Luke 18:1-He told them a parable to illustrate that it is necessary always to pray and not lose heart.
Of all the things God commands us to do, being persistent in prayer proves to be the most difficult for so many people.
For whatever reason, some people find it more easier to complain than to pray.
They have been tempted into convincing themselves that complaining works because they may get a temporary satisfaction to what they think is the answer for what they need and therefore, stop praying because they believe that answers to pray takes too long.
Oh what great lies and deceptive thoughts the enemy brings in his attempt to make us believe that persistent prayer to the Father is useless.
Believe it or not, PRAYER WORKS!!! Not in our time, but in God's timing.
The word “persist” means “to stand or be fixed, to continue steadfastly and firmly in the pursuit of any cause, to pursue, not receding from the purpose, not to give up or abandon.”
Throughout scripture we are constantly reminded of the need for persistent prayer.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:17- We are minded to pray without ceasing.
We are reminded in mark 11:24 To pray in faith believing that we already have that which we have need of.
In our text on today in Luke 18, We are told to keep praying and never give up.
Jesus, in this text, exhorts His disciples to always pray and never give up when he said “men ought to always pray, and not give up and quit.".
To drive home His point about being persistent in prayer and not giving up, Jesus told his disciples a story about a widow woman from a certain city who went to an unjust judge to seek justice in a dispute she had with an enemy.
After having been persistent day in and day out in her pursuit for justice, the widow woman was finally granted justice by this unjust judge who did not fear God nor respect any man.
In his willingness to grant justice to this widow woman, the judge said to himself: "Even though I do not fear God nor respect man, 5 yet because this widow continues to bother me, I’m going to see that she gets justice, because she is wearing me out with her constant requests.’”
People of God, have you ever heard the saying: “the squeaky wheel gets the grease? Well, we see it manifested here in this text. It was in this woman’s persistent plea for justice that she was granted justice.
At the end of this story,, Jesus drives home (2 points) to be learned from it. (1) persistent faith is what produces the desired end and (2) if an unjust judge can render a just decision, don’t we know that our God will surely give justice to His chosen people who cry out to him day and night?
People of God, are thinking about giving up and quitting??? Don’t do it!!! GOD FORBID!!! Continue to persevere for with our God all things are possible to them that believe!!!
Our God alone is the one who can bring about righteous justice. That is why we must persist in prayer and never give up!!!
Believe it or not, as corrupt and as chaotic as this world is in which we live, Our God, The Sovereign God, has the ultimate say so in all the affairs of our lives.
God can bring miraculous justice in a corrupt world and He can bring miraculous healing in a sick world.
Regardless of the judge’s position or his injustice act, he was still under God’s Sovereign authority, power and control.
Proverbs 21:1-declares that the king's heart is in the hand of the Lord and like channels of water; God turns it whatever directions he wants.
If persistence pays off with a corrupt judge who has limited power, how much more will it pay off with a just God who has all power and authority?
As the unseen God who is the only One who can truly be called the "JUSTIFIER", our God will do what is just and what is right.
That persistent widow wanted justice and didn’t waver in her pursuit. She stood firmly and didn’t give up in her asking.
God is honored and pleased when His children persist in prayer and don't give up.
It is only through faith that man receives the forgiveness of his or her sins. And it is only through faith that God hears and answers prayer.
Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
This widow represents us. There are times when we too are burdened down with cares, worries, fears and troubles.
It is during those difficult times when it seems that every circumstance of life is stacked against and we have no where to turn to.
Perhaps, there may even be times when we are tempted to say "what is the use in praying", especially when we believe that we have prayed long enough and our prayers are still yet to be answered or not answered as quickly as we want them to be.
It is in those times when the enemy of our mind tries to attempt us into believing that God does not hear nor will He answer our prayer is when we MUST trust and believe that God knows all about our situation and even yet while we are paying, He is working things out for our good and He will answer us.
This widow woman is proof to us that persistent prayer of faith works!!!
Throughout the bible we see where many of God's people were persistent in prayer.
The Apostle Paul prayed three times for a “thorn in the flesh” to be removed. God did not remove Paul’s thorn in the flesh, but instead He told Paul that my grace is sufficient for you.
In the garden of Gethsemane, 3 times Jesus persistently prayed "My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”
Jesus prayer to the Father was not answered with the passing of His cup, but it was answered with divine strength to endure the cross.
Persistence prayer does not guarantee that you will get what you asked for, but it does produces and delivers exceedingly abundantly above what we ask or think.
People of God, the choices we are left with on this morning is to keep praying or quit, keep pressing on with God or giving up on God. There is no other options!!!
People of God, I can only hope and pray that this day you have found yourself in a place of perseverance in persistant prayer to God our Father who promises to hear and answer our prayers of faith.
People of God, remember, "The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much."