Sunday, July 13, 2008

Luke 18:1-8

1Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart, 2saying, “In a certain city there was a judge who did not fear God and did not respect man. 3“There was a widow in that city, and she kept coming to him, saying, ‘Give me legal protection from my opponent.’ 4“For a while he was unwilling; but afterward he said to himself, ‘Even though I do not fear God nor respect man, 5yet because this widow bothers me, I will give her legal protection, otherwise by continually coming she will wear me out.’” 6And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge said*; 7now, will not God bring about justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night, and will He delay long over them? 8“I tell you that He will bring about justice for them quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?”
Luke 18:1-8

Wow. The good Doctor has some potent medicine here for us Christians. Our Pastor noted this parable in his message today. There’s a lot here, but some of the main points that I find comforting are:

1. Our Lord is going to return. He will bring Justice to an unjust world. He will remember every offence perpetrated against His elect; every cruelty, every persecution…and ‘He will bring about justice for them quickly.’ It is stated as fact, not assumption or guess. That is very comforting, especially as we struggle on through a world that wants to deny Christ’s return.

2. In the very first verse we are told the object lesson of the parable: pray and not lose heart, don’t give up;
Prayer, our lifeline, our communing with God, is what keeps us connected, in sync, sensitive to the leading of God in our lives. I can tell you that I have not prayed as I should, and it has been detrimental, has weakened me.
I have the ‘not lose heart’ part down, the ‘not giving up’ element is part of my nature, but I am often guilty of pushing forward in my own strengths, instead of submitting to God. I would make fewer missteps if I spent more time listening to our Father. Part of the reason I so cherish His Mercy and Grace is that I am daily in desperate need of both. So are you.

3. Jesus uses the example of an ungodly Judge who does the right thing due to the widow’s perseverance.
This reminds me of the children of Israel being given treasure by the Egyptians as parting gifts. The ungodly Egyptians were used by God to bless Israel. You could look it up.

4. “when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?” Lord, I hope so. He will…if we do not lose heart, and continue to pray. The last verse leads back to the first.

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