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For academic mid-term break, see Intersession.

In Christianity, intercession or intercessory prayer is the act of praying to God on behalf of others.[1]

In Western Christianity, intercession forms a distinct form of prayer, alongside Adoration, Confession and Thanksgiving. In public worship, intercession is offered as prayer for the world beyond the immediate vicinity and friendship networks of the church community. As such, intercession constitutes part of the worshipping community's engagement with otherness, as it expresses Christians' solidarity with those who are 'other' than themselves. In doing so, a church both appeals to, and seeks to embody, God's own love for the world.

In the Greek version of the Scriptures, the Apostle Paul's tailored exhortation to Timothy specified intercession prayers can be made for those of worldly authority where it benefits God's immediate family members in maintaining their current way of life, as opposed to the use of intercession prayers motivated by love [agape] for worldly authorities.

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. (1 Timothy 2:1-2, NIV)[2]
Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. (1 John 2:15, NIV)[3]

There are different forms of written intercessory prayer in various groups including Roman Catholicism, Anglican Communion, Ecumenical movements, Emerging Churches, and Methodist and Baptist churches. For example, a Christian prayer that says "we" instead of "I" is one example of intercessory prayer, as the person offering the prayer is offering it for everyone within that church or for all Christians.

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  1. ^ "Question: "What is intercessory prayer?"". Retrieved 5 April 2014. 
  2. ^ "1 Timothy 2:1-2 NIV - Instructions on Worship - I urge, then, - Bible Gateway". Retrieved 14 October 2014. 
  3. ^ "1 John 2:15 NIV - On Not Loving the World - Do not love - Bible Gateway". Retrieved 14 October 2014. 

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