// Kenneth E. Hagin
GOD CAN ONLY MOVE on this earth as His people ask Him to move. God is longing today for someone who will make up the hedge and stand in the gap before Him and intercede for souls in every nation. That's the scriptural way to win cities and nations for God.
30 I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and STAND IN THE GAP before me for the land, THAT I SHOULD NOT DESTROY IT: but I found none.
In this verse God said He had to destroy the land because as a just God, He had to pronounce a penalty on sin. God's penalty on sin wasn't unjust, because the people had brought judgment upon themselves by their own sin: "THEIR OWN WAY have I recompensed upon their heads" (v. 31).
This scripture implies that if God could have found someone to stand in the gap and make up the hedge and intercede for the land, He wouldn't have had to bring judgment on the people.
I once read a statement by John Wesley: "It seems God can do nothing for humanity unless someone asks Him to do it."
If someone would just ask Him. Think about that! God didn't say we had to go out and try to fight Satan, a defeated foe, to win cities and nations for God. These verses say that if God's covenant children would just ask Him to move on the earth, He would hear and answer their prayers. Satan is no match for God!
The unsaved people of the world are dominated and ruled by the devil—not by God. Therefore, they are destined to have "their own way recompensed upon their heads" unless they hear and receive the truth of the Gospel and repent.
God looks for those who will boldly ask Him to hold back judgment and give the unsaved more time to repent and come to the knowledge of the truth.
Then it's our responsibility to preach the Gospel so people can be saved and teach them their position of authority in Christ over the devil.
Praying for Those in Authority
Another scriptural way to pray to win cities and nations for God is found in the Book of First Timothy. We are instructed to pray for those in authority. It stands to reason that if people in positions of authority in a nation change to God's glory, then God has more liberty to move in that nation, so the devil's plans are thwarted and men are saved.
1 TIMOTHY 2:1–2, 4
1 I exhort therefore, that, FIRST OF ALL, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for ALL MEN;
2 For KINGS, and for ALL THAT ARE IN AUTHORITY; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
4 [God] will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
Notice that Paul said in First Timothy 2:1, "FIRST OF ALL." That means we are to pray for all men and for all those in authority before we pray for ourselves or our own families.
Praying according to the Word and putting first things first always produces results. Praying according to the latest spiritual "fad" that's not based firmly on the Word of God will never produce lasting or eternal results.
As we pray for those in authority, the Bible says we will effect changes in the nations of this world, "that we may lead A QUIET AND PEACEABLE LIFE" (1 Tim. 2:2).
Yes, there are ruling spirits over cities and nations that influence people who are in authority. Although we can't "pull down" those demonic strongholds once and for all, as we pray for the leaders of nations, we can thwart and render inoperative the devil's strategies on the earth and cause God's purposes to prevail.
But praying for those in authority doesn't mean we are to pray that the politicians in our favorite political party will be voted into office. We can't judge by political party alone which candidate is best to fill the leadership positions in our nation.
In other words, we don't need to get involved with personalities in praying for our government; we just need to pray that the right candidate be elected to office. We may all have our opinion who is the right one for office, but only God knows for sure. Therefore, we just need to pray that God will have His way in the matter.
God wants us to pray for those in authority so there will be peace in our nations. Then we can preach the Gospel undisturbed. As long as the devil has nations in an upheaval, we can't lead a quiet and peaceable life and preach the Gospel unhindered to the ends of the earth.
According to 2 Thessalonians 3:1–2, when we pray, God will deliver us from "unreasonable and wicked men" in every area and sector in our nation so the Word of God will have free course.
So the most important reason God wants us to pray for the leaders of nations is so the Gospel can be preached and people can be delivered out of the kingdom of darkness. God's plan and purpose is for the Church to preach the Gospel to every nation: "And this gospel of the kingdom SHALL BE PREACHED in all the world for a witness unto ALL NATIONS; and then shall the end come" (Matt. 24:14). This is the scriptural way we render the devil's work inoperative upon the earth.
[Editor's Note: This article was adapted from Kenneth E. Hagin's book The Triumphant Church.]
How to Win Your City for God
Winning a city for God doesn't necessarily mean that every single person in that town will be saved. That's true because people still have free choice. But our prayers and intercession make it easier for people to yield to God and desire to be saved.
If you're not sure how to pray for your nation, visit rhema.org/prayer and read Rev. Hagin's prayer from 1983 for the United States. It can serve as a helpful guide.