|Intercessors for Canada|
Canada's Twelve Most Wanted Answers to Prayer #1 - January 2006
| CANADA'S TWELVE MOST WANTED ANSWERS TO PRAYER
I have been pondering for some time what it would take to see a profound change in the fabric of Canada that was clearly noticeable. Below is an outline of some themes which I am going to pursue in 2006. This month it is very timely to look at who is in 'high authority' in Canada and how we can pray for them.
1. PEOPLE IN HIGH AUTHORITY
Paul writes to Timothy giving him instruction on important priorities:
1 First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men, 2 for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life, godly and respectful in every way. 3 This is good, and it is acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all... 1Timothy 2:1-6
'High positions' translates the Greek word, huperoche, which can also be translated as high responsibility, or authority with a sense of pre-eminence or superiority. The context refers to 'Kings and all...' and must include those who have the ability to shape the culture and laws of a land and maintain peace and security.
The Lord wants us to have a peaceful lifestyle but especially to have the freedom to preach the Gospel. Paul in verse 3 calls God, 'God our Saviour', the urgent priority being His desire for all men and women to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the divine truth: only one God and only one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus who ransomed his life for all people. Our prayers must align with the revealed desire of the heart of God ... our saviour! CANADA’S SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT
So who is in high authority over us in Canada? The type of government is a constitutional monarchy that is also a parliamentary democracy and a federation of provinces. This is also expressed as three branches:
1. Executive Branch: The chief of state is Queen Elizabeth ll, represented by the Governor General Michaelle Jean (appointed by the Monarch on the advice of the Prime Minister for a five year term). The head of the government is the Prime Minister, who governs the various Federal Ministries through a cabinet usually selected from the ruling party.
2. Legislative Branch: Parliament consists of the Senate and the House of Commons. The 105 Senators are appointed by the Governor General with the advice of the Prime Minister and can serve until 75 years of age. The 308 members of the Commons are elected by direct, popular vote to serve for terms of up to five years.
3. Judicial Branch: There are a number of levels of Courts that can rule: Provincial Courts, Federal Court of Appeal, Federal Court of Canada and the Supreme Court of Canada. In the latter Court the judges are appointed by the Prime Minister through the Governor General. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms, which was added to the Constitution in 1982, has been a tool for social change in the hand of governments and interpreted and enforced by the Supreme Courts.
HOW TO PRAY FOR THE GOVERNMENT
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all men...
SUPPLICATIONS (requests or petitions) This is where we make specific requests of the Lord for others. We confess that are totally dependent on God and nothing is too large or small to take to Him in prayer for others. Key concept is dependency.
PRAYERS The emphasis is on coming to God as father, on a regular basis, knowing that He really does want to be with me. It involves talking to God, praising Him and also listening to Him on behalf of others. Key concept is that we gain authority in prayer for others as we cultivate intimacy.
INTERCESSIONS Intercession is a technical term for approaching a King and asking for mercy on behalf of others (inter = between, cedere = to go). Most people can't pray for themselves. So God raises up the intercessor to plead with Him for the lost. The Lord really does want all men and women to be saved. Praying this way makes us partners with God, in what He is doing in Canada. Key concept is that intercession is a passion not a pastime!
THANKSGIVINGS As we move in prayer in dependency on God alone, with intimacy and passion, a gratefulness rises up in our hearts. It's not easy being in leadership at any level and our blessing for others is more positive than our complaining or criticism. We thank God for those who serve us in authority over us. Key thought is that praying this way reinforces our total reliance on a sovereign and all powerful God.
1. Executive Branch:
Clearly the Prime Minister of the day has remarkable direct influence to appoint Senators, pass new laws and appoint Supreme Court Judges that could influence Canada for a generation or more. In a curious way we have also found that the Prime Minister's 'kitchen cabinet' of close advisors and administrators also, on his behalf, exercises remarkable influence with MPs and Ministers.
We need to pray fervently now for these following four leaders and their parties especially as one of them will be the People's choice under the hand of a sovereign God.
2. Legislative Branch:
For general guidance on how to pray for the upcoming election please see www.NationAtPrayer.ca
Example: That this election will serve God's purposes for Canada, as a nation which demonstrates righteousness, justice, compassion and generosity. That Canada will be a country whose elected leaders are individuals of: integrity, discernment, grace, courage and conviction; willing servants; people of vision, perseverance and character. That the Holy Spirit will guide electors in examining issues and candidates, and in voting. That all Christians would be mobilized to vote their moral conscience, so godly leaders are chosen!
3. Judicial Branch:
The nine Judges of the Supreme Court are very influential in their exercise of High Authority. Their decisions have recently been very controversial. It led the Globe and Mail to say in an editorial (January 3rd):
'The Supreme Court's recent decision on sex clubs raises an interesting question: Are there any social and moral norms in today's world?' and at the end of the column:
'Is there even such a thing as public morals in a modern society?'
The Supreme Court, by a majority of 7-2, dismissed the traditional concept of a community having common values and standards and went for tolerance as long as nobody was coerced or injured! We have moved from tolerance of what people do in their own homes to an amazing tolerance of what people can now do in public places. Where will it go from here, what will our children inherit unless God intervenes with godly Judges? We need to pray hard for these Judges to rule in the fear of God:
The Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, P.C. Chief Justice of Canada The Honourable Mr. Justice John C. Major The Honourable Mr. Justice William Ian Corneil Binnie The Honourable Madam Justice Marie Deschamps The Honourable Mr. Justice Morris J. Fish The Honourable Madam Justice Rosalie Silberman Abella The Honourable Madam Justice Louise Charron The Honourable Mr. Justice Michel Bastarache The Honourable Mr. Justice Louis LeBel
Canada was originally a Federation of four Provinces back in 1867. There are now ten provinces and three territories. Provincial Premiers, Cabinets and Mayors of cities all need our prayers. Over the last 30 years we must commend Arne Bryan and Prayer Canada for pioneering Prayer Posts all across the nation in homes, City Halls and Provincial legislatures. They have helped us with information on how to pray for the Federal Cabinet, Provincial Cabinets, and City Mayors and Councilors. Please have a look at www.prayercanada.ca
Other Useful Links:
Prayer Canada www.prayercanada.ca Nation At Prayer www.NationAtPrayer.ca Canada In Prayer www.canadainprayer.com National House Of Prayer www.nhop.ca The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada www.evangelicalfellowship.ca Government of Canada http://canada.gc.ca/ Intercessors For Canada www.int4canada.com
© Copyright 2006 Intercessors for Canada. All rights reserved.