Towards an understanding of strategic intercessory prayer: implications for mission practice
North American conservative evangelical missiology does not typically focus on intercessory prayer as a primary tool for missions practice. Several factors have contributed to this, including the implementation of good and necessary practices arising from the study of missiology compared to the more difficult to measure and somewhat mysterious nature of prayer. The research question for this study is ‘How can a theoretical model of strategic intercessory prayer be developed that is scripturally, theologically and missiologically sound for missions practice today?’ This question seeks to be answered through an overview of an understanding of evangelical theology including that of missions, prayer and discernment including relevant passages in the Old and New Testaments. Additionally, significant practitioners from early church and missions history are examined, as well as emerging data. During the study period, a comprehensive three iteration Delphi questionnaire research project was undertaken with expert participants consisting of evangelical missionaries, mission leaders, vocational Christian leaders and intercessors from various countries. The results reveal an emerging consensus pointing to effective practices and approaches to intercessory prayer as it relates to missions. A praxis theoretical model is developed, with the goal of seeing intercessory prayer increasingly ‘strategic’ for gospel proclamation, the birth and strengthening of the church and the transformation of civil society.
- Theology