Growing in our understanding of our identity and our beliefs about God are important keys to praying more effectively. We will pray out of who we believe we are, and who we believe Him to be. If we believe ourselves to be paupers and our God to be angry, we will never have faith to pray prayers that accomplish much at all.
When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, in a very true sense they gave up their ‘keys’ of authority to the enemy. God had commissioned them to rule and reign, but they were no longer able to do this. Then, when Jesus defeated satan, and the power of sin and death on the cross, in a very real way He retrieved our keys of authority and gave them back to us. He restored us to a place of authority.
In Matthew 16:19, Jesus tells His disciples, “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” This must have seemed bizarre to the disciples, and almost too good to be true. I can just imagine the amazed looks on their faces as they tried to wrap their heads around what Jesus was saying.
Now, over two thousand years later, I think we are still trying to wrap our heads around these words. Jesus has given us an incredible degree of authority and responsibility as revealed in this verse. He has given us the keys of the kingdom.
Imagine someone giving you a brand new car. They hand you the keys and say it’s yours to drive whenever you want. If you never actually go and put the keys in the ignition, the car will never go anywhere. In a similar way, we’ve been given the keys to the kingdom. But, we have to use them!
In my bible, Matthew 16:19 is cross-referenced with Isa. 22:22, “I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.” In biblical times kings would wear keys attached to the shoulders of their royal robes. These keys represented their authority. These kings had absolute authority in their land. It is said that they would raise their right hand to signify a ‘yes’ answer and the door would be opened. They would raise their left hand to indicate a ‘no’ answer and the door would be closed. Our authority is similar to that mentioned in this verse. We have been given authority to ‘open doors’ and ‘shut doors’ in order for the kingdom of God to advance. We use our keys by making decrees and declarations in line with the will of Heaven.
We’ve been well aware that we are a royal priesthood as seen in I Pt. 2:9. But, somehow we overlooked the royal part and always focused on the priesthood part. The phrase royal priesthood would indicate that we not only have the role of a priest, but also that of a king.
The last twenty years we have seen hundreds and hundreds of houses of prayer spring up all over our nation. Many have focused on the priestly anointing, worshiping and petitioning God through worship and prayer. It’s been a beautiful thing. But, a new thing is springing up as God is revealing a fresh wave of our true identity in Him as the King’s sons and daughters who walk in His authority. Our role as royal priests is not only to worship and petition, but to declare royal decrees.
The key to the house of David is mentioned in Isaiah 22:22. David is known for his intimacy with God and his heart of worship. This is very significant for us as we began to understand our place of authority. Our keys must operate out of hearts that are rooted in worship and intimacy with the Lord. There is no authority apart from intimacy with Him.
It is no wonder that satan does just about anything to keep us from praying. He is well aware I am sure of the power of our prayers and would like to keep us unaware of our authority as sons and daughters of the King of Kings.
I am asking the Father for greater revelation of the authority He has given us through Jesus Christ. I am asking that He raise up an ever increasing army of sons and daughters who have sown into the secret place with Him, and are eager to take up their keys and use them to enforce the victory that He has already won.