Standing in the Gap for the Land

Ezekiel 22:23-31

23 Again the word of the Lord came to me: 24 “Son of man, say to the land, ‘You are a land that has not been cleansed or rained on in the day of wrath.’ 25 There is a conspiracy of her princes[a] within her like a roaring lion tearing its prey; they devour people, take treasures and precious things and make many widows within her. 26 Her priests do violence to my law and profane my holy things; they do not distinguish between the holy and the common; they teach that there is no difference between the unclean and the clean; and they shut their eyes to the keeping of my Sabbaths, so that I am profaned among them. 27 Her officials within her are like wolves tearing their prey; they shed blood and kill people to make unjust gain. 28 Her prophets whitewash these deeds for them by false visions and lying divinations. They say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says’—when the Lord has not spoken. 29 The people of the land practice extortion and commit robbery; they oppress the poor and needy and mistreat the foreigner, denying them justice.

30 “I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one. 31 So I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger, bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign Lord.”

Rulers: All about making personal gain – money/ power/ fame. No regard for the state of the people. Current govt. shut down.

Priests: Complacency. Everything does – Not taking a stand for holiness.

Officials: Corruption/ violence – abusing power. Not standing up for the common people.

Prophets: Preaching God for personal gain. Focus of visions and prophecies that will draw people to themselves.

People: Selfish, Practicing evil – no love and compassion.

Look at the heart of God – Exodus 34:6 tells us His nature. He is loving and merciful and does not want to destroy the people. Yet He is righteous and just and has to destroy wickedness and disobedience. So He gave His son, Jesus Christ as a ransom for the peoples of the world that who ever believes in Him will have eternal life – John 3:16.

There are still billions of people who do not know this truth. So he is looking for someone to stand in the gap and pray so that they too would have the opportunity to receive this gift of salvation.

To stand in the gap is to stand between God’s righteous judgment and the people. We see a great model of an intercessor in Abraham when he tried to stop the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.

Then the men turned away from there and went to Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the Lord.- Genesis 18:22 

God intends us, His church to be a light shining on the hill to show the path to the world.

10 His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to his eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Eph 3:10-11

Isaiah 62:10 says,

Go through, – Step out of your comfort zones. Go through the gates! – Go where the need is – Go on location – Identify with a people, a nation Prepare the way for the people; – Prepare the way (till the ground and make it ready for the word of God) Build up,  – Take action – strengthen Build up the highway! – Build a highway of prayer and intercession Take out the stones, – Remove the barriers – Intercession is known as rock movers and weed killers.

Pull down the strongholds. 2 Cor 10:3-4

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,

It is the job of the church to lift up Jesus so the world can see and be attracted to Him. Lift up a banner for the peoples! The bible says in John 12:32 – When he is lifted up, He will draw all me to Himself.

31 Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out. 32 And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself.”

Intercessors prepare the ground for the sowing of the seeds of the gospel. – Mat: 13: 18-23

As Intercessors, we are the rock movers and the weed killers. Through intercession, God removes the obstacles, and prepares hearts for the word of God to take root and grow.  Evangelism and intercession go hand in hand.

That is why we go on prayer drives. We pray for the masses of people in these areas we drive through, pulling down the strongholds in their minds, lifting up the name of Jesus. We are building the highway and clearing the paths for people to reach God.

-Suresh Veeravalli