Exodus 32:11 – “And Moses besought the LORD his God, and said, LORD, why doth thy wrath wax hot against thy people, which thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand?”
While Moses had been meeting with the Lord on Mt. Sinai, receiving the commandments of God, Aaron and the people made and were worshipping a golden calf. The Lord was angry with His people, and told Moses that He would destroy Israel for their idolatry and raise up a new nation through Moses. At that moment, Moses stepped into the gap and began to pray for God’s mercy. The Lord heard his prayer and preserved His people.
One of the greatest benefits of the Christian life is the privilege of prayer. Prayer has several aspects. We worship God in prayer and thanksgiving. We confess our sins to God in prayer. We are instructed to pray for our needs to be met. Also, we can pray for the needs of others. We can go to God on behalf of others, holding their needs up before Him. We sometimes call this aspect of prayer INTERCESSORY PRAYER.
Moses was interceding for Israel. Moses knew that God would permit him to approach God on behalf of his people. Abraham interceded for Lot and the inhabitants of Sodom. Paul prayed for his people that they might be saved. Jesus prayed for those who crucified Him. Nehemiah prayed for the children of Israel. Jairus requested that Jesus might come to the aid of his daughter. One of the things about prayer that we will never fully comprehend is how God uses the person of prayer. The Lord wants us to pray for that which God wants to do. Of course, God could do as He desires without our participation, but He chooses to involve our intercessory praying.
Moses knew that God wanted to spare Israel. When he prayed, Moses reminded God of His promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them this land. One of the things that makes prayer so powerful is when we are praying for something that we are certain is God’s will. Today we see many things that we know God would want to do. He wants to revive Churches and save sinners. He wants to reunite families and help the hurting. He wants to restore the Christian that is out of the way. Knowing these things are His will, we can confidently pray for Him to work.