pray, but have not really been much good at it. Nevertheless, I am brokenhearted at the condition of this world. It really is just so tragic. Jesus quotes Isaiah, “Be ever hearing, but never perceiving, lest I would come and heal you”. Or II CH 7:14 - IF my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and turn from their wicked ways . I will come and heal their land". The world hates God, but all He has ever done is love us. But the rebellion runs so deep, we don’t even see it for what it is.

(Billie Corbett) #8

Hebrews 1:2 On many past occasions and in many different ways, God spoke to our fathers through the prophets. But, in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, and through whom He made the universe.

While I know what you mean…Jesus is the intercessary prophetic word…( made flesh) “This is My beloved Son, hear him!” Mark 9: 7.

(Tim Ramey) #9

Dean, I really agree with your heart. I’m not bragging but I like to read through the Bible twice a year to get contextual, mainstream thoughts that are conveyed in Scripture. The prophets are always urging their fellow Israelites to repent. But they didn’t just cry out for the people to turn from their wicked ways but they prayed. I read Ezra last night about Ezra fasting and praying for the Jews who intermarried.

You hit a hot button with me when you spoke of intercession because I feel that it is the number one failure of the church at large. I try to get intercessor groups together in my area, not to talk and then pray but to go right to prayer and let the Lord lead us to pray for our nation as well as the world, ie the persecuted church, etc. However, I can only get one 83 year old brother who will join me in prayer. I beg and announce at church to come together and pray - but no one. Once we had Sunday School class on Jim Cymbala’s church that has huge crowds join in intercessory prayer. When the sessions were over, there was a break from Sunday School. I asked that maybe we could use that hour to pray as there was no class. No one showed and we just had a class on intercessory prayer.

Dean, your posts come across to me as one crying in the wilderness to repent. Repentance, I believe, needs to start with us in the church before revival can happen. Keep preaching it, brother!

(Dean Schmucker) #10

Strangely, it;'s not even an emotional thing for me, except the sadness I feel at the fate of a world heading unnecessarily to a fate beyond imagination. Yes it’s sad, but what can I do? I once read the book “Rees Howells intercessor”, and time after time WWII turned at key points while he was praying. Or another book on the New York City Revival of 1858, when, spontaneously prayer meetings broke out all over the city, and strongholds began to be demolished. I remember how these books inspired me when i was younger. Now, at 60, I am just not feeling much of anything. BUT THERE IS HOPE1 Even the young men grow weary, but those who wait on the LORD will renew their strength.
My generation has not seen a true revival, nor had my parents or grandparents. All I got to see was preachers encouraging people to follow after all sorts of strange spirits and make fools of themselves. What these so called revivals all have in common is humanism, it’s all about us, not about Him. I’d love to see something like NYC in 1858, but what is God doing/

(Billie Corbett) #11

Hello Tim,

I totally agree with what you have expressed.
A number of years ago, the Holy Spirit…brought insight and awareness to my heart in regards to prayer. There were many things troubling…and bottom line…the Spirit said, “It’s not your place to fuss, fume and try to problem solve…It’s your place to humble yourself consistently in prayer about these very matters…and then, wait… until you receive God’s answer.”

So, I started writing down in catagories…a prayer “list” … and have committed to following the wisdom that the Holy Spirit gave…to pray consistently, fervently, until there is a clear “answer” from the Lord.

It is painful to see the lack of heart to prayer …but, I think it is important to just soldier on…by yourself, if need be.
For one…it is the Lord’s work…and if we are faithful in prayer, we get to see and experience God’s work in a very personal and real way. (And no one can rob us of the deep faith and trust that grows through intimacy with the Lord in prayer.)

Faithful, consistent, believing prayer…ensures God gets the glory due His name…when He moves to act in the situations we are interceding for.

