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Intercession’s Grand Finale

Sometimes our future eternal life with God can seem far away, belonging more to the realm of fairy tales than to the ordinary rhythms of everyday life. But as God’s people, the priorities of eternity should set our priorities. We daily seek to live according to the aims of heaven, and we pray, as Jonathan Edwards prayed, “Lord, stamp eternity on my eyeballs!”

In today’s passage we see that one of the main activities in our future life with God will be praying together with the fully assembled people of God. Prayer is not merely asking God for something we don’t have. Prayer is presenting our desires to God with thanksgiving. In eternity, the gathered people of God join their voices to express their greatest desire—the exaltation of Jesus—and to give God thanks for His gift of salvation. Their meditation on the great things God has done for them gives rise to an eternal prayer meeting.

God’s people in heaven are freed from sin and human weakness. No more do they struggle against their desires— sometimes asking for good things with wrong motives—or offer their prayers mixed with doubt. No more do they fall asleep mid-prayer or put off prayer time until tomorrow. The vision in Revelation 19 is thoroughly triumphant. The multitude speaks to God with both body and soul, with resounding shouts and untiring energy.

The prayer leader in the new heaven and new earth will be Christ Himself. He is the voice from the throne (v. 5) calling His people to praise, and He is the subject of their roaring, rushing, thundering Hallelujahs. Jesus’ triumphal entry to Jerusalem in Luke 19 was only a dim foretaste of His welcome among the multitudes who will dwell with Him forever. The humble, roadside hosannas of Jesus’ disciples will be amplified by His people into eternity.

Apply the Word

If praying together is an important part of life in the new heaven and new earth, it ought to be an important part of life now. God’s Word holds forth the prospect of eternal corporate worship as encouragement to gather before His throne right now. Use times of prayer with others as a way to train your heart for eternal life with God.

BY Megan Hill

Megan Hill serves on the editorial board for Christianity Today and is a regular contributor to CT Women and The Gospel Coalition website. She is the author of Praying Together: The Priority and Privilege of Prayer: In Our Homes, Communities, and Churches, and a graduate of Grove City College. She lives in West Springfield, Mass., with her husband and four children.

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