International Prayer Conference Jerusalem
22-29 January 2018
I will stand upon my watch and set myself on the rampart, and watch to see what He will say to me, and what I will answer when I am corrected. Then the Lord answered me and said: Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.
Habakkuk is a watchman, an intercessor and a prophet. The sign of his genuineness is his humility and his willingness to be corrected.
When we look at the Church today we see many self-proclaimed prophets but very few men and women of God who are really open to correction – by God or by man.
Today, when demonic spirits are roaming the earth seeking especially to deceive, blind and confuse God’s people, we need to walk humbly with our God and be open to His correction when needed. An intercessor must also be a watchman. He needs to understand where we are in God’s prophetic calendar and what God is calling us to pray about. While God does speak to us in our closet, it is also valuable to have some idea of what is going on in the world today so we can pray in the spirit and with understanding too. 1Corinthians 14:15
Prayer is easy when we get quick answers. However, intercession is more often a long range endeavor. There are no instant breakfasts, or microwave meals when we stand before the Lord. To be effective, we need faith, hope, perseverance, prophetic vision and obedience to the call of God. As Habakkuk tells us, “For the vision is yet for an
appointed time, but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.”
To some it might seem that the Lord is being contradictory here: “though it tarries……………It will not tarry.” The Lord is clearly first speaking to our human impatience and expectation that the Lord’s timetable is like our timetable.Then He reminds us that He is not late but always right on time.
Long range intercession is often called prophetic prayer because we are praying into what God’s Word has told us will be, but which is not yet manifested on earth. The restoration of Israel as a nation is a historical, biblical and prophetic signpost that we are nearing the return of the Lord. Personally I believe that we are in the last chapter of the last book before His return, however long we still need to wait for the fullness of the time of His return.
When we are praying for Israel, we are praying prophetically, based on His revealed Word and in line with His will. The battle over Israel is more than 4000 years old and we have not yet come to the end. However, in 2018 we are celebrating the 70th anniversary of the creation of the modern State of Israel, a sure sign that God is at work!
We are living in difficult times, as no one really knows what tomorrow will bring. The carnage in Syria continues with no end in sight. While seemingly in retreat in Syria and Iraq, ISIS has gained momentum outside the Middle East, especially in Europe. North Korea has just successfully tested an ICBM that can reach Alaska and is working on a rocket that can reach the west coast of America. We understand that any North Korean success in its nuclear and missile projects has direct consequences for Israel as North Korea and Iran are working partners in both the nuclear and missile projects! If the latest report that North Korea has succeeded in miniaturizing a nuclear warhead to fit on one of their missiles is correct then we have to assume that Iran now has the same technology.
Another dangerous element in the Middle East is Turkey and their ambition to recreate the Ottoman Empire. At the large American airbase in Turkey is a stockpile of nuclear weapons from the time of the Cold War. However that airbase is controlled not by the United States but by Turkey.
China and Russia continue to flex their muscles and the as yet untried new American President struggles to prove his legitimacy in the eyes of half of America and in much of the western world.
While we do not know exactly what we will be praying about in January 2018 (this is being written in August 2017), we do know that the Lord will have a full slate for us as we gather in Jerusalem to seek His face, to know His will and to pray the prayers that He will place on our hearts “for such a time as this”. – Esther 4:14
While Habakkuk began with waiting on God, he closes with a magnificent prayer of faith – faith in God and in the security that what God has promised He will fulfill.
Habakkuk 3:17-19 “Though the fig tree may not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines; though the labor of the olive may fail, and the fields yield no food; though the flock may be cut off from the fold, and there be no herd in the stalls – yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, and He will make me walk on my high hills.