By Dave Butts
“I have posted watchmen on your walls, Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the Lord, give yourselves no rest, and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth” (Isaiah 62:6–7).
There is a movement of prayer, firmly rooted in Scripture, taking place all over the planet. It is the call of God to His people to take their places on the walls as watchmen. Whether we look to the Old Testament or the New, we find God is calling us to watch and pray.
Our modern culture does not readily identify with the ancient concept of watchmen on the walls. We need to train ourselves in what it means to be a part of this great company of the “alert.”
It is clear from the Isaiah 62 passage that the job of a watchman is a continual commitment. It is not sporadic. It does not depend upon feelings. Because of the life-or-death nature and constancy of the watchman’s task, it is an assignment for the many, not just the one. Isaiah describes an intensity that must be shared—day and night, never silent, no rest. Groups of committed believers who band together in watchful prayer will be able to stay at their post.
Notice also in this passage that it is God who posts the watchmen. This is a divine assignment, not just the latest prayer fad. To stand on the wall as a watchman, stationed there by the Lord Himself, is a great privilege. We need to receive and obey such a call with gratitude and humility.
Perhaps the overwhelming characteristic of watchman prayer is that it is to be done with open eyes. This does not necessarily imply physical eyes (although it certainly can), but we must hold our spiritual eyes wide open.
What Do Watchmen Look for?
What are we, as watchmen looking for as we pray? First, we watch for an enemy attack. Certainly in Old Testament times, this sort of defensive watchfulness was at the heart of the task. The watchman on the wall was always on the alert for any attempt of an enemy to attack or infiltrate the city. Similarly, in 2 Corinthians 2:11, Paul wrote that we are “not unaware” of the enemy’s schemes. If praying watchmen are not on duty, we often fail to see the enemy’s attempts to disrupt and destroy our churches and cities.
Second, I believe that as watchmen, we are also to keep our eyes open to see and discern moves of God. The watcher should always be asking, “Lord, what are You doing in our church or city this day? Is there something You are calling Your people to do in cooperation with what You are doing?”
What Results Can We Expect?
According to Isaiah, one of the results of the watchmen’s prayers is that we will see the firm establishment of the Kingdom of God. The prophet speaks of the establishment of Jerusalem, the dwelling place of God among His people. In both the Old and the New Covenant, Jerusalem represents God among man. Jesus’ main message was the coming Kingdom, present in Him. Emmanuel—God with us!
Another result of this powerful prayer movement is that the glory of God will be seen among the nations. As we watch and pray, we find ourselves lining up with the prophet Habakkuk and crying out for the glory of God to cover the earth “as the waters cover the sea” (Hab. 2:14).
Prayer warriors, it is time to ascend the walls of your city and begin to fulfill your calling as watchmen of God.
PRAYER, PEACE, and the PRESENCE of GOD by David Butts
As believers, we are supposed to walk in the peace of Christ, yet we all have stressful issues and circumstances that rob us of this peace. Subtitled “A 30-Day Journey to Experience the Shalom of Jesus,” Prayer, Peace and the Presence of God powerfully encourages the reader on how to hold onto that peace in any circumstance.
When author, David Butts (1953-2022), first started writing this book, he got word ten days into the project that he was in stage 4 with a rare form of lymphoma. God not only allowed him to complete the book, but to live for five more full-strength years. His 30-day devotional will encourage, inspire and challenge you to walk in the peace of Jesus no matter what situations or struggles you are walking through.
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