One of my petitions on my prayer list…was for a prayer partner…so, I would have a witness besides myself to God’s grace in action…(in response to intercessory prayer). God bought a beautiful Nigerian woman to the church where I attend. I found out she had been renting a space in a community hall…(by herself) because she believed God wanted her to do that. Every week she gathers, with her 11 year old daughter, and sometimes, her 19 year old son, to pray…She prays fervently for the community and for our country. (For people to come to faith in Jesus.) When I found this out…I asked if I could join them…and she was overjoyed to have me join them. What a blessing!!! This woman knows how to pray and intercede. (God has answered my prayer for a prayer partner. :blush:) The space is rented for 2 hours…and at least an hour or more… is full on serious communion with the Lord in prayer. Sometimes she speaks from scripture first…to prime the prayer pump so to speak…To give our hearts direction, certainty of purpose leading into prayer…
I have stopped fussing and feeling bothered by the lack I feel, from the places where I have been taught it “should” be…
“One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much.” Luke 16:10
By God’s grace I want to be faithful in a very little…
Sadly, many Christians seem to neglect private prayer… it isn’t seen as being as important as church attendance, serving in the church, being involved in church ministry, teaching, preaching, bible study…
But, without earnest, sincere seeking the Lord in prayer, we lack experiencing Him in very intimate ways.
Over many years, I have developed real clarity in my mind and spirit…I feel quite strongly…I don’t want to invite people to come to church…I want to be used of God to invite people to come to God, through Jesus Christ. I want people “to know Him, whom is life eternal”.
My desire is for God’s people to trust Him with all things…For them to experience sincere fellowship and communion with God in private prayer. A prayerful heart reveals trust, faith and confidence in Him.

As I read your post…it stirred that cranky part in me :confounded:…and as usual, the Holy Spirit reminded me… “Don’t talk about how what you “think” or how you “feel” about these matters…Get down on your knees and pray about them. No talk…just prayer!”
So, affirmation…Yes…great need…your insight is likely bang on…
Exhortation…do what you know is right…
Pray, Pray and Pray…for grace to be given …and for God to be glorified.

(Tim Ramey) #12

@Billie @manbooks
Sorry that my post made you feel cranky. I mean to be uplifting - sorry, Billie

Prayer is not something where we are doing God a favor but what a privilege - to talk to our creator.

Your story of joining other women in the prayer group was really heartening. Keep it up, sister!

Hey Dean, you might want to watch a 27 minute YouTube video by J Edwin Orr on revivals. He has a few of them out on the subject as that was his area of study This particular video is called, " The Role Of Prayer In Spiritual Awakening by J Edwin Orr". It’s from the 70’s. It is very good.

(Billie Corbett) #13

Hello Tim,

No need for apologies as it wasn’t your post, that brought up my cranky feelings…it was thinking about my experiences around what you were communicating about.
The loneliness and isolation…
The weight or burden of reality…around the sense of general prayerlessness in the broader church as a whole and what that means.
But, like I said, the Holy Spirit is faithful to redirect myself thought processes…and convict me…to burrow deep down into prayerfulness…just to deal with my own thoughts and feelings…to bring me into alignment with His will and purposes.
If the Holy Spirit wasn’t working so graciously, I would really be a cranky, crabby believer! :joy:
As I have said in another post, I’m getting pretty long in the tooth…and my life experiences have been hard…so, without the grace of God at work in me, I am a pretty tired soul. But, praise be to God, He truly has never failed me…and I trust in Him alone.

(Justin Reid) #14

Hey Dean! I love that you are looking for people who will pray and call for repentance. That is so good!
I just wanted to encourage you that there ARE people interceding for the church and our nation around the clock! I am part of a prayer ministry in Lansing, MI and we work with others from around the country to call people to do just what you are saying.
There are literally thousands of houses or prayer or prayer ministries in the US and many more around the world.
A couple that are well known are IHOPKC (the international house of prayer) and contend (formerly known as the call). Both of these ministries have been calling people to pray for many things for the last couple decades, but a main focus has been for God to turn our nation back to him and to revive the church.
So be encouraged!
If you would like more info or even help finding a prayer ministry in your area, feel free to email me and I’d love to help in any way I can :slight_smile:

(Dean Schmucker) #15

I know IHOPKC from when it was called Kansas City Fellowship. Mike Bickle, John Paul Jackson, Paul Cain. I was there 12/31/89. It was so sweet. I left for Indy the next day, but forgot to put gas in the tank, ran out, and He sent his Angel to help me! One of them had a vision of a large human like statue, but it was covered with imperfection. A hand appears out of Heaven with a hammer and starts chiseling away. Underneath all that dross was Jesus. That hammer is persecution. It removes all that is not Him from the church, leaving her “without spot or wrinkle”
I see youre in Lansing. Like most college towns, I imagine a very dark place. My whole state is that way, no Aloha in the Aloha state for true evangelical faith. But we are Not alone!