In the religious life of the biblical communities, as in that of the churches of today, prayer was both individual and corporate. Although the biblical worshiper always approaches the Lord as a member of a larger covenanted community, there is a distinction between prayer in general and prayer set in the context of acts of corporate worship. Because prayer is a pervasive posture and activity in the Christian life, the subject of prayer is a comprehensive one; the following discussions are confined largely to prayer as a part of the worship of the gathered community. Prayers of intercession are petitions offered to the Lord on behalf of others: people in special personal need; those who bear particular responsibility for the welfare of others, such as leaders of church and state; the many concerns and issues affecting the church, local and universal; and the larger community of the nation and the world.
The Israelites had committed a terrible sin. During Moses’ absence, they had forged a golden calf and had begun worshiping it. Although Moses was enraged by their idolatry, he also pled with God to spare them from the fullness of His just wrath. Because Moses was a righteous and humble man his prayer was heard and answered.
There is a twofold use of prayer: the one, to obtain strength and blessing for our own life; the other, the higher, the true glory of prayer, for which Christ has taken us into His fellowship and teaching, is intercession, where prayer is the royal power a child of God exercises in heaven on behalf of others and even of the kingdom. (Adapted from Andrew Murray, With Christ in the School of Prayer)