Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 28:15-68 / Luke 18:1-30 / Psalm 47:1-9
As of 2014, 97% of adults have a cell phone and of these phones, 56% are considered “smart phones”. Cellular phones have been the fastest and most adopted technology in history. 29% of cell phone users describe their phone as something they can’t live without. Cell phones are used not only for talking but also texting and 2.27 trillion text messages were sent in 2013!
Because of the growth of the cell phone, 28,641 cell phone towers were added across the United States last year. Cell phones are used to verbally, textually and socially communicate. Many would not know how to function without it! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if people used prayer like they used their cell phones? That would mean 97% of adults would be praying and live like they couldn’t function without it!
Jesus tells a parable about a widow and how we are to pray with consistency, faith and confidence. Widows were easy prey to the opportunistic and deceitful crooks. They were vulnerable and helpless to defend themselves. Widows were often oppressed and there was no one to defend them. Jesus shares about a widow who was fraudulently being extorted of her possessions and inheritance. She repeatedly comes to a judge and pleads, “Grant me justice against my adversary” (Luke 18:3)
Judges would travel to towns and set up their tents for court. The Romans appointed the judges and everyone referred to them as “robber judges.” They were notoriously wicked and lived for bribes and hush money. Jesus describes this judge as one, “who neither feared God nor cared about men.” (vs.2)
He was cold and unconcerned about man and certainly did not consider God’s verdict. He was disinterested in this widow’s appeal for him to right a wrong. The judge had the power and the responsibility but he would not act on her behalf. Finally after her constant pestering he said, “Even though I don’t fear God or care about men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually wear me out with her coming!” (vs.4,5)
If a poor widow got what she deserved from a selfish judge, how much more will God’s children receive what is right from a loving Heavenly Father? Jesus isn’t telling us to pester God until he responds but to approach prayer knowing God is ready and willing to answer our prayers. Unlike the unjust judge, God is our Heavenly Father who loves and cares for us. Knowing this should move us to faith that will persevere not out of desperation but with confidence.
Remember, the widow did not have a lawyer but we have a High Priest acting on our behalf before God’s throne. The widow had no promises but we have a Bible filled with sure and faithful promises. She had no relationship with the judge but we are the children of God! Call on your Heavenly Father…He’s waiting to hear from you!
Pastor James Clark has pastored Calvary Assembly since 1985. He is blessed with his wife Yvonne, six children, two son-in-laws, a beautiful granddaughter and hopefully many more grandchildren to follow!