And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?(Luke 18:1-8)
Why did our Lord Jesus teach in parables? He certainly didn’t do it to make his teachings easier to understand, at least not according to Jesus’ teaching in Mathew 13.
And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.(Matthew 13:10-13)
There are those who “see…but see not”, they think they know, but don’t realize how blind they are. they will take the paables at surface value and go on in their own blindness, thinking they understand, but never letting God’s teaching move their heart. They only think they have “heard…” God, but in the hardness of their hearts to God, they are truly deaf and unresponsive to God.
Parables are nice stories to them, perhaps for children,(Veggie Tales?) but having nothing meaningful to say to them.Isaiah says of them,
… Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed.(Isaiah 6:9-10)
But there are also those who know that they don’t know , and are fully aware of their own blindness, deafness and lameness as far as God is concerned. But they have been shown (by God) that Jesus is the Son of God, and that only in His Word is eternal life to be found.
They rralize that since the Parables come from the mouth of Jesus, there has to be something in them for us, of great value. They know these are far more than ‘childens stories” or “morality tales”, the Parables are full of the depest eternal truth, and that God is willing to reveal this truth to the humble seeker.
“To Him who has, more shall be given Him, but to him who has not, even what he thought he had will be taken away from him…”(Mark 5:25)
Thus the Messiah of Israel in Psalm 78 proclaims,
Give ear, O my people, to my law: incline your ears to the words of my mouth. I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old:(Psalm 78:1-2)
I invite you therefore to follow this series on this very serious parable, that of the unjust judge and the widow. I hope to show you how startlingly relevant it is to our situation, in this last day and age, before the coming of deliverance and grace in the parousia of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Holy Spirit reveals that Jesus told this parable that men “pray always and not faint”, or cave in, give up or succumb, as various versions have rendered it. We are not to give up on prayer no matter what.
Of course we are not to give up on personal prayer, in view of the coming of the Lord Jesus and the troubles warned of in the last days.
Furthermore we shouldn’t ever quit or cave in on corporate prayer in the Body of Christ. Public ,heartfelt prayer, supplication and intercession is perhaps more crucial to our survival and effectiveness as the church in these hostile times, than ever before.
Finally we shouldn’t “faint” on a very specific type of prayer, the type that the parable goes on to illustrate, the heartfelt, desperate cry of a widow, before a godless judge, for vindication and deliverance.(Do we not live in a day of godless judges with a lot of temporal power?).