Prayer is an essential part of our lives as believers, and we can use Scriptures on intercession as a powerful way to pray for those around us. Just think of where you would be if you did not have people in your life who prayed for you?
The Power of Intercessory Prayer
One summer on the 4th of July, my family and I watched the fireworks in the heart of our city. We laid out a blanket near the riverbank of the downtown area, surrounded by tall buildings and sparkling streetlights.
As darkness settled over the horizon, we saw spectators in fishing boats and excited passersby in brightly colored glow sticks.
In front of our view was a large bridge filled with people waiting with eager anticipation for the fireworks show we all were gathered to view.
The evening air was filled with the electrifying light of the fireworks, shooting high above the bridge like brilliant colored confetti.
When I think of intercessory prayer, I think of that bridge, filled with glorious light.
Jesus is the Bridge who provided a way for us to reach God. Without Him, we would be forever lost in our sins, separated from precious communion with the Father.
But Christ’s work on the cross has become our bridge in the darkness, illuminating our way to God and filling our hearts with His brilliant light.
Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Romans 8:34
Jesus is the bridge who allows us to reach out to our Heavenly Father through prayer–and how amazing it is to know that Jesus intercedes for us! Let’s look at the definition of intercessory prayer and discuss specific Scriptures on intercession that we can use to draw closer to the Lord each day as we pray for others.
What is Intercessory Prayer?
The word intercession in the Greek means “to pray, intercede for, to entreat, or meet with a person for the purpose of supplication” (source). It also means “bending over” to intercede on someone’s behalf, or to make a petition.
Like a bridge arched over troubled water, Jesus “stands in the gap” in intercession for us. Whatever we are in need of, He entreats to the Father on our behalf. Now we can bravely cross that bridge and approach God’s throne grace with confidence, and now we have the privilege of interceding for others through the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:26-27).
Using Scripture to Make Intercession for Others
Is there a family member or loved one you know of who is far from the Lord? Pray for them. As Jesus intercedes for you, He has given you the authority to make intercession for those in need of his healing touch and illuminating light. Through your prayers, you can become a bridge that brings others to the truth of Christ.
Whenever we pray for others in fervent intercessory prayer, we can trust that our petitions are powerful, mighty, and effective (James 5:16).
21 Powerful Scriptures on Intercession
Here is a list of 21 powerful Scriptures on intercession we can use when we pray for others.
Scriptures on Intercession: Jesus as our High Priest
Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.Hebrews 7:25
This passage talks about Jesus being our ultimate High Priest and Intercessor. In the Old Testament, the priests had the duty of interceding for the people of Israel through the offering of sacrifices. Jesus sacrificed himself for our sins once and for all, and now we can live our lives in freedom and in forgiveness through Christ!
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.Romans 8:26-27
Have you ever tried praying for something, and just didn’t know the exact words to say? According to this passage, God knows our hearts, and the Holy Spirit will make intercession for us when we don’t even know what to say! Praise God that he knows our thoughts, desires, and the intent of our hearts, and will make petitions on our behalf when we don’t even know what to pray.
Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.Romans 8:34
What a blessing it is to know that Jesus does not condemn us! Not only did he sacrifice his life on the cross to give us salvation, but he also intercedes for us and gives us access to God the Father. Use this Scripture to remind yourself that God is with you, and that Christ is making petitions on your behalf!
Scriptures on Intercession: Praying for our Communities
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people–for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.1 Timothy 2:1-4
The apostle Paul in this passage reminds us that we can intercede for those around us by praying for them with petitions and prayers of thanksgiving. This also includes people in authority over us. When we use Scriptures on intercession to fervently pray for those in our families and in our communities, this can bring peace and salvation to those around us.
Then Samuel said, “Assemble all Israel at Mizpah, and I will intercede with the Lord for you.”1 Samuel 7:5
In this passage, Samuel the prophet made intercession for the people of Israel. Since Israel failed to keep the commands of the Lord, they were subject to their enemies. Samuel urged them to turn away from worshiping false gods and to return to serving the Lord. The people listened, and God delivered them from their enemies. We can also intercede for our loved ones and pray that they make the decision to serve the Lord wholeheartedly.
As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you. And I will teach you the way that is good and right.1 Samuel 12:23
When Samuel grew and became a prophet of God, he interceded for the people of Israel by praying for them. I find it interesting that Samuel viewed failing to pray for his community as a sin against God. Do we feel as strongly about interceding for our family, loved ones, those in our communities and nations? May we learn from the example of Samuel and intercede for others out of love and reverence for the Lord.
Hear the supplication of your servant and of your people Israel when they pray toward this place. Hear from heaven, your dwelling place, and when you hear, forgive.1 Kings 8:30
In this passage, King Solomon had the Ark of the Covenant brought to the newly built temple he constructed for the Lord. He then prayed a prayer of dedication to God at the altar of the Lord in front of the people of Israel. Solomon prayed a prayer of supplication for himself, and for the people. It was a powerful moment when Solomon interceded for the nation of Israel and asked for God to look upon them with grace, mercy, and forgiveness (1 Kings 8:30, 50-51).
We may never hold the amount of power and authority Solomon had as king, but we can definitely pray for those in our communities with power and fervor.
