Thursday, July 21, 2005

Releasing the Favor of God

But You, O LORD, shall endure forever,
And the remembrance of Your name to all generations.
You will arise and have mercy on Zion
For the time to favor her,
Yes, the set time has come.
For Your servants take pleasure in her stones,
And show favor to her dust.
(Psalm 102:12-14)
God has favor for His people, and He has established a time for that favor to come forth in powerful manifestation. It is associated with a “remembrance,” a reminder to point all generations to God and His promises. For He is the Lord of all eternity, and the blessing He has determined for His people — salvation, restoration, healing, deliverance, prosperity — shall fully come to pass.
The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.
(Luke 4:18-19)
We are now living in “the acceptable year of the LORD,” the year of the LORD‘s favor.

Now, notice what releases the favor of God in the set time: “For your servants take pleasure in her stones, and show favor to her dust.” The word “for” shows a causal relationship. The set time of God’s favor has come because His servants have shown favor. In other words, the servants of the Lord have become intercessors on behalf of God’s people and God’s purpose. You see, whenever God wants to do something in the world, He speaks a word and gets His people to pray in agreement with it. We see this in Isaiah, where the LORD says:
I have set watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem;
They shall never hold their peace day or night.
You who make mention of the LORD, do not keep silent,
And give Him no rest till He establishes
And till he makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth.
(Isaiah 62:6-7)
The watchmen are intercessors who take the promise of the Lord and present it before Him as a memorial, a reminder. The Hebrew root word for “make mention” in Isaiah 62 is zakar (Strong’s no. 2142). It has the same root as zeker, the Hebrew word behind “remembrance” in Psalm 102:12 (Strong’s no. 2143).

These intercessors “make mention” to the Lord, relentlessly reminding Him of His promises. Day and night they bring up the promises He has made over His people, and they do not stop until He establishes what He has said He will do.

In other words, they show favor to the dust of Zion. The word of “favor” in Psalm 102 literally means to stoop in kindness. Causatively, it means to implore, or petition for kindness.

God releases His favor because His servants intercede, seeking His kindness and reminding Him of what He has spoken. They have so much confidence in His Word that they are bold enough to “get in His face” with it.

That is faith, and it pleases God greatly. It arouses His desire and stirs up His passion. For He has found what He has been looking for — people who trust fully in Him and Him alone.

Now look at what happens as a result:
So the nations shall fear the name of the LORD,
And all the kings of the earth Your glory.
For the LORD shall build up Zion;
He shall appear in His glory.
He shall regard the prayer of the destitute,
And shall not despise their prayer.
(Psalm 102:15-17)
Notice that, when the favor of God is released, it is a blessing, not only for the people of God, but for all earth: Nations come to fear the Lord, and so begin to move in wisdom and understanding. Heads of state begin to recognize His glory, and the name of the LORD is hallowed, that is, received as uniquely holy. Zion is built up, and the presence of the God is manifested in the midst of glory of it all.

What is more, the LORD hears and answers the prayer of the destitute, the “poor in spirit” who have come to that place in their lives where they see that that they are totally dependent upon God. They cast themselves upon Him in faith, and He answers their cry. The Good News is preached to them. They are healed of their broken hearts and all their afflictions. They are set free from all their captivities. For it is the acceptable year of the LORD — and God’s favor has been released!

The set time has come for God’s favor to be released into your life and into your world. Will you be an intercessor who shows the favor of the LORD to others, bringing His promises to bear and crying to God on their behalf? Will you be a watchman on the wall, reminding God of the provisions in His Word until His salvation appears, His kingdom abounds and the whole earth is filled with the knowledge of His glory? You hold the key.