The main lesson from The Parable of the Persistent Widow is the importance of never giving up in prayer. This story, found in Luke 18:1-8, shows how an unjust judge eventually helped the persistent widow because she kept asking for justice. It suggests that if even an unjust judge would respond well to persistence, how much more would a just and loving God respond to His faithful followers.
Jesus told this parable to instruct and encourage His disciples to persevere in prayer. Later, in Luke 22:39-46, we see Jesus asking the disciples to pray for him on the Mount of Olives, just before he was betrayed by Judas. However, instead of praying, the disciples fell asleep.
The story of The Persistent Widow reminds us not to lose interest or get lazy in our spiritual life, especially in praying. Instead of acting like the disciples who didn’t pray when they were supposed to, we should be like the persistent widow, who kept praying even when things were hard. This story shows us how important it is to always pray, even when it’s tough, and to trust that God will answer our prayers at the right time.
Summary of The Parable of The Persistent Widow
Jesus told The Parable of the Persistent Widow to His disciples to emphasize the importance of perseverance in prayer.
And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’
In Luke 18:2-3, Jesus describes a judge who was indifferent to God and people’s opinions, and a widow who repeatedly sought justice from him. Though the unjust judge initially refused, he eventually granted her request to avoid further annoyance and her potential anger.
Jesus used this story to illustrate that, similarly, God will answer prayers for justice from those who persistently seek it. However, while the judge did the right thing due to annoyance, God answers out of love for His people.
Overall, Luke 18:6-8 reassures believers that God will swiftly bring justice to those who cry out to Him continuously. Jesus concludes by questioning whether, upon His return, faith will still be found on earth. This parable teaches the importance of unwavering faith and persistence in prayer.
11 Lessons from the Parable of the Persistent Widow
1. Persistence Pays Off:
Just as the persistent widow eventually received justice from the indifferent judge, those who persistently seek God in prayer will find what they are looking for. (Luke 18:5 – “yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice“)
2. God Promises Justice:
And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly.
3. Be Patient in Prayer:
Some prayers may not be answered immediately, but that doesn’t mean they won’t be answered. It’s important to remain patient and continue to trust in God’s timing. (Psalm 27:14 – “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”)
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4. Be Perseverant in Prayer:
Jesus warns against becoming weary in prayer, as seen when His disciples fell asleep instead of praying with Him in His hour of need. (Matthew 26:40-41 – “Couldn’t you men keep watch with me for one hour?” he asked Peter. “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.”)
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)
5. Prayer Moves God:
Our prayers have the power to move the heart of God, especially when they align with His will and desires. (1 John 5:14-15 – “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.”)
6. Maintain Faith:
Even when prayers seem unanswered or delayed, it’s crucial to hold onto faith and trust in God’s plan. (Hebrews 11:1 – “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”)
7. Keep Your Faith Burning:
Just as the wise virgins kept their lamps lit, believers should keep their faith burning bright while awaiting answered prayers and the return of Christ. (Matthew 25:10 – “But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.”)
8. Those Who Cry Out to God Will Be Answered:
God promises to swiftly bring justice to those who cry out to Him continuously. (Luke 18:7-8 – “And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly.”)
9. Do Not Grow Weary:
We should not grow weary in doing good as we wait for answered prayers, for in due season we will reap a reward if we do not give up. (Galatians 6:9 – “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”)
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10. Prayer is Powerful:
The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
11. The Lord Isn’t Slow:
In the parable of the persistent widow, Jesus said: “God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off?I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly.“ (Luke 18:7-8)
Unlike the unjust judge, God will not delay. However, keep in mind that God’s timing is not the same as human timing; and though we may wait, He is never slow as we consider slowness. (2 Peter 3:9 – “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.“)
The Parable of the Persistent Widow reminds us of the importance of unwavering faith and persistence in prayer. Jesus used this story to teach His disciples about the necessity of continually seeking God and trusting in His timing. Despite the delays or apparent silence in response to our prayers, Jesus assures believers that God hears and will answer according to His perfect will.
Also, the parable of the persistent widow was shared right after Jesus spoke about The Coming of the Kingdom of God in Luke 17:11-37. Luke 17:11-37 highlights that Jesus wanted us to have faith and be prepared for when His returns. Since the Son of Man will come unexpectedly, believers must remain vigilant, keeping their faith alive and their hearts ready for His arrival.
Therefore, the parable serves as a reminder to persevere in prayer and maintain faithfulness as we await the fulfillment of God’s promises.