When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven.Nehemiah 1:4
Nehemiah was another influential leader among the Israelites, and was instrumental in the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem. The reason he wept and mourned in Nehemiah 1:4 was because he heard that the remnant of Israel in Jerusalem were not doing well. The wall in Jerusalem was broken down, and the gates had been burned with fire (Nehemiah 1:3).
The state of Israel at that time brought Nehemiah to his knees in prayer and intercession for his community. Then, his prayers led him to action to rebuild the city. May our prayers of intercession inspire us to do what we can to make a difference!
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: “May those who love you be secure.Psalm 122:6
In Psalm 122 David urged listeners to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. One powerful prayer of intercession we can pray is for the peace of God to rule in the lives of others. We can pray for peace in our nations, peace in our homes, and for peace in our hearts. We can rest assured knowing that his presence will give us comfort and strength!
Scriptures on Intercession: Praying for our Children
I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him.1 Samuel 1:27
In this passage, Hannah prayed for a son, and God answered her prayer by giving her Samuel. He would later grow up to be one of the greatest prophets of the Old Testament. Not only did she pray for Samuel, but she dedicated him to the Lord by allowing him to live in the temple. When we pray for our children, we can intercede for them and dedicate them back to God by trusting in him to guide and direct their lives according to his will.
Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them.Matthew 19:13
What a blessing it is to know that Jesus prayed for and blessed the children who came into his life! When others did not see their worth and value, Jesus lifted them up. Think of a child in your life who you can extend a hand of blessing to, and pray for them today!
Related: Check out this post with 35 Scriptures to pray for your children.
Scriptures on Intercession: Praying for the Church
I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours.John 17:9
In this passage in John 17, Jesus made powerful prayers of intercession for his disciples and for future believers. How wonderful it is to know that Jesus made intercession for us as he prepared to sacrifice his life on the cross! May the words of Jesus inspire us to intercede for others, and to offer our lives to Christ as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1).
“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message…”John 17:20
In this prayer of intercession, Jesus prayed for future believers–for those who would later believe in him through the powerful testimonies of the disciples. Thankfully, we all benefit from this prayer as the disciples were charged to “go and make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). Let’s continue their legacy and pray for those around us, that they will come to know Christ through our example of love.
But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven.Matthew 5:44-45a
It’s easy to pray for the people in our lives who treat us well. But many of us do not often think of ways we can pray prayers of intercession for our enemies. We may not have enemies the way the Israelites did with surrounding nations, but Jesus himself said to love and intercede for our enemies. Do you sometimes have difficulty showing kindness to those who are not easy to love? Let’s follow in the footsteps of Jesus, and love those around us by praying for them.
When they arrived, they prayed for the new believers there that they might receive the Holy Spirit…Acts 8:15
In this passage, the apostles Peter and John placed their hands on many of the people in Samaria who had put their faith and trust in Jesus. When they prayed for the new believers and laid their hands on them, they received the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:17). As we intercede for others, we can pray that the Holy Spirit will move powerfully in the hearts of those we pray for.
So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him.Acts 12:5
Have you ever prayed for someone who was in a desperate situation? In Acts 12:5, Peter was in prison because King Herod at the time arrested and persecuted those who proclaimed Jesus as Lord. King Herod also had James, the brother of John put to death (Acts 12:2). It was likely that Peter would have faced the same fate as James–but the church earnestly prayed for Peter while he was in prison. Miraculously, Peter escaped with the amazing help of an angel (Acts 12:7-10). We never know how God will work in the lives of others when we pray for them with earnest hearts!
I urge you, brothers and sisters, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me.Romans 15:30
In this passage, the apostle Paul wrote to the Roman church, as he was looking forward to visiting them as he planned to journey to Spain (Romans 15:28). He asked the church to pray for him, so that others would receive his message as he continued to share the good news of the Gospel. He also asked for them to pray for his safety (Romans 15:31). This passage reminds us to intercede regularly for church leaders and missionaries who faithfully serve the Lord in their ministries.
More Scriptures to Use when Interceding for Others
The next set of Scriptures do not mention intercessory prayer specifically, but can be used to pray for those around us with power, love, and grace.
Praying for Prodigal Family Members
“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ (Luke 15:4,6)
Praying for those in Bondage to Sin and Addiction
…to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor… (Isaiah 61:1b-2a)
Praying for those in Need of Emotional and Physical Healing
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. (James 5:16)
Praying for our World
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20)
We can usher in the great commission of Christ when we pray for our world.
When we humble ourselves and seek the face of our great God on behalf of others, he can radically heal our land!
Free Printables with Scriptures on Intercession
Feel free to download the following printables that you can use in your personal prayer time!
Here is a free prayer requests printable that you can download. You can print as many copies as you desire, and put them in your Bible, planner or on your refrigerator to remind you of the loved ones in your life you want to pray for.
You can also download a free Scripture reading plan with the 21 Scriptures on Intercession mentioned in this post by clicking on the link below!
Pray without Ceasing
I hope that these Scriptures on intercession encourage you as you seek the Lord each day in prayer. Whether you have been praying for someone for a few weeks or for many years, don’t stop praying.
Continue to strike a match and light the awesome power of God through your prayers. When you don’t know what to pray, trust that the Holy Spirit will intercede for you, stirring your heart with prayers and petitions from heaven above.
In due time, you will see sparks begin to flare.
The fire of God’s power will spread like a brilliant combustion of color in the sky–and you will behold His glory!
Catch the Mountain-Moving Prayer Series here!
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