DAY 19: The Prevailing Power of Prayer

After God led the Israelites out of Egypt supernaturally and brought them to the edge of the Promised Land, they let fear cloud their judgment.  In Numbers chapter 14 we learn that the people threatened to stone Joshua and Caleb, and they conspired to overthrow Moses so they could appoint a new leader and return to Egypt.

At that point God breaks into the story and speaks to Moses: “How long will these people reject Me? And how long will they not believe Me, with all the signs which I have performed among them?  I will strike them with the pestilence and disinherit them, and I will make of you a nation greater and mightier than they.” (Verses 11-12)

Then something truly amazing happens.

Moses pleads: “[The Egyptians] have heard that You, Lord, are among these people; that You, Lord, are seen face to face and Your cloud stands above them, and You go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night. 15 Now if You kill these people as one man, then the nations which have heard of Your fame will speak, saying, 16 ‘Because the Lord was not able to bring this people to the land which He swore to give them, therefore He killed them in the wilderness.’ 17 And now, I pray, let the power of my Lord be great, just as You have spoken, saying, 18 ‘The Lord is longsuffering and abundant in mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He by no means clears the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation.’ 19 Pardon the iniquity of this people, I pray, according to the greatness of Your mercy, just as You have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.”  (Verses 14-19)

Think about how guilty the Israelites were.  Even though they had witnessed unimaginable miracles, they rebelled, disobeyed, disbelieved, and tested the Lord ten different times since crossing the Red Sea (verse 22).

And yet when Moses prayed, God had mercy on the people and spared them from immediate destruction!  It wasn’t because the people repented.  It was because Moses prayed.  And that should remind us of the incredible power and privilege of intercessory prayer.

When our circumstances seem bleak and hopeless, what can we do?  We can appeal to the mercy of God – just like Moses – and pray for the glory of his salvation to be revealed.

Suggested things to pray for:
  • Pray for God’s mercy and salvation to be revealed and that he would be glorified for sparing many lives. 

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