Bible Society of South Africa

A persistent plea – 30 March 2022

By Xanthe Hancox

Bible text(s)

The Parable of the Widow and the Judge

1Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to teach them that they should always pray and never become discouraged. 2“In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected people. 3And there was a widow in that same town who kept coming to him and pleading for her rights, saying, ‘Help me against my opponent!’ 4For a long time the judge refused to act, but at last he said to himself, ‘Even though I don't fear God or respect people, 5yet because of all the trouble this widow is giving me, I will see to it that she gets her rights. If I don't, she will keep on coming and finally wear me out!’ ”

Luke 18:1-5GNBOpen in Bible reader

Widows were often vulnerable in Jesus’s time, with very few rights, no one to advocate for them, and no one to care for them in their old age. The judge in today’s story had the power to give the widow what was rightfully hers, but he did not honour God or human opinion.

Although it felt like a hopeless situation, the widow persisted each day with the same request for justice. Finally, the judge became so tired of her pleading that he decided her case and ruled in her favour.

Jesus told this parable to show his followers that “they should always pray and not give up.” Jesus tells this story to teach us about God. If a judge like the one in the parable gives way to the pleas of a helpless widow, how much more will God listen to the prayers of his people and bring about their deliverance! God will surely come to the aid of those who cry out to him. He cares deeply for the helpless, the vulnerable, and the needy.

Correspondingly, we must be persistent in prayer. If a good-for-nothing judge can be swayed by persistent pleading, we can be certain that God will respond to our constant prayers.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for giving us hope in our dark times as we wrestle against adversaries. Hear our prayer and act quickly on our behalf. Amen

Bible Society of South Africav.4.18.10
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