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                The Gospels in Harmony                                      Luke  18:1-8                        Sermon #341  Posted 4/26/21

Luke 18:1-8
The Gospels in Harmony  Sermon #341-42621

 

1  And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; 
2  Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: 
3  And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. 
4  And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; 
5  Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. 
6  And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. 
7  And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? 
8  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

     And Jesus spoke to His disciples!
Well Folks, the first thing you need to decide is: Are you a disciple of Jesus Christ!
    Are you saved or do you claim to be?
Have you given your life to Jesus or do you claim some sort of religiosity?
Do you believe discipleship is a thing of the past and all you need to do now is be good and do as good as you can?
Do you search the Bible for the answers to how you are to live and honor God in your life or do you just act like you think a Christian should when you are in public?
     The first thing everyone should understand about salvation is you are asking God to forgive you while you are committing your life to Christ who gave His life for you. You are asking to become a lifelong disciple of our Lord and Savior. There are no more Apostles. Paul was the last one. But everyone who sincerely seeks salvation through faith in Jesus Christ will also be obedient to the Word of God, Jesus Christ therefore becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ. 
     Now in the KJV the words -to this end--- are italicized. This means they have been added to make the meaning of the verse clear or to continue the direction of the meaning. That direction is the understanding of the parable itself. The end meaning is: ----that, men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
Luke 18:1
      Well you may think to yourself: "I do pray. I pray all the time. I pray before I eat and I pray before I go somewhere and I pray for this and that and I pray before I go to sleep; yeah I pray all the time."
Well, good for you. However, you just missed the point of the parable.
Let's see if we can get a better understanding of what God is looking for in His children and the disciples of Jesus.
    The first thing we see in this parable are two main characters. The Judge and the Widow.
Now many people, for some reason, place the judge in this parable as a godhead figure. They somehow try to make him represent God, probably because he has the power to decide ones outcome in a case. He passes down judgment. 
    Well that is completely incorrect. The judge does not represent God in anyway. 
First we see that this man does not fear God!
In other words God means nothing to Him. 
Second this man does not regard man. 
He couldn't care less about anyone's problem. There is no compassion in him for others. 
    So right off the bat we can see that in no way this character is comparable to God. God is our long suffering, loving, compassionate Father in heaven. He is our righteous judge not one who could care less and doles out sentences with no concern for our well being.
    Well now I'm sure right here someone is going to say "What about sending people to Hell?"
I have news for you: God does not send people to Hell. They choose to go there! Refusing salvation through faith and obedience to Jesus Christ is your choice. And the result is eternal damnation. 
God did not create Hell. Hell is the result of the absence of God in your life.
Just like darkness is the absence of light and cold is the absence of heat.
So we see this judge is the exact opposite of God because of his lack of compassion and concern for man.

3  And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary.
Luke 18:3
     The second character in this parable is a widow. Now that right off tells us she has no man to defend her and therefore she is easily taken advantage of. The word adversary in our text has the meaning of a great enemy, the Devil, an accuser of the brethren. Obviously the person was a servant of Satan doing his bidding against this woman of faith. 
That is the implied action by the definition and usage of the word adversary.
    Jesus is saying that here is a woman of faith being harassed and wronged by Satan through his servant and this woman has only an unconcerned and self centered judge to turn to.

4  And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;
Luke 18:4
      Now the judge would not concern himself with her problem for a while.
Why should he? He did care about her and her problems. They had nothing to do with him.
But after a while this woman began to wear him down with her persistence.
Was she pestering him until she could get her way? No.
She was seeking what was right. This is not an example of begging until you get whatever you want. This is telling us we should have the fortitude to keep asking for righteousness and holiness and peace in our lives.
    So the judge decides to do what is right even though he could care less about this woman's problems.
He said --Though I fear not God, nor regard man;--He wasn't doing it because God commands it or men say he should, he was doing it because she just would not quit coming back and asking for him to do something about her problem. 
5  Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.
Luke 18:5
    Obviously more concerned with his own well being the judge decides to avenge this woman just to shut her up!
6  And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith.
Luke 18:6
Even Jesus points out how self centered and self righteous this judge was. 
If he hadn't been so absorbed with keeping his own state of being he would not have given this woman the time of day.
    Now here comes the proof of the judge being the exact opposite of God.
7  And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?
Luke 18:7
    Too often this verse is taken down to a single person. In fact it is not saying a person crying day and night. It is saying Gods own elect. Many, many Christians, brothers in Christ throughout the world crying out to God at all hours. 
---though He bear long with them--- means He is forever listening to them throughout their lives. The word "them" states more than one or many and means God listens to all who come to Him in all sincerity. 
    Does He let them go on and on until He can't stand to hear them any longer? No!
For the true Christian, Gods elect, He is ready to answer their prayers.
It honors a father for his children to come and speak with him and ask him for help. It proves they are aware of his ability to make things right and to guide and direct them on a better path. 
   God is our Father and has opened the door for us to come to Him in prayer through Jesus Christ. In Christ we have the right to approach the throne of grace and ask for God to take care of us. 

8  I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. -------
Luke 18:8

God always answers quickly. We may not see the outcome of His answer as quickly but God always answers our prayers. We must understand that what we may think the answer should be is not always what God knows it should be. 
8  For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. 
9  For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways,
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Isaiah 55:8-9
   It is only for us to bring our troubles to our Father and trust in Him.
----Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?
Luke18:8
   Oh my beloved brethren, this is the whole point of the parable Jesus is telling His disciples.
1  And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; 
    True faith will not doubt that God has heard the sincere prayer and has already answered. Faith is knowing your problem is being taken care of Gods way. Trust is patiently and obediently remaining in prayer for Gods glory to be proven through His answer.

 

10  For as the rain cometh down,
and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither,
but watereth the earth,
and maketh it bring forth and bud,
that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: 
11  So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth:
it shall not return unto me void,
but it shall accomplish that which I please,
and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
Isaiah 55:10-11

      Faithful in prayer and obedient for Gods glory. Is this the kind of Christian you are?
Is this what Christ will find in you and your church members when He returns?
Perhaps we need to spend more time praying for Gods Glory to be known through us and others instead of focusing on just our wants and needs.  Give God the praise all you saints!

 

Pastor Steven Freede
Cornerstone Independent Church Ministry
4/26/21

 

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